Friday, January 3, 2014

Ping Pong - Pop Up Ping Pong, 21st December

In case you didn't know, ping pong is totes trendy right now. The Book Club has a ping pong table, Rich Mix holds ping pong tournaments and two bars in London have opened dedicated to it - Ping in Earl's Court and Bounce in Holborn. Oh, and everyone over here now calls it ping pong when I believe it used to be called table tennis. Ping pong definitely sounds cooler.

And, to add to this, Pop Up Ping Pong have been holding pop-up ping pong nights for, ooh, a while now. But every time they did one, I was either busy, or it was out West, where I don't often bother to go. Finally, they brought their pop up to the East - setting up in Netil House, a venue I like. As usual, they had burgers from #BRGR plus crack pie and cronuts. Only this time they were serving Christmas-inspired sliders with cranberry and turkey etc.

I actually managed to win a pair of tickets courtesy of Doing Something. I'd been out all day, first at Flesh and Buns and then at the lovely Sun Tavern in Holborn, but having some tickets persuaded us to go home via Hackney and see what PUPP had to offer. 

I had fun there - more fun than I thought I might, not being terribly good at any racquet sport, but at the same time it didn't knock my socks off. The place was pretty empty. It was a little like being in an extra cool sports bar rather than a cool bar with ping pong tables. Maybe that's the vibe they're going for but I rather suspect that they were in fact suffering from the pre-Christmas exodus which happens in London. 

In some ways that was good - it meant we didn't have to wait too long to get on a table. And then we played some beer pong with a friendly crew who were out celebrating a birthday. I swear we coulda won that game, I've played beer pong before and knew the deal, even though it was merely three of us against many, but Stephen kept fouling and making us drink our own beer! 

Beer pong, if you didn't know, is a drinking game, where you throw your ping pong ball into cups set up at the other side, filled with beer. If you get a ball in a cup, the other team has to drink. It's a stalwart game of many an American BBQ.

I had a helping of crack pie - a very sugary confection that's named for its addictive qualities. I've never had the original from Momofuko in New York but I can see how this moreish, sweet and salty pie could get you hooked. I didn't end up having any sliders, but Stephen wasn't impressed with his - too dry apparently.

The music they were playing was great, which made it all the more disappointing that the people waiting to get on a table weren't dancing to it. Given the amount of space in Netil house, it could easily have accommodated a makeshift dance floor and I can't help but think that was the idea. I know ping pong was the main draw, but I thought dancing would get as much attention, especially as people waited to get on a table. Not sure if 

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I work as an editor in educational publishing by day, and then spend most of my spare time discovering interesting things to do in London, and taking people there with my own Meetup.