Welcome to the Ghost Man on Third blog, the Worldwide Leader in Austin WAKA Kickball & Social Sports. Posts are player-generated, please email waka.gmot@gmail.com to contribute.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Mid-Season Survey Highlights

You asked, I'm answering! Questions are from the anonymous comments in the mid-season surveys, answers are from Stephen.

Q: Sandbox scores are a joke.
A: Ok, kinda harsh. But you're right, they weren't working the way we intended, and we've done away with Sandbox Scores as of last week. Still be nice to each other though!

Q: "1st to 3rd line rule is stupid and dangerous if you have to wait until the ball is kicked to move. One should be able to approach once the ball leaves the pitcher's hand. This eliminates the play that happened last game where I (3B) ran full speed into our catcher. We could both have been seriously injured."
A: Without the encroachment line, a defender could begin running forward as soon as the ball is released and just stand directly in front of the kicker and block anything they kick, which is entirely game breaking. Bunting would be eliminated entirely by a good defense. The solution here is simply to communicate with each other and call each other off, no different from a pop fly between two players where communication is necessary to prevent the defenders from colliding.

Q: "While I love Corner Bar (especially the staff), I feel that for the Thursday night league it is just too small. There isn't a ton of room for the bar game and you usually have to ask people to move to participate."
A: I feel the same conflicting emotions. While there's certainly much more to partnering with a bar than just picking one and showing up, I'm always open to suggestions for more suitable solutions! Corner Bar is great in that we essentially own the place on Thursdays, the staff love us and treat us well, and they've got really great prices. Obviously it's small and parking is limited. What I look for in a bar partner is Size, Atmosphere, Prices, Parking, Location. Unfortunately it tends to be a "pick three" situation. Right now we've got atmosphere, location, and prices. Email me at stephen@kickball.com if you have suggestions!

Q: "i'd like to see less, but larger teams. For the past few seasons, its been a ride on the struggle bus to get people to show up. I get its kind of the nature of social sports to run off new players, epsc girls, but we have two girls on our team who have never showed, and that makes things difficult to field."
A: I have to advise changing the way you look at things on this. It is by no means the nature of social sports to run off new players, look at teams like Pitch Please or At Least We're Having Fun! Big teams with tons of women on them that have a great time every week and come back for more. If you put the focus on winning and then don't win, it's not fun. If you put the focus on having fun, then losing doesn't have to be a negative experience that turns people off! Big teams are big because a lot of people want to play with that group, not because they need a bigger pool of players to churn through as people not having a good time leave. We've struck at the 16 player minimum with 6 of each gender minimum to be the right balance over hundreds of seasons of experimenting. Looking for more players for next season's team? Come out to the pick up games before each season to recruit new players! (Side note: Stannis doesn't approve of your grammatical choices. Sorry can't help myself!)

Q: "The start times aren't guaranteed, the cones and bases remind me of PE ... the refs are just there to keep score ... , and the lack of uniforms during cold weather makes it hard to differentiate a teammate next to a base versus a bystander standing nearby."

  • Start times can be delayed up to a 15 minute grace period for late arrivals per WAKA policy, but if games are starting later than this please notify me directly at stephen@kickball.com so I can take care of it. Your game should NEVER start later than 15 past the hour so that you can get the full 45 minutes without cutting into the next game's time slot.
  • It should remind you of P.E., that's kind of the point. We're playing kickball! While the baselines always start out straight, throw down bases tend to move around a little during play. Don't be shy about fixing them if you notice one has gotten knocked askew!
  • All of your refs have passed the Rules Certification exam with a 100% score, and generally speaking are the most knowledgeable people about the rules in the league. This of course doesn't guarantee they'll get every single call right, but talk to them if you have questions!
  • Uniforms under jackets are just part of the game in cold weather. It would be unfeasible to require players to wear their WAKA shirts on top of jackets, and prohibitively expensive to produce cold gear uniforms. Fortunately, March is just around the corner!

