Print Story A Day in the Life
By ReallyEvilCanine (Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 03:33:07 AM EST) A Day in the Life, WTF, bowling, Archie, geek, pie (all tags)

I am the (proud?) owner of a first-place medal. In bowling. My 5-man team's combined best score never exceeded 730 and yet we beat the other seven teams at a $MeegaCorp-sponsored evening out at a bowling alley. It wasn't because the others sucked even worse than we did.

When I was sent off to summer camp as a kid, I was provided with reading material consisting primarily of Archie and Richie Rich comic books. I wasn't allowed to take books like Principles of Orbital Mechanics because "they might get ruined". More importantly, I was geeky enough that I didn't need the aggro and torment my bunkmates would've heaped on me for the entire month had they seen me reading such things.

Summer camp poll

x-posted to da brog.

Oddly, one Archie storyline stayed with me through the years. Archie was in some athletic competition and kept being bested in every activity, always coming in second. Reggie beat him in a race and Betty beat him in the long jump and so on. Even Jughead beat him in something. But Archie won gold at the meet. He did this because he placed consistently 2nd whereas the others who'd gotten first place in one event placed 4th or 5th in others.

Supergeek noticed something wrong and I demonstrated that the author was lazy and hadn't actually done his math; the numbers didn't add up and I said so. "Jesus Christ, Canine! Who the fuck adds up scores in a fucking Archie comic?" my fellow 9-year-old incarceree screamed. My nickname for the rest of August was Columbo.

But I was intrigued. Could there be a way to make the scoring work so that Archie could win even though he always came in second place? It took me a few tries but I figured out how it might work.

In my university prob/stat course we had to write programs in some glub-awful language like MAPLE. The Archie conundrum was still in my head and so I used it as the basis of a complex assignment. It turns out that theoretically it's quite probable that a second-placer will win overall as long as he's consistent and there are enough other actors (probabilty becomes >50% at 6 or 7 actors).

And now it's happened to me in real life. An evening of bowling on the $MegaCorp dime. We came in second place in each of the three full games played. But while some other team would soundly trounce us in one round, they'd play poorly in another. We played consistently and won.

The best thing of the night wasn't winning the damned "team-building" event -- like I could give a rat's ass about that. It wasn't even the free food (we had to pay for our own beer). It's that my Archie conundrum which has followed me for three decades or so has finally put to bed.

Me. First place in bowling. Insanity, I tell ya.

< Bad girl | Inevitability >
A Day in the Life | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden)
Couldn't by Rogerborg (4.00 / 4) #1 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 03:50:45 AM EST
You could not give a rat's posterior about that, Mr Supergeek.

The only thing that I know about Archie is that it produced my guru, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and this gem:

Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.

Fixed by ReallyEvilCanine (4.00 / 1) #2 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 03:56:46 AM EST
That mistake bugs me too but I actually dropped the leading "like" somehow. Crap about "team-building" deserves sarcasm, not just petty dismissal.

the internet: amplifier of stupidity -- discordia

[ Parent ]
You stay away from my ass mister! by greyrat (4.00 / 1) #6 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 04:26:35 AM EST
Unless by some chance you've morphed into a sexy, available woman...

[ Parent ]
Competition: by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #3 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 03:57:48 AM EST
I autocross, both years I won the Regional Championship in my class was because over the course of 12-16 events I consistently showed up and I consistently managed to get points (first through fifth place in class are awarded five to one points respectively). In fact, the second year I won, I don't think I ever finished first at any event.

Summer Camp:
Mostly Meh. But there were two times I remember it being better than meh: The first was when a pretty young fellow camper made me her "project" for the summer. The second was when my girl friend at the time was there at the same time I was. Ah! Good times. Good times...

Depending on the scoring system by sasquatchan (4.00 / 1) #4 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 04:10:14 AM EST
I believe NASCAR has plenty of similar examples, where the guy may take the pole and win a race or two, but the usual season winner is one who was consistently in the top5 or top10.

Prep Swimming: by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #5 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 04:21:24 AM EST
2-3-4 beats 1-5-6 every heat.
That's how you win a match, son, and that's how you keep the egos in check.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

Team building? by nightflameblue (4.00 / 2) #7 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 05:25:52 AM EST
I've always wondered why team building so often devolves into competition.  We'd all be better off if we just followed David Brent's example and played guitar for each other for an hour or two.

RE: Summer Camp

I only went to camp once.  It was right at the end of the period of time my parents were trying to save me from not being a Christian.  No, I wasn't getting in any trouble, I just didn't see the point in going to Church since it was pretty obvious the preachers and teachers wanted me to stay away anyways.  So, they sent me to summer church camp.

And I thought kids were wild outside of church camp.

The girls cabin was right in front of the playground equipment.  It was not uncommon for three or more pairs of breasts to be exposed from cabin windows at any given point during the day.  Intentionally.  They'd open the window, scream, "RIGHT HERE!" and then pop off their shirt and jiggle around.

I was there with a "girl who was my friend" that I had a major crush on but had given up on because she wouldn't let it go anywhere.  So, I started hanging with this little hottay I met at camp.  Suddenly, in the middle of a camp sing-along held in the meeting room, my "girl who was a friend" girl jumped up on her chair, and then threw herself on the girl I'd been hanging out with.  Next thing I know it's teeth, nails and hair flying everywhere.  They beat the ever-loving shit out of each other.

After that I didn't talk to either of them for several days.

And have I mentioned the guy's cabin?  You've never seen a smokier room in your life, no matter how many shitty bars you've been in.  And that was the counsellors' room.  Alcohol everywhere.  And sex happening with snuck in girls about every other room through the course of the night.  Some of them seemed to know who they were visiting, not all of them.

The one thing I learned from going to church camp?  If I ever want to party REALLY hard, I should hang out with a bunch of pious people.

I think you might be a little off there... by greyshade (2.00 / 0) #8 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 09:47:37 AM EST
If I ever want to party REALLY hard, I hang out with the children of uptight, overbearing, pious people.

"The other part of the fun is nibbling on them when they get off work." -vorheesleatherface
[ Parent ]
Funniest part of the whole thing. by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #9 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 09:50:23 AM EST
I know some of those people to this day.  The most party-hard ones back then?  They're the most uptight and hard-core when it comes to their children now.


But, yeah, you're right.  Until they hit the age of twenty-five or so, the kids of overbearing pious people are rock-hard party folks.  Then they turn into overbearing pious folks and THEY'RE kids get to be the party carriers.

[ Parent ]
pious people by clover kicker (4.00 / 1) #10 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 10:34:16 AM EST
Actually they were the kids of pious people.

Right now some of them are as religious as you are.

Some of them are super religious right now and feel guilty about that summer.

[ Parent ]
See other comment. by nightflameblue (4.00 / 1) #11 Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 11:21:40 AM EST
And as far as I know, I'm the least religious of the group.  I was also the least likely to get in the middle of the party-hard tactics that summer.  I do not fail to see the correlation.

[ Parent ]
Winning by Herring (2.00 / 0) #12 Sat Apr 26, 2008 at 12:39:55 AM EST
See Tour de France Green Jersey (points winner) versus Yellow Jersey (time winner). Nobody has won both since (too lazy to check) Eddy Merckx in 1970.

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

A Day in the Life | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden)