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Weirdo Wednesday – October 12, 2011

October 12, 2011

“If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball.”
– Rip Torn as Patches O’Houlihan

Weirdo Wednesday

Dodgeball. You know the game.

You and your teammates stand in a line across the playground from your opponent, waiting with anticipation, alert, strong, and maybe even a little scared.

The rules are simple. The is to eliminate all opposing players by getting them “OUT”. This may be done by:

  1. Hitting an opposing player with a LIVE thrown ball below the shoulders.
  2. Catching a LIVE ball thrown by your opponent before it touches the ground.

Definition: LIVE: A ball that has been thrown and has not touched anything, including the floor/ground, another ball, another player, official or other item outside of the playing field (wall, ceiling, etc)

(It occurs to me I know way too much about Dodgeball.)

You may already be saying to yourself, wait a second, Mills. Dodgeball is one of our children’s favorite pastimes. It doesn’t belong in here, hanging on the walls of Weirdo Wednesday like some big game trophy. It’s as American as Apple Pie and Marilyn Monroe. It’s as old as the little red schoolhouse and as young as a child wants to make it.

True, our beloved Dodgeball is an institution worthy of respect and honor, I give you that. The game, a  mainstay of elementary schools across the nation, is all grown up now. To use a social-network phrase — Dodgeball has gone viral.

On September 21st, students from Univ of California, Irvine gathered on the grass of the university’s Anteater Recreation Fields to play Dodgeball. In all a total of 4,448 students came out to play. This was an attempt to break the Guiness World Record of players in a Dodgeball game previously set by the Rochester Institute of Technology at 2136. To break the record that game must include one ball for every four players. (1,112 balls for the UCI game.) That’s a lot of balls.

At the sound of the starting gun balls starting flying back and forth across Anteater field like cannon fire at Gettysburg. The blue team smashed the yellow team to take the victory and more than double the previous record. Official Guinness World Records™ Adjudicator Danny Girton Jr. was standing by to certify the attempt.

“If you can dodge traffic, you can dodge a ball.”
– Rip Torn as Patches O’Houlihan

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