Q: "Bar games seem to happen too late."
A: Bar Games happen when our Social Coordinator arrives at the bar, and while she's super awesome about everything sometimes her team has a 9 PM game and they can't get there until 10:15 or so. Easy guideline: check to see when Pitch Please is playing, and count on bar games starting an hour and a half after their game starts!

Q: "Stephen got me pregnant too. He jacked me, big time, and now there's a baby growing in my belly. (Is that how it works?)"

Thursday, February 4, 2016


Hello boys and girls! Wanted to take a minute to give a shout out to the whole league for how awesome y'all have been so far this season with treating each other and the refs with respect. There have been a few moments of bristling, but on the whole this has been a great first half of the season with a really positive vibe.

As the season goes on, it's totally natural to get a little competitive. Even when it's something as silly as kickball it's still a competition, and winning is fun! Tight plays are going to happen, and here's the tidbit that we all really need to come to accept: Refs are going to get calls wrong sometimes, and that's OK. 

Until such time as we raise registration costs 44327784% to pay for high speed multi angle cameras and instant replay booths, we're going to be relying on the human element to make calls, and mistakes happen, and it's gonna feel like it's not fair when it's not in your favor. I'm not immune to that feeling, I got called out at home last week after sacrificing my body on a sweet corgi-kigurmi-clad slide and immediately got hot with the ref, because

But after a few seconds I calmed right down and shook hands with everyone and hugged it out with the ref, because he called it like he saw it and that's the most you can ask of a ref! A couple hours later I was reffing a game, made an out call at first base on a close play, and I'm ashamed to say the guy I called out handled it way better than me:

So take it easy out there, be respectful to the refs, and buy them a beer after the game to thank them for volunteering their time to improve your kickball experience! Plus you get 25 social points if you take a pic and post it on the Facebook Group with a #reflove hashtag and your team name in the caption!

Pitch Please - TX Live

List of 2016 Nobel Peace Prizes Candidates:

Pope Francis
Donald Trump
Edward Snowden
Women's Cycling Team from Afghanistan
Greek Island Groups Welcoming Syrian Refugees
Pitch Please

Thursday, January 28, 2016

The WAKA Sweetheart Party

Mid-Season is rapidly approaching, and with it comes mid-season partying! RSVP to The WAKA Sweetheart Party! Free booze for TX Live and TX Austin Bowling players, but open to everyone that can pack into Corner Bar. Hit on that good looking WAKA player you've had your eye on, hang out not covered in sweat and dirt, let WAKA pick up the tab, and participate in a charity date auction to raise money for Austin Pets Alive!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Large Hardon Collider - TX Live

A Hardon Haiku

The data is in
Your team hath not the party
Thine loins awaken

5hit Circus - TX Live

Our team in a nutshell. 

Pitch Please - TX Live

Dear TX Live,

At Least We're Having Fun - TX Live

Some may think that At Least We're Having Fun is a newish team, only 2 seasons old... but the truth is, the team has been a part of American History from the beginning. 

The American Revolution - One of the lesser known battles of the American Revolution was the battle between the Freedom Loving soon to be Americans - Haveth Fun At Least We Areth and the oppressive British team - The Bunting British.
The game was a close one, but James Madison and George Washington kicked the winning home run to beat out King James and Benedict Arnold. 

The Battle of San Jacinto - Sam Houston threw the ball from 3rd base to 1st base in the Battle for the Bayou and prevented Santa Ana from tying the game on a wild west double play. We actually got to keep El Paso because the team won the bar games after the match. 

Just the first glimpse of how At Least We're Having Fun has shaped American history through kickball. 

