Monday, May 29, 2017

Hangover Invitational - A History of Herding Cats

As we reach our soon to be capped capacity of 24 members, everything we do gets a little more complicated. Sure, we benefit from reduced group rates. But the first group tees off a good 45 minutes before the final group. More people also increases our "Special Needs" list each week. Everyone is different... and golf needs to be delicately balanced with your home life.

When we began the DPT Cup era in Summer 2012, we took the obvious step of setting a few "themed tournaments" to spice up our weekly matches. The idea of golfing after a night of boozing was an obvious choice. Back then we assigned it to fellow kickball drunkard E-Flo, who has played in all of one official event in our stroke-play history.

The night before (at The Retreat next to UT) was an instant hit. We had two groups scheduled at Summerfield, but only four of us even made the 10:30am tee time. Geoff was still drunk AFTER the round was over. Nobody shot under par (net). It was a complete disaster, yet we all felt we had a winning formula on our hands.

The general rules of mandatory attendance from 9pm to 1am, as well as penalty shots for late arrival, were used for the first three years (6 seasons). The nights at the bar were mostly memorable: ranging from Faz's birthday party to Darren denting the DPT Cup to Gorecki securing us a "deal" on a $75 pony keg. During those seasons we also grew from nine members to sixteen. And I started to feel it wasn't sustainable.

Location, age, health, and personal convictions could all cause someone to be in violation of the rules. Gary, in his 60s, shouldn't be out drinking all night. We DQ'd John one year because he wasn't drinking for Lent. We started to make exceptions for people who were drinking at other events. And what if we ever added a member who couldn't drink due to an addiction issue? Basically... the rules were becoming unenforceable with the increased group size.

I removed the "mandatory attendance" rule in Summer 2015 after one of the worst rains in the last decade flooded South Tampa (and Brendan's car). Gorecki was happy since he'd been complaining about the policy for awhile, citing multiple times that "we are not in our 20s anymore." He immediately used the opportunity to skip the bar, despite owning a truck and living in an unaffected area. So not only were people who couldn't attend skipping... but we also set the precedent that those who just didn't feel like it could take the night off.

The next three seasons did not have any mandatory hangover element, resulting in last year's debacle where seven of the 14 players would have been DQ'd if we enforced the rules. Faz and I had a drunk conversation where we acknowledged the event should revert to the old format, or be scrapped all together. Even Gorecki decided to scold all those who didn't attend by publicly stating: "the night is all about hanging out and people should be here!" I'm sure that flip-flop had nothing to do with the poor attendance at a bar of his choosing outside of Westchase. One that didn't give us the promised 20% food discount.

So after last season, I said mandatory attendance was back on. And it isn't sitting well with me.

I don't want to force people to hang out. But it would be nice if the league had one night each season where we get together and include our WAGs. It gets them involved and helps make us a more legit social club. It should be something that people want to attend. Not an annoyance for those who don't give a shit.

I took a vote of the current Board members, and the decision is to yet again kill the mandatory attendance policy. I'll be at Red Dog on Bay to Bay at 8pm on Saturday night. Come hang out and bring your significant other. If/when attendance drops below an acceptable level, we'll scrap the theme all together and make it a regular event. The expanded Board can take that up as one of our first items of business after the season ends.

And for the love of God, use Uber or Lyft so you don't end up like Tiger Woods.


We still don't have a course booked for this weekend. We'll be scrambling last minute to find something, and I'll post that as soon as possible. Either way, it looks like we only have 16 since I haven't heard from anyone not on the registration list. If I'm wrong on those numbers, you better make a comment ASAP.


Geoff Leighly said...

A) Who is on the board and why did I not get a vote?

B) Who voted against mandatory attendance? I want you to name names!

This league has gone softer than a tootsie roll fruit cup.

Chris Faz said...

C) The board is just Chandler for now, which is why he keeps alluding to the actual establishment of a board after the season.

D) I'll be there with my WAG and I'll be drinking more than I normally do because I'm a purist.

E) I'm ok with losing my sponsorship deal of the match play event...I'm running out of coozies and basically everyone I know has one from the Masters by now.

Geoff said...

F) this shit!

Chris Faz said...

G)ood one

Darren Broom said...

I'll be there. We don't need mandatory attendance though. It should be our once per season get together.

Geoff said...

