Welcome to The Best Lack All Conviction Blog
This blog is not about anything other than the things I want to write about.
For a long time this blog tried to be about darts and may yet again talk about darts
but for now it is about whatever suits my fancy.
If that entertains, engages or inspires you, then I guess we are in good company.
My sister also has a blog that is written by her pet border collie
Callum the Border Collie ands his Autistic Human
Please follow her page and show her some support. She has been having a tough time living alone since our mother passed from cancer.
Darts: Getting it on Paper
Well the summer darts team has had it's first team meeting and I think we have a good bunch going on. We have been coined by our captain as a 'developmental team' and that suits me just fine. Indeed it is perhaps the essence of what this is all about for me, or at least a major element of it.
I suppose there is the temptation of being on the 'already good' team, but then I would have to ask how serious you are about getting better and maybe even if you might be lackign a little horizon on what you consider 'already good'. If I am to be even harsher still I might ask if you're up for a game of tackle football (yes the American kind) with a bunch of six year olds?
So yes we have a developmental team, and while the short but intense summer season has yet to unfold, I feel that there is some potential in our group. I think we can look forward to some interesting and hopefully positive updates about the team as the season progresses!
Paper Practice Targets?a 180 'on paper'.
One thing that our team captain has introduced which I kind of like is paper practice targets that you pin onto your board, so you can see if you have a natural drift one way or other, and that you can date and save as a reference to see how your focus and control is improving over time.
I dont think this can be used as a primary learning tool, but as a supliment and as a practice game I think it has value.
I even managed to score a 180 while doing it, which I have pixctured here. I must admit that I almost had second thoughts about posting pictures of these practice sheets since it destroys any possible pretensions of me being a good shot. (but give me time, give me time!)
Question is how much time? In my mind it will take as long as it takes, but how long do you think it will be before a drastic difference can be seen between the practice sheet of then and of today? Maybe I will never get better than I am now? Interesting questions for speculation, no doubt!
Is there a darkside or a danger to using these sheets? I think potentially, espescially if you are the sort to track and compare each individual hit or miss. In that there lies a path that can lead to frustration, and towards getting in your own way. It doesnt have to be that way, just maybe remember to look at it in terms of the overall grouping rather than in terms of scoring, and also to look at it as being your control and focus not only over time, but also specific to that moment. Mostly it is just fun. Just need to make sure I don't neglect my actual practice!!
Hmmn, so a friend of mine, and a savvy one at that who I didn't even know had seen this blog referred to it as 'Inane drivel about darts that no one reads' and dang it all, I cant say I can disagree with him. Well I suppose you read it, because well there you are right now, but how many other than you? Exactly!
Same goes for the inane drivel part. I am no writer....
It's a free show kids, so if you don't like it you can leave.. 'nuff said!
So why put in the effort? if not so much me as the guy writing, but you there who has to sit through all this?
Think of the Children!
At the end of the day, we have to remember what this whole thing is about! That of course is the children of the world. How can reading this blog help the children of the world? Well, no doubt what ever kid from on high to on low is missing in their life is a set of Dave 'The Abominable Throw Man' Sproull signature darts!!
Now there are two main ways I can think of to get a 'signature dart'. One is to be actually good at this darn game, and the other is to be some sort of known entity. Right now, I'm not either, but I'm leaving no stone un-turned either!
So, in the interest of the kids of the world, and world peace, keep reading. The whole practicing everyday and slowly but surely evolving as a darter, that's everyday stuff...heck..it's today stuff. A signature dart made by an actual sponsor. Well those are the dreams of tomorrow..aint they?
OK, thanks again for reading (the inane drivel that it is), see you all next time!
Dave 'The Abominable Throw Man' Sproull
Darts: Waiting for summer.
I suppose i should be honest right off the bat and let you know that if you want a real post, one with some real news and real events and real goings on, then I suspect the next one i do some time around next week
This issue I could call the anticiaption and suspense episode, but really it is the hurry up and wait world. In fact with the summer season so clse and yet so far away I am indeed all of these things, and maybe also a little bit in limbo.
My wife and i have a team, but it is not the one we originally thought we were going to be on, and we are not 100% sure exactly who will be on the team.
You see, we have a team meeting this coming Tuesday which is of course the pont at which I would be able to tell you more about what was going on, what the team was like and all that jazz.
So then, for those of you gracious enough to join in on all parts of my journey in darts, what exactly do i talk about or share with you that might not only relay my own experiences but perhaps offer a thought or insight or two that you might find parallels and applications to within your own journey in darts?
