Go Dad Go!

A self-important blog about riding bikes, raising kids and the all-too-rare nexus of these two pursuits.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Tour Game: How to Play (from July 19, 2006)

Less than two weeks, friends -- time enough to request 13 mornings off from your boss, convince your kids that Noggin doesn't broadcast in July and of course pick the team that you're certain will take the top spot on our virtual podium.

This email, then, will let you know how to do just that: how to pick a team of riders and generally how to engage, mano a mano (there it is, the first Liggettism, and well before the Tour's even started) in this contest.

How to Play
Here are the steps you'll take in order to play:
1. Tell me that you want to play. (I've listed below those of you who have signed up thus far).
2. Send me $10 (to 2600 Camino Lenada/Oakland, CA 94611) or $11 Paypal (to mackfee@hotmail.com). I've starred the names of those of you who have paid up.
3. Pick your team.
4. Sit back, watch the Tour and hope you win.

All pretty self-explanatory, except perhaps #3. Thus, the next section is devoted to:

How to Pick your Team
Everyone is allotted DM1,000,000. (This year's obsolete European currency is deutschemarks, in honor of our Teutonic football hosts, and as a begrudging nod to the Janster.)
You'll "spend" those million marks on five riders -- no more, no fewer -- by consulting the price list that I've attached and pasted below. Send these names to me by midnight on Thursday, June 29. Note that the prices were carefully developed after hours of combing through stage profiles, team composition, results in the three jersey competitions for the last fifty years, UCI rankings, rider biorhythms and Zodiac signs...aw, screw it; I based the prices on what seemed about right. (If you're concerned about this method, please see rule #1, below).
I'll then randomly add four riders to each team to round our numbers out to nine, the same as the Tour teams themselves. (We do this so that we're all only selecting from among the big names, thus encouraging even the casual fan to join in. Of course, if the only "big name" you know rhymes with "farm-thong" and no longer appears on the list, you might want to go to your local bike shop and pick up a guide to the Tour.)

Scoring (No, Bob Burlinson, this section is not about what you think/wish it is.)
Points will be awarded similarly to last year, with one key change that you'll note below.
The top three placers in every stage will earn 5, 3 and 1 point, respectively.
Mountain stages and time trials, including the prologue, count double.
At the end of the Tour, winners of the four jerseys and the one red number earn bonus points for their teams as follows:
-Le Maillot Jaune, which goes to the overall winner (see how democratic and accessible this all is?) earns 20 points.
-Winners of les Maillot Vert et Pois, or green sprinter's and polka-dotted climber's jerseys, earn 15 points each for their teams.
-The white Best Young Rider's Jersey earns 10 points
-As does the Most Combative Award, designated with a red number on the rider's jersey. (And, as is my annual wont, I'd like to take a moment to praise any sport that awards a participant not for mere aggressiveness, but for combativity. WARRIORS these men are -- soldiers, or knights of olde; of course, they do differ a bit, in that instead of big guys wearing fatigues or armor, they're really really skinny and they wear lycra.)
Bonus feature -- new this year! The wearer of the Yellow Jersey at the end of each day earns his team an extra two points.
If one of your self-selected riders is busted for doping, you lose 50 points. (Hey, just because Barry Bonds can get away with it doesn't mean any of us can!)

The overall points leader wins 55% of the pot. If we get 40 people to play, that's $214.50!
Second place gets 30%
Third place earns 15%
Dead last gets his/her money back (which is why the math doesn't work out in bullet #1, Tom Lariviere)

Other Rules
1. No whining about prices! If we're all working with the same list, it's fair, right? And no correcting my French, either.
2. Trash talking is highly encouraged. (But let's remember what we're about: friends, family, the beauty of cycling and spirited competition. Of course, talking smack about riders for their nationality/odd names/pink uniforms/funny riding style/absurd haircuts is always encouraged).
3. The most important rule of all: If anyone so much as mentions the results of that day's stage prior to the final West Coast broadcast on OLN, s/he will be penalized severely. As most of you are likely already aware, watching the Tour as if it were live is one of this life's true joys, and I won't have it ruined -- for me or anyone else. This year, I'm considering such penalties as Clockwork Orange-style forced watching of the 2004 OLN "special interest" pieces featuring Kirsten Gum, or being made to stand on the roadside during next year's Tour of California, yelling "Go Lance! Go Lance!" whenever riders go by.

That, and don't hesitate to ask questions. If it seems that I enjoy doing this and that answering your emails allows me to procrastinate working, you're absolutely right (not a word to anyone, Anne Mahle!), so don't hold back.

Bonne chance, everyone!


Blogger uderhood said...

This site is one of the best I have ever seen, wish I had one like this.

12:33 AM  

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