Then it's just a party and the event is not "The Hangover Invitational" it's just week 4.

Chris Faz said...

There are two different things to consider here. 1 - The act of forcing people to play golf hungover as part of an official event and 2 - Getting as many of us (and WAGs) together as possible and having a good time. These two are not mutually exclusive.

I'm personally a big fan of the Hangover event but, like Chandler mentioned in the post, I'm of the opinion that there shouldn't be any gray area. We either do it as originally intended or it gets scrapped completely.

Whether the event lives or dies, it doesn't have any impact on our ability to get everyone together. We could do a more casual night out a night before an event and if you choose to get blasted then so be it. We could do a night out on a Friday and play an event Sunday. We could get together at someone's house for christ's sake. We could do something as a season kick off type thing or a season ending party. The point is, we don't need to combine getting everyone together with an official league event.

Chandler said...

These comments are great.

A) The board will be expanded to 5 people after the season. I'll post all the info on that later. More than likely it'll be a vote... so don't vote for someone who willingly skips events like the Hangover bar outing!

2) My conversation last season with Faz is still valid. But upon reflection, I think I just chose the wrong option. Instead of forcing people to hang out in order to play golf, we should try to do a more informal night out like Faz suggests. With the Masters party and Rapture... we do have some league outings. There's also the Champions Dinner but a lot of guys don't know about that one. I'd just like to also include our WAGs if we could at an event. It's for YOUR own good.

C) Gorecki bought Jimmy Buffett tickets and was going to miss the bar and be DQd this weekend. I forgot about that when I wrote this post. Now I'm regretting giving him a pass. So while we're all out on Saturday, let's discuss how a 40 year old man is watching a 70 year old man sing songs about fake drinking stories. And that 40 year old can't break 100 on a golf course despite playing 40+ rounds a year.

4) I still expect the turnout to be decent Saturday. Honestly... for a while I've been concerned about the idea of having one of you finally come to grips with your alcoholism and then decide you can't party. If that happens, we'll support you. But it instantly makes the "mandatory attendance" unfair. For everyone. The event as created was AWESOME when we had 8 people. But it's not sustainable as we grow.

Geoff said...

Hopefully Faz and I can agree Jimmy Buffet sucks! I swear most of his song lyrics came from a journal written by Dr. Seuss' retarded toddler.

The point of this event isn't to get my wife to hang out with Darren's wife, it's to play a challenged round of golf. We have have the masters event as a social and I don't recall Darren's wife at that. If we want to have add another social event, great. But that's not what the hangover is about.

And I'm not picking on Darren, his wife is just an example. This example works just as well with Buchert, Brendan, Reid, etc.

J.W. said...

Jimmy Buffett is like the Cinco de Mayo of music: an excuse for amateurs to party. When I was in high school and early in my college years, it was great. Not so much, now.

And I'm with Geoff. The initial event seemed to be intended to have everyone experience the round how EFlo experienced it. And then it was me that was the league drunk, and now we have several more who still hold strong to those drunk ideals. If we were doing the Big John/Tall Mike/Buchert hangover, we'd have to stay up til 6 and show up 20 minutes after the first tee time. I only ever got really day drunk and passed out somewhat early.

All that said, what if we awarded 100 or 200 bonus points to the winner of a newly created Hangover Challenge? I'd say the challenge should be, at a minimum, a shot at the top of every hour of the event: 8 PM, 9 PM, 10 PM, 11 PM, and midnight. You have to be there for all 5 and can leave after the fifth. If you don't want to drink anything else, or don't even want to be in the same bar during the rest of the hour, that's fine. Chances are, that won't happen.

Chandler said...

WAGs aside, the tournament was created as a season party. We used "feeling like E-Flo" as the "theme" around that party. Bottom line is we either force people to hang out or we don't... and I don't want to force you people to do anything.

JW is way to aggressive on his minimums, and sounds like it was written by a guy who finished 3rd in the KA drinking contest as a freshman.

Faz, Geoff and myself would be throwing up after the 2nd shot... because that's what happens when we take 2 shots of anything. It also doesn't address the problem of someone physically not being able to drink. Gary is old and him taking shots might ultimately kill him faster than hanging around construction sites. Gorecki is like 3 years behind Gary... and has anyone EVER seen him drink a few beers and take shots? He pours beers out in the bathroom during these events to make it look like he's consuming.