Well i think I can segue into that by explaining that the summer league is quite a different beast from the season I just finished. In the summer all the divisons are geographically based, and not based on skill or experience or general level of seriousness. Everyone from the best of the best to the worst of the worst and all shades inbetween play agianst each other. The competition, needless to say can get to be rather of the stiff sort.
so I thought I would talk about how i am preparing for the season both interms of the competency I bring to the oche as well as how I am approaching motivation and nerves and all the emotional side of it all.
Ok so well I have gone over and re-memorized some of the out shots that i had started getting fuzzy on, but as far as my darts practice routine, in order to be prepared for this awesome challenge before me I have changed, well I have changed nothing really.
As much as I wish there was a button i could push or a magic wand I could wave to make me awesome for summer season there isnt, there is just where I am at and where I am going, and while yes of course I make progress, and indeed some of the challenges of summer season might give me more expereince in executing the skills I have, my actualy skills development really does not pay heed to it being summer season. More to the point, if there was some super special trick I could use, I doubt I would have waited before unleashing it.
So it is about two hours a night of practice and twice a week I have a playing/practice session of around five to seven hours, and which is more about having fun and enjoying darts. I could practice more of course, but to what end? Would i be learning and improving or just throwing darts at the board as the practice session dragged on? I have heard it said before that practicing smart is better than simply practicing a lot and i have developed and maintained a fairly steady confidence that the Flight School drills I do are smart practice.
Once the season starts my deathly boring plan is to 'play the best i can at that given moment in time'. Yup boring as all heck but that's all i got. would you suggest I do different?
A spot of good news! in the course of getting this writen it seems our dart team has now been reigstered with the league. Our first team meeting/practice will be on this coming Tuesday! Two of the players I already know, and one, well i'm married to, but also looking forward to meeting a few new people.
I'll have more to report on that after Tuesday, but I am certainly excited! If I am going to make one prediction for myself for this season and that is I will be calmer and more relaxed than I have been. I might even win a game or two. if I dont, well it wont be for a lack of trying!
A Little News on the (Google) Plus Side
For people who want to enter the contest for people who subscribe to this blog, I have decided to expand it to include people who follow this sites Google Plus page. This will make it easier to get to the point where prizes will be awarded as well as giving you options on how you want to participate.
Just remember that to be eligible for prizes you need to 'follow' the page and not just 'plus one' it as I need to have a clear way of seeing who is eligible for prizes!
So whether by email subscription or by following on google Plus, you now have two great ways to stay in the Best lack All Conviction loop and maybe win some cool dart prizes along the way! (and the more people who join on, the more sponsors will eb willign to contribute for you to win!)
Ok, that is all for now. Thank you all for reading!!
Dave 'The Abominable Throw Man' Sproull.
Well here we are and I would reckon a few of us are dart players. Maybe some are avid begginers like me, or maybe a few of you have been around the block a few times. Darts is a great game and on so many levels, and right from the word go, right when we very first start. For many it is simply the chance to socialize and use the game as a focal point for that, and I think that is an excellent thing to do. For others it is about getting a leg up in a friendly rivalry.
For me the game of darts and the appeal and draw it has for me includes those things, but it is not those things.
I want to get better (we all do I suppose) and to as a manner of speaking put one foot in front of the other until i move out there in the distance to 'better'.
Sometimes the steps can go more slowly than I like and I must remember to remain both patient and diligent, but yes I do try to take each step I can toward 'better'.
Where is better? I think about five miles from 'actually good' and an infinite amount of space from Phil Taylor, if I am to believe everything I hear.
This is the trap I find with darts, the feeling that everything has to be qualified or that everyone is trying to manage my expectations to save me from some ultimate disapointment.
The truth is, in some way disapointment is almost what I am fighting to achieve, since you can only walk into the forest half way and then you are walking out of it. I will get as far as my dedicartion and ingrained and inate abilities (and limitations) will take me and I will get as good as I get and will be happy for the journey but most likely wishing I could be just that bit better yet stiill, and then time will take it's toll and i will start to find I can't quite do what I used to do, and maybe I will not even care? That is still a while off for me just yet but that is what is out there in the distance as I stand here, somewhere at the beginning.
