At first glance, you might mistake Thingie Ball for a generic paddle and ball set sold at Target for $9.64.
BUT DON’T GET IT TWISTED.
Thingie Ball, once placed in my hands, is actually a game of skill, violence and foreplay. Alisha and I came up with tentative rules, combining the exciting serve and catch action with all the flavor and full-contact of flag football and all the punkish fashion of roller derby (i.e. another excuse to pull out the tutu, which is still the sweetest tutu in the world) without the skates. Unfortunately, every time I tried explaining my new and evolutional conceptual sport of the millennium, my giddy smiles were met with confused and unsure frowns.
We learned on Sunday that Thingie Ball is a Really Good Icebreaker, as Henry invited his work friend Jess and her girlfriend Christina to join me, Alisha, Janna, Brenna and Liz at our cookout. Jess in turned brought along her friend Jennifer. It wasn’t planned to be a Girls Only Cookout, but that’s exactly what it turned into, much to Henry’s delight.
At first, we all sat around somewhat awkwardly, waiting for Henry to finish grilling. We made idle conversation, which mostly consisted of me bragging about the totally tedious caramel apple salad I made upon my friend Angie’s suggestion (she failed to mention that prep time was no less than HALF A DAY and I had to PEEL & SLICE SIX APPLES OMG). I chose this particular recipe from those given to me by a collection of LiveJournal friends because it didn’t call for any cooking; no water-boiling, over-heatin’, no measurin’. I was able to do all the prep work and mixing at the dining room table which put me out of Henry’s way. AND it was the only recipe that called for six Snickers bars. So yes, aside from all the peeling & chopping, it had win practically jizzed all over it in caramel.
I also had Henry make some potato salad crap and peach pie twisters, both of the recipes I found in Better Homes and Gardens. Everyone raved about the peach pie shit, and I didn’t want to say anything out loud for fear of embarrassing Henry in front of his work buddy, but there was like, no sugar in that shit. Also, he was supposed to tie rustic-looking fabric scraps around the lips of the dixie cups they were served in, and then a cute little wooden spoon was to be tucked inside the fabric. He did no such thing.
He always quits one step away from reaching true Martha Stewart status.
Henry was also supposed to make these awesome-sounding garden sliders, and he even bought all the ingredient-shit for them, but claims he “forgot” to prepare them.
Oh well, at least we had Alisha’s gimp fruit kabobs to fall back on. I mean, the BEST KABOBS ever. They even had Rolos on them. ROLOS! And they were sharp enough to stake any vampire that might have tried to crash our half-assed driveway picnic. Aside from my son, I mean.
Please don’t anyone stake my son.
Once the subject of praising Henry’s grilling prowess grew old, we kind of sat there looking at each other, sizing each other up, wondering what to talk about. Christina suggested we get a deck of cards but then Alisha was all, “Well, there’s always Thingie Ball.” I was waiting for everyone to be like, “That looks dumb” when I came back outside with some paddles and a ball. But once we started, all inhibitions were lost to the wind.
And that is how I ended up in a church parking lot Sunday evening, drunk and standing in a deformed circle with six other drunk girls, swatting a ribbon-tailed ball back and forth, sweating Woodchuck and trying not to wind up with protruding bones. Alisha kept mocking my Captain status because she’s jealous of my agility and nimbleness, the suave way I soar through the air, performing perfect scissorkicks and landing with the ball firmly stuck to my paddle. Meanwhile, Alisha just clomps around and sometimes accidentally catches the ball.
By the end of the action, we were all BONDED FOR LIFE. This is just one of the many things Thingie Ball does with it’s magical velcro, along with lint removal, drink tray, and serving as a sexual submission aid.
When we get our team shirts made, my name (underneath the blinking CAPTAIN marquee pin I’m having made) will probably just be my good old standby of Vagynafondue. I dubbed Alisha “Arkansuck” because she’s from Arkansas and she sucks, you see. She wasn’t pleased but I guess she’ll have to learn to love it because that is her name now. Janna will be something equally appropriate, but I need to sleep on that one.
We capped off the night by wasting a good two hours of our lives playing Uno underneath the dim light of our backyard spotlight, and this is where I learned that Christina cheats, Alisha is an asshole baby-smacker, Draw Fours make Jennifer yell like she’s on Springer, and Jess might just have the worst Uno luck I’ve ever seen. At one point, I laughed and said, “My neighbors probably think we’re having a fucking cock fight back here when all we’re doing is playing motherfucking UNO.”
Fuck, it was a good day.
[Thingie Ball photos are from last weekend. Blake wasn’t able to attend the cookout which was probably a good thing lest he drown in estrogen.]