Tuesday was the third meeting (of eight) for Season 3 of the League. After the last meeting, dubbed Demolition Derby Night by Joseph, everyone was concerned about the state of the games, but they all got some TLC after that and all were working as league night began. I was hoping we would play Attack from Mars now that Pinball Pete’s has moved the outlane posts halfway back in (they had previously been as far out as they could be) and dialed back the tilt sensitivity — but Matt’s random number generator selected Junk Yard, Monster Bash, Addams Family, and Austin Powers.
Chris made a show of elaborately snubbing me tonight, greeting Joseph but passing me with a cold “excuse me, ma’am.” I suppose this might have something to do with an exchange on the Grand Rapids League Facebook. In response to Chris’s complaining about someone double-flippering in a video, I innocently suggested that he was just envious because he couldn’t handle two flippers at once. Apparently I touched a nerve.
Everything seemed to be going well until Junk Yard decided to start serving up two balls instead of one. As exciting as nonstop multiball action with single ball scoring rules would be, it was decided that we would instead play Getaway. I blame Mike (MWS) since he was in the group playing Junk Yard when it broke and his first time with the League was during the Demolition Derby Night. He has admitted that crazy malfunctions have hit him at other leagues before, so I am afraid he might in fact be some sort of pinball gremlin.
It was apparently Family Night this time as I got sorted into a group with my own dear pinball partner Joseph as well as Mark and his daughter, Samantha, who joined the League for the first time. Sam was too polite to blow her own horn but that’s what Dad is for: he told us that she previously placed highly in a youth tournament. I was not taken up on my suggestion that we should play in teams as a sort of Family Feud.
The elusive Terry showed up for the first time this season just to make sure everyone knows he can still put (most of) us in our places. When the dust had settled, Terry had narrowly edged out Aaron to take second for this week, graciously leaving the top spot for Chris. Speaking of Chris, a reliable source tells me that he was seen playing his multiball on Monster Bash one-handed. I hardly need to point out that this only strengthens the claim that Chris has trouble using two flippers at once.
Poor Matt ended up tied with yours truly, a rare confluence of an especially rough night for Matt and an especially good night for me. Maybe he’s been learning some of my Useless Pinball Moves. When his League games were over, Matt said, “It’s time for me to emerge from the chrysalis of league play and become the butterfly that I am.” I can certainly sympathize with the feeling that league play too often fails to capture us at our best.
The next league night, meeting #4 of 8, will be on October 7. Will anyone be able to catch Chris? No, scratch that. Will anyone be able to catch Rodney? The gap between first and second (Chris and Rodney) is immense, but the gap between second and third (Joseph) is almost as big. Matt and Aaron are both within easy reach of third at this point, and others are coming up quickly. I am excited to see how the Race for Second and Third develops as we approach the season’s midpoint.