Now you may wonder if I do think I might one day play at a Phil Taylor level? The answer to that, and I think why the whole question frustrates me in the first place is the answer is irrelevenat. I think a certain level of rationality would suggest that if Simon Whitlock isnt going to be as good as Phil Taylor my chances arent all that hot, and I don't think that really needs to be said. I just think saying "I'll never be" or "not actually" or "can't" create a drag albeit a psychological one on progress.
I am on the road of trying to be as good (or as bad) as David Sproull. That is the only game in town.
Now as far as me getting there, I'll do my best to not say I can be as good as Phil Taylor as long as you promise to not say I can't.
Well with this being a bit of a wordy post and me with a bit of steam yet I'll pose more of a question/observation than some sort of actual opinion. Some but not all of the people I play darts with sociallly work in any dedicated way towards getting better. Keep in mind, that as opinionated as i am (darts huberis supreme!) I am very new to all this and so I wonder if it ispossible that a day will come that my friends wont be able to beat me? is it possible? Am I a jerk for having some vision of it coming to pass? I wonder if this is something that holds a lot of people back? The fear of jumping from the pond to the lake to the ocean and so on...?
Of course I am not better than my friends i play with. Once upon a time (not that long long ago) i was nowhere as good. Now I am most days as good, and of course one step at a time I am getting better.
Thanks again, as always for reading!
This Just In...
Pretty much on the cusp of 'going to press' I see that the QSDL league website has just updated! Looks like the Summer darts season starts July 2nd. There is no divisions in the Summer so I can expect opponents in all ranges of talent. My wife I think is a little nervous about how she'll do, and to be honest I'm a little nervous too! I think more in a good way than not though, and I know that I'll do as well as i do simple as that. I put the time in, and I am certainly a much better player now than when I first started.
Of course I may have a chance this coming Tuesday to see how i might stack up against some of the competition as there is the Rayburne Blake singles tournament! (and no,I have no idea who Rayburn Blake is..anyone?)
Ok that's all for now! Check us out on Google+ now as well!
David 'The Abominable Throw Man' Sproull
Darts: Contests and Carousels
Well, some exciting times around these parts!
If I had maybe hoped for a bit more of a response to the contest to win a set of target darts, I was pleased that it did pick up right at the end, and the response I got from the winner Jim McKay made it all feel worthwhile.
That just put a smile on my face and made me glad that the darts will be going out to a true darts lover!
Announcement: The New Free Contest Just Got Bigger, Better and Easier to Win.
Oh and of course you may have noticed that there is a new contest where I'm giving out prizes for every one thousand subscribers. Well I was talking to Erik McVay who runs the Team SEWA darts forum and he is very generously giving the contest a very nice boost.
(UPDATE: The FitFlights are now being sponsored by Toronto Darts and Games)
Signing up for the contest is free and easy as entering your email address below. (Plus you get the added bonus of never having to worry about missing an installment of the The Best Lack All Conviction!)
Your continued readership really does mean a lot to me! Thank you for everyone who takes the time! As long as your subscription is active you will always be eligible to win prizes!
Here it is...
Some Darts Talk or Have I Just Gone Contest Crazy?The hand carved antique (Circa 1907) Carousel on Toronto island. About thirty of these are left in the world. Beautiful and ghostly and still just plain fun..
Oh well you know I always have time for darts. About apart time jobs worth according to my estimates. Combining playing with practice and I am pretty safe to exceed twenty hours on a week. Some would say I need more, but I think a solid effort for a dedicated hobbyist. (and that time is a round a 50/50 split between playing and practice).
Now of course there is playing, and there is playing and I am maybe wondering when the summer league will start. As I mentioned before, it is all levels so maybe I cant expect the best for my ego, but can expect to learn a lot and to challenge my limits. Who knows, I might also win a game or two that people aren't expecting me to!
Now of course you may wonder if there has been anything I have been doing to prepare, and the answer is that I have done nothing specifically geared towards the summer season, but I am always trying to work toward as being as good as I can on the Oche. To this regards I have done two major things that have been showing great results.
I also think there is a connection between your emotional state and your ability to focus in darts and I am currently working on a new article the addresses this as well as other issues surrounding focus and concentration in darts. That is still in the works, but I hope it is a useful resource or at least provokes some thoughts once i put it out there.
Not sure when, but I'd say days rather than hours but i may surprise you... (for good or bad).
Oh, and if maybe you were thinking that I spent every single free moment obsessed with darts, that is not the case, and even for a darts maniac like me a break is in order here and there. Today my wife and i went out to Centerville Amusement Park on the Toronto Island. We were maybe the oldest people there going on the rides without kids, but well it is the place I proposed to Rebecca and a place that has had a fond place in my heart since my childhood.
