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Angry cricketers make mockery of permit system

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Angry cricketers make mockery of permit system

Postby rchaos » Tue May 24, 2005 12:23 pm

Last night, 4 eager ultimate teams headed to Flemingdon Field 6, ready to do battle on Victoria Day in the season opener. To their dismay, a large group of cricket players had already set up the field for a match. I showed up in time to watch an irate cricket coach tear a strip off of some young lady (I think she was captain of one of the teams). We told him we have a paid permit to use the field (which we ended up showing him later to no avail). He claimed that he too had a permit, which he refused to show. Then he ordered his men to take the field and start playing. To each reasonable and rational argument we gave, he simply would yell and scream in response. We remained firm and even set up some cones, but this angry mob was simply too feisty for us chilly ulty players.

Ultimately, with our tails between our legs, fear in our hearts, and permit book in tow, we begrudgingly moved across to the other side of Gateway in the hopes of finding some fieldspace. Fortunately, this story does have a happy ending since we managed to set something up, despite the large ground indentations on these fields. But what would we have done if there were no open fields available to us? Would we have gone home without the glory of an ultimate game under our belts?

Bottom line: The permit system is fine and dandy if you are dealing with a rational group of people, who are willing to listen and respect the authority of the city of Toronto permits (or in the absence of this rationality, some kind of field police would be nice). Unfortunately, most of the time when you encounter a situation where large group of people, uniformed and ready to go, have arrived first, they will not give up the field and move somewhere else just cause you have a piece of paper that states your right to the field. These cricket players (and many soccer players I might add, from my personal experience) certainly do not share the unique sense of fairness and spirit of the game that we self-refereeing ulty players do.

I’ve heard some sad stories about fights breaking out, police being called in, etc, etc. Is there a solution where we can avoid such confrontations, and still manage to exercise our right to the fields?
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Postby beachbum » Tue May 24, 2005 12:36 pm

You are to be commended on your restraint and respectful display of SOTG in the face of a belligerent and hostile ignoramus.

You should certainly file an incident report with the TUC office. They should, in turn, have some sort of authoritative presence on this field for the next week or two.

With all due respect to past club management and the wonderful job they did, this should not be a case of acquiescing to a squatter. We in the membership have paid for those fields with good cash money and we have a right to them. It's incumbent on club management to enforce that permit moving forward with all reasonable means.
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Postby jason » Tue May 24, 2005 1:25 pm

I've had a few run-ins at Flemingdon Park in the past few years. I think that some of the local residents can't understand how we can come and kick them out of *their* local park. David Balfour is another problem spot, where an Aussie rules team insists that they have the right to practice even though they don't have a permit.

The permit system in this city is a complete joke for many reasons.
Hopefully the league/city can do something about this, because we're on the hook for the quality of those fields. I'd hazard a guess that TUC members are above-average when it comes to maintaining our fields, but we seem to get blamed whenever a field is damaged.
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Postby Gonzo » Tue May 24, 2005 2:37 pm

And to add injury to insult, I was walking across those same fields and noticed that there was a large amount of garbage (chip bags, paper bags, water bottles, beer bottles, etc.) littering the fields around where the cricketers were playing. If anyone checked on the condition of these fields afterwards, we, being the permitted users of these fields, would likely get blamed for the garbage.

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Postby tommythecat » Tue May 24, 2005 2:55 pm

We actually picked up a great deal of their garbage under the belief that we would be using the fields. Some of them even helped us do it. There seemed to be two contingents. There was a game playing when we got there, and those people gave us the impression that they would be done shortly and we could then use the field (this was before 6:45, so it wasn't a problem). There was also a group who wanted to use the fields after that game finished, and we only became aware of that group when the first game ended.

I think part of the difficulty of handling the situation was that we didn't realize that we were really dealing with two groups. For example, when I asked some of the spectators to clean up the garbage so we could use the fields, they got rather angry about it. I didn't realize that they were actually angry because I told them we were using the field at 6:45 and not because I asked them to help clean up.

