The Average Intergalactic Cadet’s Field Guide to Understanding Their Human Classmates and Crewmates.
Written in Earth English
Current as of Earth Date 05-09-17
Understanding Their Competitive Nature and Occasional Aversion to Physical Activity or Friendly Sports
The Barbaric Practices of Young Human Physical Education.
Physical Education in many Human Schools
In the required Physical Education class, the students play all sorts of physically demanding games such as: Kickball/Matball, Dodgeball, Prisonball, or Linetag. These names may sound alarming and rightfully so. In our observations, the “games” they play are often humiliating for some and potentially injury inducing for others. Pardon our generalizations, but if your human is academically inclined, it is likely they do not have fond memories of their Physical Education classes and you will understand why after reading this breakdown of a typical class period (45 minutes to an hour long)
In Kickball and Matball, the small humans are divided into two “teams”. This may be done by the “coach” or by an outdated and socially cruel process of assigning “team captains” among the students who then alternate picking their fellow students to be on their teams. From this, the students who are either athletic or popular or both are easily determined from the shy, clumsy, or awkward students.
Once the teams are decided, the team that will be attempting to score points will line up; they are called the “visiting” team. The team trying to keep the opposing team from scoring points fan out across the gym; they are called the “home” team. The defending team will roll a spherical object called a “ball” at the line of students visiting team. One of the offensive students will then kick the ball as hard as they can and then run for a mat/base like a Idjwluge is chasing them.
Now this is the part where things get interesting. The home team students will attempt to catch the ball. If they catch the ball in the air before it hits the ground, the kicker is “out”. Three “outs” will cause the teams to switch roles. The kicking team doesn’t want out; the defending team wants to cause outs. If they don’t catch the ball, they can still grab the ball and throw it. We do not joke: the only way to get the kicker out after a non-catch is to THROW THE BALL AT THEIR BODY SO THAT IT HITS THEM. There is another option where the defensive team holds the ball and taps the running player with the ball, BUT THAT NEVER HAPPENS; THEY ALWAYS RESORT TO THROWING THE BALL AS HARD AS POSSIBLE. BECAUSE HUMANS LOVE TO MAKE THEIR LIVES AS DIFFICULT AS POSSIBLE WITH THE MOAT POTENTIAL FOR PAIN. However, if the runner gets to the base/mat before the ball hits them, they are “safe” and cannot get out as long as they are on the base.
This is one way where kickball and matball differ. In kickball, the runner on base is required to keep moving to allow room for the next kicker in line to get on base. In matball, there can be as many people on base as can fit on the mat. This routine will continue: kick, run, kick, run until you can run “home”. “Home” is the place where you kicked from. The bases form a diamond and there are four of them that form a circular running pattern. You kick from “home” base, and run towards “first” base. You then head for “second” base. Then “third” base and then back to where you started. If you safely make it home, you score your team a point. In kickball, you run the bases once. In matball you run them twice: first, second, third, back to first, second, third, then finally home. This probably to makeup for the advantage of choosing when you run to the next base rather than being obligated to.
The goal is to score as many points as possible before the other team gets any person on your team out three times.
If you thought that game was horrid prepare yourself again. After this description, the word “dodgeball” will strike fear in your heart. The entire goal of dodgeball is TO THROW A BALL AT THE OPPOSING TEAM WITH THE EXPLICIT INTENTION OF HITTING THEM WITH IT.
THAT’S THE GAME.
The humans are split into two teams similar to the kickball teams. They line up on opposite walls. Precisely in the middle of the “gymnasium” (which as near as we can tell is the official name of the torture chamber of public schooling) are a row of spherical balls lined up parallel to the lines of students on each side. When the “coach” blows a whistle the students sprint for the balls, grab them and retreat. What follows is a chaotic battleground the likes of which we haven’t seen since the Battle of Wakowwnoif. The “game” is simple. Throw the ball at a member of the opposing team. They avoid the ball. If they are unsuccessful at dodging the impact, they are “out” and move to the wall. If they do dodge, they are fine and nothing happens. If they catch the ball thrown at them, they can bring one of their teammates back into the game and the person who threw the ball is out. If the person gets hit in the head, the person who threw the ball is out (this is the closest we could find to any sort of safety precautions laid out in this game). The game continues until one team systematically hits every member of the other team out.
Prison ball is exactly the same as dodgeball, it just has a few more enhancements and opportunities for social humiliation. Teams are still split in two. However, each team has three figurines called “bowling pins”. They are placed on the gymnasium floor. The goal of prisonball is to knock down the other team’s figurines and get the other team out. So each team is guarding their figurines while still playing dodgeball. Another twist comes when you are hit with a ball. Instead of simply being out, you are in Prison. Prison is an area in enemy territory separate from your team.
There are two ways out of prison. One is statistically unlikely. On each side of the gymnasium, located high up on the wall is a hoop with a net hanging from it. If the opposing team manages to to throw a ball through that hoop from their side of the gymnasium, everyone on their team in prison gets to rejoin the game.
