SBS Guide to the Mayan game Pitz

Written by :
Published on : March 29, 2016

 

Pitz is an ancient ball game played by the Mayan people going back to 1,400 BC. With similar contests (some call it ulama) being enjoyed all over the Mesoamerican region. The sport is kind of like if racquet ball and basketball had a violent baby. Oh yeah, there was also sometimes human sacrifices before show time, so it was just like a Raiders game. We must not lose our sports history. So let’s take some time to honor the Mayans AKA the original hoopers. Here is the ScoreBoredSports Guide to Pitz.

 

Before we start throwing human heads around, let’s go over all the rules and customs so you don’t piss off your more “traditional” friends. There is a lot to know beyond the fact the hoop is sideways (from basketball standards) and the rubber ball is smaller. Here is how it all works.

 

pitz team

 

Please pay attention. There are stone tablets that show losers of the game being executed. Not always something that happens but it could. So don’t let your lack of knowledge of the rules lead to your demise. Maybe write this next stuff down or screen-cap it.

 

The Rules

No hands allowed! You can’t catch or throw the ball. Think soccer style for making contact. If you do use your hands then the other side gets a goal. Lots of the old art shows players striking the ball with their hip. Plus you get to do it all in a loincloth. Score.

 

Teams face off against each other both trying to get the ball through the hoop. This was super difficult and scoring a goal often ended the game. Most contests were just about keeping the ball afloat. Historians reason they added the hoops later but the original game was just about keeping the ball from hitting the ground.

 

pitz

 

Your team must keep the ball in play. If it falls and hits the dirt or is booted out of the court then the other side gets a goal. The game has no time limits. A match could go on forever as long as the players continued to legally hit the ball.

 

Team with the most goals wins. The victors are treated like gods with a feast and epic celebration. The losers, well, it’s not great for them. This wasn’t just Sunday Night Football: Ancient World Edition. These games were part of a bigger ceremony that held a deep importance in the culture. The Pitz match helped tell a story for the whole community to enjoy. It was sport and religion and theatre all rolled into one. It sounds epic and I’m jealous we don’t get to enjoy it.

 

great court
                                                                                Great Ball Court, Chichen Itza

 

The ball courts were also used as a venue for other events. Records show music, festivals, and other sports like wrestling took place at these large arenas. The Mayans understood how sports and athletics can bring people together. I was lucky enough to visit the Great Ball Court in Chichen Itza and it is massive. Truly inspiring. In some ways, Pitz is the spiritual ancestor of the Super Bowl.

 

There you have it. I think we should start a league. Email me and we can start making teams. But maybe none of the rough stuff. Or maybe I can just be coach or the GM.

 

Game on!

 

 


The SBS Guide to Snowboarding

Written by :
Published on : February 22, 2016

 

 

Snowboarding has been a favorite winter activity of mine for many years. It allows you to be close to nature and is one of the few physical activities where it’s okay to drink while you’re doing it. This applies to skiing as well, but I made that switch from skis to board in my early teens. Skiing is cool too, it’s just not for me anymore. It just seems kind of uptight and haughty. There’s something about the laid back, stoner attitude of snowboarding that attracted me at an early age. I am by no means a professional or expert in the sport, more of a casual long time rider, but I’ve been shredding pow for a good 17 years, so I thought I’d impart a few things I’ve learned on the mountain.

 

Getting Started

Snowboard
                                                                                           Your trusty steed

 

First things first. Find a friend that is already into snowboarding and borrow as much of their extra gear as you can. This will help you save some cash when it comes time to start renting stuff. If you’re really lucky they will have the whole set up and it will save you some serious money. Snowboarding is definitely not cheap and if you have to rent everything, along with buying a lift ticket, you’re going to be $150 in the hole before you’ve bought your bag of medical weed or hit the bar at the lodge.

 

Once you’ve sorted out your gear and ticket, it’s time to hit the snow. If you’re a first-timer then you better get to the bunny hill for a while to get your legs under you. Don’t be the dumbass who tries to hit the mountain for their first time out and breaks a leg getting off the lift, or hurts someone else. It’s going to take some practice to get a feel for the snowboard but you’ll get it. Remember to keep your knees bent and your back straight and be prepared for some growing pains in the form of a few bumps and bruises. If you’re lucky there’ll be some kind-hearted snowboarding soul who’ll show you some pointers out there. Maybe even take a lesson or two to get the fundamentals down. Either way, once you’ve learned the basics it takes practice to get comfortable, but it’s totally worth it.

