The sport that has taken Iceland, Zimbabwe, New Zealand, and Ecuador by storm is now reaching the shores of the United States despite the justifiably stringent embargo laws.  This complicated game is called flugënball and it is rapidly becoming the nation’s pastime.  (And when I said the nation’s pastime, of course I meant selected parts of Idaho.) While starting out small only to fail on an immeasurably titanic scale has always been flugënball’s preferred path, it still somehow manages to capture hearts. There then follows a renewed passion to play again, despite the breathtaking injuries.

Developed in 1563, by known scientist and unknown shepherd Hildagio Trepespankqua, the first foray into flugënball combined chess, tennis, water polo, naked spaghetti wrestling, and spelunking.  Contemporaries of Trepespankqua were perplexed by this new sport and were downright confounded as to how one could even find naked spaghetti in the first place. 

However, Trepespankqua’s peers were willing to take a chance by rejecting flugënball outright as an imprudent exercise from this part-time brilliant man.  Hildagio Trepespankqua was later executed on unrelated but widely substantiated organ grinding fraud charges.  Yet one cannot help but think that his development of flugënball played no small part in motivating the jury towards their understandably harsh verdict.

Here is a depiction of Trepespankqua’s home.
It is unfortunately obscured by that huge tower in the foreground.

Then in 1620, a breakthrough!  The Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, setting up their colonies in this exciting and challenging New World. However, as this breakthrough has nothing to do with the story of flugënball, we will continue.

Then In 1786, Thomas Jefferson inadvertently discovered and begrudgingly examined Trepespankqua’s original plans for flugënball. Jefferson was intrigued by this sport and wrote, “ʄlugënballe (flugënball) is rather inane.  This sport proves the limitations that man imposes on himself concerning knowledge.  Oh, the depths that man will sink to!  That all being said, has the dime been spoken for already?  If so, I suppose being on the nickel will have to do.”  

Without the endorsement of Jefferson, flugënball thankfully seemed destined to fade away into oblivion.  Although he was an avid reader and later was a supporter of the Library of Congress, Jefferson decided that for the good of humanity he would burn all sixteen volumes that Trepespankqua had devoted to his sport, flugënball.

Jefferson’s snobbery is well-documented.
For instance, he never once visited the Jefferson Memorial.

Once again, fate seemed on the verge of finally eliminating the scourge of flugënball completely.  Then the miracle happened.  Amid the flames of the burning tomes, Jefferson’s manservant, Nephilim Keywhydan, spotted the word “flugënball” in the ashes.  Thinking this word was rather unique, Keywhydan decided that would name his firstborn child Flugënball!  He then continued to burn the rest of the books.  Naming his firstborn Flugënball would prove to be difficult as his firstborn child not only had a name but was already 29 years old.  However, Keywhydan persisted and soon young Linda became Flugënball.

Despite having a name like Flugënball Keywhydan, she managed to find love several times over the years before finally settling on an animate object.  By a mere suspicious coincidence, his name was Lawrence Flugenbäll.  She married Lawrence and soon had seven children: Tippy, Bippy, Bottle, Bum, Chirper, Stilendal, and Roger.  Luckily, Lawrence never found out about it.  Meanwhile the children Flugënball had with Lawrence were Harry, Kerry, Gary, Carrie, Barry, Gerry, Larry, Perry, Jerry, Harry (no, a different one), Terry, Carey, Mary, Contrary, and Flugënball.

Flugënball Flugënball is depicted here soon to be without a leg to stand on.

Flugënball, the youngest, sadly lacked a Nintendo Entertainment System, so instead he soon developed an interest in the mundane history behind his name.  He wondered how he, Flugënball Flugenbäll, could have the same name as his mother, Flugënball Flugenbäll.  His mother explained how she came to be named Flugënball and that her father, despite his large Hummel collection of random 12th century hang glider stewardesses, was quite mad indeed.  The young Flugenbäll decided to investigate his background further.  Finally, through one of those amazing coincidences that seem to happen throughout a poorly executed, obnoxiously fictional history, he discovered the name of one Hildagio Trepespankqua!

Reading further on, Flugenbäll discovered the origins of his name and despite the cease and desist order from at least 19 U.S. states and territories, as well as the nation of Denmark and the Vatican City, he foolishly decided to carry on the work of Trepespankqua. The sport of flugënball was back and better than it never was!

