Dartoids World

Column #HR209 The Tuscany Tryst

Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Column HR209
The Tuscany Tryst

The last time the term “dog days of summer” was used in reference to the PDC was as they took a deep breath while gearing up for the run to the World Championships. The Champions League of Darts final signals the PDC’s long summer snooze is over. The Champions League is an event made for TV and the only event on the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation).

The BBC used to be the private domain of the British Darts Organization but, like darts everywhere, they found “gold” with the PDC. That’s everywhere but North and South America with South America not giving a “rat’s posterior.” The Champions League final matches the top 8 players in the Order of Merit.

The winner was Mensur Suljovic who reached the final when he erased 160 with Raymond van Barneveld sitting on 32 for the 11-9 win. In the final, Gary Anderson led 2-0 and 3-1 when Suljovic took advantage of 116- and 118-checks to run off 5 on the trot to take and pad a 6-3 lead. Anderson would level but couldn’t slow down Suljovic who won 11-9 and took home £100,000.

Even though the PDC is just coming out of its summer snooze the ODC’s most honored editor still demands at least 1,000 words per column – “or else.” No idea what “or else” is but I would just as soon not find out. One idea was a column devoted to the ADO. It might be “of interest.” But two words (to whom?) entered the equation so idea was tossed in “Round 13.”

The two top selling authors of all time ply their trade writing romance novels. Those that write about darts would appear on any list just below those that write about competitive crocheting and earth worm collecting. Anne “Sleepy” Kramer has done the darts genre – a style of writing – so she’s moved on the greener pastures. Green being the color of money.

Sleepy’s two latest efforts, Laguna Sector and Cally’s Dream, dive into the romance genre pool with wild abandon. It’s possible that “darter” Anne’s first two romance novels – available online at Amazon – will put her name among the list of contemporary leading romance authors like Nora Roberts and Jane Austen. The ultimate goal? Her name mentioned in the same breath with Danielle Steel, Jackie Collins and Barbara Cortland.

The term “genre romance”: “A genre of fiction placing the primary focus on the relationship and romantic love between two people, emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending.”

Why the switch? “Back in July, explains Anne, “a friend convinced me to try writing romance novels. I admit that I had considered it over the years, but the idea never really got any further.”

Those that know Anne’s husband, JK, might well think that the romance novel idea was born when considering what a “white wine, cuddle by a burning log fire, walks in the forest after a rain and a Love Story watching kind of guy he is.

As Anne Kramer is going to be successful the Old Dart Coach, at the request of no one, is going to try his hand at writing a novel in the “dart-romance genre.” He’s already achieved a start with the title The Tuscany Tryst and a few words…

Their eyes met as they passed traveling in opposite directions on the casino’s crowded escalator. One was heading to the dart hall for practice as the other headed downstairs either to the bar, restroom or possibly to the sport book. The looks they exchanged could have provided enough electricity to keep the Las Vegas Strip bright and shining for a year. Their eyes ignited a lighting strike where the only danger was a deep and abiding love that would grow to a lifetime of cherished love buried deep in their rapidly beating hearts.  

“Interesting,” one thought.

“OMG, I’m dreaming,” thought the other with a sigh that was probably audible to all.

In what seemed like an eternity but probably only minutes they found themselves back to front as they were standing in line waiting as an overworked on-call bartender did her best. Working at a portable bar is barely adequate to serve an always thirsty darting community.  

An over the shoulder glance brought forth words that nervously escaped quivering lips, “Hi.”

Jolted out of a daze but delirious happy with the opportunity to respond came the haunting reply, “Hi.”

Possibly not the best opening line but all great romances start with first words.

“Would you like drink?

“Sure. A beer.”

“What kind of beer?”

“Whatever you’re drinking would be fine.”

They stood nervously with beer in one hand and darts in the other.

“I throw John Lowe Unicorn 22’s.”

“Nice darts. I use the Bottleson Hammerheads.”

”I see we both use “L-Style flights,” a comment offered with a nervous laugh.

Their words formed the bond that their eyes had initiated in what seemed eons before. As happens way too often in those moments fate stepped in to break the mood. The timing couldn’t have been worse.

The would-be lovers were becoming more comfortable which each other, both ready to take the next verbal step. Both were called to play at boards far removed.

Then cupid arrived just in the nick of time. She does that on some occasions. Their boards were directly across the room from each other. In the pause between trips to the oche their eyes would meet, speaking untold emotions, exchanging the promise of later meetings.

They both lost although in losing love was the winner. What might have been doom and gloom was replaced with the lavender freshness of joy under a Vegas sky that shined down on the darting hall. They knew now that they could spend precious time together exploring the adventures of the heart that might lie ahead.  

Was it love? Was it infatuation? Could it be the introduction of rainbows and Unicorns into their lives that would last forever? Or was it just Las Vegas?

We’ll never know as “What Happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.”

Stay thirsty my friends.


  • Howie Reed

    Astute, often controversial, and always humorous, the Old Dart Coach, Howie Reed (a former rodeo cowboy and advertising executive), is heralded as the Dean of Darts Chroniclers - the most prolific and widely followed writer ever about our sport. He goes back decades with the legends and knows where the skeletons are buried (just ask any of the ADO and WDF old-timers!). Here are four well-known facts about the Old Dart Coach: 1) he is a Republican, 2) he loves the ladies, 3) he can drink most anybody under the table, and 4) he throws darts as bad as Dartoid.