April 28, 2004

Better Than Office Politics: Office Sports

Sheila’s got a post today about how a couple of her co-workers saw her playing with a balloon and used it to create an impromptu sport:

Then the two guys got involved, and within literally THREE SECONDS, an entire game, with a complicated rule system emerged. A point-system blossomed forth, and disqualifications were discussed - all of this seemed to happen immediatley, like flowers opening up on speeded-up film. The game just MANIFESTED.

Ms. O’Malley uses this as an example of why, due to their inherent competitive nature, “men are great.” And while I’ll leave judgment of that to Sheila, I must say I’ve had a lot of fun with “office sports” over the years, as it’s often the sort of thing that can make an awful workplace just a little bit more bearable.

At my first job in New York, myself and the rest of the copy-editing staff invented a new sport called “Sectorball.” Sectorball was a dodgeball/volleyball/gaga hybrid which entailed the five or six of us tossing around a Nerf football until it landed in someone’s cubicle (their “sector”). Players would get points for dropping the ball in someone else’s sector, and lose them if the ball landed in theirs.

Aside from getting tickets to the 2000 World Series, Sectorball was really the only good that came out of that job.

I think the make-your-own-sport phenomenon is the reason those “Great Moments at Work” commercials by Microsoft touch such a nerve- who hasn’t wanted to do a heavily choreographed touchdown dance after winning a makeshift sport and/or completing a particularly difficult TPS report?

Anyway, this trend apparently has caught on down under as well; Tim Blair addresses Red’s post and shares his own favorite office game, “Run Away From Gary.” Check out the comments of both posts for more examples.

Posted by Stephen Silver at April 28, 2004 11:06 PM

There was "East Football" my freshman year...but as you can probably imagine that didn't work too well.

Then there was jumping into walls...um, but that was only funny for those of us who watched the idiot from our hall who was doing it.

Then there was the game which led to um, accidentally, er, set off the fire alarm and evacuated all of Pomerantz...but that wasn't me...honest!

Posted by: jaws at April 29, 2004 01:05 AM
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