Along the same lines, we wouldn't hold a sunburn competition... where we all sit out in the sun without sunscreen, and then see who has the LEAST amount of burn the following day. Dave would always lose... Reid would always win. Because people are different.

I'm not opposed to giving EVERYONE who comes out from 8pm to midnight a few bonus points... but the number shouldn't be too high. Maybe like 50. It'll basically help with Rapture qualifying, and reward those who are social.

Geoff Leighly said...

You're not forcing people to hang out, you're forcing them to play golf in the same hungover state as the rest of the league, so it's a level playing field. I thought we changed the DQ to a points deduction, so the old and non-drinkers could miss out and just play at a disadvantage?

This is supposed to be a social league. It was started by friends looking for an excuse to golf more. If people don't want to hang out and play our silly games, maybe this isn't the league for them.

And this tournament was not created as a league party, it morphed into that. It was created solely to make sure golfers were impaired for the early round the next day.

If we want it to be a social event, why have it at a bar at 8pm. Let's make it a dinner or BBQ and stop calling it the hangover.

The new name should be "The Eflo's rolling over in his grave, Hangout invitational".

Chandler said...

I disagree. At least in my mind it was always a season party, no different than we had for every kickball season. We added the Masters party after the fact, when we realized the Memorial was around Masters Sunday.

Anyway... most of us are impaired and feel like shit EVERY week. So it also isn't unique in that regard.

So let's reward those who follow the "rules." 8pm to midnight. Shots if you're late. If you do those things you get a bonus 25 points. On further review I think even 50 is too much. JW is just trying his best to get rewarded on non-golf performance! Haha.

With two hangovers a year... the bonus 50 points (25+25) will help enough with Rapture qualifying.

And E-Flo has no grave to roll in. He's all talk and played in ONE event.

Chris Faz said...

I couldn't disagree more with any points being added/removed for anything besides golf.

J.W. said...

I must have forgotten to include 100 or 200 bonus points to the best score among those who completed the challenge. I do like giving 25 bonus points to all those who complete the challenge, too, though. Typing this on the phone is a little tougher than on the computer and things can get missed.

Geoff Leighly said...

I'm not sure rapture points matter much to most of the league. It only effects the few people on the bubble. We used to do a handicap penalty, no? What was wrong with that? Then, the people who don't make it to the bar can still play in the event, just with a disadvantage, like those that are hungover will be doing.


Make the hangover event an off-season party and golf event. And those who want to participate, can and we can just do a gambling pool. Then points and attendance doesn't matter.

Personally, I like it as a league event. I liked the 'Just the Tips' and the par-3 events, as well. It makes the league fun and different, but it doesn't make sense as a league event if it's not a level playing field.

J.W. said...

The Faz match play event can add 1,200 points to the standings, theoretically. Why not add 200 points for the champion of the hangover golfers? Gimmick events are fun. That's why I'd like to see the tips brought back, Gorecki should be forward tees only, the hangover, match play, and skins should continue. Shoot, I'd like to add the red tee challenge to the mix.

If that stuff doesn't keep going, I do hope we can get together and have some of these as gambling tournaments during the offseason.

Chandler said...

The tips tournament is dead. It is everything that is wrong with golf and there's no need to celebrate that.

Handicap penalties really ruin the historical data. I would hate to go that route. We did it one time to Reid I think. And only once.

We only have nine events. It's ok if a couple are "normal." The league isn't broken. What's broken is the idea that we penalize people for not showing up and getting hammered. It's a huge liability, and all your opinions on this will change as you age and develop some health issue that will cause you to not be able to drink for 4 hours. So don't be short sided in your analysis now.

100 to 200 points is just WAY too strong. It's a huge bump for anyone, and a large percentage of the final total for any season winner.

Red tee challenge should also not be a real event. Off season gambling, sure.

Chandler said...

Also, Rapture points affected a handful of people this season. Soon there will be EIGHT people not qualifying. Points matter. Just because they don't now... We can't ignore the future.

J.W. said...

If it's 100 points, that's the same as winning a match in that event. I don't see how that's too many points to add for one person. Double standard in tournament value, here.

Chandler said...

Not at all. The Match-Play is modeled after "position night" in bowling leagues. Where you play the team right next to you, and earn enough points to hopefully jump them and move up the standings. Doing it once is fine.

