Tale of Two Tournaments, Part 1

It’s Friday,  March 16, one day before St. Patrick’s Day, and the Twin Cities are absolutely gorgeous tonight. It’s 80 degrees outside, the birds are chirping, and there’s not a drop of snow to be found. I’m on my way to the Woodbury Country Inn & Suites for the Capital City Classic cribbage tournament. Driving east on I-94 into a beautiful waning sunset, I’ve got the windows down, music loud, an arm danging out the window, and I remind myself once again what I’m losing this beautiful night to. A game. Cards. Part of me just wants to keep driving into the dusk.  Continue reading

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Back in the Ring

 

This weekend marks my return to the competitive cribbage circus circuit.

Work and school have kept me away for quite some time. About 6 weeks ago I emailed Dan Taylor, the ACC rep for my club (the Twin City Peggers), and told him “say hey to everyone, I’ll see you when I see you,” as my Wednesday nights are booked solid with grad school this semester, and I’ve been unable to join the club I’ve come to know over the past year. I couldn’t make it to Reno; I couldn’t even make it to the January St. Paul snowball.

This weekend, though, the Capital City tournament is just a few miles down the highway, and I’m all-in. Friday night tournament: 9 games. Main Saturday event: 22 games. Saturday night tournament: 9 games. Sunday: unknown. 40 games minimum–that’s a lot of time hunched over a board in another no-trump hotel conference room, a weekend lost counting to 15, to 31, lost to moving pegs, lost to small-talk, no-talk, trash-talk, bravado and humility in equal measure. That’s a lot of time lost to playing a game. 

But I’m not the only one, thankfully. Though I qualified for the bracket rounds (top 25%) in my first tournament ever, I’ve been unable to re-create that success everywhere else, and I go to Woodbury with a deplorable tournament record. To win, or at least do well, would be great. To come one step closer to figuring out why we do it would be even better. Stay tuned.

Estate Sale Confidential

Early Estate Sale Confidential Gold

After a holiday hiatus, we’re back on track here at Cribbageland; interviews are again underway, as well as drafting, drafting, drafting.

For most of us, writing and blogging is a lonely business. That’s why on Saturday I’m joining fellow writer, blogger, and baseball fanatic Peter Schilling, Jr., for one of his favorite activities: estate sale-ing (hey, we both blog about activities that people really want to know about). Come Saturday morning, we venture in search of pre-owned booty! He’s going to bring me up to speed on the four types of estate sales (the Digger, the Shoeless, the In-Between, and the Poser) and show me first-hand the competitive world of second-hand goods. We’ll be on the lookout for the bold and bizarre, the overlooked and under-cherished. From old books (WPA Guide to Minnesota) to tarot cards, incandescent crosses to bullshit grinders, you never know what you’ll find.

 

Mike and the Mt. Holly Cribbage Board, won by Peter soon after.

We might even be joined by Cribbageland celebrity Mr. Mike Haeg, the Mayor of Mt. Holly, Minnesota, and world record holder for the largest cribbage board. Mike contributed a Mt. Holly cribbage board to last summer’s Cribbage in the Field event at the Walker Art Center, and it was none other than Peter who won that crimson beauty.

I’m looking forward to a morning of estate sale-ing. What’s your favorite estate sale find?

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Peter Schilling, Jr. is a freelance writer, Minnesota Twins blogger, and author of The End of Baseball, which the New York Post deemed “required reading” for baseball nuts everywhere. Be sure to also check out The Bug Blog for more Estate Sale Confidential.

Mike Haeg is Mayor and Chief Creative Badass of Mt. Holly, Minnesota.