Don’t Judge a Map by its Googleness

Last night I learned a good lesson in relying too much on technology.

To keep fit, I play sports. I’ve never enjoyed staying still in a gym — I need to run around to enjoy myself, so it was fortunate that I joined an intramural mixed sports team 5 years ago. Since then, I’ve moved on to a regular Ultimate Frisbee team and haven’t looked back.

One of the quirky things about these intramural leagues is that the game locations often change every week, so you need to know where you’re supposed to be and at what time. Fortunately, some leagues like the Toronto Ultimate Club offer an iCal option so I can stay on top of my games — I just imported it into my Google Calendar, which syncs to my phone.

Normally, this is a perfect set-up for me — that is, unless the map’s not quite right.

Relating with Christopher Columbus

This is the map my phone gave me for my game:

Horrible map to 275 Unwin Ave

So to translate that, I expected a 5-minute walk,10-minute bus ride, and then another 15-minute walk — BOOM! I’m at the game. Couldn’t be easier, right?

But that map was a goddamn lie.

Here’s what the map should’ve looked like:

Better map to 275 Unwin Ave, aka the Cherry Beach Sports Fields

So a few things to put this in context for everyone:

  1. I’d slept in from a nap and was already late — I didn’t even reach the end of the first map until 7:20 for a 7 PM game!
  2. This was another 15-minute walk on top of the 15 I’d just power walked, which would’ve been fine if I’d stuck to the road and taken a straight line there, but noooo I had to try the waterfront trail and take a nice nature walk to get even more lost. What the hell. Also, one of the reasons why I play Ultimate well is because of my speed, and I didn’t want to run with sore legs, making me absolutely useless to the team. Oy.

    Unwin Avenue and the Waterfront Trail
    It’s a lot more confusing in person, TRUST ME.

The Ultimate Trek to an Ultimate Game

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YO. WE PLAYIN' ULTIMATE, MAAAAAAN!!!

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I mean, all’s well that ends well — I eventually wound up at my game (a mere 45 minutes late) and ended up playing one of my best games ever. I guess all that cardio and walking must’ve gotten me limber and ready for some power plays! But I learn a very important lesson:

Technology isn’t perfect.

We rely on tech for everything, but remember less now than our predecessors. Everything’s a quick Google search away, and we trust so much of what we see online without questioning it.

This could be a problem.

So remember to question what the Internet tells you, if even only a little. Nothing’s perfect in the digital age, and the more you can store in your head, the less often you’ll find yourself wandering across isolated train tracks on a hot summer day, wondering how it all went so wrong so quickly.

–case p.