we didn't play last week because of ~Scheduling Conflicts~ and like, only playing once per week isn't great for muscle memory at the best of times, so missing a week is going to be pretty rough. but it'll be fun

it's not like we ever win, we're the team that's recommended for new players so that we can learn alongside other new players with a couple actually good players alongside us mentoring. so we don't expect to win, we just have a good time

one time we only lost by one point and it was incredible

a few weeks ago i overheard someone give someone else a piece of advice

so now before the game i practice using that advice, and then as soon as the game starts i stop focusing on it and fall back on the thing that feels natural

(but it's not all bad, the advice was about the one thing that i'm actually pretty good at anyway)

i know from fighting games that you can practice tech skill all you want but it won't help you if you're not comfortable doing it in a game, for real

but here i am, practicing tech skill and then not doing it in a game for real

(referring to a way to throw a real life ball using your actual body as "tech skill" is very funny to me)

it's a little rough because my execution, to extend the metaphor, isn't bad

but i have very little sense of what i should be doing outside of the most common scenarios

like generally there is a way that the game tends to flow and there's a specific situation that comes up a lot, like every game many many times you'll be on one side or another of this specific scenario and in that case i have an okay idea of what i'm doing

if something weird happens, like if someone makes a mistake, or takes advantage of someone else's mistake by going off the plan, i have no idea what to do. and instinctively i'd rather do nothing than do something wrong so i spend a good chunk of time standing around like a deer in headlights

over time i'm getting better about this and it's actually pretty funny that the more i play, the more exhausted i feel. you'd think it'd be the other way around because i'm getting more used to running around, which is true. but also i'm spending less time doing nothing at all so i'm doing more actual running around

last time we played i threw the ball good and people went "hey good job holly" and then one of the Actually Good players on our team said, as a joke, "yeah, holly has a great arm when she uses it"

which is funny because like, i spend a considerable amount of time being confused and doing nothing, but also i just often find myself in a situation where i know what to do, and the correct thing to do here is "don't throw the ball you're holding". if i was standing 10 feet that way i would be throwing the ball but very often i'm standing in the place where i shouldn't be throwing it

"well why do you spend so much time in the place where you shouldn't be throwing it" where that place is depends on where the other players with balls are, i don't get to pick if i'm going to be in a good position to throw or not


to show you what i mean, here's like, the example you have to know. this is the scenario that comes up most often. if you only know what to do in one situation and it's this situation, that's a great start

imagine you're player E. your team has 3 of the five balls, so its your team's responsibility to throw. (the other team is allowed to if they think they have a good opportunity but it's your job to)

both players on the opposing team with balls retreat to opposite corners, because "whoever's holding the ball" is the most valuable target. your teammates with balls, A and B, are bunched together, so they plan to throw. they're going to focus down a specific player, likely 1 because they're holding a ball, but may go for someone else as a mixup. as E, your job is not to throw.

notice 5. they know they're not being aimed at (because it would be quite an awkward angle) so they're sneaking up a bit from the corner. what they're looking to do is, when A and B throw, immediately retaliate at one of them while they're still in their recovery frames

you can't stop this from happening. so as E here, your job is to terrify them. you want 5 to know that if they throw at A or B, you're throwing at them immediately to capitalize. you need to hold that ball to present a credible threat

5 may choose to throw anyway, in which case you have to try to back up your implicit threat. but most of the time, they'll back down, and you gain very little from throwing

that's one of the reasons you might choose to hold onto a ball you have instead of using it

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