Kickball in the City

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Never Forget

It's been a couple of months since my last post and I am now back to regular posting. I never want to let a September 11th pass without remembering what this day means. We were attacked because we support freedom. Freedom for people to drink beer, argue about stupid things like kickball, and freedom in a much more serious sense. For those of you who have forgotten about what happened six years ago think about it today. It's important to never forget.

I thank everyone who allows me to have the freedom to blog about kickball by virtue of serving the country. And I weill never forget.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

False advertising or Wishes that will never come true?

Yesterday I came across an interesting ad on Craig's List for one of the teams in the Kash guys' league looking for players. You can check it out here. I thin it's one of the best ads I've seen for a team in any league. I like the graphic, team name, and general vibe the team gives off. However, some of the claims in the ad don't, shall we say, exactly match up with reality.

First, there is no way one could ever claim that $60 is the total cost for anything in the Kash guys' league. It's more like the entry fee. Most divisions have to charge for parties, even for players, due to the paltry sum given to them while "WAKA Central" people invest the 80 percent they keep in lawsuits with other leagues or against their own brethren. Usually the only way this is a total price is if divisions have an hour or two of free beer or their parties on a Tuesday night. Again, I fault nothing to the volunteers who put this together, it's all about the Kash guys. However, the ad should state that it's the starting fee, not the total price. The total is more likely to be $70-100 for the whole season.

B: The ad states that the cost includes:

"an awesome WAKA shirt, several season parties, crazy fun times, new friends, and all of the logistics for the games are covered!"

I've already covered the parties. Crazy fun times and new friends are always up to each person's willingness to drunkenly talk to people. But all of the logistics for the games are covered? Ummmm. Many of us who have spent hours of our own time squatting for fields would object to that. I think it's accurate to say:

"you will have a general area with alleged permits that we never actually have or see where you need to show up 2-3 hours in advance to sit on to keep softballers and other leagues away (unless they have permits in which case you have to move)"

But then, that probably wouldn't entice as many people to join the team...

I thought we had permits, how much more time before games?

Finally, this bit about an "awesome WAKA shirt". I'm not going to nitpick, if they like the shirts and think they are awesome, that's fine. My issue is with guaranteeing you'll get one. Apparently several divisions across the country did not this season, as this email I received states:

Hello CA Gold Rush players,

You may be aware that some WAKA division t-shirts were not issued in a timely manner to a portion of the players this spring. WAKA takes this matter very seriously and would like to offer our sincerest apologies to the players affected. The primary factors causing the delay of shirts included vendor management, shipping, and software issues. While these are all fundamental components of any companies business and should not cause large customer or service disruptions, WAKA unfortunately experienced all of these issues at the same time. WAKA accepts full responsibility for failing to provide all of our players with the best experience possible. We are working to rectify the situation as well as compensate those players affected, and will continue to do our best to eliminate similar problems in the future.

If you were affected by these issues, you will hear from your Division Representative regarding this matter in the near future. Thank you for joining us this past spring, and we look forward to seeing you on the fields this fall.

Happy Kicking,
WAKA Customer Service

Dude where's our shirts?

The text color was changed by the Kash guys' "customer service" department - whatever the Hell that is - to fit all of the occasions where this is needed. My list includes: CA Gold Rush, DC Independence, and DC Gold. Sideshow Bob found one for Kansas City too. I have to laugh because I'm not sure what software issues could have caused this. Nor do I get how a multi million dollar, 20,000 member (as they claim) company that has been in business for 10 years could have this so poorly managed.

Why is there not an emergency stash of generic shirts warehoused at Kash Guys Central that they can ship out when these things occur? I realize that the $10,000 (latest demand confirmed by a few bar owners) the Kash guys get from bars to have the bar name on the back entitles the bar owners that this happens, but what about the customers? How about giving a portion back to the bar and saying "Yeah, we screwed up so here's is $5,000 back we had to get our kids the shirts and shipped these ones out due to a fubar situation"? The $5,000 would still more than cover the shirt costs. Oh yeah, that's right the Kash guys never give up the dough. My bad.

