Game # 3 Bent Like Beckham: 2 Back in Black : Only 5
February 1 was truly a momentous night for the Bent Like Beckham, Indoor Edition.™ A night that comes but rarely in a life of nights. A night, of dazzling play, a night of courage, a night where one truly believes that dreams can come true.
Bent Like Beckham entered the Green Gym of Forest Lawn High School with but 1 goal in two games and facing the top team on the Thursday Plus League table, Back in Black. Certain defeat was but 48 minutes away. But Bent Like Beckham dared to dream … the impossible dream … to fight the unbeatable foe … to bear with unbearable sorrow … to run where the brave dare not go … to right the unrightable wrong … to love, pure and chaste, from afar … to try when your arms are to weary … to reach the unreachable star (sing it with me now) … this is my quest, to follow that star, no matter how hopeless, (louder) no matter how far, to fight for the right without question or pause, (all together) to be willing to march into Hell for a heavenly cause … (okay, I’ll stop now).
And then it happened … while Tony Swain was behind the defence and floating like a butterfly, the ball squirted to him and he stung. Yes, like a bee. The goaltender could only flinch helplessly as Tony’s ball soared past him and propelled Team Bent to the first goal and their first ever lead.
If only the game had ended at that moment. It would have been glorious. And we could have made it to the pub about 40 minutes earlier. Alas, it was not to be. The Black team, dressed in the same colours as Darth Vader, the Sheriff of Nottingham and the rabid wolf that bit Ol’ Yeller, stormed back and besieged Denise (hereinafter referred to as “Pam’s Mom”) with shot after shot. Miikkaa Kiprosoff himself would have wilted under the assault, but not Pam’s Mom. She stood as tall as anyone who is 4’11” tall can stand, batting ball after ball right back out to the top of the crease so the Black side could shoot again. No doubt her new goalie gloves, acquired during a recent Disneyland vacation, played a big part in her success.
Although 5 goals were officially counted, upon review of the videotape it is clear that three were the result of hand balls, one never crossed the line and the fifth was actually Tom’s cup, which had fallen from his shorts and was mistakenly kicked into the goal by an opposing player.
Down 5-1 and entering garbage time, Brian determined to make it close. As the clock wound down, he took the ball from deep in his own end, deked through the other side, and then, in a scene that will play for years in the cinema of our collective minds, he executed a text book Savardian spinerama at the top of the crease, then drilled it into the lower right corner. That’s why we got him, for his goal scoring. Oh, and his personality, too. He’s tons of fun. But mostly for his goal scoring.
The gentleman pictured at the left is Mr. Tim Speckman. As you can see, he is cheering for us. And by us, I mean Bent Like Beckham. Mr. Speckman has generously donated the sum of $2.95 to endow the Tim Speckman Player(s) of the Game Award.™ This award, symbolized by stickers of cartoon soccer players is given to those players who show exception perpicacity, indefatigability and a complete disregard of gentlemanly play. Thursday’s recipients of the coveted Speckman Sticker© included Stephanie, who played a brilliant game at both ends of the pitch and goal scorers Tony and Brian. Well done, Team.
Not everyone can win a sticker. But one guy who should have had a sticker (but did not get one) was Philippe “the Big Toe” Beckham. Philippe was a force all over the floor and completed his performance with a thundering shot to the goalie’s nards, which left him curled in a fetal position, sucking his thumb and weeping for his mommy. Well done, Philippe. Your belated Speckman Sticker© is in the mail.
One guy who won’t get a sticker, ever, is Team Co-Captain and The Other All Around Great Guy®, Peter. Once again, he arrived late and in no condition to do anything but run around in circles, waving his arms and shouting expletives. In other words, he played his usual game.
And then, there was Pam. What can you say about Pam? Seriously what can you say? Because I’ve got nothin’.
We were all a little disappointed that Summer and Desirée skipped out on post game beverages. Summer offered the lame excuse that she had to be in the Court of Appeal the next day and could not stay out late. But, since she ultimately lost her case anyway, what was the big deal?
Perhaps this e-mail, sent shortly before kick-off, explains why Summer and Desirée slipped out early for a little “together time”:
Those few stalwart team members who were left braved the Forest lawn night and headed over to Grampa’s Pub, a delightful little dive decorated in 60’s rec room chic. Baby face Tom was Id’d by the waitress. It turns out he only acts like he’s twelve. He is actually 52. Peter shouted a round for his tardiness, which amounted to all of $16.00. Beer prices are a little cheaper at Grampa’s place than at Ceili’s.
Coach Tom has designed a trick play to be invoked in carefully selected emergency situations. This play, known as the “Pink Pony” is both elegant in its simplicity and simple in its elegance. On the call of “Pink Pony”, the goaltender plays the ball to her right defenceman. The ‘tender then accepts the return pass and chips it to the left defence, who is breaking up the middle. The defender advances the ball right, to the rushing right defence, who dribbles it across center before crossing it to the left forward. The left wing immediately taps the ball to the still rushing right defence, then rushes into the corner before curling out towards the goal and accepting a return pass. The left wing then quickly puts the ball back to the right defence, who lifts it to the right wing who heads it into the goal.
The Pink Pony
Throughout the play, those on the bench are expected to simulate the sound of a charging stampede of ponies (pink or otherwise) thus distracting the other side as the play develops. In fact, the key to the Pink Pony is the fear engendered in the other side by the sound of a thousand thundering hoof beats bearing down upon them. So, make some noise people.
In other football news, the Super Bowl took place on Sunday. The Colts beat the Bears 29-17. Since “Colts” is just another way of saying “Ponies”, this has to be a good sign. Surely the stars are aligning for a big victory on Thursday.
But, since we are talking about the Super Bowl, a few words about the Super Bowl commercials. You can watch them all online at www.cbs.com. But if you click on one, you have to watch another commercial before you can see the commercial you clicked on. Yes, it has come to this – you actually have to watch a commercial so you can watch a commercial.
The next game is back at Forest Lawn High on Thursday at 9:00, when Bent Like Beckham takes on a bunch of losers who call themselves “Warm Milk”. They’ll be crying over their warm milk by the time it’s all over. Warm Milk are currently ranked 13th in the League standings … that’s right, a win on Thursday will vault Bent Like Beckham into the upper echelon of the lower echelon of the league rankings. So bring your game face, show up on time (Peter, we’re talking to you) and remember: Pink Pony!
 OK, it is not actually Tim, but it sure looks like him. And there is no doubt that Tim would cheer for us.