I believe part of the problem stemmed also from the fact that we didn't have any permits on us when we first began talking to them. Neither captain had brought their permit book, we had to borrow one from another team, and by the time we showed the permits it was clear that this guy wasn't going to respect them. The situation might have been different had we had the permits ready initially.
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Postby conjob » Wed May 25, 2005 10:35 am

a sad fact to add to all the drama about the permits and the argument over the fields, was that once the light rain started about 30 mins after we gave up and moved fields, the cricket players stopped playing their "game" (if you can call a game dicking around with some cricket bats and a tennis ball) and left.

as much as a commend all the ulti players for being chill, i question if we did the right thing by letting them walk all over us. it's like backing down from a kid who's throwing a hissy fit, they'll just keep doing it cuz they know they can win that way. i can yell louder than you. i win.

i still maintain everyone should've laid down on that field somewhere and not moved. kinda like how people save parking spots ;)
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Postby jason » Wed May 25, 2005 10:54 am

Unfortunately TUC is in a bad position with regard to people poaching on our fields. On the one hand we followed the city's rules for using field space, and payed money to use these fields. However, the parks department has a bad habit of cancelling permits when local residents complain, and they seem not to care about the validity of said complaints.
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Postby bargold » Wed May 25, 2005 7:47 pm

Has anyone made our GM aware of this problem?

Chances are, if not, it's likely to repeat itself.


cheers
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Postby Wartank » Thu May 26, 2005 5:43 pm

Good points made all around. In retrospect, I’m really surprised at myself for keeping my temper and not having my blood rise over an incident like this where someone seems to ‘get one over on me’. But perhaps it’s just easier to be calm sometimes when everyone else is raising arms. Thankfully I’m a contrarian. I arrived late on the scene, which may have coloured my opinion of what happened.

I think we all have to keep in mind that we are competing for recognition and respect for our sport in this city, and that all of us are representatives. (I don’t know how much longer this article will last, but it seems as though cricket and ultimate are the two big 'upcoming sports' competing for toronto fieldspace)

While one of those cricket players in particular was very hostile, and very likely full of complete BS, I don’t think that we handled ourselves in the best manner either – both in terms of the negotiation process and in terms of representing our sport. While there may have been calm voices amongst us, frankly Rich, we weren’t always the ‘reasonable, rational, and chilly’ people that you made us out to be. There were too many voices, and voices that were too aggressive, for anything productive to have come out of it.

Would they have listened to reason and acceded to us if we had been more calm, and less of a mob? Perhaps not. But I think it would have been the best course of action. I think that the captains and the players have to take some responsibility for the escalation of emotion that occurred. In many ways, it was good that we could find an alternative fieldspace for us to go to, so that the situation didn’t escalate.

That being said, would calling the cops be too much? I’m not sure if this is a misuse of city resources, but i don’t think there is another authority that both groups would have accepted. That might not even solve anything – with a group as unreasonable as the one we were dealing with, and a matter as trivial as this, they could easily have made our lives miserable in a many ways. You simply can’t punish all of the petty jerks out there, and you certainly can’t stress over the inequity of it. I’m just glad we were still able to get a good game of ultimate in.

Contrary to how this post might sound, i don’t want to blame anyone; if anything, i blame myself as much as anyone. I just want to find a solution.

I emailed mike and gm with my incident report. I suggest that you guys (esp. the captains) do the same.
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Postby Blue » Thu May 26, 2005 10:56 pm

Just to provide another viewpoint;

Wednesday night when I got to the fields at Norfinch (which are hard enough to be comparable to concrete by the way ;) ) there were a number of crickteers on the pitch already.

When I spoke with them and explained we had the field booked, they too said that they had a permit for the field, but having the permit handy and in my hand helped a lot, especially since they didn't have a copy of their own.

Further, they were quite understanding that it was not our fault, and gave up the field graciously.

Just thought I'd highlight that there are some very nice and understanding cricket players as well.
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Postby tommythecat » Fri May 27, 2005 12:19 am

When you consider how few cricket pitches there are in the city, it strikes me as somewhat brain-dead that the city gives them to our ultimate club. There's lots of baseball diamonds in the city, but we never seem to play ultimate on baseball fields.
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Postby Wartank » Fri May 27, 2005 12:30 am

tommythecat wrote:When you consider how few cricket pitches there are in the city, it strikes me as somewhat brain-dead that the city gives them to our ultimate club.


good point..!

tommythecat wrote:There's lots of baseball diamonds in the city, but we never seem to play ultimate on baseball fields.


sure we do - how about mcleary and riverdale?
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Postby rchaos » Fri May 27, 2005 11:51 am

tommythecat wrote:When you consider how few cricket pitches there are in the city, it strikes me as somewhat brain-dead that the city gives them to our ultimate club. There's lots of baseball diamonds in the city, but we never seem to play ultimate on baseball fields.


