austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

My heart is like a wheel

B Division Finals: the top eight people after the top sixteen people plus anyone too good to be placed in the B Division. I earned the lowest seed spot, but I get 7th because someone, somewhere, above me didn't make it to the finals. This is maybe marginally better. I'm in a group with the #2, 3, and 6 seeds, instead of the #1, 4, and 5 seeds. But the seeding was arbitrary enough it probably doesn't make much difference.

In any case I'm the low seed in our group. We have three rounds of games, so everyone else will get the chance to pick a game to play. All I can pick is order. I've picked up the superstition of going second; tradition is, if you can pick order, to go last. I don't know. It works for me, and while it rarely throws anyone off, if it does, it throws them way off.

Our first game: Iron Man. I know its rules from Lansing League, but I've only touched the table at this venue once and it whomped me hard. It likes me better now, and it whomps on my competitors. I end up running away with a 31 million point game, a good score even for high-level players. I'm none too confident, since I was only the second player, and the fourth-place person makes a good run at some high-value shots. But he gets a bad bounce, finishing at about 12 million. I have a first-place finish, getting four PAPA points. Now I'm relaxed; even if I bomb the next two games, I can hold my head up.

Next game: Bally's 1975 Knockout, an electromechanical. I've worked out the one thing to do: there's this little trough in the upper playfield to shoot for. You can get it with the skill shot and with a not-quite-hard-enough shot from either flipper. I put together my best game on this ever (of, like, six times I've been on the table). It's ... not quite good enough. BMP beats me by about ten thousand points (of about 75,000). But I hold on to second place, earning me two more PAPA points.

Last game of the first round is Genesis that whomped me so many times. I have confidence going in, though. If I can avoid coming in last then I'm guaranteed to move on to the second round. Even if I do come in last there are two outcomes where I'd go to a playoff for the next round. I can relax and just play, and I have a game that's not bad for me on Genesis, especially for not really getting the multiball together. I earn second place on the table, and two more PAPA points. Of our quartet I have the highest score, and DAD, father of that father-son pair, second-highest. Might yet take first place, B Division!

Trivia: In his New York Vaudeville Debut Senor Wences was billed as ``The Wences'', which as Variety noted, made him sound like a dance team. Source: The Encyclopedia of Vaudeville, Anthony Slide.

Currently Reading: Pacific: Silicon Chips and Surfboards, Coral Reefs and Atom Bombs, Brutal Dictators, Fading Empires, and the Coming Collision of the World's Superpowers, Simon Winchester.

Tags: #1, #2, pinball at the zoo

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