And The Crowd Goes Wild…

I feel the bumpy softness of the last beanbag as I take it off the board and hold it in my hand. If I don’t get this one in, we lose and everyone is watching.

Cornhole is a game that we play here in Shekou and twice a year, we have a tournament.  It’s a lot of fun because we all just hang out and it’s a friendly competition in a game that everyone can play.  All you need is eight small beanbags, two slanted boards with holes at the top, a bit of luck, and you are there.

Competition in sports is something I really miss.  I miss being out on the soccer field.  I miss it a lot.  I wasn’t a world-class athlete, but being out on the field, ready to play is something I definitely took for granted. I thought my body would always hold up and on the whole, it did.  Compared to other girl soccer players, I never had to have knee surgery at 15.  I don’t have that soccer scar.  But it’s been interesting because I have always identified myself as being athletic; I can pick up pretty much any sport and play pretty well.  But with my right knee being pretty much junk, soccer is out of the question and bye bye competition.

With Cornhole, the point system is this: if you get a beanbag on the board, it’s worth one point and if you sink one, that’s worth three.  But here is the trick; you can ‘answer’ the other teams points. So if they make one on the board and you make one on board, the points cancel each other out.  This is where it gets interesting.

This year’s tournament was set up differently and at first, I was a bit put off by it.  Partners were chosen at random, so you could only cross your fingers and hope you got someone who at least knows what a beanbag is.  So I was hesitant when I heard my partner  was Rob.  I really didn’t know him that well and I had never seen him play.  I know that he works at QSI and  just got married this past summer in Canada to Amy… both really nice people, but can he sink ‘em? These are the thoughts that go through my mind.  So after our names were called, I walked over to him and I just said, ‘I’d really like to win this thing’ and he visibly sat up a bit taller and said, ‘Yeah, me too.’ That’s when I knew it was on.

The unexpected part about the random pick was that not the same teams or people dominated as in past tournament.  There were two girls in the final this time, Colleen and myself (represent!).  And we gave them two really good games.

And I have to say; I had a blast at this tournament.  Rob and I were undefeated going into the championship round.  At one point, we both kinda looked at each other and were like I can’t really believe we are in it!  For me, he was a great Cornhole buddy because he was really calm and focused; took it serious enough but nothing over the top. I kept saying we CAN do this, because I am AmeiCAN and he is CANadian.  Good times.

I was totally in the zone. You know in the movies when the pitcher is about to throw and in his mind, he can’t hear the yelling crowd anymore?  Seriously, that was me.  It was just me, the beanbag, and the hole at the end of that board. The greatest part? I definitely surprised people with my mad skills and focus.

In the championship, both teams played well and it was close.  I made two clutch throws and man, it felt fantastic to see that beanbag go in the hole.  The crowd went wild! I mean, it was just plain fun.  Now, writing that we won would really make this a great blog, but alas, it wasn’t meant to be.  We lost. I may not have bragging rights, but the thing is, I had just as much fun coming in second.  Rob and I did really well and we surprised many.  It might not be the World Cup, but it will do for now.


  1. Kate Freeman

    Awesome post, Claire! I could feel the tension and excitement in the air! Good job and I’m glad you had so much and got to show off your mad skills. Love ya!

  2. Kate Freeman

    correction – I’m glad you had so much FUN…

  3. It’s all about Cornhole. I felt like I was right there with you.

  4. David Tanaka

    Lovely story. Next, I’d like to hear about how you got revenge on the team that won.

    1. not fit to print Dave, not fit to print.

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