I would hardly call that field at Flemingdon a "cricket pitch" ...it's more like a field of power lines with a dirt patch in the middle of it.
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Postby rchaos » Fri May 27, 2005 12:06 pm

I have a potential solution:

In the pizzabox filled with TUC goodies, which all members will be receiving (shortly I hope!), we should include a park rangers uniform. That way, if an altercation occurs, one person from one of the teams can pull a "Polkaroo", that is, disappear for two minutes and return with the rangers uniform on.

Then he/she can act as judge & jury and upon examination of the proper documents, deem the ulty players as the rightful owners of the field in question. Then we can all watch as the sad cricketers disappear into the sunset with their bats waggling between their legs.

Please see url attached for example of said uniform. http://corpslakes.usace.army.mil/employees/uniform/images/classbduty3.jpg

Or perhaps this one might be more appropriate since the weather has finally started to improve. (I'm partial to this one anyways since it looks way funnier!).

http://corpslakes.usace.army.mil/employees/uniform/images/classd.jpg
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Postby Nigel » Fri May 27, 2005 1:52 pm

Wartank wrote:sure we do - how about mcleary and riverdale?

Riverdale league games are played on the soccer field or on the greenspace just north of it. Every once in a while, some Barry Bonds wanna-be hits a softball that makes it that far, but not too often.

I don't think Mcleary is on the list for league games?
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Postby Wartank » Fri May 27, 2005 2:10 pm

i've played a tuc game in the fieldspace southwest of the soccer fields, southeast of the track.. that's right in the outfield.

what is the point of this tangent? ;)
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Postby will mercer » Fri May 27, 2005 3:35 pm

tangents are the point of life (or at least BBS's)
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Call the police...

Postby Leigh_K » Tue May 31, 2005 12:28 pm

Isn't the process to deal with permit conflicts to call the cops? Or the TUC office? At least I seem to remember that being the process.

Sorry about de-tangentizing the discussion...
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Postby orilliaboy » Fri Jun 10, 2005 2:56 pm

I actually had a conflict with a TCSSC ultimate team at sunnybrook. luckily the permit book helped out a bit - we still lost 1/3rd of the field. And the tcssc captain was quite hostile!
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Postby Happy Camper » Sat Jun 11, 2005 12:43 am

hmmm...

I have been at Sunnybrook twice this summer, once with each league (TUC and TCSSC) and had no issues whatsoever. The fields are pretty well marked with TCSSC having put in some sort of tile things to mark cone spots and TUC being on the eastern most side of the Field Hockey fields.

I would guess that their captain got a little disoriented as it seemed really simple to me when I have been there.
Winners never quit and quitters never win. Cheaters, however, go on to win home run titles.
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Postby bargold » Fri Jun 24, 2005 9:19 am

there was a story/rumour floating around at our game last night that a TUC player confronted cricket players at Flemingdon on Tuesday night about the fields being permitted to TUC.

Apparently they returned with some friends and proceeded to kick the hell out of this guy until he was unconciousness, and putting him in the hospital.
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Postby a. » Fri Jun 24, 2005 9:36 am

Is there any truth to this? :shock:
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Postby oshai » Fri Jun 24, 2005 10:10 am

I was at flemington on Tuesday, and did not notice anything of the kind... I didn't see any cricket players at all, only some little league baseball.
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Postby HotSauce » Fri Jun 24, 2005 10:14 am

Maybe the little leaguers did it. I wouldn't put it past today's angry youths...
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Postby rchaos » Wed Jun 07, 2006 11:46 pm

In a stark contrast to last year's episode, tonight I had an incredibly amicable experience with some cricketeers at Cedarbrae C.I. They were having a practice on the field when we showed up and I was thinking to myself, "here we go again". But to my pleasant surprise, they were extremely understanding and left the field quietly after a quick discussion. It was such a pleasant surprise and I was really impressed by the way the situation played out, and the way the cricketeers represented themselves. So for future reference, not all cricketeers are like the ones we faced last summer at Flemingdon. When treated with respect, they will reciprocate.
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Postby Jesse » Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:14 am

Last Wednesday at Vaughan Road Academy (Bath/St. Clair) we had another good experience.

There was a small group of kids playing soccer at one end of the field using the soccer net. It was going to conflict with our field..
Peyton and others (Hammered Penguins) talked to the group, found one of them to be quite the diplomat, and they agreed to use the side of the field. And to make sure they still had a 'net', we gave them some cones to make their own field.

Anyways, kudos/props/etc. to Peyton.
BOOOO to the Penguins for beating us... :wink:
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