In football, the quaterback calls an audible when the defense presents an unexpected challenge and he needs to readjust his team’s strategy based on the new information he has. In HeroTalk (and urban dictionary, of course), ‘Calling An Audible’ is defined as coming up with a new plan (in mere seconds) when the original plan goes awry. You can be by yourself when you call an audible, you don’t have to be with a team per se. Since you alone constitute a team, you can call audibles for yourself. However, even if you’re by yourself you have to call the audible out loud because, for God’s sake, it’s an ‘audible’. There are a few different ways the original plan can go awry (be too fucked up to remain as the plan). For fun, I’ll make a list:
- When a significant part of the team doesn’t want to execute the original plan anymore. When I say ‘significant part’ I don’t mean ‘large percentage’, since there’s only a few key members of a group who’s opinions matter anyway. Followers opinions never count. And, of course, if you’re the only one who doesn’t like the original plan, this situation applies. You, by yourself, are a significant part of the team. These are 90% of audible situations.
- When the team arrives at the location the plan was supposed to take place, the plan can no longer take place for logistical reasons. Good examples of this are if the place is closed or the place doesn’t actually exist. Big time dissapointment. The old plan is dead, and a new plan needs to be audibled.
- When circumstances present themselves that make the plan impossible without urgent and remarkable effort, often under excruciating circumstances, but the plan is still viable.
In all of these cases, it’s time to step up and call an audible. I always make this clear when I do it by prefacing my audible with “I’m calling an audible…” to let the team know that the plan is changing. The key to calling a good audible is pretty simple: your team needs to be really excited about the audible being called. Leadership is paramount.
Calling an audible is my 3rd favorite life activity after 1. Reading racist jokes on the internet and 2. Asian sex. As such, I’d highly recommend it. I called an audible the other day when I was driving to work. It was 71° in the middle of February, and I didn’t want to go to work. I called an audible, picked somebody up, and drove into the Shenandoahs instead for a day in the mountains.
This act is closely related to the basic life principle of never getting trapped into doing something you don’t want to do, no matter how long you’ve planned for it or how many people are doing it. Some people would say avoiding a task like that at the last minute and “calling an audible” is immature and childish. Those people would be right. But fuck them, they won’t be ready for the other 10% of audible situations.