Rewarding someone 100+ points for going to a bar is way too strong. At least in match play you beat someone at golf (in the golf league). This isn't a drinking league. Rachael tried to organize that after the Ligers died and nobody showed any interest.

J.W. said...

I think you're missing what I'm saying. Only one player is awarded 100 points: the lowest net score of those who completed the challenge. Completing the challenge buys you entry into the bonus 100 points tournament.

Chandler said...

Oh yeah I'm totally missing that.

So IF you go to the bar from 8pm to 12am (with penalty shots for being late), then you can win a bonus 100 by beating everyone else who did the same. Three way tie would be 33.3 points for everyone (repeating, of course). So it's still golf related and only eligible to those who go out and hang out.

That what you're saying? Cause it's not a bad idea. In hindsight I think you attempted to say this like 4 comments ago but I was at the store getting my clubs re-gripped and not comprehending.

Geoff said...

We're recognized by the USGA, so now we're concerned about "liability"? I agree with JW, the gimmick events are fun. So what if the handicaps are skewed to 97% accuracy because we play dumb games and have fun. No one in the league is getting their tour card any time soon.

I don't want to get drunk and be out until 1am, now. The event isn't broken, it's just how we did it from the beginning. You're only as old as you feel, but I understand you want clean stats.

Here's the only real solution; Why not make the hangover event like the all star game. Have it in the middle of the season and those who want to come out to the bar and participate, get to play in a cash game the next day. Those who don't, get to stay home and aren't affected in the standings. It's a win-win.

That way the event isn't watered down and no one is penalized for not participating. Except they miss out on a good time.

Geoff said...

I like the tournament within the tournament idea, as well.

Chandler said...

We're concerned about liability... because you should always be concerned about liability.

Yeah JW's bonus point tournament within a tournament idea seems like a good compromise. It's golf related, which Faz likes... and it doesn't hurt those who can't hang with us young studs... which I like.

Faz, what say you?

J.W. said...

Speaking of golf, do we have a course, yet? Mangrove Bay, perhaps?

Chandler said...

No, I made the mistake of letting Gorecki attempt to get us on TPC Tampa. It's fairly centralized and a good course. He's "calling" his contact now...

Geoff Leighly said...

Fuck being concerned with liability. No one needs the league as their babysitter or conscience. We're all adults and can take care of ourselves. This league is softer than 1-ply toilet paper floating in a prison urinal.

Pretty soon the league is going to have mandatory sunscreen application and a slower pace of play so the smokers don't get winded.

Chandler said...

There are many good things about our public discussions. One that I enjoy the most is being able to reference comments when your opinion on things change.

Like how Gorecki flip-flopped twice on mandatory hangover attendance. Or John saying an 8:50am tee time in Orlando was "too early." Or Geoff in two years asking for mandatory sunscreen.

Chris Faz said...

Has this post met the maximum amount of attempted jokes by Geoff yet? It has to be getting close. While we're in the business of handing out/taking away DPT points for non-golf related accomplishments, I say he loses 5 DPT points for every hilarious use of simile.

And yes Geoff, we can definitely agree on Jimmy Buffett.

I love themed and gimmicky golf events as much as the next guy. But I also love that we play by legitimate, consistent, common-sense rules, use real handicaps, stick to an established points-based system that's probably more fair than the FedEx cup, keep season and career spanning statistics, and have a more well-oiled machine than other local "official" leagues that actually charge bullshit fees.

It's a slippery slope to start messing with handicaps, points, etc. We've had some close races for the cup in the past and I'd hate to see someone win/lose a season based on their ability to meet some non-golf related standard. In theory I like the idea of awarding some bonus points for a drinker to beat a non-drinker or whatever was suggested earlier, but at the end of the day I'd vote against it if it were a voting situation.

Match play bonus points (and I'm not saying this because I created the event) are totally different. You earn those points by out playing the person next to you. It's not based on any other factor or variable.

Chandler said...

Faz makes great points and I agree with him about how "well-oiled" the league is. Serioiusly... there isn't anything better around.

But looking at actual data... nobody has ever won the DPT Cup by less than 100 points. It WILL happen at some point. Just hasn't happened yet.

Reid, Anthony and JW all "missed" qualifying for The Rapture. If they had 100 bonus points, Reid and Anthony would have qualified over Chandler and Brendan. So this is where the true value lies in 100 bonus points.