OK, well being whipped around all day on rides is tiring for an old man like me so I think that's it for this time around. next installment I am hoping to have that article on focus and concentration in darts done.
In the meantime I am hoping that you will sign up for the email subscription and make yourself eligible for great prizes!!
As always, thank you for taking the time to read. It truly is appreciated! Getting to be time for darts practice..
-Dave 'The Abominable Throw Man' Sproull
Well the contest dealine has come and gone and not one to waste a lot of time I numbered everyone's entries and then fired up the random number generator. (The number generator is on my phone, I normally use it to test myself/keep myself sharp on out shot combos)
So not quite pulling names out of a hat, but sufficiently random and i would think fair.
The winner is: Jim McKay !!!
As soon as I know what weight he wants I'll be sending them off to him!
Hind sight being 20/20 I am actually quite glad I did this contest. Not so much because zillions of people entered, but because it did bring my wife's music to people who might not ahve heard it otherwise (and you really need to try it for darts!) and well it makes me feel pretty cool to send out a set of darts to a perfect stranger. In fact that makes me think I want to start up a new contest, but well more on that in a little bit.
Set Phasers on Ton!
Ok well here is a little something I wanted to share with you all. As you know, other than Cricket and the odd game of Baseball much of darts is playing '01 games. Many indeed would call this 'proper darts' and it is my game of choice. (It's what the big kids play)
That being said, when you are out shooting darts more for fun than not it can be good to mix it up a little and throw in some games, espescially if they combine fun, competition and maybe a little bit of pracctice.
The other night the wife and i were on a good seven hour stretch of darts and needed something a bit different. That's when we cam up with Star Trek themed, Star Fleet battle Darts!
The Object: Destroy the enemy vessel!
How to play: Each player picks a colour from the outer double ring of the board (usually green or red) and those are their segments of the board. The player must then shoot at and destroy each of the enemy (other coloured) segments by firing their disruptors or photon torpeedos (aka darts) into them. Simple enough, except that you need to get past the shields first! That means you need to get two darts into the enemy wedge to take it!
The game is over when one player has destroyed all the enemy player's wedges and has thrown a bull. (inner or outer is fine)
The third dart: This of course makes one wonder what can you do if you have taken out a segment and have a dart in hand, or have missed twice and have no chance of doing anything.
In the first instance where you have sucsessfully taken a wedge you may take a free throw at the bullseye. if you hit you can increase the number of bullseyes your enemy must hit to finish the game by +1.
If you have thrown twice and not hit anything you can still take out a wedge by hitting the double of a enemy wedge.
Hitting your own wedges: if you are so unfortunate as to hit your own wedge it means you are having a Warp Core malfunction and must divert power from your shields! This means that on their next turn your enemy will only need to hit that wedge once to take it out. (This applies for one turn only).
So there you go! Not a perfect game, not a serious game, but with a little imagination a bit of fun!
To make it official when you loose you need to shout "KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN".
I hope you like it if you give it a try, and of course feel free to add as many rules/revisions as you think it needs to be fun as possible!
A New Free Contest: Win a set of FitFlights and Stems!
Us dart player types like a contest, and even better we like a free contest, and so that is what we will have. I have added a new feedburner email subscription button on the side bar here. For every 1,000 subscribers I get I will draw one of the active accounts for a darts related prize. Obviously as more people subscribe I might be able to get prizes donated as well so it could get quite good!
The first prize will be a set of Cosmo FitFlights and Stems. If you arent already using the FitFlights I highly recommend them. If you are a little unsure, winning them in a contest would be a great way to try 'em out!
All you need to do is sign up for an email subscription to this blog and you are eligible to win once the blog reaches 1,000 subscribers, and as long as your subscription is still active, you will be eligible for a prize every one thousand subscriptions after that!
What will the prize be for the one thousand after that? Well, I am always open to sugestions, but let's plan on it being awesome!
Dave 'The Abominable Throw Man' Sproull
A Word For Lou..
Well what do you know! Not very long at all before I was about to send this out to you I found out that the world came very close to losing rock and roll legend and hall of famer Lou Reed who is now apparently recovering and geting by in life by the use of someone else's liver. In a press conference his wife Laurie Anderson has said that while he wont ever fully recover he is back to doing Tai Chi, which I think we can take as a good sign.
As someone who learned guitar learning Lou's songs, I wish him a speedy recovery! Glad you're still with us Lou!