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BCUCJoel

Step 1

Furious George qualified for the Canadian Ultimate Championships today, taking the first bid out of B.C., and the top seed out of the West.  We earned the victory in decisive 15-7,15-3,15-3 wins, although not always with the kind of efficient aplomb we are trying to drill into habit.  We practiced various iterations of man-to-man and zone defenses that we are cultivating for use in August, and we continue to try to refine our offense into something less like an enthusiastic chaos.  The theory is that when the machine is finished, it won’t matter which part we play — it will trundle down the field as designed, as we each do our jobs.    That will come; for now though, we have accomplished step one.

Today, our Canadian series roster was required to compete for two bids to Winnipeg.  We have selected a 28-man subset of our master roster (the maximum allowed) for this purpose, and only those 28 names may compete at regionals.   Of course, when you subtract eight players for Canada, and three-or-four more for injuries, you easily wind up playing another tournament with a modest cohort. And some not on our CUC roster chose to sign up with other squads for the Canadian series (e.g., Blackfish, Sundown). And that’s the challenge of Furious George this year: building ourselves up despite the forces that conspire to fractionate us.

I’ve never been on a team with a roster numbering in the mid-thirties before.  Since we first announced our roster, we’ve had a number of amusing encounters with other players.  They glance at us sidelong, through furrowed brows, and you can see the question, unreconciled, fomenting on their lips.  After some conversations they reveal their thoughts, which are invariably, “thiry-five seems like a lot,” and “but there are only like, fifteen of you….”  Of course, as we’ve hinted at before, carrying a large roster is the solution to our human resources problem. If we could have everyone with us all the time, then we obviously wouldn’t need thirty-five.  But in an environment wherein we’ve become stretched so thin, and priorities compete, we need every last man.  We need to switch out, pass each other the baton, do each others’ jobs seamlessly, become a faceless army of angry monkeys.  This recap isn’t just about BC Regionals; it’s about keeping family together.

BCUCTayBobo

Thus, our uniforms carry added symbolism this year.  Mostly, they are simple, devoid of gaudy sublimated trappings.  They present the monkey logo with a modest aesthetic.  There are no names — just numbers.  The monkey comes first, and anyone wearing it owns an equal share in its power.  Our whites, admittedly, do show names — every single one, in an unending pattern, blending into the background.  Those are the jerseys we wore today, with some of us on another continent, some of us hurt and sidelined, and some of us competing on other teams.  We all have a stake in the dream we strive to keep alive.

In exactly one month, Furious George will take the field against the rest of Canada.  Every four years, the competition at CUCs swells to match the stakes: the right to choose the national team for the world championship (WUGC).  A lot can happen in four years; entire generations of players turn over, but we all inherit the old rivalries and the old ambitions.  For us, there is a calling running deeper than podium finishes and selection committees — there is a belief in our combined power and our potential that will be tested.  Only seven can step on the line, only twenty-eight can go, but there are thirty-five names woven into our shirts.

BCUCall

Ed.Note: Click to enlarge the photos and read the names thereon

Alex Davis

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