Sons of Pitches Kickin the Punt - TX Live

The Gayest Merger Of All Time (an open apology to our heterosexual teammates)
It was only a matter of time before the two gayest teams of WAKA LIVE did the inevitable and joined forces. In our minds it resulted in rainbows, sunshine, unicorns, and glitter. Naturally the boys of Sons of Pitches brought jello shots and threw shade while the lesbians of Kickin The Punt packed their cats in a u-haul and promised not be like the others and rush things. We are giving it a go and if it doesn't work we will attempt to remain friends and spend countless hours in therapy talking about how it could have been.
We neglected the fact that even though being FABULOUS is contagious there would be some Free Agents added to our flock. This is an apology to those guys.
Dear new teammates of SOPKITP,
We know you have no idea what you just signed on for. We are so happy to have you on our team but we regret to inform you that you are now gay. This is not as much of an apology but more of a formality. You can choose to remain in the closet about your current status but I know for a fact Evelyn (the lesbian with the hair) will out you. #sorrynotsorry Don't be afraid, just come as you are we are a welcoming crew. It will be fun, promise.
Please watch this video below for it is a cautionary tale.

Captains of SOPKITP

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Papa Stephen's Sexy Babies - TX Live

Perhaps not totally unexpectedly, we've started the season 0-1. If not for Papa Stephen gifting the other team some generous pitches in the first inning we could instead be a dominating 0-0-1 instead, but it's just kind of against my nature to throw spinny spinny curve balls against people who have never played kickball before and aren't expected that kind of hot saucy action on their rubbers.

Cest le vie. This week the Babies are scheduled against the only other team in the league to struggle as much as they did in week 1: Austin Vibes. This rumble in the bumble will undoubtedly be a match for the ages, and I expect a lot of scoring from both teams based on what I've seen out of their respective defenses: exactly the kind of game one likes to see in the Music conference!

I'm still in the process of learning everyone's names because my team is SPANKIN new to me, so I think I'll do the tired cliche of doing an intro bio for everyone on the team next week, but for now with Papa Stephen out of town on a work trip, I'm just going to hope that the babysitter can keep everything together for 5 innings. Prost!

Large Hardon Collider - TX Live

Drink mix
Frozen fruit
Almond milk
Toilet paper
Dryer sheets
Aluminum foil

5hit Circus - TX Live

Listen up Capital Division, there’s a new speed bump in town, and the road to Vegas goes through us. We came here to do two things: Drink Beer, and F*** 5hit up. And it looks like...well, we actually still have plenty of beer.

Introducing the 5hit line-up

Warren "Cold Cut" Ogle - Captain
Peter "G-Ham" Graham - Co-Captain
Ninad "The Brown Bomber" Pandit - Co-Captain
Daniel "The Pain" Hain - Co-Captain
Jessica "Wish You Would" Hemming
Vanessa "The Professa" Nicole
Tessa "T-Money" Miller
Carter "The Marauder" Kaough
Amy "Deathbringer" Slotin
Kia "Straight Outta Compton" Conwell
Erin "Say It To My Face" Walters
Matt "Hardcore" Helms
Josh "Tar Heel" Hudson
Naaman "The Man" Severson
Amanda "Too Real" Richards

So for anyone that thinks they're just going to run us over:

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Large Hardon Collider - TX Live

Bio Bidet Ultimate BB-600 Advanced Bidet Toilet Seat, Elongated White

Excellent product.  I first got introduced to the automatic bidet recently in Korea and this model has all the pertinent features.

Installation was easy onto an American Standard Cadet 3 oval toilet.  The bracket fits on the narrowest notch and is a little tricky to reach from the backside.  The hoses were not difficult either.  I utilized the splitter at the wall faucet and actually had the toilet tank come off the line pointing downwards to direct it out of the sight.  The bidet reservoir is attached to the other line pointing forwards and makes an "S" alongside the toilet.  I used the right angle joint at the intake port to make sure the hose does not direct laterally.

The unit functions well and has plenty of features.  I don't think additional features are necessary.  It has been durable for the past week since installation and I've not had any problems.  I would definitely recommend this product.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Welcome to the GMOT!

Congratulations, you are awesome and made the decision to click on a link to this blog and start reading some good shit. This is the GMOT (Ghost Man on Third) Blog! 

Posts here are player generated, and anyone can get one posted by just emailing them to me at waka.gmot@gmail.com. They'll be screened to make sure there's no outright hate speech, abuse, or threats of violence or anything ridiculous like that, but healthy smack talk is acceptable and encouraged. And yes you can curse, this is a 21+ league and nobody is forcing people to read this blog.