And this is certainly not the first time shirts from the Kash guys have been late for divisions. I recall seeing a division last season giving out shirts during its playoffs. I have experienced times when running registration where shirts have come in after the first week or two due to the crappiness of the rep, supplier, or who knows why. In other words I highly doubt that their will be any real compensation for "those players affected". Thus, the ad shouldn't guarantee anything like that, it'll just make them look bad if the Kash guys continue down their path of "we get richer, you get worse and worse service".

AKA Lost Sage, "WAKA RULES!"

On this note I have to add one other. There is a Kool-Aid Drinker Extraordinaire for the Kash guys on wakakickball365 who calls himself the Lost Sage on the boards. He attempted his, I guess, PR piece for the Kashers on the board by posting this under the heading WAKA Acknowledges Spring '07 Shirt Processing Delays:

"Hello (Division Name) players,

You may be aware that some WAKA division t-shirts were not issued in a timely manner to a portion of the players this spring. WAKA takes this matter very seriously and would like to offer our sincerest apologies to the players affected. The primary factors causing the delay of shirts included vendor management, shipping, and software issues. While these are allfundamental components of any companies business and should not cause large customer or service disruptions, WAKA unfortunately experienced all of these issues at the same time. WAKA accepts full responsibility for failing to provide all of our players with the best experience possible. We are working toaffected, and will continue to do our best to eliminate similar problems in the future.

If you were affected by these issues, you will hear from your Division Representative regarding this matter in the near future. Thank you for joining us this past spring, and we look forward to seeing you on the fields this fall."

You may not notice the difference between this alleged reprint of the email and mine, scroll up though - an important piece has been left out of this one. Go ahead, I'll wait. Can't see it, okay, here it is:

Actual email: We are working to rectify the situation as well as compensate those players affected, and will continue to do our best to eliminate similar problems in the future.

Sanatizied version: We are working toaffected, and will continue to do our best to eliminate similar problems in the future.

Seems like the least believable piece of the email, that players will actually see some compensation from the Kashers, is oddly and quite mysteriously missing from Lost Sage's example. Wonder why that would be? I'm sure it was simply a slip of the control C and control V keys and not any attempt to leave out what is clearly just a throw in line by the Kashers. I mean, wouldn't people start asking what kind of compensation or when they could expect to see it? Of course then Mr. Kashers Kool-Aid might have to face the questions and contact Kash Guy Central, which I'm sure they'd be quick to respond to. Anyway, I found that interesting to say the least.

That's the last time I respond to a Craig's List ad

Back to the point though, I am not bashing the people who put the ad up, as I stated I like it, they just need to be a bit more careful with exactly what they promise. After all, sitting out on the Mall at 4 o'clock for a 6:30 or so game with no shirt and deciding whether or not to go to a $15-for-3-hours-of-beer party at the end of August after all those promises might piss somebody off.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Some people may call it puppy love

Occasionally I get emails and comments that accuse me or Sideshow Bob of being a variety of different people. Sometimes we're people who actually don't play kickball at all, other times I am the guy who runs the Little Rock Arkansas kickball league, but most of the time people think I run NAKID. This comment regarding my last post sums that up:

Wow I even play for NAKID and I find it hilariously ironic that this blog typifys evrything that is wrong with kickball in DC(spinning insignificant details and stories into huge political issues). I am left wondering about this authors connection to NAKID because flaws can be found in ALL of the area kickball leaugues (to which we never hear about any from the later mentioned league). And yes I do realize this is a blog and you are not required to be unbaised. -Matt (sic)

I fully admit to having puppy love and a crush on NAKID. I know it's partially because it's one of the newest leagues in the area and thus small and subject to fewer problems than the Kash guys' and DC Kickball. It's also because the people I have spoken to in all leagues agree that you get your money's worth the most in NAKID. But mostly it's because while I have problems with it, at least for now, it's still my favorite. I had planned to so a sort of "season in review" for my experiences in it and this is as good a time as any.

