Remember kickball? In elementary school we played this game often, both during gym and on the playground. The game terrified me for two reasons: (1) someone would assuredly pelt me with a large scrotum-colored ball; and (2) as a testament to my lack of athletic ability, I would certainly be picked last, or close to it. So when I heard there was an adult kickball league, I was immediately intrigued: why relive this playground nightmare???
The Providence Kickball League held their season opener on Saturday, June 1. After a long winter void of sport, these adult kickballers were ready for the party of the century. All 18 teams would compete on this day, each armed with two cases of beer (courtesy of their generous sponsor, Narragansett Brewery) and a host of shenanigans. I needed to be there, desperately.
The day arrived and the weather did not disappoint. The sun shone brightly and the temp was hot, hot, hot. I threw my two young kids in the car, and we headed to Dexter Field in The Armory District of Providence. Given the kickball league’s reputation, which I garnered from their website, I did have some trepidation about bringing my kids. Would they be exposed to assless chaps, or worse?
When we arrived, I quickly scanned the crowd and breathed a sigh of relief that everyone was fully dressed, the most risqué being a dude in ripped skeleton tights that left little to the imagination. Shortly thereafter, a minor fight ensued between ref and team captain, in which some serious f-bombs were dropped. Eh, my kids have heard worse from my own mouth. Besides, the fight ended quickly with the opponents shaking hands, showing extreme sportsmanship. No Red Sox/Yankees type rivalry here.
We got there just in time to see the Glamazons play the Cobra Kais. Wigs, tights, squirt guns and short-shorts were the order of the day. The more I watched, the more it became clear: this was no ordinary sport. These people were putting on a show and having FUN. Of course they kept score, unlike at my 6-year-old’s soccer games. Easy fly-balls were missed and bases were stolen, yet no one seemed bothered. The announcer poked fun at the players as the onlookers cheered and drank beer. I felt the pull to join them. I could stand in that outfield wearing a wig, missing fly balls; yes, I could!
Sadly, my kids grew antsy so I needed to leave. The pull was so strong, however, that I returned later in the day, just in time to see the Tales of Zomboree play the Unstoppaballs. I was prepared to witness a field full of zombies annihilate the opposing team (which they didn’t, by the way). I was not, however, prepared for a bloody onslaught. The zombies attacked their opponents with blood-filled squirt guns so by the end of the game, the opposing team looked like, well, it had been attacked by zombies. As a big fan of “The Walking Dead,” this finale did not disappoint.
The Providence Kickball League’s season runs through Labor Day, when they have their championship tournament. If you’re interested in checking out the madness, or possibly joining the league, check out their site at http://www.providencekickball.org/.