Well, I guess I'm going to try to play again this year, unless those heartless bastards decide my contract is too expensive or if it turns out that I'm going to suck and embarrass myself.
We scrimmaged Brown U yesterday and beat them. I did well enough for this time of year. My legs were probably taxed more than my lungs, although the game moved so quickly that neither ever became much of an issue. I think I'm a little ahead of where I was last year, and feel better than I thought I would after another winter of relative inactivity.
All through last season, I was pretty convinced that I was done with competitive ultimate, because it was just so taxing mentally and physically, and I was still (after five years of not winning Nationals) having troubles adjusting to the idea that some of the time, my team could play well and still lose. Then you throw in that the faces on the team have changed so much over the years, and even the "new guys" have retired or moved on to other places. (We had some tryouts playing with us yesterday, and I called for a continuation pass from one of them by saying, "Hey, you", which is better than what I did once two years ago, saying, "Here, new kid!")
And I'd never seriously considered retirement before, unlike say Billy, who seems to have been on the verge of hanging them up since 1994, or Seeger, who has come and gone so many times that I wouldn't be surprised to see him at practice in October this year.
But then you get away from the year a little bit, and it doesn't seem so bad. You forget about how long it takes to recover from a hard workout, or that you lost a lot of games, or that you're not as fast as you once were. But that's how life works. If something is worth attaining, then you have to be willing to put up with the 80% of the time that the road there sucks.
So, I'm in, I suppose. I'm not sure what it would take to convince me that I couldn't cut it, and I'm not even sure what level of play I need to have to make it worthwhile. But right now I think that with a lot of work and practice that it will all work out.
I will need to work on my flexibility, game-play, conditioning, and strength. It may seem odd that despite a couple thousands games that I could get rusty, but without a lot of play, it takes me an extra second to recognize the situation. I feel that one of my greatest strengths as a cutter is knowing what to do before anyone else does (specifically, knowing when I can just turn and run to a spot and be open), so I need to be at the top of my mental game to exploit this.