Check out the side bar on the right for weekly picks and power rankings, and please let me know if you'd like to be more involved! I would LOVE to have a volunteer on board to moderate the blog, and a weekly column to recap the prior week would be awesome but just isn't something I have time for. Hit me up at stephen@kickball.com if you want to step up!


Get Home Safe - Up to $50 Credit From WAKA for New Lyft Users

Getting everyone home safe is always a big priority, and with the abundance of options we enjoy in Austin there's really no excuse for driving home drunk from a league night. And now there's even less of an excuse! We've partnered with Lyft to get new riders up to $50 in credit if they use the code WAKASAFERIDE before their first ride. Don't be "that guy" this season, get some free credit and get home safe!

Haypitch Abernathy - TX Live

The first couple seasons, we were Kickness Everdeen.  The lead.  The protagonist. Angsty in our youth, but undeniably talented.

Next, in a shortened season: Effie Trinkick.  Beautiful.  Modern.  As much about style as results.

Now, it’s time for glory: Haypitch Abernathy.  Drunk, stubborn, loud.  I plan on calling everyone “dear” and drinking from a flask the entire season.  We may not remember a single game.

What’s next after that, huh?  Caesar Kickerman, maybe?  That would be cool.

Why not Three-Peeta as a tribute to our 3-peat, or maybe Four-Peeta if we take it again this time?  Easy answer: because Peeta sucks, idiot. 


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Alcaballic Rex - TX Live

Oh hi there.
Alcaballic Rex here.  We've had so much fun this season that apparently its really hard to describe.

"Chronicle our adventures this season?  WTF?!  We can't even."  I would attribute that quote to someone on my team, but I made it up.

We got down.  We partied.  Some of us were in a karaoke room for 3 hours on a Sunday afternoon singing our faces off to celebrate a teammate's birthday.  That's just what we do.

But after the shenanigans, the games, the costumes, the friends, and the impromptu dance parties in the outfield, what's really left?  What has this season really been about?

The fact that I haven't tripped and gotten a good solid mouthful of ground on the way to first base even once this season, that's what. 

NOT EVEN ONCE.  #KevinDidntFeelLikeAnIdiotForAnEntireSeason

And now, a puppy catching a ball:

Its two whole weeks until next season.  Come by the Alcaballics game so I can high five the crap out of all of you to tide you over.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Large Hardon Collider

This is getting painful. Does anybody write these things anymore? Or maybe a better question: Is anybody even reading these things?

I will now pretend that no one is listening and proceed to ignorantly ramble on while uncaringly exercising my right to free-association.

I miss the Relax trash-talking posts.

I miss posts of Stephen reminiscing about dinosaurs, Legos, and a better, less-complicated time known as the 90s.

I miss the for-some-stupid-reason-retired, brown WAKA color.

I miss Crystal Pepsi because it was soooo crisp…

and that Orbitz drink because why WOULDN’T I need semi-edible balls floating around in my drink?

Caption font: Can you imagine the fucking insane cocktails we could make with that now?!

I miss watching Gummi Bears and having it be socially acceptable to eat Totino’s Pizza Rolls.


Totino’s fo lyfe.

Alcaballics Rex

That rain, tho... I don't know if all of you played spring season, but over here we are seriously hoping El NiƱo doesn't rear its soggy head again. Unfortunately the sloppy vs. sloppy game of us playing the Punts didn't happen, but we are looking forward to one ridiculous end of the season make up. 

But on a real tip... Can we take a moment to address the lack luster attendance at The Park this season? What do you all have to work on Friday morning? WELL GROW UP. So do we. And we still go hard. We have a preschool teacher on the Alcaballics Rex who is molding the youngest minds of tomorrow's leaders and she still gets her ass to the bar every week and is quite arguably the drunkest person there (I'm looking at you, Rachel!) So in short, be there or be laaaaaame.