Chapter Eight: Frisbee

WARNING! Most of the information presented in this book is simply not true and, in fact, is a complete pack of lies. It is therefore highly recommended that you do not use any of its contents as part of a book report, a school project or as an answer to a question in a surprise test. CONSIDER YOURSELF WARNED!


The Circle of Life or the Platter of Strife?

Despite it’s many years amongst us, the verdict is still out. Is the frisbee a bringer of peace and harmony as we shall see later in the chapter, or is it the harbinger of doom?

General Rules of Frisbee

The basic game of Frisbee is fairly simple, and perhaps most comparable to the game of Catch. There is the frisbee tosser and the frisbee catcher and all players will alternate between those positions.

What makes Frisbee different than Catch is the variety of choices available within each position.

The frisbee tosser can choose to:

  • throw the frisbee directly to the catcher.
  • throw the frisbee at a very high angle that confuses the catcher into thinking the frisbee is meant for them but will actually end up returning to the tosser.
  • throw the frisbee into a strong wind causing it to curve away from the catcher and then roll on it’s side for an even greater distance, so that the catcher will foolishly chase after it into a lamppost or worse (see illust. 8a).
(Illust. 8a Prior to the invention of the selfie-stick, the leading cause of accidental death at Grand Cayon National Park was attempted frisbee catches.)

The frisbee catcher can choose to:

  • catch the frisbee with their hands.
  • catch the frisbee with their face, having missed catching it with their hands*.
  • catch the frisbee with the back of their head, having attempted a “trick” catch that didn’t succeed*.
  • catch the frisbee with the shattered windowpane of a nearby house (see illust. 8b).*

*(technically, not a catch.)

(Illust. 8b Don’t throw stones at glass houses? Perhaps, but throwing frisbees at glass houses in one of many fun options that delight both players and home owners alike.)

The History of Frisbee

An Olympic Failure

Visit any decent-sized stadium, arena or curling rink, and their sport antiquities collection will show you that the frisbee has been around since the time of the ancient Greeks, in the 11th century BCE (see illust. 8c).  The Greeks did not coin the word frisbee however, but instead called it a “quoit” (pronounced kummerspeck). What is truly amazing is that despite having been around for thousands of years, it would take humans until the 7th century CE to learn how to throw it properly.

(Illust. 8c Clearly evident in this image is that by adding numbers around the statue, it makes the picture look much more informative than it actually is. What should be really noted is that no serious frisbee thrower would ever use this technique and second, why on earth would you make your frisbee out of marble? I mean, seriously!)

It cannot be stressed enough just how bad the ancient Greeks were at throwing the frisbee or quoit (pronounced treppenwitz). For example, the legendary Greek hero, Perseus, the slayer of Medusa, the saviour of Andromeda, a son of Zeus and the half-brother of Heracles, also happened to be so terrible at Frisbee that he accidently killed his father throwing one*. The oracle at his birth more or less warned it would happen, and yet despite having a lifetime to then practice, he obviously didn’t improve.

Historians concur that this incident cannot be fluffed off as a fluke, a one-in-a-million chance of happening. None other than the god, Apollo, killed someone as well, someone he liked, no less. The myth tells us that Apollo threw a frisbee or quoit (pronounced Gemütlichkeit) during a friendly competition with his buddy, Hyacinth. Obviously lacking any muscle control, Apollo wildly banked the toss off a cloud, giving it a bad bounce which caught Hyacinth in the head*. Yikes.

(*from time to time, this book will reference “facts” that are actually true. We apologize for any confusion this causes, and hope you will continue to be suspicious of 99.9% of the information given – editorial board)

There is a new theory growing in popularity among musty academics which suggests that the Cyclopes, the one-eyed giants freed by Zeus, were in fact originally two-eyed creatures before being hit in the face by a frisbee or quoit (pronounced verklempt)by the great Olympic god (see illust. 8d). The cyclopes thus forged thunderbolts for Zeus, not out of gratitude for being let out of prison, but in the hope that his aim would significantly improve.

(Illust. 8d This cast reconstruction of an immense sculpture was recently discovered in a villa belonging to Emperor James Tiberius Kirk, dating from the 1st century. Here, we see an attempt to dislodge the frisbee or quoit (pronounced quoit) from the face of an injured cyclops. To the right of him, Zeus holds aloft a thunderbolt to announce that he is taking up a new sport.)

A Good Defense is a Better Offense

To delve into the military history of the frisbee is to turn everything we thought we knew on it’s head. Each and every early civilization has demonstrated that a soldier should be armed with a weapon (such as a sword, a mace, a spear, etc.) to attack with, and a shield to protect themselves. When it came to the Normans, we find the one and only exception.

The word, frisbee, actually derives from the Anglo-Saxon language:

friþ-bræc    (pronounced frith-beak)*

(* Again, we wish to apologize for this necessary but brief touch into truthfulness – the editorial board)

Friþ-bræc is defined as a “peace-breaking” or a “breach of the peace” and it’s quite understandable how the spinning disc came to inherit that word. As Sergeant-Professor Gargle, of the Llanfairpwllgwyngyll (pronounced quoits) Military College in Cardiff, Wales explains, “When the Norman Invasion (see illust. 8e) reached the British Isles in 1066, the Anglo-Saxon armies soon realized their enemy had a different way of doing things. What they thought were shields were in fact weapons which they tossed with deadly results. Adding to the loss of life, many priceless stained glass windows were accidently broken during battles in which the Norman tossers missed their intended target.”