First, the things I have problems with:

1) While I enjoy that the parties for the division you play in are free, I don't appreciate that the first two had virtually no air conditioning. While I understand that this is not the fault of the people in charge and more of the bar, it still should have been checked out in person before we were assured it would be working for the second party. All I can say is it better be working Saturday.

2) I really still get a bit annoyed at the people who share my puppy love crush on NAKID always feeling the need to defend it when others say or post anything elsewhere about the league. My feeling is that if you are secure in the greatness of the league you don't have to respond to everything.

3) The registration process is still in the dregs as I have written about before. Many people still tend to show up more than once, using the payment system is difficult for some of us, and it really needs to be streamlines. It's been a year and a half already.

4) Having the people (or person?) who run it around at everything is good and bad. The bad is that there is a tendency, in my opinion, for people to be more guarded at events or the bar then they would normally be. It also can lead to more run-ins with the people in charge than the other leagues have - that's not necessarily a good thing.

5) Teams have been been banned or disbanded from the league which is not always so good. For a new league you would think they'd want as many teams and as much good word of mouth as possible. Certainly some of the handling of teams/players will not lead to that.

6) Growing too fast? It's possible because while I understand the desire to want new teams and how difficult it may be to turn down new teams, quality control is what would continue to set NAKID apart from other leagues. As the league has grown it has seen a few chinks in the armor as stated above, as the league grows larger those need to be dealt with.

And to the good:

1) I do love getting a returning player discount and a discount for playing on more than one night. I like that the parties are free for the division you play in.

2) No forfeits, open rosters. I LOVE this rule as many times my team has been short players and instead of wasting the whole day we get to play. Sure we lost most of the time because of being down runs but at least the game counted.

3) Social activities, $1 hats, and ridiculously large trophies. At least for now, makes it seem like most of the money goes back into the league.

4) Getting the second sponsor bar to be right next to the current one is awesome! Twice as many people to try to get with it.

I assume as in any relationship, kickball or otherwise, the bloom will recede from the rose as time passes. For now though it is my favorite league and I will probably continue in posts to be biased toward it. As many people tend to be with the one they are infatuated with, despite the flaws, I am very happy with it.

As to the comment above questioning my "connection to NAKID", that's fine people can think whatever they want. It doesn't change the fact that when I or Sideshow Bob post something about the different kickball leagues here most of the attacks on what we write are not on the merits or truth of what we wrote, but an attempt to poison the well against us. So"Matt" question me if you will, but continue to not even comment regarding my post. And to this guy on it's fine for you to continue to think I am on NAKID's payroll, but it doesn't change the facts written in my last post.

In short, I admit to loving one league more than others and I'm okay with that coming across in my posts. As things come up in all my leagues I will continue to point that out here in an effort to make these leagues fix their problems. I'm sorry if that "typifies everything that is wrong with kickball in DC" - to me it's wanting to make something you care about better.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Sometimes cheaters DO prosper

Lots of the posts I write here engender the response that I am taking things too seriously and need to chill out. My favorite is that people use the tired cliche that "It's just kickball" to defend all sorts of different behavior; from treating your customers like crap to cheating in a kickball game. Another example of what I am sure will lead to these comments took place a few weeks ago in the Kash guys' DC Star division.

The Kash guys' rules are clear on what happens when a team does not have enough players at game time - that team has to forfeit. Further there are two separate instances in their rule book governing player eligibility:

4.01 All participants must meet the following requirements:
a. must be 21 years of age or older by the date of the first game;
b. must be adequately and currently health insured against any injury that may arise from kickball play;
c. must be properly registered with WAKA including but not limited to full completion of the registration process,

Rule 7.05 A team playing a non-registered person, an improperly registered person, or a person not registered on that team, division, and season, will forfeit that game (see Rule 4.01c). This team will also lose the right to play in any division tournament or World Kickball Championship

(italics added by me as these are the important parts)

This takes us to the DC Star story. In the first round of the playoffs a couple of Sundays ago the teams took to the fields for their runs to glory. Unfortunately two new teams to the division, Your Mom and Playing the Field, did not have enough players show up and as per the rules were told that they had to forfeit. They did, understanding the rules and that they were being enforced. While I'm sure that sucked for them, especially being new teams, there was really nothing they could do - or was there?

