These are just some of the incredibly manly terms that come up when playing the least gay sport ever: Curling. The term "Curling" actually comes from the way men's chest hair curls when several thousand screaming women cheer them on from the audience. It's just an occupational hazard. Don't want curly chest hair? Don't curl. Don't have chest hair? Then you can't curl.
Tom Gundarson (Like we were teenagers) decided that many of the people he knew were simply giving off too much testosterone, and so invited us for a gentlemen's match of curling, but only if our stones were big enough to compete. The stones that I own are bigger than regulation size, so I had to go with what the rink provided.
|Tom Gunderson Amie Mendenhall|
We heard that there was sweeping involved, so we decided to bring along the womenfolk. Practice makes perfect, or so they say. Amie and Mike Mendenhall joined in on the curling action, but this post isn't about them this time. (We'll be spending time with them another day.) A last minute cancellation meant that we met up with Mike and Kaylee. Mike was stronger than I was, but he was on my team, so we were good.
There were 8 of us that stepped into the rink that night. The four men ready to compete through an iced-up metaphorical match of fisticuffs, and the four women faithfully supporting us in our endeavor. Though we had all been through countless man-proving challenges, none of us were ready for the sheer intensity of the game.
As I walked into the rink that night, my eyes slowly adjusted to my surroundings. "What, is that blood?" I thought to myself. Surely it was, let from those who had lost this grisly game. No. Only the red lines painted on the ice to measure boundaries.
I then sensed other bodies in the arena. Like a gladiator of old I puffed up my chest and flexed every last one of my muscle. I did not want to let the other seasoned curlers know that I was fresh meat. Surely they would eat me alive, and leave my body for the crows.
But, the bodies were smaller than I thought. And the anatomy... different. Oh no.
I suddenly felt somewhat less manly. Granted, many were pretty manly women, but it did take some of the grandeur out of the whole thing.
No matter, we went ahead.
Tom split us up into 2 different teams, of 4 people each. He made sure to split us so that we were not with our spouses. This way, if fist flew amongst team members, at least it wouldn't be spousal abuse. I ended up on Mike's team, and Trish on Kaylee's.
Mike was our skip. And I really don't know why they call it that. Try skipping on ice. Really. Make sure you're taking a video of it.
|I think your so called 'skip' has other talents.|
I don't want to talk about how the game went. Turns out, the women put us to shame in the scoring department, and we all got in touch with our feminine sides as we learned how to vigorously work the brooms. I've been sweeping in front of Trish everywhere she goes in the house, and I'm pretty sure she's going faster now.
|Sweep, sweep, sweep away Ry. If only these skills could transfer to shoveling snow. |
Just think how fast the driveway would be cleared!
Hmmm... Or mopping. So many possibilities...
|To sweep or not to sweep? I still need to get that figured out.|
So it turns out that curling does not require the special talents that men hold so dear. Finesse seemed to be the key. Balance. Coordination. And other things that are foreign to me.
|As a first time curler, it was either - Coordination or Skill - Not both. |
I mostly lacked in the coordination department most of the night,
as in the women curling next to us were thoroughly amused at the majority of my sad attempts.
|Ryley making it look easy. What the picture doesn't show is my awesome |
rock busting shots after him that earned us some pivotal points.
Next time maybe Tom will choose a more manly sport. Like making sandwiches or something.
|The not quite winners.|
|The best part about this picture is that Ryley and Mike both turned for a mug shot pose, |
at the exact same moment. and direction, without prior discussion.
However, I don't think I can afford to pay his bail.
|Had a great time with some great friends, some newer than others.|
Who knew curling could make such a fun date night. I highly recommend it.
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