The Carver Mobb: New York City Street Football
February 24, 2015 10:49 PM   Subscribe

Essentially two-hand-touch taken to bloodsport level, with two 25-minute halves, a mostly running clock, and referees to nominally control the mayhem, it's the closest these weekend warriors will come to professional sport, though many are high-caliber athletes.
posted by MoonOrb (7 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Man. Coaching a football game over the phone from prison. That's hardcore.
posted by mannequito at 12:33 AM on February 25, 2015

This was excellent.
posted by KingEdRa at 5:38 AM on February 25, 2015

A lot of cities have their game that they play like nobody does. NYC has rough-touch 7-7 football and stickball. Chicago has softball played with the 16" softball, which is similar to Mushball in Portland. St. Louis has corkball. And so on.

When you live in the city, you play the game modified for what you have. Chicago developed 16" softball (compared to the much harder 12" standard softball) because there wasn't as much space to play in, and the 16" ball didn't fly as far, and in the depression, gloves cost real money and you don't need gloves with the 16" ball. Stickball, of course, is fitted to the streets of New York, if you used a full sized ball and bat, you'd be shattering windows all day.

When I was a kld, we played whiffleball with taped up bats and balls in the subdivision, using the four storm sewer grates as the bases, ghost runners, and we had a few extra rules. A ball in the sewer grate was out, as was a ball that hit Al Tree, Homer Bush, or Dennis Lamp. Last person to touch a ball that went into the sewer had to either retrieve it or replace it with a new one. Ghost runners could be doubled off you were within 10' of the base when you got the ball and you tagged the base then threw. Finally, there was the "Not That Ball" rule -- if anyone could stand at home and curve the ball around the bush that was 10' behind home plate, that ball was declared illegal. In truth, that faded after we started taping up the balls more -- you'd get a more random motion, but it wouldn't be a five foot break like you could get with a lightly taped ball thrown just so.
posted by eriko at 6:12 AM on February 25, 2015 [2 favorites]

Yep, I've not got much to comment on, but wanted to say how much I enjoyed the article.
posted by ominous_paws at 6:21 AM on February 25, 2015

The Dennis Lamp doping scandal was the last straw for me with sports. He seemed like such an upright guy.
posted by Wolfdog at 7:03 AM on February 25, 2015 [1 favorite]

I did enjoy the article, but something about the portrayal of the players seemed like ghetto tourism, especially the part where the author accidentally blurted out the N-word. I appreciate the honesty and the portrait of a world you don't see talked about in most sports journalism places but still, it gets a little breathless making make sure we know these guys are super hard core gangstas who say f*****t a lot or whatever. I could be reading it wrong I guess.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:08 AM on February 25, 2015

The Dennis Lamp doping scandal was the last straw for me with sports. He seemed like such an upright guy.

I dunno. He always struck me as a shady character.
posted by parliboy at 3:22 PM on February 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

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