Author Archives: hixswiffleblog

Holiday Week


After much build up, hype and conjecture, the brothers Hixson have arrived with senior (or senior’) Texan Derek Mayfield back to Shangri La.

It is exactly what the Doctor prescribed. Dinner at the Golden Nugget, general unpack and field assessment.

The beer arrived, so Hall of Famer Matt Endsley’s Spider Sense tingled enough to call. We caught up with Dee Dee and Jim, spent too much time laying out the “stage/press box” and bored Mayfield with tales of the evolution of Shangri’ La,

The field is ready to be molded into a masterpiece, and the scout party is ready to welcome the friends and family to get the show on the road.

It’s 330 am, and time for sleep, but not before I appreciate the hell out of being back.

See some of you later today!

Geoff Hixson
SLWAA President

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Booze and Ball 2


Back at it on Sunday, July 3. This years retrospective is of 2010. Most of the listeners/readers will recall most of what I’m recalling but here it is, none the less as another stream. Spent the day at the pool so I’m in perfect shape to review.

Now another thing to note is that the commish is here tonight, and was none too pleased with my non-AP style of writing in “booze and ball 1.”

We open with game one with Sip on the handicam. Not a bad effort by Sip – probably hung over and pissed about filming. Although I’m sure he is skipping ahead in time as there are large chunks missing from the game. Luckily not a “bannable” offense as neither Hixson is playing.

Tollbooth Willies hard luck begins early, but they are the closest thing to a uniformed team in the history of the event, sporting the sleeveless button-up Farm & Fleet shirts.

Park looks pretty good in the 9 a.m. light.

Rookie Derek Mayfield with his first SLW home run.

Dude with the webgem of game one with a layout out from the mound.

Game two features Seph Lietz on the cam with the same time-lapse video issues. Could there be a time – space continuum issue in left field?

Game two also features the north vs south/brother vs brother Hixson Battle Royale.

Untimely errors mark the undoing of the younger Hixson’s “Yellow Bat Fury”.

The Nazi commissioner is killing me with updated edits as I review this game – Jesus.

It appears to be getting hot, especially for the commish as his team is taking on water fast…..

I’m still fat and it will prove costly later in the day.

Commish says the base umpires aren’t vocal enough – I say “who cares, it’s 11-0.”

Kudos to the camera men – this is boring and I’m playing.

Now the commish is filming and mad after his two runs of offense in game one. He and James E. have a nice chat about his fiancé drunk dialing, followed by Hixson Homstead projects and the farm report – fascinating TV.

Endsley is dispensing with the Crystal Seph Heads in workmanlike fashion in game three.

In the spirit of making everyone’s experience better, talk arises about playlists for the masses in 2011. Elder Hixson scoffs, citing the 2010 Maxim Mag’s iPod of the year.

I can’t wait to play with “skinny James Morton” in six days.

Also excited about opening up the third base line by moving the press box.

Forgot that Charlene thought Mayfield’s name was “Dennis”. Hilarious!

Just witnessed the lone HR from Jaime, which prompted him to remark that he will be miked up thus year by video savant, Jeff Cain. That should be great….

Hall of Famer Matt Warnes with two HR in the same game- never underestimate the streakiness.

Base umpires focus needs to include leaving the bag early in 2011 – Dave Cain?!

Dave Beethoven’s first appearance on the video …….and films! Thanks a lot, DB!

Stats will provide a great going forward bar. Everyone (who doesn’t have the video) cant remember shit. Which leads to inaccurate statements that include things like “there are only two great players.”

My idiot brother’s plans to end this “Christmas in July” should be met with extreme prejudice. The level of play is reached the best ever – based upon the hours of footage.

Lots of pageantry planned for this year. Keep an eye out!

Really looking forward to the return of “one-7” photography in 2011. We need to get the kid in the pictures this year.

Pandora for everyone will be the playlist on tournament day by order of the commissioner.

Thanks for reading through the second edition of booze and ball.

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Booze and Ball


Much like any big event build up in the modern world, there is always a stream blog highlighting the views and opinions of the viewer.

in 2011, Im spending time on games from years ago. Here is my historical two cents as I pour over old footage ramping up 1 week out of this years installment over a knob creek or two.

Tonights pick to recap is from 2003.

In 2003, we were all fat. Except Warnes, my brother, John Einhorn and the mayor.

My team consisted of Chris Meneley and Jen Pope. This is clearly before the “modern era” and no wonder I wasn’t winning in the old days- no offense to those mentioned.

In addition, it was the one pitcher and one fielder. This format sucks and accentuates the “company picknick” approach to the event.

Women are present, but not near as many as previous years.

