End-of-Year Clearance
Party Like It's . . . 1979!!!

Throwing Rocks

During the cold months, Tom curls.


He plays in a couple of leagues each week, and travels to bonspiels with his curling buddies.

It's his thing . . . not my thing.  

I have never had any desire to curl -- despite encouragement from Tom and the other members (many of whom are couples) of the curling club.  There is no real reason why I wouldn't want to at least try it.  Except that it's never appealed to me.  And I have plenty of other things I already like to do.  And it's cold.

But a group of our friends decided they would like to try it.  And Tom offered to organize an outing.  And . . . I finally tried it.  On Monday, I went through . . . the curling entrance . . .


and went right out on the ice.


Tom was a great curling instructor.  He's passionate and patient -- and has a good sense of humor.  (I think it helped that this particular group of our friends . . . are all very athletic with a strong competitive spirit.)  (Okay.  Let's make that a VERY strong competitive spirit.)


It was actually . . . a blast!  

Curling is a game of finesse and technique -- and WAY harder than they make it look on TV.  It's also a bit scary.  Because ice.  But it's the kind of thing that - with a bit of solid instruction - you can actually DO (even if badly) right away.

I mean, it wasn't very pretty . . . but we learned the basics AND played 3 "ends" (kind of like an inning in baseball) in 2 hours.  (Of course, we were motivated.)  (And - did I mention - competitive?)

It was a lot of fun.  But also kind of . . . intimidating.  It's awkward to push off "the hack" on that slippery ice with a teflon-coated "slider" under your foot . . . to send a 42-pound "rock" down the ice.


And the first time Tom told me to RUN down the ice to sweep one of my teammate's rocks, I was like . . . are you freaking kidding me?????

But.  I got there!  It was challenging -- and a whole lot more fun that I imagined.


The best thing about curling, though, is that it's a really social game.  We all had a great time -- lots of laughing and banter.  And after the game?  Well . . . then there's something called "broom-stacking."  (According to the Glossary of Curling, this is "slang for socializing with teammates and opponents, often over a drink, after a game.")  We went out for beer and pizza!


Will I try it again?

Sure!  (Although the weekly league thing sounds like way too much commitment for me. . . so don't count on any regular curling posts here.)

And, the four people to the left side of the photo above?  WE WON!  (Just sayin.)