It seems that in DC Star there are 2 sets of rules - one for the new teams and quite another for returners. The reason this is evident is because another team in the division, Team Keg, who has been with Star for a number of years now was allowed to play in the playoffs - with unregistered players. A member of Star found out about this and brought to the attention of the head referee and (in some way) the division president and nothing was done about it. The team was allowed to play and won its first game. They lost their second round match. Meanwhile teams full of players who actually paid money to play in the division and obeyed the rules couldn't play.

Where's the other set?

Team Keg must be very proud of itself for being a bunch of cheating assholes. For bringing in players that did not pay money, go through a whole season, and get treated like crap from Kelly's to win a stupid kickball playoff game. It must have been really important to the division president to have a returning team be allowed to play, since she was willing to break the rules for Team Keg and not the other two. And you don't have to take my word for it because in their recap of the game Team Keg boasted about being cheaters:

2) We were the first ever team in kickball history to employ two dead-on ringers that weren't registered…and STILL lose the game.

As you can see they clearly have no shame, and they really should. Actually the president, head ref, and whomever else knew about this should be even more ashamed. I can't comprehend how this would be seen as okay and if I was a member of the teams forced to forfeit and the team that lost to the cheaters I would be furious! They paid money and played by the rules and for that they were treated like crap while cheaters got to play on and brag about cheating.

Team Keg's new logo?

This is all bad enough and pretty pathetic (I mean these are kickball playoffs) - but there's more. Apparently the Kash guys' representative for DC Star plays in the division - and he hasn't taken any action on this either. I have, on many occasions, written about the uselessness of these reps but this is a new low. It is unconscionable that someone who is paid to make sure that the division is run properly by volunteers and that the rules are followed would allow this. Yet this guy is in a bunch of pictures every week goofing around and having fun. That plus his regular load of 8 real hours of work a week certainly makes that $60 worth the price to play, right?

This stuff pisses me off so much because the kickball dorks who read this blog, volunteer for boards, read, and the like are usually the ones who suffer because of these rule breakers. Why didn't anyone listen to the person telling them that a team was cheating? What's more telling is that DC Star routinely has posts on it's message board that talk ad nauseum about a fair v foul ball or something equally mind numbing about the rules. Yet there has been zero, zip, nada on their board about the cheating by this team and what the penalty should be. Not even by the biggest big mouths in the division.

DC Star's slogan for new teams not in the clique

Hey Stars, while you are so delusional about how you are "the best around" you may want to try applying the rules to all of the teams in your division - not just the ones you like. This isn't "just kickball", it's just unfair.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Sideshow Bob's awesome crystal ball and mysteriously coincidental disappearing posts

Curiously, since my post one of the links I provided has disappeared from DC Kickball's website. Luckily Sideshow Bob had the foresight to think this may happen and cut and pasted the exchange and has emailed it to me. I thought that this magical coincidence would not occur. Thanks to Sideshow for being so insigthful!

Ahh Sideshow, thanks to you for having OCD

I am sure most of you can understand why this was removed from the site:

NAKID Corrections posted by crabasa on June 18th

Some of you might have noticed (or been told about) some odd statements published in a newsletter by a kickball league called NAKID that was sent out this past week. It was primarily directed at the players in the District (Thursday) and Constitution (Sundays) divisions that call Hamilton ’s their home before and after games. Here are some excerpts:
"After looking around there was only one place that made sense to us – Hamilton ’s Bar & Grill, the place right next door. Unfortunately, they currently host two lesser kickball entities.

However, after speaking with the owner of Hamilton ’s and many members of its staff seeing our weekly turnout, they decided that HAMILTON’S will be our second sponsor bar in the fall!

So this week if you see any members from other leagues at Hamilton’s let them know that if they want to keep going there in the fall, they need to get NAKID!"