The games are a focal point but not important to the crowd. Lots of heckling the games.

Field is in good shape, but not yet a stadium. First year of the “press box?”

John Lockhart playing. Athlete. I think he won HRD.

Of all the uniform talk, this is a shirtless and sleeveless haven year – see “company picknick ” reference. Guilty of Gun Show outerwear myself.

Still camera is boring in this format and not very crisp. Like looking through a dirty fishbowl.

Was this the end of the two day format? Has a pick up feel. Hasler must love 2003. Teams change from day 1-day 2.

Chris Meneley has nasty stuff in 03. Bad news is his mobility on the mound resembles David Wells.

8 mile must be recent as well as it is well represented on the soundtrack.

Chris Meneley walk off. His proudest moment in the history of SLW!

Tons of “down time” in 2003.

Jed Pope has a “Fernando Valenzuela” delivery in 2003. Hiding the ball makes him more effective……

Ryan Winne’s only appearance on the diamond? Makes sense, as he replaces Jen from previous day.

End of the film. All those thinking this era was “better” is a dope. I think “revisionist history” plays a big role in the nostalgia of the old days.

More to follow in the days to come!!!

One week from right now, those trying to win will figure a way to go to sleep.

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Thoughts from the SLW Alumni Association


By SLWAA President Geoff Hixson

SLWAA President Geoff Hixson

We are now one week from our annual pilgrimage to the hallowed ground of Shangri La’. This fact carries with it a nice list of things that make me smile.

We will have the most level playing field to date, thanks to Chief Scientist Seph Lietz. The league welcomes back 2010’s two rookies in Derek Mayfield and Luke Kirby. We will mark the return of the prodigal son, Kevin Walsh,  from his “high-falutin’ wedding trip absence in 2010, with the hope he doesn’t destroy any more of the park or kill himself. We will again be treated to some of the best hospitality and food available from the Hall of Fame hostesses – Dee Dee and Charlene.

Look for an upgrade to the DJ booth/press box with a location and elevation change. There will be uniformity in the participants not seen in 18 years with the “great uniform experiment of 2011”. There is a groundswell of additional surprise happenings yet to be announced. Our press coverage from both print and video will again be increased with the photo and video commitment of the aforementioned Mayfield and Jeff Cain Productions, respectively.

As in years past, there will be grueling field prep all day Thursday. The annual Old/Young Series (a name that I believe will stick forever, even though neither tag is accurate) will take place on Friday.  And of course, Home Run Derby Friday night.

There will be camaraderie, catch-up time and an ongoing over-consumption of alcohol. There will be one champion and five “also rans.” There will be smack talk, debates on the future, exhaustion and bug bites. There will be heavy metal from Maxim Magazine’s iPod of the Year 2010. There will be a sense of family and fraternity. A sense of competitiveness, drive and fire most of us no longer get to exhibit on a regular basis, that will come out in the heat of battle.

There will be the self-proclaim of the greatness of the commissioner and all he has created (which kidding aside, is pretty well deserved). There will be memories that we be analyzed and re-analyzed for years to come. There will be a podcast or two. There will be pitchers on the fun island.

SLW Founder Bernard J. Alblinger throws out the pitch at the 6th Annual Shangri La' Classic.

Most of all, there will be talk of the patriarch of Shangri La’ Wiffleball – who will assume his usual seat by the back door with the best view in the park, next to his wife and his buddy/long- time neighbor. He will be happy to be back. He won’t be bothered by the problems of the day to day life. He won’t be too hot, too “full” or too tired. He will be back at his happiest for his favorite weekend of the year.

There is a reason this event has become what it is. Let us remember all those things we look forward to the rest of the year and enjoy it in the moment, like the Mayor loved to do.

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Commish to Postpone Show for Ballgame


by Geoff Hixson

It seems that the weekly SLW podcast listeners will have to wait an extra day (at least) for their “all things Shangri La Wiffleball” fix. It seems that Commissioner Jaime Hixson has unilaterally postponed the weekly podcast in order to attend a local minor league game. His response when questioned was even more disconcerting. “We will do it Wednesday if it works, or maybe next week.”

What this tells newly commisioned blogger Geoff Hixson is that the fate of this tournament, league and nation of wiffleball is in the hands of someone who only wants to be in charge if its convenient. I for one, think the loyal listeners are owed something more than that.

Interest is at an all time low on the Shangri La’ site and instead of addressing the masses, the younger Hixson is sucking down suds instead of serving the very people he relies on for so much – probably using money from the wiffleball treasury to do so. I urge you all to weigh in on this “what, me worry?” approach of your fearless leader.

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