The O’s Eleven…
Captain Insane-O; OJ; Vincent (respect); Loco; Tron; Trump; Face; Goodman; Ex-Lax; Pepto (FNG!); Wham!
The Night Before…
Last night, after helping get the 2.0 in bed, I sat down on my couch around 8:45 to relax and mindlessly look at my phone. I casually checked Slack but wasn’t expecting much chatter except for perhaps something about Zartan’s nighttime beat down at the Mutt. But I soon found out that something was afoot and I was behind on the comz. I quickly tried to put the pieces together and figured out that my boys at the O were plotting to snag the ghost flag by running from the O to the Mutt in the morning, but it wasn’t that simple. Endless questions and scenarios were being discussed: Was the Posh pax planning a similar raid? Did they mistakenly think the O had the ghost flag? How many would they send? Who had signed up for the ghost Q at the O? Was it someone from the Poshlands, the Mutt or was it one of our own? And how would that impact our end game?
As an aside, as soon as I heard about this plan, I was 100% in. This is because I was on sick leave when similar ghost flag shenanigans occurred back on August 31 and so I was forced to read about what happened after the fact rather than live it myself. I remember that being peak FOMO for me as I read through the six (yes, six) separate backblasts that described the events of that morning which included pax from all 3 AOs, doubles crosses, triple crosses, icy hot, tweed string, child scissors and other awesome props. I even asked the M to read the backblasts from that day because I thought they were so fantastic (she politely declined). Needless to say, I was not missing another potential epic F3 morning.
Without going into more details, here’s how things were left as I went to bed last night. We were prepared for 2 situations. The first involved the Posh sending 5+ to the O under the mistaken belief that the ghost flag was there for the taking. Under that scenario, we would then send 5 of our own (after having a good giggle at the Posh’s expense) to run the 2.5 miles to the Mutt and rightfully claim our flag back. The second possible situation involved the Posh pax figuring out that the Mutt had the ghost flag and posting there instead. Under that scenario, our only option would be to send at least 6 (and hopefully more) on the run to the Mutt with the hope that we would outnumber the Posh pax. Of course, there would be no way to know in advance how many Poshlanders would be at the Mutt and so it was quite possible that this would end up being a suicide mission. Either way, we decided it would be a great story. The only problem is that at the time I signed off Slack, we only had 5 HCs to make the run and so we would have to get at least one more runner in the morning if the second situation came to fruition. What I didn’t know at the time is that Mayberry was already planning on posting at the Mutt and so we would already have an O pax there. This would also give us another car that could transport us back to the O afterward, in addition to Face’s car that was surreptitiously parked on Leland at approximately 5:05 am this morning.
It was tough to fall asleep as I anxiously awaited what was to come in the morning. As Face said, he felt like a kid on Christmas eve.
The Morning Of…
I woke this morning and quickly learned through Slack (I may or may not have been on the toilet) about Mayberry’s intention to post at the Mutt. Now we had 6, but would that be enough to outnumber the Posh pax? I arrived at the O at 5:25 am and there was not a poshlander in sight. But wait…was that Starchild pulling in? Did he have a clown car full of Posh pax? Alas, it was only him (no offense SC) and so it was clear that we would have to embark on a suicide mission and hope for the best if we wanted the flag. CI quickly asked for a show of hands of who was willing to run and I was hoping for 6 hands, but I once against underestimated the men of F3 Lousiville as 8 hands were raised (and possibly a ninth from Diablo, who started on the run but then changed course). We were now ready to set off on our run, but there was still one problem: Who was the ghost Q? No one identified himself as such even after intense questioning and so the Bag of Wrenches was left without a Q…but not so fast…Starchild stepped up like the HIM he is and so 8 of us were on our way knowing that the O pax staying behind were in good hands.
I titled this backblast “The O’s Eleven” and so you may be wondering where the “11” came from since only 8 pax took off from the O’s shovel flag. This is where the story really gets good. Goodman and Ex-Lax, who are brothers and O regulars, were bringing an FNG (Pepto) to the O this morning but were running a few minutes late. When they arrived, they saw a group of pax running down the Seneca running path and so they hopped out of their car and joined the group assuming that this was part of the WO. At some point thereafter (probably after we left the friendly confines of the O’s loop and entered the adjacent neighborhood), they figured out that something else was going on, but rather than turn back, they carried on and made the run to the Mutt despite having no intention to do so when they arrived. This brought our number to 11 and we would tack on Mayberry as our #12 once we arrived. [Side note: It is unclear whether Posh had 7 or 8 at the Mutt, but what is clear is that the addition of Goodman, Ex-Lax and Pepto turned what otherwise would have been a close contest to a Ghost flag blow out].
Most of the mumble chatter during the 2.5 mile run to the Mutt centered around how awesome it would be when we showed up unannounced to claim our flag. We also discussed how odd it was that someone had signed up as the ghost Q for today’s Bag of Wrenches several weeks back and then never showed. Certain theories were tossed around but we all remained perplexed. Luckily, though, we have a half-human/half-robot in our group (Tron) who is a master at beep bop booping and he was later able to discover the following information on the mystery ghost Q:
Kilo has since claimed that he lost his mind at the same time he lost a chin or two and that he simply forgot about signing up for today. While the merits of that defense can be debated, there is no doubt that the no-show of the ghost Q added to the intriguing storyline of the day.
We maintained a good pace during the run and arrived at the Mutt at aproximately 5:52 am. Here’s a visual of the path we took for those interested:
Before entering Mutt grounds, the 11 of us huddled up at the corner of Cherrywood and Elmwood to scope out the situation. What we saw looked like a scene from a prison yard: 20+ men walking in single file lines carrying concrete blocks. It would have been an odd scene for any non-F3 group, but not for us. We then descended upon the group who were lining up next to the school’s portico for some coupon work. It is difficult to describe all of the reactions we witnessed as we moved in, but they ranged from dazed and confused, to happy, to amused, to pissed off (hi Kilo). Simply put, it was a thing of beauty.
Rather than grab the ghost flag and take off back toward the O, we decided to join the Mutt pax and finish the workout with them. So we grabbed coupons and joined in the beatdown that Old Bay was inflicting. You can read his backblast for the details, but all I can say is that we weren’t allowed to let our coupon hit the ground and I am already feeling the effects of it. Thanks OB for welcoming us with open arms!
And thanks to anyone who actually read this whole thing. I know it’s a bit lengthy, but there was a story to be told and I wanted to do it justice. I hope you enjoyed reading it. I know I enjoyed writing it. You guys are the best.