April 29th, 2010
H-Town Showdown: H.O.R.S.E/Horseshoes vs. Bocce
There is nothing better than cold beer on a sun-soaked day. No one can debate that. What is up for debate is what you do with your free hand that isn’t involved in the twelve-ounce curls. Some might prefer to gesture wildly while trying to show the craziness of their boss. Their friends might be forced to use their free limb for defense of the erratic gesticulating. There is another whole sect of people that prefer a bit of extracurricular activity to occupy them between trips to the bar. Two outdoor powerhouses square off in this weeks Showdown: West Alabama Ice House with their basketball and horseshoes tandem and Hans’ Bier Haus’ Italian classic, bocce.
Contender #1: H-O-R-S-E and Horseshoes
If you ever wore a poor quality, monochrome t-shirt with “Bumblebees” on the front and a number on the back that your coach called a “jersey,” the hoop calls out to you when you arrive at West Alabama Ice House. You look around and judge the number of obstacles that you might use during your exhibition of sorry H-O-R-S-E skills. “Standing on the corner of the flower bed, between the legs, left-handed, off the first oak tree branch… nothing but net.” Don’t worry, you have four numbers to waste before you awe your friends with your prowess. Who cares if you lose? Even if you do, there’s redemption just off to the side. Horseshoes await you in the loser’s bracket. Perhaps your aim will serve you better tossing the iron crescents around a little bit. Mix in some ringers, leaners and just-misses with your cold suds. Remember, being close counts. You know how the saying goes: Close only counts in horseshoes and hand-grenades. Consider bringing the latter. I’ve seen people bring their anacondas to West Alabama Ice House to let them chill out in the sand pits. Seriously.
Contender #2: Bocce – An Italian Man’s Game
What is this long stretch of sand and gravel in the garden behind Hans Bier Haus’, you ask? Why that, my dear Loopster, is a Bocce run. Wielding eight-pound blunt objects during a binge drinking session never sounded so good. Competition is generally fierce. Get your ball closest to the “jack” and wait for your opponent to send his effort down the field at speeds approaching the sound barrier hoping to knock your winner away. The rules are foreign to some people. That shouldn’t be a surprising revelation considering the game is foreign born. We’re talking about a contest that has its roots steeped in the Roman Empire. What is horseshoes? That’s just a game for drunk farriers. Basketball? Sure, it’s an American sport, but take me back to the days where you couldn’t dribble and you were shooting at true peach baskets, Mr. Naismith. Give me a game where the act itself, a spherical weight rumbling down the path of gravel and dirt, creates the thunderous crack of breaking stone. Plus, hold your spheroids in a particular manner below your abdomen and you’ve got a joke the middle schooler in all of us can appreciate.
The Final Jabs
- Neither place technically sells food, though West Alabama Ice House cooks free hot dogs on Friday afternoon. A tasty post game snack in the same vein as orange slices, if you ask me.
- Hans’ Bier Haus wins the day with more beers on draft and in the cooler. Though, West Alabama Ice House wins the wallet with PBR behind the bar.
- Neither place really has parking. Who needs it?
- Neither place has a large-enough indoors. Once again, who needs it?
- Darts at Hans’ and pool at WAIH provide other entertainment.
- Outdoor restrooms? Points to WAIH.
- Outdoor ferris wheel carriage? Points to Hans’.
Who Ya Got?