In the Lebodome: The Five People You Meet at D.C. Kickball

by Borderstan.com July 26, 2011 at 8:30 am 1,919 10 Comments

DC Kickball, Lebodome, Stead Park

Which type of kickballer are you? (Courtesy DC Kickball)

From Scott Leibowitz. Find Scott on Twitter @Lebodome.

The groups of people walking the streets with neon color t-shirts. Your favorite bar turned into a flip cup basement party on a Wednesday. Canceling group dinner plans because someone passed out around 8 pm. Most D.C. residents, at one point or another have been a part of or have been affected by a D.C. kickball league.

I am currently in my fourth season on the same team, so I like to think of myself as a veteran. For me, it’s a great group of people enjoying some easy-going nonsense that is later accompanied by a good evening. Over the seasons I have noticed some trends and some general categories of types of players and behaviors. I could have gone further in depth, but if you were to meet a random selection of five players it would probably look something like this:

#1 The New D.C. Resident. Often heard saying, “I just moved to D.C. and heard all about kickball!” or “Free show after the game at Kennedy Center Millennium Stage guys?”

This player is generally one of your nicest players and is likely to have never heard of Jazz at The Sculpture Garden. Actual skills can vary but these players are important due to the fact they are always open to volunteer ref other games while everyone goes to the bar. Thanks newbs!

#2 In It For The Post-Game. Now this is a group I truly respect. They join the league not for the kicking, the cool shirts or even because it’s cool to play on The National Mall while tourists go about their day. No, these guys and gals are there for the post-games, the great bar specials that kickball leagues provide and the flip cup challenges. They also have been known to show up to your game with a gym bag filled with Pilsner refreshments for everyone (don’t tell anyone). Frankly, every team needs more of these.

#3 The High School Varsity Athlete. Notice I say high school and not college because, frankly, anyone who was good enough to play a college sport probably has a bit too much pride for kickball (that’s a good thing). Instead the league has some people — and this is like 95% dudes — who probably were stars in their small towns and have struggled to move on.

They take the game of kickball way too seriously, yell at their own teammates, argue over the actual rules and single-handedly make a game ugly. These guys are usually your teams’ best players, sadly, but for the most part, aren’t the majority of the league.

#4 Boring/Average Yuppie. Pretty much everyone else. Nine to Fivers/Sixers. The same people you would see at that Dupont HH you went to last week. Overall, great people. I like to think I am mostly this, but sometimes I slide into the previous category .

#5 Hot Girls. There are better places to meet guys… kickball… what were you thinking?

Bottom Line: D.C. Kickball is about playing a classic childhood game with sort-of-adults and then rehydrating yourself at one of many watering holes. I play in this league, there is also this one, and this too, as well as lastly this one. So get out there, Borderstan… no matter who you are and kick it!

Thought of the Day

With NFL back FINALLY, what is the first terrible move the Redskins make to doom their season? I say it’s a splash veteran free agent..

Links! Links! Ice Cold Links!

  • Alex

    Oh man, Borderstan, I love your blog. I’ve loved your blog for years. Your expanded coverage into all sorts of locally-relevant things — the community garden coverage, the galleries, neighborhood pictures — has been welcome. You’ve focused on things that are, at the least, new, local and interesting.

    The introduction of national sports commentary has been kinda weird and jarring, but reading this content-free humor piece had me rolling my eyes. The tone, content and quality here are a huge departure from what I’ve come to expect from Borderstan.

    • We hope you actually DO like it. (:>)

    • Lebodome

      1. I want to thank you. You are my first true hater. Hater’s are key components to good sports blogs/chats and I thank you for it.
      2. Jarring? Disasters are jarring, not my column.
      3. Sounds like you had a bad kickball experience once. Just sayin….

    • MissPiggy

      For reasons I don’t completely understand, kickball has become the new sport of a wide variety of 20- and 30-somethings in trendy urban neighborhoods. That fact alone makes it a logical topic for Borderstan.

      • Lebodome

        I don’t know why its so popular either Ms. Piggy. I assume it is somehow connected to that awesome feeling of kicking a red rubber ball. That or the post game drink specials..

  • According to the Wikipedia entry, “Kickball, originally called “Kick Baseball”, was invented around 1917 by Nicholas C Seuss; Supervisor of Cincinnati Park Playgrounds in Cincinnati, Ohio.[1]”

    Seuss? Where have I heard that name?

  • anon

    I can understand why kickball would be appealing to some. Let’s say you are new to town, or fresh out of college, and you want to socialize in a co-ed situation with people of a similar demographic, I don’t think there is any harm or foul to dc kickball.

    For some, it’s not their cup o’ tea (see: http://dcist.com/2007/09/20/dieyuppiekickba.php), which i suggest you avoid the Mall post-work, and McFaddens/Sign of the Whale/The Exchange.

    • Lebodome

      This isnt a foreign policy or budget debate. It aint even a real sports debate. Either too many Bordertsan readers were last picked for teams, or I have missed something larger in this article. Frankly I am not sure.

      Also there are leagues that don’t play anywhere near The Mall or involve those bars. That DCist article is interesting but again….it’s just kickball.

  • Laura

    Wow, Lebodome. Just want to give you some ups on all this chatter. Its almost better than my usual spot on the kickball bench.


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