J.W. said...

They're officially called Geokes, btw.

Chris Faz said...

A Geoke like that deserves 5 points!

Gary said...

I like JW's idea of awarding 100 bonus points to the qualifying winner of the Hangover social...#DRINKBETTER. It seems to satify both Geoff & Jeff (why does his pic keep changing during his duffs?)

Geoff said...

Oh shit! Someone stole my identity and he's Hilarious!

Mike Oostenbrink said...

So I'm of the mindset the Hangover as it was originally intended is great..everyone having to compete hungover gives the whole league a nice twist. I can't tell you how many people (not in our league) laugh and think that it's awesome that we have an event like this. I don't know enough about the shitty wannabe DPT leagues surrounding us, but I'd have to say this likely sets us apart to some extent.

I know some people may not find this to be their favorite event, but I don't know too many people here that didn't have fun the night before. I tried going back through the records to look at some things but eventually gave up bc it's too much work on my phone, and I'm sure Chandler has some of these stats...but I'd like to look at the league participation rate (% of tournaments played in out of the total since each person joined) and then see another participation rate by member for the Hangover Invitational (this would include those who got DQ'd as a DNF aka me at Quail Hollow one year - made it to the bar, but not to the tee box on time) and then finally see if the winner of the Hangover has ever been anyone who didnt make it to the bar?

One thing is for sure, I don't think I've ever played well at a Hangover despite usually attempting to make 6 of the 9 seasonal events my own hangover participating definitely puts you at a disadvantage over someone who doesn't make it to the bar.

There are always going to be people that are against this event for a variety of different reasons..some may not want to spend the money, some may not want to drink that much (yet I still see others make it out to the bar and not drink that much - which I'm okay with because at least they came out, had a few drinks, and fulfilled the time requirement and had fun with us), maybe it just falls on a bad weekend and seems inconvenient, some may be to lazy to want to go out, don't want to travel too far, etc. Hell, I even missed a Hangover bc I was out of town once. Which brings me to my point, most league Champs have won while still not playing in every event, so if you don't want to go to the bar and play for points the next day, make sure you play in all the other events and you'll still have a good shot at winning. I think I asked Chandler for the Summer schedule the 2nd week of January so it is possible to plan ahead for this! I also don't think we have to try and come up with a winning formula that caters to everyone's special needs or complaints. Catering to all leaves everyone with a platter of shit in my experience.

I genuinely think we have the right mix of "gimmicky" vs serious tournaments and love the fact that in all of these we still maintain the integrity of the game and our stats.

Being a data whore at work, I can certainly appreciate keeping the stats clean. I'm not necessarily against throwing in a smaller 25 pt bonus to those who make it to the bar but I don't think there should be one 100 pt winner of bargolf. Sure that's fun, but at least in the Fazioli Match Play half of those that play will win 100 extra points in a legitimate historied golf style of play. Let's just try to be consistent.

Just my 149 cents..

Oh and on a side note, let's not turn into a league that requires Buchert to draft an Accident Waiver and Release of Liability form for all of us to sign after the league gets incorporated...that doesn't sound fun...(or does it?!)

Mike Oostenbrink said...

Also, I think I barely beat Dave by 145 pts which was the result of an improbable scenario and Katie beat Big John by 114.5 pts last season so the points will matter even more at some point.

Just wait for someone to win by less than 100 or 25 pts and see the shitstorm that will create on this blog if it was the result of tweaking the Hangover.

I do have to take the other side and say it should be a bonus or at least a tiebreaker for Rapture qualifying.

Chandler said...

Rapture scoring will never come down to a tie. I mean... it's possible... but isn't going to happen. If we award bonus points for anything, it all filters down to The Rapture by default.

You're also not addressing the possibility that someone CAN'T make the bar, due to say... alcoholism. So when that happens, do they just get DQd from the event every year? Do we make an exception for that ONE person, and not someone who is out of town Saturday night? It's a slippery slope that was fun and easy to manage when we had 8 people in the league. Sadly, we've outgrown "mandatory bar attendance."

J.W. said...


Chandler said...

I enjoy telling people to "deal with it" more than anyone. But I also like being able to point to who is suggesting terrible policies. So when someone has an issue, I can say... "Go talk to JW, Geoff and Tall Mike. Leave me alone." That's where I really shine.