Anyway, I am forced to make the following corrections:
Hamilton ’s was told that NAKID just needed some extra space (ie: the downstairs) for a handful of teams
Hamilton ’s will remain DCKickball’s sponsor bar for Thursday and Sunday kickball
Both the District Division and the Constitution Division will have exclusive use of the upstairs Thanks,Carter RabasaCommish, DCKickball
Filed in

7 Responses to “NAKID Corrections”
Kristin Says: June 19th, 2007 at 12:08 PM
You might want to double-check your sources on this one… Hamilton ’s is ONLY hosting NAKID for next fall’s season.

Carter Says: June 19th, 2007 at 02:05 PM
My “source” is very simple: Scott Hamilton. As in, the owner and namesake of the bar. Who’s your source?

NAKID Says: June 19th, 2007 at 03:03 PM
Can’t we all just get along!

Kristin Says: June 19th, 2007 at 03:14 PM
Well then Scott is giving us both the runaround…he said we have it next season. I think we both need to verify what’s going on in the fall…

J Says: June 19th, 2007 at 05:54 PM
Is the nakid league also being sued?

Carter Says: June 19th, 2007 at 06:11 PM
NAKID: if you don’t have a signed sponsorship agreement, you don’t have a lot of room to talk.

Kristiin Says: June 19th, 2007 at 08:13 PM
I have talked to Scott personally and I he said NAKID is the shiznit

I must apologize because Sideshow copied this prior to the final post from someone named "Stephanie" who basically quoted a post on the NAKID message board which stated:

OK, just got word that the confusion has been settled.NAKID has an exclusive contract (in writing) with Hamilton's. DCK will not be there on the nights we are there. Neither will any other sports leagues.

This re-poster ended with "This is what they are saying now" I believe.

I just wanted to post this for those of you who may click on the link in the last post and now, for some strange and highly coincidental reason, no can no longer access it.

Hmm, keep this up and you may have to move to Texas... Oh wait...

Since the post I have come across several other "interesting" stories about the DC Kickball founder. Let's just say he has burned many a bridge in both the kickball and DC bar communities.

Again, dude, you may want to catch Earl.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Carson Daly WAS right

It's been over a month since my last post, so I will need to make this one worth your attention. I have been gathering as much info as I can before writing on this because I am sure the DC Kickball Scout Blog Reader will dispatch a message that will lead to comments galore. Plus I like to have my facts straight before I write and when I haven't, I have been sure to write corrections. I admit here fully that I have not spoken to the DC Kickball founder about any of this because, well, I don't believe or respect him basically. Especially after what has transpired over the last few weeks.

First things first. I am still incredulous at this first story about the DC Kickball founder. About two months ago the founder of DC Kickball decided to go on a trip overseas. While he was gone he had a volunteer assist him with the spring registration for DC Kickball. As someone who has done this before I can tell you that this is no easy task. There are endless questions, teams who need to be updated, people wanting to switch teams, etc. You would think that someone who would be willing to do this while you were vacationing in a faraway land would be appreciated. Well, most of you would.

This woman also agreed to help out to run a division of DC Kickball by volunteering for the board. I call this being "in the can" for the league; it's a term of endearment from one kickball dork to another - but I digress. I refer to this as free labor, and according to the founder of DC Kickball himself, they do all the work on a day-to-day basis for the league.:

"DC Kickball relies on its players to volunteer to run the board and ref the games. The board members are the ones that make all of the major decisions (such as dates and venues) about how to spend the social budget (about $8,000). As well, the board picks and works with a charity throughout the season. In the past, we raised $4,000 for our charity in a single season."

The last two sentences of this quote are the ones that lead to the incredible part of the story. The board this DC Kickballer serves on had chosen a charity for their season and were proceeding with the plans for the season. Apparently a couple of weeks ago they were all notified that they were being fired from their volunteer positions on the board. The board's great malfeasance you ask? They actually believed the DC Kickball founder's above statement about the board being allowed to "pick" it's charity.

Remember, forced charity starts at home!

