by Kevin Hatch
Special (Surpassing what is common or usual; exceptional.)
Pseudoscientific (A theory, methodology, or practice that is considered to be without scientific foundation)
Ultimate (Representing the greatest possible development or sophistication.)
Ultimate (Team disc sport. Not clear if dogs are involved.)
Fantasy (An imagined event or sequence of mental images, usually fulfilling a wish or psychological need.)
Speculation (Engagement in risky business transactions on the chance of quick or considerable profit.)
Experiment (To try something new.)
Summary (A brief statement of main points as a conclusion to a work.)
With fanfare and hullabaloo the SPUUF experiment was implemented Thu Nov. 29th in the VOTS Fall league for the Huck Soup vs Brick House game. With fantasy ultimate already enjoying a secure and welcome place in ultimate culture, inspiring partisan cheering, heckling, goading, and in some circles rather pointed spewing (arahSay), the SPUUF concept was spawned as an attempt to expand upon the fun by actually keeping track of various and sundry points maneuvers, events, and deeds and posting the results on a scoreboard. With the scoreboard in place, the next obvious enhancement that demanded implementation was that of a wagering book to further enhance the experience by inspiring even more partisanship and also providing the opportunity for some lucky participant to win enough scratch to buy everyone a beer at Old Chicago.
Special and voluminous thanks go out to Huck Soup and Brick House for playing along and allowing their game to be imposed upon. Of course, what were they going to do about it?
The thing got off to a sort of wobbly start, as it seemed that most folks interested in putting up the ante had only cursorily scanned the email explaining how to play. But it didn't turn our to matter much as only 10 big risk takers joined in.
I'll not go into any depth in covering the game, but it is worth noting that it turned out to be a tight and spirited contest that went down to the wire, with Huck Soup finally prevailing 11-10. As near as I could tell, the effect of the SPUUF on the game was minimal. The only obvious gratuitous point-grabbing maneuver was Al's style points catch on the final point. There were a lot of hammers, but I don't know if that was normal, the result of the SPUUF subtext, or, what seemed more likely, Squeaky's constant shouting for anyone and everyone to "Throw a hammer!", "Hammer!", "Throw the hammer!"
The point results had some expected results and some surprises. Al and Dhey, wily vets with solid throwing skills and uncanny abilities for making it look like any mistake near them was someone else's fault. Al notched a +10, with 3 points coming from extras like hammers for scores and the style points catch for score. Dhey posted a +7, with his lone extra point coming from a D (!). Tiamo turned in a solid +4 to round out the top three point gainers. After those showoffs, Jason Lewis and Susie Hirsch notched +3s and Larry and Kathi posted +2s.
One surprise was that the team of scorers was able to conduct their business at all with all the conflicting interests at play. Numerous events inspired varying and opposing takes on various and sundry merits and demerits of this or that, but in the end I only had to threatening flash the bullhorn a couple of times to settle quarrels.
In a very surprising turn of events, completely unexpected and by all that is holy I swear this wasn't fixed, VOTS president Jill Blutt won and took home, or to Old Chicago, the $20 prize. Jill's roster of Gretchen, Kathi, Ray, Al, Jesse, Dhey, and Larry, worth 22 points, doesn't seem all that shrewdly played. I guess everyone else who played must be a little obvious-challenged. The best possible play could have garnered 29 points by picking Al (10), Dhey (7), Tiamo (4), Jason (3), Susie (3), one of either Gretchen (1) or Sylvia (1), and one of either Cary (1) or Andy (1). This was what I was going to play, but I decided to recuse myself in order to make it appear that I have a shred of credibility.
All in all, I think the thing was a success. There seems to be some sentiment for spuufing points in the league final next Saturday. Let's just assume it's going to happen, however, if you feel a need to express concerns, dismay, or your opinion in any other fashion, I suggest utilizing the handy dandy VOTS message board to state your case. For those folks who read their email really quickly and kind of blow through it without really reading it (I know you’re out there), go back and re-read the last sentence. So come prepared to play next Saturday. I think we’ll make a couple of small changes though. The entry fee will only be $1. This will hopefully take the edge off so that people aren't quite so jacked up about everything. And instead of taking lists from people, they will present their list and have it stamped when they pay their fee, keeping their list and tallying their points themselves and then trying to convince me that they didn't cheat when they try to collect. Btw, since I'm planning on being in the final, I'm guessing some other nutcase will pick up the ball if I'm unable to attend to the important duty of lording over the scoring.