I imagine the owner of that sweet pad really gets the ladies! Pretty lucky dude!

For the most part, flugënball as we know it today was set up along similar lines back then.  There were some notable differences as well.  Originally there were 852 players on the field at the time.  All players were first handed a rather nasty club and would then have to drink a quart of rum, all the while being spun and blindfolded before heading out to play.  This tradition was carried out until the mid-1980s, when the number of lawsuits soon reached into the trillions.  (These lawsuits were the main cause of The Great File Cabinet Shortage of 1988.) 

There was also a now-defunct rule in which players who dared to have vowels in their names were to be savagely beaten about the face and genitals at each game.  This somewhat hindered the growth of the sport because oddly enough, there simply weren’t enough people willing to change their names to Jzcw Ptrnml just to play flugënball.

In 1994, the formal rules for the sport were redefined under flugënball’s commissioner Heidi Flügënbäll-Trentønortən.  Soon enthusiasts were popping up in Iceland and Ecuador for reasons that remain a mystery to most anthropologists with grant money to burn.  A possible problem developed when Iceland discovered they didn’t have enough room for a flugënball stadium.  Even with their much-vaunted geothermal power, the chances of Iceland getting more space were slim at best.  Ignoring pleas to halt from the United Nations, the playing field was then relocated to Ecuador.  

Geothermal, Schmeothermal!” the irate Icelandish people screamed in rage!

Even then, there were difficulties along the way.  As one might and probably should imagine, travel arrangements from Iceland to Ecuador were a nightmare.  After several rather expensive and tragic attempts, it was discovered that busing was not an ideal means of transportation. The language barrier didn’t help either as many Ecuadoranians were shocked that despite all the evidence to the contrary, the Icelandickers couldn’t speak a word of Spanish.  

With this new interest in flugënball, new rules then followed.  Women players were finally permitted to wear clothes, much to the chagrin of the voting board.  New recruits could be drafted already at age 4.  Since one slice of American cheese proved to not be enough material for an athletic supporter, using at least two slices was written in stone as the unwritten law.  Once again, the only way to win the game was to have a tie.  As soon as the game was tied, there was a sudden death overtime where both teams were to tie up the score again.  If they failed, both teams would then lose.  Coincidentally, many 0-0 final scores in overtime led to fantastic winning records for every single team.  

New Zealand and Zimbabwe soon started flugënball teams on their own, violently disregarding the condemning reports out of The Hague. Mandatory half-time physicals were enforced.  Rain delays were only allowed for matches held on even days of the week.  The use of farm machinery to break through defenses was permitted, but it had to be equipment endorsed by the league. Flugënball kept growing and finally reached the shores of Idaho, which was quite a feat considering that the state is not surrounded by water.

Defenses weaken considerably when the Harvest Mangler is employed!

Will flugënball come to dominate the rest of the United States as well?  It is hard to say because flugënball has one large obstacle in gaining U.S. mainstream acceptance: flugënball doesn’t use an actual ball.  This seemingly inconsequential tidbit confuses the weaker-minded citizens who mainly watch drivel like Celebrity Hooker Pick-up, reruns of Tic-Tac-Dough, and American football.  Yet flugënball apparently knows no bounds.  The only way it can go is up because it couldn’t sink any lower without coming out on the other side of the planet. 

Perhaps in the future, people will be able to examine the genius of Hildagio Trepespankqua.  They will finally come to the realization at the end of the day when all is said and done that the sport he originally devised is a tremendous failure that can only result in the destruction of mankind as we know it.  So far everyone has expected basketball to be such a sport, but it hasn’t happened…yet.

Published by benjaminawink

Being at best a lackadaisical procrastinator, this is purely an exercise in maintaining a writing habit for yours truly. This will obviously lead to the lucrative and inevitable book/movie/infomercial deal. I promise to never engage in hyperbole about my blog, which will be the greatest blog mankind has ever known since blogs started back in 1543. I won't promise anything other than a few laughs, a few tears, and maybe, just maybe, a few lessons about how to make smokehouse barbecue in your backyard.

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1 Comment

  1. Thank you for taking on this important topic. Few writers have been brave enough- nay, heroic enough- to call out that sport which I cannot spell for being almost definitely but probably not what it is!


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