See, the founder has setup his own "charity" - his legal defense fund to help his case with the Kash guys. The founder has notified at least this particular division (and one can surmise all of them) that they MUST make his legal defense fund their "charity" for this season. When the division's board balked at this demand and explained that they had already chosen a charity and were setup to work with it, they were fired. So, the woman who helped the DC Kickball founder make money while he was off vacationing was dismissed from a position she held to help him run his league because she didn't want donations that could have helped children go toward his legal defense fund. Unreal.

I find it fascinating that a guy who likes to act like he is the greatest thing to kickball since flip cup consistently behaves in the same fashion as the league he is being sued by. In fact in some ways this is worse - the Kash guys couldn't care less what charity a division has and at least are using player dues to pay for this ridiculous lawsuit. (Please note I think they are greedy pigs too, but at least they are not asking for EXTRA money to pay for it). I guess the lesson here is to not trust this guy - even if you help him out and allow him to frolic in Asia. If you don't do what he wants he has no respect for you.

I wonder how registration is going, eh, what's her face has it

Which brings me to the latest saga in this guy's story: sponsor bars. In a previous post I have talked about the fact that DC Kickball and the Kash guys both take money from the bars they send their divisions to. The bars get a promise of a turnout by those divisions, the bar's name on the back of the division's players' shirts, and maybe some extra love (site links, parties, etc). This season DC Kickball on Sundays and Thursdays has sent certain divisions to Hamilton's Bar & Grill which is right next door to the NAKID sponsor bar, My Brother's Place. This has made things somewhat interesting on Sundays as many DC Kickballers have come over to MBP while Hamilton's has been cleared out by 7pm after games.

Probably not what Hamilton's thought it was paying for

Apparently this has not gone unnoticed by the staff and owners at Hamilton's. After one season of paying money to sponsor DC Kickball, they are apparently choosing to do business with NAKID in the fall. Not really tough to figure out, the Sunday turnout at Ham's hasn't been great and they don't have to pay NAKID a sponsorship fee. Hmm, more turnout and costs less - seems like a good business move. NAKID announced to all of it's players in it's Weekly Brew newsletter last week. We were all glad to hear it as it makes access to both bars easy for double the drinking and socializing. The DC Kickball founder was not so thrilled.

I have spoken before about how I do not like the pompous nature of the DC Kickball founder, and
this post on his website's blog is a great example. The points that are particularly telling are these:

"I am forced to make the following corrections:
  • Hamilton’s was told that NAKID just needed some extra space (ie: the downstairs) for a handful of teams
  • Hamilton’s will remain DC Kickball’s sponsor bar for Thursday and Sunday kickball
  • Both the District Division and the Constitution Division will have exclusive use of the upstairs "

These were all, of course, untrue and he was called out in the comments section of the blog. This is my favorite exchange:

Kristin Says: June 19th, 2007 at 03:14 PM
Well then Scott is giving us both the runaround…he said we have it next season. I think we both need to verify what’s going on in the fall…

Carter Says: June 19th, 2007 at 06:11 PM
NAKID: if you don’t have a signed sponsorship agreement, you don’t have a lot of room to talk.

Yeah, see you shouldn't go around posting pompous ass things on your blog until you have this in hand

The funny part is, of course, the DC Kickball founder was totally talking out of his ass. Her had no "signed sponsorship agreement" himself. Yet claimed all of these promises from Hamilton's - none of which he had received. In fact I spoke to the other people involved in these negotiations and there was nothing promised to DC Kickball after the spring season. And there was a discussion between Ham's and NAKID before spring season started that they would meet later to discuss a fall sponsorship. Which makes the final statement (I assume final as he has cut off all discussion via comments) on this by the DC kickball founder even more ludicrous:

"The fact of the matter is that the owner of Hamilton’s, on multiple occasions this summer and as recently as last week, assured me that DC Kickball would be coming back for the Fall."

What's clear in both of these cases is this: the DC Kickball founder chooses to, well, bend the truth to fit his own ends. Divisions can choose their own charity, as long as he would get the money. Hamilton's is his sponsor bar, except that no one ever told him that. Seems like the DC Kickball founder really does need to go to business school, as he is planning to do soon, because he sure isn't running this one the right way.