 

Now What?

powder

 

So what happens after you’ve begun to figure it out? Well, I guess that’s all up to you. I like to break up the day by hitting the bar up every 3 or 4 runs down the mountain. Snowboarding is a do what you feel kind of thing. Me personally, I stick to cruising down the mountain, or maybe sometimes hitting some fresh powder in the trees (not recommended for beginners). I’ve never really been into the park stuff, like jumps and rails. I always liked to chill and enjoy the ride down the mountain, and I feel like I might be too old now to get into it at this point. I’m not trying to tear an ACL or something, but if you feel like you might want to get into it then you should try it out. Just make sure to start small and have a spotter with you in case you crack your head open or something. You should probably also get a helmet, which I’m totally guilty of not doing. But you shouldn’t follow my example anyways.

 

Enjoy Yourself

boarding

 

So that’s pretty much the deal. Now go and load your phone up with some good music and enjoy a day on the mountain. For me snowboarding is about letting go and getting away. When you’re out there flying downhill with the wind blowing in your face, it can be a liberating experience. It’s a good way to forget your worldly troubles and truly live in the moment. The most important thing however, is to enjoy yourself, and only you know how to do that. So take it at your own speed and don’t try to impress anyone. Just be yourself and it will be a positive experience.

 

 

 


SBS Guide to Throwing a Good Super Bowl Party

Written by :
Published on : January 18, 2016

 

We are now looking forward to the Conference Championship and that’s only a stone’s throw from the biggest game around: Super Bowl. Many will fill their favorite bar or restaurant while others will watch in solitude in their living room, but the coolest of your friends will be going to parties on Super Sunday. Now, if you have a buddy that always hosts a party then great. Ask what you can bring and take your shoes off at the door. But if you are like me, you are throwing the shindig and that can get a little tricky. So here is a guide to having one kick-ass Super Bowl party.

 

The TV

jumbotron

 

The bigger the better. I’m not normally in favor of the giant screen but you need it for the big game. Ideally, you get a projector and take up a whole wall. You need some good speakers too. This sounds expensive so open a credit card, get your stuff then return it Monday morning.

 

Seating is just as important. Don’t get lazy here. Pre set chairs, couches, bean bags, etc with good eye lines. Don’t assume everyone will figure it out come kickoff. Don’t make the rows too tight, you need easy access to re-up on snacks, drinks or for a bathroom break.

 

The Food

super-bowl party sub

 

You may have the urge to pick one thing and make a theme of it but in my experiences it’s the variety you want. So go ahead and get pizza. But also get wings, BBQ, grill burgers and dogs, make a big salad, get all the chips you can find, maybe something awesome to dip those chips in. Like chili or cheese or salsa or hummus or Nutella.

 

Don’t forget the dessert. This can just be store bought cookies, mini cupcakes, something. Bake some brownies the night before and cut them into tiny pieces. The smaller the portion, the less guilty people feel about eating them. Even if they have eight.

 

Remember, anyone not watching the game will be hovering around the food. So try and situate the grub so lots of hands can get access to it. Don’t put everything in your tiny kitchen. Or all on one counter. Get some folding tables and spread that stuff out. And don’t hide your trash can. It may not look the prettiest but you want to make it clear where refuse is supposed to go. Recycling too.

 

The Drinks

cheap beer

 

Lots of beer. Cold, American beer. Something cheap and easily consumed. Like Coors Light. No place for that fancy, microbrew shit. If you aren’t going to spring for the keg then do cans. You will have lots of empties and you don’t want to deal with all that glass. Also, other drinks should be made in plastic solo cups. No glass, no breaks, no blood. Leave a sharpie on the bar and everyone can personalize their cup.

 

As far as the bar goes, keep it simple. Get base liquors like Vodka, Whiskey, Rum. Gin if you’re British. And then a few mixers. Soda, Tonic, Coke, Sprite. Get more than you need cause you may have guests that don’t drink all together. One sober dude can kill a whole 2 liter. I’m not really a big fan of Red Bull but when you have it, people drink it and it makes you look legit. Your friends will be like “damn, he bought the 24 pack!”

