Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Kickball Ramblings: The Great Debate - Indoor vs. Outdoor

If there’s one thing that I enjoy doing, it is bringing up questions for debate, making cases for both sides of the argument, and then ultimately deciding nothing.
So in that spirit, the latest question I will not answer is this: Are NAKID sports better when played indoors or outdoors?
Back in the day, there was really no reason for debate.  Regardless of whether you preferred your kickball to be played indoors or outdoors, you didn’t actually have a choice.  The winter season was for indoor kickball, and spring and fall were for outdoor kickball.  Everyone grudgingly accepted this and went about their business.

Guess it's time for indoor kickball

But now that both indoor and outdoor sports are offered during the summer and fall seasons, the question becomes more pertinent.  Or at least as pertinent as a question about social sports can be.
The biggest advantage for the indoor sports would seem to be the weather, or more accurately, the lack thereof.  No matter what the weather may be like outside, the conditions inside the YMCA gym are always perfect for playing sports.
In contrast, outdoor sports are always subject to the whims of Mother Nature.  And as anyone who played on Sundays this past fall can tell you, she can be a real bitch sometimes.
For the first few weeks of the season we had ball-meltingly hot temperatures.  It got so bad that I think a couple people might have spontaneously combusted one week.  For some reason, people tend to forget just how hot it gets in Washington during the summer, but those early games were a strong reminder. 
A scene from the National Mall in August. Yes, there are mountains in Washington now.
After the heat finally broke we got weeks upon weeks of rain.  While this might have been beneficial for the grass, it didn’t exactly enhance the kickball playing experience.
Nature finally relented slightly and we got some nice weather towards the end of the season.  But nature was apparently just teasing us, and for the weekend of the playoffs we suffered through unseasonable cold and a steady rain.
So at first glance, it would seem that the indoor sports have a huge advantage here. 
But on the other hand, aren’t the indoor players missing out on all the nice weather that we sometimes get? 
On the days when conditions are perfect, it seems like kind of a waste to be stuck inside.  When it’s 80 degrees and sunny, isn’t it nice to get to run around outside for an hour or so? 
So basically, as I mentioned at the start, I haven’t really taken a definitive stand on either side of the argument.  If you read this far expecting something different, then that’s your own fault.  It’s kind of like going to an Adam Sandler movie and expecting some sort of highbrow entertainment.
Speaking of Sandler, what happened to him?  His early movies were funny as hell.  And now, I’d be embarrassed to tell anyone that I was going to see one of his movies. 
I thought maybe it was because I’ve gotten older and my tastes have matured.  But I can still watch Happy Gilmore and laugh.  Would 19 year-old me think Jack and Jill was funny?  I can’t imagine that I would.
I’m just disappointed that AWESOM-O can’t come up with any ideas better than “Adam Sandler plays his own twin sister.”
Anyway, getting back to the original subject matter, perhaps I’ll present some further arguments the next time I get bored and decide to write something.
But for now, I’ll talk about another defunct cereal.
Retro Cereal of the Week
This week’s cerealicious blast from the past is Morning Funnies.

The main draw of this cereal was that the box featured comic strips from some of the day’s “favorite” Sunday comics.  I’m not sure exactly who considered Hi and Lois or Tiger to be among their favorite comics, but I suppose that some people out there might have really loved them.
It’s hard to figure how this cereal would have been successful.  Unless the cereal tasted really, really amazing, how much business could they expect from a comic strip gimmick?  Were they hoping that a large percentage of Americans simply couldn’t wait until Sunday to read new color comics, and were craving a mid-week fix?  
And it doesn’t seem like they’d get much repeat business either.  While there were a few different box variations, was there really any motivation to buy a box once you had already read the comics the first time?
Apparently, the back flap of the box which contained the comics was considered to be a big innovation in the world of cereal box manufacturing.  According to this guy’s LinkedIn profile, he won an award for it:

And we shall conclude with another link that may (or may not) be an embarrassing picture of Dan Boger: