Opinion: Why Isn’t Your Team Called Huckerpunch?
It’s the silly season.
Those Ultimate players who’ve known the editor here at afda.com for at least 15 minutes have likely received his rant about terrible Ultimate team names.
Team names in Ultimate, unburdened by mainstream expectations, can be unique things of beauty, fun and joy.
They don’t have to be funny, they don’t have to be ‘in jokes’ (a joke heard once is funny – a hundred times later it’s a different story).
But they must be instantly memorable, easily called out on and off the field (or shortened for purpose) and not too painful for organisers to use when preparing draws and updating tables.
Here are the 10 that we came across this year that we like the least (leaving aside most of the AUDL’s names, which, yes, we understand they’re trying for mainstream marketability, but no, mainstream marketability in 2012 means not using names that could’ve come from the 1950’s): Disco Inferno (Disc related puns are so over); Disc Throw Inferno (see above); Floppy Discs (see above); Disco Fury (ok, we’ll stop now); Black Caviar (ok, you’re in black shirts … but a racehorse?); Blue Cheese (ok, so you’re in blue shirts …); We’re Lame (not quite ironic enough); Cheesegraters (wtf Wikipedia?); Heads of State; and Karma.
But not to be negative, here are 10 relatively recent team names, as registered on afda.com or otherwise heard around the traps, that we like: Zombiecorns; Griff(ith)indoor ; Giant Squid Wizards; Veni Vici Vrisbee; Moose Knuckle; Gabon Gabboff; Fluttershy; 93%; Slamtown Flatball Club; and Ult Ctl Del.
Tips for Your Ultimate Team Name
And so to move you into a better place in 2013 in naming your team, here’s some thoughts:
Stick to three syllables or less. Yes, long names have a certain absurdity, but absurdity doesn’t last and its hard when you’re too busy puffing.
Check that nobody else (nearby at least) is using the name. The internet is handy for such checking.
Sticking two common words together that don’t normally go together is a simple and fun way to get a winner. Here’s a few quickies: Fenbudgie; Cabledrool; Runtnovel; Beatwant; Hamhart; Qipi; Zoohog; Figsedan. All these names made from 15 seconds of looking at my current online Scrabble game.
Alliteration is ok only if its kept rare.
Use unfashionable and unlovable animals. Beavers, badgers, unicorns have been overdone. Its old hat. Why not draw on the turkey, the dung beetle, the hagfish, the vulture, the yeticrab, the blobfish or the sucker-footed bat?
Can you get some geography in there? It tells people where you’re from. Even if its fantasyland, as you’ve used fictional geography.
Hat Teams = Popular Culture References
One extra rule relatively unique to Ultimate; Hat teams, by their ephemeral nature, must aspire to greatness (and if necessary, fail miserably) by tying themselves into popular culture, ideally with some sort of Ultimate jargon linkage. We should stroke our own egos and present ‘Game of Cones’, but could add in some others such as: Call Me, Frisbee; Catapullers; Hurricane Randy; Big Huck Theory; One Disc-Rection (hat teams are allowed to break the bad-disc-pun rule); Hucky Boo Boo; and iFlick 5.
This article was partly inspired by the AV Club’s lengthy list of its favourite band names for 2012. Ultimate teams could grab a few from there straight away. Our favourites from that list include: Fartbarf; Hoodie Allen; Butterlips; Not the Face; Age Sex Occupation; Spankshaft; Bearsuit; Uncle; The Hugs; and Lovesicle.
Remember too, if you happen to do something outside the Ultimate community … well, the best name for your next trivia night team of course is ‘afda dot com’.
Opinion: Why arent You Called Huckerpunch?
Jason de Rooy