The other way out is if a teammate throws a ball from their side of the gym, over the enemy territory and the enemies heads and the comrade in prison catches the ball, then the prisoner is set free.
This method requires a few things. First it requires the prisoner to have a friend on their team willing to throw them a ball. Second, it requires the non-prisoner teammate to be able to throw a ball that great distance accurately. Third, it requires the prisoner to be able to catch the ball. Fourth, it also requires the non-prisoner to also get hit in the process of doing all this, and if the prisoner and would-be rescuer don’t have any other friends-they are simply out of luck. In other words: the human must be popular and athletically inclined or just very very lucky. This is where the social humiliation comes in. However, many of our reports have shown that this game is prefered to dodgeball because once the human is “in prison” they simply have to pretend that they are trying to get people to get them out but then can just fritter away the rest of the game not participating. These are the humans we want to recruit for strategic planning.
The game ends when all the figurines are knocked down-either by the opposing team throwing balls at them or by the guarding team’s clumsiness.
Linetag is the least strenuous “game” the humans play in Physical Education. In all honesty, it looks rather fun. The human game of “Tag” is usually characterized by chaotic running around and avoidance of the human that is “it”. If “it” touches another human, that human is now “it” and must “tag” another human. There are many variations of this game that we will detail below since they are the least barbaric of the human “games” and might be useful in certain training exercises.
Linetag is one of those variations. Linetag requires a floor with different sets of intersecting lines. For some reason, humans decorate their gymnasium floors with a design of lines. Further research is required to discover if these are sacred markings, if they have special meanings, or if they are just for aesthetics. Two to four humans are chosen to be “it”. They remain “it” for the remainder of the game. Their goal is to tag every one of the non “it” students. When the student is tagged, they must sit down right where they are-no matter what.
The trick to the this game, however, is that the humans are only allowed to walk on the lines. They cannot deviate from a set of prescribed routes. They cannot hop lines. They must find intersections to avoid “it”. When a player is tagged and they sit down, they become a “roadblock”. The fleeing humans cannot pass them-but the “it” humans can. The game continues until all students are sitting.
Other Tag Variations:
Freeze tag: chaotic running pattern, but when “tagged” the player freezes though touched by a Nxiebxwoie. Game continues until every player is frozen. Players can unfreeze friends by crawling through their legs. (We do not understand why this would work to unfreeze someone but we have discovered that humans have very vivid imaginations when it comes to recreational activities)
Amoeba tag: also known as “sticky tag” or “worm tag” one player is “it” until they tag another player and then they are “stuck” together and must hold hands while chasing the other humans. With each tag, the “it” group gets larger and larger continuing to hold hands, link elbows, etc. Great fun to watch.
Circle tag: humans pair up and link elbows in a circle. “It” and a “runner” will begin a pursuit. The “runner” can link elbows (the bendy bits of their upper limbs) with anyone of the pairs and the partner that didn’t get linked must then run away. If they are tagged they are now “it” and the former “it” is now the “runner” and must find a pair to break up.
For the athletically disinclined human, you could understand why these activities would be traumatizing. Oftentimes these games were treated as though they were the equivalent to our Yeqipguited Games by the more athletically inclined. The less talented humans may have been mocked. If the human you are working with seems less inclined to participate in a game of Bejbpoi, you now understand why.
"Getting kicked in the balls is WAY worse than periods!"
(Before I begin, just let me say that pain is relative and one particular ball kicking could be worse than one particular period)
Call me when you get kicked in the balls so hard you collapse on the bathroom floor at school. Call me when you get kicked in the balls so hard that you have to ask an acquaintance to run and get the nurse because you can’t stand without passing out. When you have to ask your friend to get you ibuprofen and you’re in such pain that you can’t even swallow it. When you call your mom to tell her that it’s never hurt this bad and you absolutely cannot stay, all while sitting on the bathroom floor and sobbing.
Call me when you get kicked in the balls so hard that the nurse has to put you in a wheelchair and wheel you across the school to her office while your shoes are off because you’re too hot and too cold and while you hold an oversized trash can, praying you don’t throw up because everyone in the halls and the lunchroom and classes with the doors open is staring at you. When you sit in the nurse’s office, trembling and crying, on the verge of a panic attack because you feel like your brain is melting but you’re also freezing. When you have to call your best friend to help you stop panicking while you wait for your mom to come get you. Call me when the nurse has to wheel you down to your mom’s car. Call me when you pass your AP teacher and she shakes her head and mutters, “it’s a bad day to miss…”
Call me when you get kicked in the balls so hard you have to leave school right before all your enriched and AP classes, leaving you with so much homework you start to panic again. When you get home and immediately collapse on the couch, crying and shaking because it hurts so bad. When the pain is so bad it makes you throw up so much that you can’t even drink water. Call me when you take Advil to help the pain that’s causing you to throw up, only to throw up the medicine before it can help.
Call me when you get kicked in the balls so hard you can’t even function because the only thought in your head is “oh God, this is how it’s going to end for me. No way the human body can survive this.”
Because that’s what happened to me today. I got my period today.