Methods of Mayhem

Well, I hurt my f-ing shoulder moving some heavy crap on Saturday which completely hobbled me and made playing the guitar a total bitch. It’s an old pain which I reactivate now and again when I pretend I have any arm strength.

I did get to play a little pong over the weekend with Todd and Andy. Todd was extremely distressed at losing pretty much every game he played. We thought it was a good opportunity to try out our new scoring systems. We adapted method 1 (see below) a little bit so that: every time you decisively win a point, you get a positive one point; every time you totally screw up a returnable ball, you get a negative one point. A player wins either by getting to positive eleven points or by having his opponent hit negative eleven points.

This method stunk. First of all, I had to keep score on a pad to figure all the crap out, then we kept getting confused about how many times they’d served. I figured we needed a line judge and a service judge and … hell, there isn’t enough room in Todd’s upstairs for all those people. Secondly, the game seems to go on forever. And lastly, it doesn’t make any sense. If one could win by his opponent hitting a negative threshold, then it’s the same as just playing the normal game. But if we hadn’t given a losing threshold then no one would have crawled out to a positive score.

Then we tried method two: like volleyball, you serve til you lose a point. Well, they traded serves just about every point.

Perhaps the designers of ping pong’s scoring system were craftier than we give them credit.

Todd did defeat me in the last game we played. It was close 24-22. He played a different style that seemed to work for him: watching the ball at all times. I play a highly intuitive game – like using the force – I try to sense where the ball will be. But my assessment of Todd’s game is that he’s always thinking too much about his serve, his spin, his placement. So focusing on the ball may take his mind off all the other things he’s trying to do and help him win.

Like I said, we think about this a great deal.

In Kirsten Dunst tribute song news, I haven’t heard from Geoff this morning but Friday, he reported that, “it’s looking like my song is going to turn out sounding like somebody was drunk and decided to pour a bottle of sweet, sticky Aunt Jemima all over a big ol’ block of cheesy cheese.”

That sounds fantastic.

My gimp wing prevented me from recording my epic Kirsten Dunst heartbreaker this weekend, but hopefully I will mend quickly and hit the four-track in the next day or so.

In Crazy From The Heat news: 1) My friend Dana Cerrick reportedly played my song “Easy Street” out twice last week. 2) Despite sending a charming bio and CD to “The Local Buzz,” no the Hit On List song was played. I am crushed. Natalie shall not receive a Christmas card from me this year. But if you want to hear the Hit On List’s songs on the radio, email her or give her a call at 615.737.1029.