February 3rd, 2016

krazy koati

The chemical, physical, kryptonite

Most of the people there for the New Year's Day tournament were the same ones there New Year's Eve. But the day, and the year, had turned, and with it the tone. Rationally, the first match of the year should be as important as the last one; if you need half a point to get into the finals, it's as good to get it January 1st as it is 365 days later. But this was the start of the season, and it's so hard to think that the first match is as much part of the pennant chase as the last.

And it wouldn't all be pinball. MJS has a couple electromechanical games. One is a Ringer, a mechanical simulation of horseshoe tossing. You spin a wheel, that spins a flywheel, that triggers a string of lights to simulate the toss of a horseshoe. That's been a tournament in past events, though not this time around. He's also got a bowling simulator. It's a machine with an alley maybe eight feet long --- coats were put on the backside of it --- with the ball's roll knocking the pins up-and-out. bunny_hugger and I got into a six-person match for this and I stunned myself by doing well. I was able to find roughly where to throw and how strong to throw the ball to keep hitting strikes, which is all quite gratifying. This was all for bragging rights, of course, but we'll take that.

MJS, and people who could, brought snacks and food in for the kitchen. University of Michigan's football team was doing rather better in its game than Michigan State had. We'd spend some time playing games that might come up for the day's four-strikes tournament, or just games we liked playing. I did try working out any kind of strategy for Godzilla, a game of which knocked me out the day before. It would be one of the games knocking me out again. Well, who even has a Godzilla (based, indeed, on the forgotten 1998 movie) anyway? Sometimes the hazard of a great pinball machine collection is you run into games nobody can explain.

And there'd be more payoffs for this tournament. MJS promised money not just to the first four players but also the fifth-place finisher because, he said, they'd found a dime on the floor and that was going in the jackpot. There was a motion on the floor to make RLM's jacket also a prize, but the chair refused to allow debate on it.

Trivia: In 1555 the Mughal nobility (the omrah) numbered 51 persons, nearly all non-Indian Muslims. By 1580 it had grown to 222, nearly half of them Indian, including 43 rajputs. Source: India: A History, John Keay.

Currently Reading: African Americans in Michigan,Lewis Walker, Benjamin C Wilson, Linwood H Cousins.