The Rise and Fall of the Jesus Cobras
I am a warrior.
Made of steel.
And so when Rachelle (my lady) suggested that it might be fun for us to form a team and join a Coed Recreational Floor Hockey League, I knew that the group of friends she assembled, a bunch of Asian designers, cat-sitters, snippy gay men*, recent immigrants and food critics, would rely heavily on my grit, determination, leadership and skill. The team was called The Jesus Cobras -- a name that wasn't intended to mock Christians, but rather the type of people who call strangers "friend," and like to advertise their faith through floor hockey.
At any rate, as it was a league for beginners, I felt confident that I'd be able to dominate any game, as I've managed many fantasy hockey teams. Our first match was against the Mother Puckers-- a team full of dudes with Celtic bands tattooed around their biceps (who likely attended Daughtry concerts, thinking them edgy) and their sluts.
I hated them, in particular one dirty player named Kat. She must have been at least six foot two, was all elbows and knees, and there was a look in her eyes that suggested her mother loved her sister more than her-- a resentment she would likely never get over. Anyway, as we were losing 8-0, I decided to step-up my game and show some leadership, which I did by elbowing Kat in the throat area. Because the league is run by Care Bears, I was tossed from the game and suspended for the next one.
Final result: The Mother Puckers 26 The Jesus Cobras 2
I feared that without my customary grit, leadership and mostly intentional shot-blocking skills, The Jesus Cobras would be slaughtered and irreparably demoralized in their next game, but when Rachelle returned after the game she was glowing, like she'd just met Clive Owen. She told me that the Jesus Cobras had won their floor hockey game and it was the BEST GAME EVER!! EVERYBODY PLAYED FANTASTIC AND HAD A GREAT TIME!
It turns out that minus me, the team "gels." As Rachelle tactfully put it, "it seems that people feel less pressure when you're not there, as there's less shrieking and vomiting before the game."
Our next game was against the Bomb Squad, and as I had a bloody nose due to allergies and the dry air, it was decided it would be best if I sat this one out and served as coach, even though my suspension was lifted.
I wore a Fedora for authority.
Like Tom Landry.
Sitting down and sipping the whiskey I brought in my thermos, I motivated our team by yelling out everything they were doing wrong and that I could do better. For instance, many of the Cobra's shots were nowhere near the Bomb Squad's net, but kept smashing through my "coaching zone."
The Jesus Cobras, playing like a bunch of little kittens, were being utterly dominated, losing the game by a score of 7-1. It was at this point that I decided to try to throw their best player off his game. A pudgy yet very agile guy, he wore a stupid bandana around his head that made him look like an extra from Pirates of the Caribbean.
"Hey, Captain Fat Sparrow! Why don't you go break your fucking ankle?! Yeah, and then your boyfriend can build a float for you out of flowers and roll you all over town!"
I thought this would intimidate him and inspire my team, but it did not. As they are weak, it "embarrassed" the Jesus Cobras, and then both teams turned on me. I guess because it was winter and was a little pale due to a flu I had been fighting, they nicknamed me Scurvy, and started shouting things like, " Scurvy, we can smell the booze from here!" or ""Looking good with that bloody piece of Kleenex sticking out of your nostril, Scurvy!"
The Bomb Squad 13 The Jesus Cobras 3
It was clear to me that our team was full of a bunch of losers, and with that in mind I created a post on Craig's List looking for skilled players who might supplement our roster, and I found one. His name was Eddie, and in spite of looking like a pro wrestler, he was an absolutely amazing hockey player. He was also a reformed gang member, who had become a Jesus Freak and been attracted to our team because of the Christian connotations of our name.
In spite of the fact that he insisted on leading us in prayer before each game, and shouted "In Your Face Satan" whenever he scored, he was entirely awesome, and the Jesus Cobras, under my skilled coaching (it was where I best served the team and Lord, Amen!) and Eddie's hockey ability, we won the next four games.
Feeling confident, we faced off against Team Charisma, a squad composed primarily of players of Indian/Pakistani descent. Wearing crisp, white t-shirts and headbands that were worn without a trace of irony, they were led by a dong who had taped a 'C" onto his t-shirt. He even brought his own floor hockey stick, one that he screwed together like a fancy pool cue, and he turned out to be amazing, scoring goals at will.
I hated him.
As I am not a racist, I only made ethnic slurs about him behind his back, referring to him as "Slumdog Millionaire." Because I am a leader, this caught on, and soon our entire team was speaking with Indian accents, saying, "Oh, the Chaiwalah has done it again!" whenever he scored.
It was pretty funny.
I'm not sure that Eddie, our Christian ringer, had seen the movie, but he clearly wanted to participate, shouting out, " God hates Muslins!"
I panicked when I heard this, and not knowing exactly what to do, screamed out, "He means Muslims! He means God hates Muslims!"
(I should have known that there was something wrong with Eddie as on his Facebook profile there were several photos of him in his weight room in Nazi regalia, but I just presumed he was a military re-enactment enthusiast. "Coach," he once told me after a game, "Jesus has saved me from a life of unimaginable darkness and murder. Praise the Lord!" I guess the clues were right there.)
Anyway, this led to a kind of ugly spat that saw Mei-li, one of our defensemen, assume a Martial Arts posture, which was entirely sexy and awesome. However, it also saw me humiliated in a game of Monkey-In-The-Middle in which I was forced to jump about trying to retrieve my coach's hat, which the other team had captured as a kind of trophy.
The refs broke up the fight, got my hat back, and then allowed the game to resume. As I was getting into the head of another player (this time by emitting a distracting high-pitched shriek whenever she touched the ball), I got a text from Rachelle telling me that CNN was reporting a UFO sighting out by the airport. As it has long been a dream of mine to see a real UFO, I immediately left the game. However, when I got out to the airport, the UFO must have left, because nothing was going on, which was a real rip-off.
When I got home at 2:00 AM, I found out that the Jesus Cobras had forfeited the game out of a "sense of profound shame and disappointment," and then gone out for drinks with The Dharma Bums.
Obviously, this was nothing short of traitorous, and I have begun try-outs for my own team--The Spartans--who will destroy all opposition next year.
There will be blood everywhere.
* Apparently we were mixed up here, and when it comes to hockey, you want gay women on your team, and not gay men.