The way the world chooses who goes first in games of H-O-R-S-E, who takes out the garbage, and who is in charge of the remote control, just got a little more complicated today.
Rock, perhaps the most recognized figure in the "Rock, Paper, Scissors" trio, announced his retirement at an informal event held at the local schoolyard late Saturday afternoon.
"I would like to first and foremost thank the kids," said a visibly shaken fist as he read from a prepared speech. "I know there are many other ways to choose captains for kickball. But you never wavered in your support. You stuck by us and for that I'm very grateful."
But it was Rock's closing remarks that most in attendance found especially touching:
"To my associates Paper and Scissors, what can I say? Thanks for the great run. No one covers and cuts like you guys. I wish you both the best of luck, and I sincerely apologize for any smashes that may have caused you pain."
With that, the iconic symbol was led off of the podium by family friend and Scissors' cousin, the Peace Sign.
As is often the case, rivals in the world of choosing were giddy at the news and were quick to point out their former foe's shortcomings.
"Well, the guy was definitely a handful," said One Potato, reached by phone while washing clothes with someone's mother. "But he's still the cheapest s.o.b. I've ever known."
"In fact, I can't think of anyone as tightfisted as Rock."
"Well, he knew how to crush stuff," added Odds, from the team of Odds and Evens; possibly Rock, Paper and Scissors' biggest competitors. "But unlike Evens and me, he didn't have any work ethic at all."
"I don't mean to point the finger," agreed partner Evens. "But Rock never knuckled down. Everything was just handed to him."
Still stunned from the announcement, life-long pal Paper nevertheless came to Rock's defense.
"Sure, I may have covered up for Rock a few times," he said while standing next to his friend. "But I'm telling you, he has always been there for me. Always steady. Always strong."
"He is like...like a...he's like a...oh, what's the word?"
Scissors, while stepping in to comfort her friend Paper, was quick to agree.
"It's true. Rock really knows how to squeeze the most out of life. He just knows how to hold it all together."
The three friends then said their own personal good-byes away from the microphones and cameras. But before leaving, one last question was shouted to the retiring luminary.
"Hey Rock, what's next?"
The answer was instantaneous.
"I'm going to finally return some phone calls and emails," Rock said. "Starting with the Minnesota Vikings."
"I'm curious to find out what they could possibly want."