 

The X-Factor

x factor

 

Non-football related activities. A good SB party will have more than a few non-sports fans. And that’s okay. Hell, it’s needed. And you need to have stuff for them to do. I suggest beer games like Pong or something like Washers, Bags (AKA Cornhole), Darts. Make sure these games are far enough away that they don’t interfere with anyone’s viewing pleasure. Please be carful with those darts. It’s also fun to make a small pool and bet on the score of the game or other similar wagers.

 

A clean bathroom with a locking door. Well stocked with toilet paper. And either matches or air freshener. No one wants to poop at another person’s house. But sometimes it needs to happen. Don’t punish your guests for it. Maybe throw a fun magazine in there or a Calvin and Hobbes book.

 

SB50Flyer

 

Follow these rules and you will be hall of fame status with all your homies. If you are in the Los Angeles area on February 7th, 2016 then you can see these teachings in action at the first ever ScoreBoredSports Super Bowl Bash. Or SBS SBB for short. More details to follow but free food, open bar, games and jokes provided by me. Warning, jokes cannot be turned off. It will be a guaranteed blast. So please wear your team gear, bring a friend and see how the big kids do it. It’s Super Bowl 50. Get hype.

 

 


SBS Guide to Snowball Fights

Written by :
Published on : December 29, 2015

 

 

It’s cold, many are back home visiting family. The country is at maximum holiday fever. So if you need a simple getaway, try an old fashion snowball fight. It’s a classic winter sport that goes all the way back to the caveman era. You can get a few buds and organize a game or you can do my favorite, which is just start throwing snowballs at random people until someone starts throwing back. Either way, guaranteed good time plus it’s 100% organic and gluten-free. Below is a little advice on how to make your snowball fights really fly.

 

Find some cover

Only a fool stands out in the open. Get behind a parked car or a trash can. You need cover so you can reload and catch your breath. But don’t stay in one spot too long. The enemy is sure to crash your bunker, so get your shots off and find a new place to hide. Never be predictable. Stay moving, keep the other team on its toes. The difference between victory hot-coco and the white wash of defeat is where you decide to make your homebase. You want something with multiple firing angles and escape routes.

 

Pack it tight

elf snowball

 

Hopefully the powder is clumpy or as we call it in Michigan “packing snow.” For the perfect snowball, start with a large handful of the white stuff. With your other (gloved) hand apply some pressure and start shaping the sphere. Keep rotating it while adding more and more force. Careful not to split it. Once it’s solid, smooth out the surface of any major bumps. Those irregularities will throw off your accuracy. Make as many as you can when you have the time. Those with the most ammo can do the most damage.

 

Aim for the head

True, that targeting the chest probably gives you the best chance of making contact but there is nothing quite as satisfying as beaming someone in the beak with a well-placed throw. So aim for the head. If you are lucky, you knock their hat or glasses off their dome.

*Please note, this is super funny but does come with a high risk of ending the game and sending someone home crying.

 

Cheat

If movies and TV have taught me anything it’s that it’s okay to cheat in games like this. So if you have magical powers or are some sort of cold-based deity then by all means flex those muscles. Below is the trailer for the 1998 film Jack Frost starring Michael Keaton. Snowball action starts around the 1:18 mark.

 

 

This movie is not to be confused with this Jack Frost. I’m also told there is a flick called Frozen that is supposed to be popular and have something to do with winter. After seconds of research, I found this thing.

 

olaf

 

I bet he’d be a solid snowball fight teammate. Looks a little goofy but is probably a natural. Like snowball fights are his country’s national past time.

 

Also, if this snowball fight is against local bullies or other legit dicks then it is okay to authorize dirty tactics. That’s right, I’m talking yellow snowballs and even ice balls. For the yellow snow, you want to make the ball as normal, then pee on it. Don’t pee on the snow and then try and shape it. That’s gross.

 

There you have it soldier. Keep your head up and you just might live to see February. In the rare instance where a large group of children ambush you with snowballs then there is only one course of action. RUN! There is no winning here. Just run. Get in your car, house or somewhere adult and boring, like a Bank of America. The gang should lose interest and look for another target. You cannot face the hoard alone. Doing so will most likely end in violence and maybe even arrest.

 

Stay frosty.

 

 


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