Wednesday, June 29, 2005



It was another hot and muggy night on the streets of New York City. One of those summer evenings when the air was so thick you could chew it. And the smell of baking garbage and Pug urine greeted you at every street corner. What did you expect? This is the Upper West Side of Manhattan in June. It's like New Orleans only with more dogs and baby strollers.

But inside George Keeley the air was was cool and the beers were even colder. The Dartbags (The Drinkin'est and Friendliest team in the NYDO) faced off against Hands of Doom in a match that would determine the B-1 championship. With an accomplished foe that featured one of the city's best players and 14 points needed to clinch the title, The 'Bags had a tall order in front of them. And I'm not just talking about the 16 ounce Sierras.

Here's how it went down at the GK.

Usual lead off man, Glenn Pike managed to drag himself out of bed despite suffering from Strep Throat, Avian Flu, Mad Cow Disease (and rumor has it being bitten by a malarial tsetse fly on the way over). However, he would be late. So Frank started the show. Sort of. He faced off against Dennis Hayes. Hayes went first, went out in 8 and that was that. Good as advertised.

Next up, Louis Francis Henry, III, purveyor of fine housewares and darting fool. Lou got off to his, now trademark, slow start, but righted the ship and sank a double 2 to win a nail-biter. (13....)

Cup followed Lou with solid effort, sinking a double 5 with dart number 1 (which would become a theme) to close the deal. (12...)

What followed was a Cheesequake. Vince started with an 85, then a 95, then a Ton. And with dart number 21, finished off a 7 rounder. Lou would return from a smokie treat and ask why Vince wasn't playing. (Uh, because he already won, numbnuts). "But I was gone for, like, 2 minutes.", he would say with a confused look. Indeed. Behold, the power of Cheese. (11...)

R.J. followed the stellar with the solid. A crisp 10 round effort. Call it minor surgery. (10...)

Glenn would shake off the effects of his whooping cough long enough to turn in a vintage performance. Not to be outdone by Vince, he smacked 228 ASPs and also turned in a 19 darter to nail down another victory (9...)That's 3 games. Three wins. 24 Rounds. Good stuff.

5-1 at the break.

Glenn and Cup teamed up in the first round of cricket. Hot knives. They were on top of their respectives games and took a quick sweep (8... 7...)

Vince and RJ followed that with some inconsistent, but effective darts, including a classy C-3 finish (3 singles) from RJ. (6... 5...)

Lou and Frank, the River Road connection, faced off against Dennis and Mike. With an unorthodox strategy of chasing employeed by the 'Bags, the two teams started a Snowdem Pole. Dennis closes 20s. Lou closes 20s. Mike closes 19s. Frank closes 19s. Dennis closes 18s. Lou closes 18s. Things broke up a bit after that, but thanks to a sweet C-3 winner from Lou the 'Bags took the first game (4...)

In the second game a nice start from the Hands, put the 'Bags in a hole. The comeback came up short.

10-2 after 2 periods.

Next up was Doubles 501. We decided to put Glenn first because his tuberculosis seemed to be worsening. With 84 left, Glenn hit a single 18. With 66 left he hit a double 15 to put him on 36. And you knew he was going to bury the last dart for the win. (Captain's Note: Glenn is allowed to do crazy stuff like this because he throws ridicudarts. The rest of us are not.) In the second game with an out of 10, there appeared to be some confusion. With a comfortable lead should Cup shoot for the double 5 or go 2, double 4? After some brief deliberation it was decided that Cup would not play "wussy darts" ("Guy, I'm going for it, guy.') Good choice. First dart was double 5, just like in his first match (Atta boy, Joey Pep.) (3... 2...)

It is time for Line of The Night (TM): Referring to Glenn who, upon winning and shaking hands, quietly departed for home:

Farty: "He strikes! Then he sinks back into the night..."

Cheese'N'Frank faced off against Dennis and Zach, a tough pair who did some damage in the doubles tournament earlier in the season. Crisp darts (80+s) were what the H.O.D. were serving up. The D'Bags counted down to 19. But when Dennis hit a 1 and followed it with a double 8, the 'Bags would drop the first match. In the next leg, Cheese would get the Good Guys on in the first turn. After a solid countdown, Frank nailed a 58 out with a dart in his hand. As Hope would point out, his dart hit the board to coincide with the final note of Peter Sorkin's rendition of Tiny Dancer. That's just weird. (1...)

It came down to RJ and Lou for a chance to clinch the title. R.J. was his surgical self, in on his first dart. With Louis ripping it up and RJ not missing his 20s, they built a sizable lead. An attempted double out on double 20 by Lou left R.J. with a leave of 10. RJ calmly stepped to the line, eyed the target and -- bang -- double 5 first dart.


And with that, the celebration began. Drinks were raised, (manly) hugs were exchanged and there was much rejoicing. A great night, and a great way to end the season. We knew we needed a big time effort to beat a good team and we stepped up. 14 was the goal and we ended with 15 (In the final game of the year, Lou did some sick stuff down the stretch and RJ doubled in and out, blah-blah-blah).

I think we've accomplished both goals for the year; Winning our sub-division and having a good time every Tuesday. Next up we have the playoffs. I'm not sure who we play yet. I thought we were playing the 4th place team in the other bracket (East Gaf team, nice guys), but someone told me that they pick the pairings out of a hat. Whoever it is, they will be good. But if we played like we did last night, we'll give anyone a tough time. Perhaps Cheese summed it up best last night in his own minimalist way, "I believe in this team".

I think we all do. Great job and congratulations to everyone. I'm proud of you guys and I'm proud to be one of you guys. And a big thank you to all the well-wishers, friends, girlfriends and wives who support our Tuesday Night festivities at which we get to act like kids again (albeit drunk kids who curse a lot). We love it. We really do. I just wish Big Friendly Tim and Colin could have been there to join the celebration.

But, hey, if we play our game, there may be another celebration soon enough.

Playoffs start 7/12. Practice anyone?

Stat of the Night:
Not a single player had fewer than 190 All Star Points.

Lou: 558 (New high for him and highest non-glennjamin total ever for team)
Pike: 368
Vince: 315
RJ: 200
Cup: 200
Frank: 190