Stuff I love: Darts

I decided that I’m going to finish out the year just writing about stuff I like.  This is kind of a challenge.  A little history-

Throughout college I wrote a zine.  It was the 90s.  That’s what people did.  It was mostly like this blog, just random stuff- drawings, stuff about music, stuff about my personal life, my thoughts on things, etc.  My most popular story, judging by the response of the handful of people who read my zine- “I HATE MY ROOMMATE”.  It was a three page take-down of all the annoying, weird shit my roommate would do.

The positive response I got from it set a pretty bad precedent for me.  I can amuse people by writing nasty things about others!  Not good.  Also not good was the fact that I was absolutely serious, I hated that guy.  I even considered leaving a copy somewhere that I would be sure he could find it.

But I don’t like thinking of myself as a jerk, and I actually don’t think I’m someone who complains that much in real life.  I am, truth be told, fairly indifferent to most things and tend towards a mulish refusal to pass judgement on other people.  On the odd occasions that I do get passionate about something, it’s usually utterly trivial and I think it’s funny to angry about it.

I get road rage like everyone else, though, I don’t want people to think I’m a robot.

But anyway, I’m going to take a break from pointing out silly inconsistencies in pop music lyrics (AKA shooting fish in a barrel) and try to write about things I really like, if only just to see if I can.  Here goes.

Darts

I am one of only two avid dart players that I know personally.  Plenty of people play in bars, using the house darts, but I have my own set.  I have my own board.  I tend to practice 2-3 times a week.

I can’t really remember how or why I picked up darts, but probably it was because 9-10 years ago I was spending a lot of time at a friends apartment and they had a board.  I tend to wake up relatively, so if I’d crash at their place I’d wake up and start throwing darts to pass the time.  I don’t remember being all that great at it, but I have a fairly obsessive personality- I’m the person who is still playing a video game everyone else has long since got bored of, or throwing darts after everyone else has gotten tired of it.

After that I got a board for myself.  Throwing things at a target was just a nice way to deal with stress.

I started really playing in earnest a few years ago.  My friend moved nearby a bar that had two nicely lit boards and almost no one playing on them. We’d usually play a dozen or so games every friday night.  My wife was busy studying and his wife worked evenings, so it was a good time to get out.  I guess we could have just gone to the bar and drank, but this seemed like a slightly better use of our time, plus you don’t drink quite so much when you have other things to do.

We played using the house darts before graduating to our own sets of darts.  I’m now on my third set of darts.  They’re 90% tungsten and made in the USA.

Anyway, part of what I like about darts is that it’s not pool.  I don’t know, pool just seems so flashy, like you spend half the time trying to look cool.  Also, I suck at pool.  I am also terrible at shuffleboard.  Other than darts, any game that involves beer is a game I am terrible at.  That includes poker and bowling too.

A couple of things-

I don’t play for money.  Not because I think I’m not good enough, but because I don’t enjoy gambling AND I’m afraid I will beat the wrong person and will get my fingers broken.  One guy kept talking about how he has two boards in his garage and how we should come and play.  He might have been totally on the up-and-up but all I could think of was ending up like Roy Munson in Kingpen.

I will not loan my darts to people at the bar.  I see what they’ve done to the house darts.

I usually play cricket, because that’s the game everyone likes to play, but I like 501 or 301 as well.  Don’t tell my friends I said this, and I’m not trying to brag (even though I will) but cricket is a little too easy for me, and mechanically destroying them game after game is kind of mean, so I deliberately miss sometimes.  But I’d probably play 501 more often if more of my friends could play it.  Someday I want to join a league and so I have to get better at that game.

I also play with my dad a lot.  Hanging out in bars tends to be a big part of what my dad and I do, and darts are a good friendly competition.  I tend to beat him a lot.  He’s much better than me at pool though, so I suggest pool every now and then just to even things out.

Well that’s what I got.  I have decided that other than the customary book reviews I am going to stick with this til the new year.  We’ll see.

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4 comments

    1. I have watched a few of those on Youtube just to get a flavor for it. It’s more intense than I would have guessed. People in the audience even had signs for 180 (three triple 20s- highest possible score in a turn)- that they’d hold up their signs up and go nuts every time someone scored one. I read the best guy in the last twenty years is named Phil something (Jones? can’t remember) his nickname is The Power. He even had it on his shirt

    1. Pool is really much cooler, I wish I could play, but I just can’t do the geometry. I have a 92 year old grandfather who still plays every day. That’s one good thing about both games- you can play them at any age.

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