Tonight was the best night of ultimate playing that I’ve ever had, and that’s no hyperbole. The day was beautiful and sunny with a high in the mid-high 80s. We had enough breeze to keep us cool but not so much as to throw the disc off track.
The game itself was pretty awesome. I had some good runs and caught the disc quite a number of times. Heck, I even managed to pass the disc forward (the throwing forward is my weak point – I often throw backwards to another player that throws better). My team ended up winning by a handy margin.
After the game, several of us stuck around to have some fun, and my friend Kelly introduced the idea of “leftimate.” In this variant, you must tuck your dominant hand behind your back (the right hand, for most players) and catch and throw the disc exclusively with your left hand. Like I said, I’m not the best handler (the ultimate term for someone who throws the disc) with my right hand, and I was nervous about my left hand.
Turns out that my left hand is pretty darn good. I might have to keep practicing and become an ambidextrous ultimate player.
We also played with two more variations: we played without cleats (and this isn’t cushy grass, so that is a challenge), and we played a modified form of ultimate called hotbox. In hotbox, you play with a small goal inside a larger square. You can only stay in the goal for three seconds, so the game still involves a lot of movement and a fair number of dropped discs (and dropped discs means the other team gets it). So, we had a bunch of righties trying to use their left hands to pass the disc to people that ran through this small goal.
I’m afraid my post just doesn’t do it justice. I didn’t have my camera available, so there’s no record of this awesome night. But suffice to say that it was amazing. It also showed me how far I’ve come as a player: hotbox relies on good throwing and being able to fake out your defender, as the box is so small that speed is fairly insignificant. Last year, I played hotbox a few times with my dominant hand, and I was always a mess. This year, I did quite a bit better.
After the sun set, we dispersed, and my ultimate buddy Mark and I cooked a fabulous impromptu dinner of pasta, chicken, onions, and spinach. It’s the first home cooked meal I’ve had in almost three days.
The only thing that would have made my night better was the delivery of our new fridge (the whole thing is dead). I am assured that the new fridge will be delivered tomorrow. I’ll believe it when I hear the reassuring hum of fresh vegetable storage again.