(Illust. 8e – a segment of the famous Bayeux Tapestry, considered the Marvel comics of its time. Created in the 1070s , it depicts the Norman Invasion led by William the Conqueror who was formerly known as the Duck of Normandy (see chapter 7 regarding historical ducks). In this scene, the invaders are shown crossing the Channel towards Britain, armed to the teeth with their deadly friþ-bræcs)

Lieutenant-Major-Professor Gargle (just promoted since the last paragraph), goes on to say, “What the Anglo-Saxons then discovered was that the spears held by the Normans were used to defend themselves by skewering any incoming friþ-bræcs (see illust. 8f).

(Illust. 8f – The Anglo-Saxons adopted the Norman battle strategy. Depicted here is a Saxon warrior proudly displaying his skewered friþ-bræcs to his enemy before tossing his own in response)

The Groovy Era

Some might reasonably argue that Frisbee was never a child’s game, and like Halloween costumes, Star Wars gatherings, and performing open-heart surgery, frisbees were kept mainly in the hands of adults.

In the 1960s, there was a growing movement among young people who referred to themselves as Hippies on account of how they walked. Because Hippies wanted to change the world and they questioned everything in society, the frisbee served as a potent symbol for their “counter-culture”.

The California company that made frisbees was called WHAM-O, and the first version of frisbees were stamped with WHAM-O-1. Hippies noted that if you interchanged the 1 for an I, then you could rearrange the letters to spell WHO AM I? For most of the decade, self-identified Hippies throughout the world could be found in groups, staring at frisbees and pondering that deep philosophical question (see illust. g and h).

(Illust. 8g This photo, circa 1964, captures a typical Hippie-frisbee gathering or what was known at the time as a “Toss-In”. Here we see some spontaneous art being created with pop cans. Older generations considered soda drinks an addiction that might lead young people into madness.)
(Illust. 8h A genre of music known as Frisbee Rock was popular during this period. The British group, The Who, were revered by Hippies for their mellow, relaxed tunes, and had even experimented with a Frisbee Rock Opera about a boy who couldn’t taste or smell but was an amazing frisbee player.)

Could Frisbee have changed the world? We would never know. By the 1980s, Monopoly and Hungry, Hungry Hippo was all the rage, and Frisbee, along with everything it meant, was a beautiful but faded dream.

Frisbee Now, with All the Excitement of Golf Added In

It doesn’t take a genius to see how well frisbee could be adapted to the game of golf. After all, they both involve hitting a tiny ball with a big metal stick over a very long distance into a tiny hole. Except for the fact that frisbee is nothing like that, they are exactly the same.

Some people call this new game Disc Golf, but those people are considered boring and often ignored. Frisbee Golf has become a multi-million dollar sports industry. Professional Frisfers, as they prefer to be called, will spend spring and summer months touring municipal parks the world over, to play and compete at the fanciest courses a local civic engineer can design. A typical professional frisfer can make over sixty-eight dollars in prize money a year (see illust. 8i).

(Illust. 8i The frisbee golf caddy carries a display shelf containing various frisbees for the frisfer to choose from when making a shot. The caddy will then offer advice for when an orange frisbee is needed, or, as seen in this photo, when the frisfer clearly requires a blue frisbee. The caddy will also have a selection of fine china available should there be a request for tea.)

Unlike conventional golf, the frisfer must deal with all kinds of dangerous obstacles. That can include angry picnickers who refuse to get out the way, children flying kites hither and zither, and the occasional slip on la confiture d’oie verte, also known as goose poop. And whereas conventional golf has obstacles such as water traps and sand traps, Frisbee golf decided to combine the two (see illust. 8j)

(Illust. 8j The quicksand trap is a particularly difficult one to get out of.)

If you’d like a heads-up to when the next chapter is out, follow me on my website: Dan Bar-el or on my Facebook page: Dan Bar-el – Children’s Book Author for a notification.

Quiz Questions

  • How many lies or misinformation were you able to spot in this chapter?
  • What were some of the ways you figured out that they were not true?
  • Were there any bits that were true or that maybe sounded believable?
  • Between watching a game of golf or watching paint dry, which method would be most effective in putting you to sleep?

Tips for Truth-seekers

Perhaps not so much a tip this time, but something to consider. Gathering and reporting real news around the world can be a dangerous profession. There are over 1300 documented cases of journalists killed or murdered in the past thirty years. Many journalists are imprisoned and even tortured every year by those in power who do not want the truth to come out.

“The Committee to Protect Journalists is an independent, non-profit organization that promotes press freedom worldwide. We defend the right of journalists to report the news safely and without fear of reprisal.

When we swallow the bait of fake news, we do a disservice to those people who may risk their lives to inform us of what’s actually happening.

Currently, we are wearing masks during the Covid-19 pandemic. We do it to both assist in, and to acknowledge the efforts of frontline health workers. When we show a healthy suspicion of dubious news sources, and when we separate facts from opinions, we are doing our part to bring truth to light.

%d bloggers like this: