My first season of darts is over and I see a need to reflect on it. There were highs and lows, and some genuinely warm moments. I decided to play darts in February after watching it on TV. I joined two leagues and three months later, my latest obsession is still going strong.
Apparently there are two seasons of darts. Fall through spring, and summer. As you might guess, the summer season is only about half as long as the other season. I guess lots of people go on holiday in the summer, so I don't expect the shortened season to be as serious, or as well attended.
What I have learned:
Ø Darts, like many other activities, gets better with practice. In the past few weeks my three dart average has increased, and my ability to hit doubles and triples has gotten better.
Ø Competition makes you better. Despite not being that competitive, wanting to win makes me a better player. Unlike some, I don't get down on other players, and try not to let my performance get to me.
Ø With any activity there is a whole new lexicon to learn. Without knowing it, I have added a lot of dart related words to my vocabulary, much to the chagrin of my coworkers. Of course, they use a lot of ESL related vocabulary that other people in their lives don't understand....so it's pretty much a wash. I throw around words and phrases like treble, three in a bed, checkout, double out, oche, flights, sisal, double bull, 9-darter and so many others.
Ø Leagues only work because so many people put in a lot of work. Casual or not, a lot of organization and stats keeping is needed to keep the league going. It seems like a lot of the people who I play with are retired, but it still requires a lot of their time. Thanks.
Ø The temptation to buy lots of equipment exists whenever you start a new hobby or pastime. Fortunately, I have resisted the urge to spend a lot of money. I've got some darts, a board at home, a small case for the darts, and a few extra parts. Most people I have seen have several sets of darts, a rather large executive case, a large number of spare parts, and various tools. Knowing me the way I do, I am sure I will get there, but for now, I am keeping it simple.
Ø There are a variety of people and people types involved. While most of my experiences have been good, some have been bad, and I have to accept that clashes will happen in the future. Hopefully calm heads and rational thinking will prevail.
Ø There is a huge world of darts out there. There are professional leagues and huge tournaments. I have only encountered the tip of the iceberg. I may or may not make that big jump in the next year. While being a professional anything appeals to me, I know there are drawbacks to taking something you enjoy to a level like that. Friendly competition is good, but intense competition may not be so great.
I have enjoyed darts, and I will be playing summer darts. I will let you know how that goes.