Letter to the Editor

Letter to the Editor for Friday, March 20, 2015

Dear Editor,

I, along with many of my Queen’s University peers, am an active, amateur athlete who loves and craves competitive sports.

I’ve participated in dodgeball, curling, ultimate Frisbee, basketball, outdoor soccer and flag football intramurals during my time at Queen’s. As the intramural entity of Queen’s University, Queen’s Intramurals is responsible for providing us with a safe, well-organized, efficiently coordinated, fun environment.

They have failed us all in this task. Each evening, armored in sports gear, I arrive at the gym or field, uncertain; I dream of a competitive game of sport, but am wary against such optimism. Why must this be so?

Well, there remains a recurring theme of frustration within Queen’s intramurals. It is bolstered by an inexhaustible list of infuriating intramural experiences:

1) I’ve had no referees show up to games;

2) I’ve had one of two referees not show up to games;

3) I’ve had referees who don’t know how to referee their respective sport;

4) I’ve spoken to referees who lament your referee training, your scheduling, and your unwillingness to listen to suggestions;

5) I’ve had a league fold because there were not enough teams. Even though I was team captain, I was not notified of this until I emailed you to ask where our schedule was;

5b) It took multiple subsequent emails to have you rectify the situation fairly;

6) The KCVI gym is haunted by a finger’s width of dust and constructed out of concrete, which is entirely unacceptable;

7) I have played in games without the necessary equipment (torn dodgeballs, lights off on the field, and not enough pinnies;

8) I have had many opposing teams not show up to our games.

To be clear, Queen’s Intramurals has a number of referees who are attentive, responsive, knowledgeable and authoritative, but they also have a swath of employees who lack a number of these essential qualities.

I’m also grateful for the absentee penalization fee and understand they cannot guarantee team accountability. But, suppose, for a moment, that teams’ indifference to attendance is something greater and more systemic. Consider the reason students don’t care if they leave their counterparts hanging is because they have no incentive or desire to show up to games. There are always reasons teams “no-show” for intramurals, but it could also be that the games are simply not thrilling enough. Playing in an uncomfortably cold, concrete high school gym, or in a dusty, outdated dodgeball facility, or with poor referees are disincentives for students to remain accountable for their registration. Queen’s Intramurals has left us amateur athletes unsatisfied: longing for competition, bemoaning imperfection. It is simply unacceptable for this program to remain at status quo.

Intramurals need proper equipment, trained officials and appropriate venues.

Winning, to be frank, is the ultimate goal, but the experience is equally vital. Eating a hot dog is futile without ketchup, mustard and relish to realize its deliciousness.

I suggest Queen’s Intramurals reviews itself, and rectify the glaring issues that plague Queen’s. I write this letter in hopes that they will cure their ailments and give students the experiences they desire and have paid for.

Adon Moss

JD ’15

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