From NYC to SF, a Zog Perspective

 Going from East to West, John McCartney knows a lot about making moves. Though he left his NYC team behind, he was able to continue his ZogSports journey in San Fran. Today he shares how it all began…

It has been a thrill to be involved with ZogSports for all these years.  I was first introduced to the league by a friend who informed me her team, “Rule 76: No Excuses, Play Like A Champion”, had some open spots on the roster. I was glad I made the cut.

Being involved with the “Rule 76” team had a profound effect on my life as it afforded me with the opportunity to meet some really kick ass people, most of whom have become dear friends of mine. After having an enjoyable first season, I continued to play in as many seasons as possible. Granted, a few injuries here and there couldn’t compare to the joy of being on the same field as my friends. I was always looking to get that win week in and week out and then, of course, hit the bar for some Flip Cup, Beer Pong, Civil War, and Ring of Fire.

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Few of the Rule 76/Lock It Up members from throughout the years, Social Bar & Grill, NYC, December 2010

From my first NYC Zog football team in 2008 to my last one in 2013, “Fargin Iceholes”, I am so lucky to have had so many memories over the years through Zog. The competition, the rivalries, making the playoffs, and of course happy hour made my NYC lifestyle all the more exciting!

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Fargin Iceholes, Octagon Field, Roosevelt Island, NYC, March 2013

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Fargin Iceholes & Tom Brady’s Tears, Tammany Hall, NYC, March 2013

When I made the decision to move from New York to San Francisco for work towards the end of 2013, I knew that somehow I would get involved with the Zog SF league.  I introduced myself to Nick, the SF General Manager, inquired about the winter season and the potential to become a league football referee.

No Punt Intended

No Punt Intended

We’ve just finished the third week of the ZogSportsSF winter football season and I’m fortunate to be part of “No Punt Intended,” a team comprised of individual players. From top to bottom everyone has been so supportive of each other and we are having fun along the way. In addition to playing I now have been able to become a part of the “Zog Referee” family.

Realistically, I know there’s no difference between the New York and San Francisco Zog leagues.  However, I will make three general observations having been lucky enough to experience both:

1. Weather. This winter season I am definitely happy to be on the West Coast! The weather has been very good, sunny and mid 60s. I’ll gladly take this weather over what I experienced in New York!

2. Level of competition. Being a newly minted Zog football ref has given me the chance to see a number of teams play, and I have to say that there are a few San Francisco teams who would give the New York teams a run for their money. On the other side of the spectrum, there are a number of new teams with no prior Zog experience who could use a little extra practice time! The San Francisco league is still pretty brand new, all in good time.

My new Zog ref shirt, Galileo Field, San Francisco, February 2014

My new Zog ref shirt, Galileo Field, San Francisco, February 2014

3. Happy hour. It saddens me in a way that there is no “Parlour” in San Francisco. I truly believe that the Zog happy hour is an absolute important piece to the overall experience; it’s where you can meet other Zog players, make new friends and new memories! I am looking forward to recreating this and calling a local bar a ZogSports home of our own.

The San Francisco league has so much potential for growth and it’ll be exciting to see where we end up in the years to come!

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