Friday, October 1, 2010

Croquet-Game or Sport
















This weekend the Merion Cricket Club held the 20th Anniversary Croquet Invitational. According to some reports, this is the biggest Croquet Tournament in the U.S.A. There were 160 players whacking balls around the 24 grass tennis courts for 3 days.


Merion Cricket Club is an Old Line, Old Money Waspatorium that has great tennis and squash and facilities and serves a mean Snapper Soup. Merion is not quite as hard to join as it once was, you know with the economy and all and many Clubs across the Nation scraping for cash and new members. It used to have the reputation of needing direct a Mayflower rap to get in. It is far more loose now and quite a nice place.


This Croquet-a-polooza is pretty interesting . One of the organizers claimed in a quote in the Main Line Times: "It's the putting of golf, the angles of billiards and about 66 percent the strategy of chess." I always thought it was a game played at a backyard party which gave you an excuse to try to dent your older brother's ass with a mallet. The game always turned into weapon wielding mayhem in my parent's backyard in Bryn Mawr. Few balls were shot thru any hoops and no one really knew the strict rules of the game anyway.


Evidently this crew that donned whites and showed up at this Club in Haverford takes this gig seriously and believes it is a sport. Arguably it is no more or less a sport than golf in many ways. Then again, I do not much like golf either. Given the chance to blow shit up with a shotgun as opposed to chasing a little white ball around a giant manicured lawn, I will opt for the former.
However, I do see this as a spectator opportunity. One can certainly park on the expansive porch of this venue and slam down some Gin and Tonics or Bloody's and watch these "athletes" crack away at the balls.

I wonder if Michael Caine knows that dude stole his British Officer's campaign Hemlet from the wardrobe room of the movie "Zulu?"
Photos courtsey of MainLinemedianews.com

13 comments:

vir beātum said...

I know nothing much about croquet, save that it is certainly a sport. 'Blowing shit up' no more defines a sport than hitting things with mallets; rather, it is the spirit of competition, typically through physical activity and skill, against self, thing, or foe, which makes it qualify. Incidentally, golf potentially provides all three.

The club in question here seems like a rare gem -- to be cherished, I should think.

My best to you,
VB

RulingPart said...

I love croquet. It's like mini golf except you can totally SCREW your opponents. "Oops, I didn't mean to knock it under the fence and into the neighbor's illegal dog fighting ring. Guess you'd better work quick!"

I know a guy who claims to have been a semi-pro croquet player. I savor that sentence... "I could have gone all the way, man!" In croquet!

Great post and I love the pictures.

Love it!

RulingPart said...

I love croquet. It's like mini golf except you can totally SCREW your opponents. "Oops, I didn't mean to knock it under the fence and into the neighbor's illegal dog fighting ring. Guess you'd better work quick!"

I know a guy who claims to have been a semi-pro croquet player. I savor that sentence... "I could have gone all the way, man!" In croquet!

Great post and I love the pictures.

Love it!

Toad said...

The tourney looks like a hell of a lot of fun. Sign us up for nest year

old polo said...

1965 land rover 109 station wagon, ruger 20 gauge over/under straight stock, south texas dove or quail, now that's blowing shit up! Look out for rattlers.

old polo said...

If I'm gonna get grass stains I hope it involves a horse, mallet, and a 3 inch white ball followed by gin and tonics after the last chukker.

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

Just awesome. I love these small, eccentric, niche sports such as croquet and lawn bowling. I agree with you about golf, and blowing things up (do neighbourhood coyotes count?) with a 12-gauge certainly sounds fun.

lancelonie said...

classy classics :)

ADG said...

I've got friends who gather once a year for a seriously serious croquet weekend. Whites on the lawn of one of the absurdly wealthy founding members of this clan. The founders kids are now grown so this thing has exponentially become a Gatsby Meets The Grateful Dead weekend. They won't invite me.

Main Line Sportsman said...

VB-Merion Cricket is a gem and the competition is the thing in shooting skeet or trap..but not hunting.
RP..Have to teach us the rules!

Toad...They play every year so practice!

Polo...Used the 20 guage on railbirds...see last post

ADG.Do they make white belgians?

LBF-Oh yeah...coyotes are one of the best thibgs to low up.

Hilton said...

Thanks for making the American male appear as Neanderthal, Mr. Main Line Sportsman.

Hilton

(veteran and gun owner)

Main Line Sportsman said...

Hilton, I fail to see how any of my posts have debased or denigrated American men....in any way whatsoever.
To the limited extent that Neanderthals hunted for food then perhaps you have a point. However, it seems clear you are using Neanderthal in a pejorative connotation. On that score I disagree. Apparently your reading comprehension skills are limited.

croquet set said...

Croquet sport is really fun and enjoyable. It is a game that the players have to drive the wooden ball through series of wickets using long handled mallets. It is really important that you have a good croquet set before playing.