Maybe it's time to start making that list, DC Kickball founder

And even if it was true that he got jobbed by Hamilton's as he implies here: "I definitely feel like an idiot for taking Hamilton’s at their word and misinforming you all about the Fall." I'd advise him to watch a few episodes of My Name is Earl. Karma's a bitch Carter, maybe you should start treating people better.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Taking the "Adult" out of Adult Kickball

Now that I am no longer a child there are lots of cool things that I no longer have to worry about. No one tells me not to eat Oreos right before dinner because it might spoil my appetite. If I have money and want something I can just buy it without clearing ti through mom and dad. And most people treat me as an adult, meaning that I am responsible for myself and my own actions. Most people, that is.

About 10 days ago I received an email from one of the Kash Guys' representatives, Michelle Vaccaro (whom I have quoted before):

Hi Kickballers,

It has come to our attention that conduct at the Irish Times needs to be addressed with all WAKA players. For the safety of all players and other patrons of the Times as well as the Times staff there are some issues that have happened that are inappropriate and will no longer be tolerated at the Times or with WAKA.

Any and ALL disregard to the Irish Times property and staff including tearing down soap dispensers, kicking in doors, speaking with disrespect to any staff member, throwing beer or other beverages, running across tables, standing on tables, swan dives on tables, OUTSIDE BEVERAGES being brought in, the list goes on and on, will result in that person or person’s being asked to leave the premises. WAKA and the Irish Times are not trying to spoil your fun, but when people’s safety and well being are at stake, something needs to be done and it will be done.

The Irish Times is one of, if not the most, lenient bar that works with WAKA in regard to allowing all WAKA players free reign to have fun and games in the bar. Please have fun, drink and be merry, but do so with respect for yourself and others around you.

Yours in Kickball,
Michelle Vaccaro WAKA
Kickball - The World Adult Kickball Association
The New American Pastime TM Celebrate 10 years of WAKA
Kickball New Kickball Games, New Friends, New Parties Get it all now at!

In sending this email out, Michelle cc'd 5 WAKA divisions and three other reps. Obviously the offending "person or person's" are in one of Michelle's divisions, yet she chose to send this to a number of us that have nothing to do with whatever took place at the Times. My first questions is why didn't she just email whomever was the responsible party?

This is yet another way of showing disrespect for paying customers by the Kash guys and their staff. Shouldn't the offending players be dealt with and the rest of us left alone? It is called ADULT kickball after all. Doing things in this manner has lead to speculation and gossip on several division message boards about who the responsible parties are. And I wonder if it has led to the problem being dealt with.

I also want to take a moment to address the idea that all of the above behavior is worthy of being admonished. The bar and the Kash guys make their living from kickballers consuming vast quantities of beer in a relatively short period of time. Occasionally someone will throw a beer or run across a table. Gee, I am mortified! I thought that drinking all of that beer would make people act like they were at dinner with the Queen.

Poor treatment? Too bad no backtalk from you!

Additionally, the idea that the Times (one of the worst kickball bars in DC) is among the "most lenient" is a complete lie. This is a bar that lies to its patrons by telling them that they cannot buy pitchers of beer from the bar because it is illegal (you see, you have to order them from staff so it can take longer and they get tips). This is also a bar that regularly treats the kickballers like they are an inconvenience and who the staff treats with disrespect. Yet according to Michelle, the paying customers should take the verbal abuse and attitude with no recourse.

Other leagues I play in have either made it clear to the bars or the bars understand that they want us to drink - a lot. As such they allow for stupid behavior like swan diving on tables, dancing on the bar, and the like. Of course damaged property is not tolerated, but those individuals are dealt with, rather than all of us receiving emails like the one above. I guess some people have respect for their customers.

And what's wrong with this?

So, just so we are all clear: the Kash guys and the Times will take kickballers money and encourage all of us to drink until we can barely stand. They want us to tip well, keep coming back, and take whatever treatment we get. Then they want us to behave like we are good little boys and girls. Otherwise Michelle will send out another nasty note, and we may have to have this one signed by our parents before we are allowed back in.

I have my permission slip, Michelle, can I play with the other kids now?