February 02, 2005

Glass–Air hockey

Pending a couple of superb action shots, here's a brief introduction to a brand new sport:

But first, a bit of background: As Rootes residents may be aware, the crazy bike trailer has made a come-back. Since Anthony's kind and loving parents (you never know, they might read this) brought it up this term, he has been getting back into the swing of big Tesco shops, despite a completely flat tyre on one side. This trailer has an interesting history, and you may wish to fast-forward the blog a paragraph if you really have no interest in trailers whatsoever.

For those of you who haven't, this trailer was custom built using a few chunks of scrap iron from a nearby skip and a child's bicycle (dragged out of retirement for the purpose). I built it with my dad (oops, Anthony dropped out of the third person there for a second) one chilly weekend halfway through term 1, and it has served its purpose as a platform for a 72 litre indestructible box for many long Tesco shops. I even had some total strangers write me a letter with an offer to purchase it (I won't mention the pitifully low offer here – when one runs a Glassball blog one has to maintain a scrap of dignity somehow). When I refused, they proceeded to attempt to steal it, but somehow the clever use of a nut to secure the trailer to a bolt on the back of the bike nipped their daring exploit in the bud. (To be fair, they did succeed in undoing the nut, but lifting the trailer off the bolt somehow defeated them). The trailer will take quite a lot of stuff, and I once bought 30 litres of orange juice in a single purchase from a nervous girl who insisted that the legal limit was 6, but who gave way eventually to my eloquence and obvious desire for vast quantities of orange juice.

And back to the main point of the whole story – I had just beaten my personal OJ record by buying, in a single purchase, 36 litres of Tesco Value Orange Juice. Now, with all this juice kicking about, it was only a matter of time before someone came up with the bright idea of adapting the kitchen table for air-hockey. Using a total of 32 (that's how many would fit in a square 2 across if we lived in 5 dimensional space) we lined the edge of the table with cartons, leaving gaps at either end for goals. Then, using the Glasses in place of thingys (whatever those things are you use in air hockey), and 4 ping pong balls (one just wasn't hectic enough), the somewhat cowardly and inferior game of Glass-Air hockey was born. I think it got more surprised visitors in the first 5 minutes of its existence than Glassball got for a good 6 weeks, partly due to the excessive noise of ashtrays being violently slid back and forth over a table and the odd carton of orange juice falling off and bursting on the floor. All in all, I think a fitting success for the inventor, creator, director and facilitator that is Anthony. Unfortunately, at the rate at which I drink orange juice, I sense this game being more short-lived than any other multi-ping-pong-ball related game I have ever invented.

Finally, a happy Wednesday from all at the Glassball Federation (officially not recognised by the Warwick Sports Federation for the petty reason that we have 3 instead of 30 regular members)

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