“On Sports,” Daniel Clowes, Twentieth Century Eightball. Copyright Daniel Clowes; all rights reserved.
Awesomeness: I’m now a contributing blogger to the content-rich (but seemingly glitch-ridden) blog portal, True/Slant.
My page is HERE.
My first post, “Jocko Homo: How Gay is the Super Bowl?,” a Queer Theory-for-the-Straight-Eye take on the super bowl, jock culture, and Masculinity in America, is now up. Drop by and nail a comment to the wall, if you’re so inclined. (The more comments I get, the more link love and re-Tweets I get, the more marquee play I’ll get on the front page, I assume.)
NUT GRAF FOR THE ATTENTION-DEFICIT DEMOGRAPHIC:
Our long national nightmare is over. By “nightmare,” I mean the drumroll of breathless speculation, ESPN stat porn, and news-anchor joshing about who’s going to be whose daddy that culminates in that Great Event in the History of Our Times, the Super Bowl. By “our,” I mean those millions of Americans who would rather undergo a trans-orbital leucotomy with an icepick than the protracted brain death of pre-game hype, when our cultural conversation is pre-empted by a live feed from the jock unconscious of Team America.
It may come as Piss Christ blasphemy to many, but there are those of us who Truly Do Not Give A Flaming Fuck who finished last in the league in rushing the ball or who led the league in defending tight ends or who had a hot flash during red-zone play-action passes (although that does sound provocative, now that you mention it).
Not that anyone asked us. During the run-up to Super Bowl Sunday, anchorclones, talkshow hosts, politicians, and the rest of the chattering class act as if we’re one big happy congregation gathered in solemn veneration of the Gipper’s jockstrap, displayed in a monstrance. It’s the sheer presumptuousness of the sports-crazed majority that galls the unbeliever most—an obliviousness to the possibility, even, that not everyone shares the One True Faith. It’s the same genial arrogance that makes evangelical Christians so monumentally irritating to those of us who prefer a good exfoliating body scrub to being Washed in the Blood of the lamb. (The religious reference is apt: in our national religion, sports is one aspect of the Holy Trinity, the other two being the Free Market—whose invisible hand, like God’s, moves in mysterious ways, but always for the betterment of all—and Christianity, which in the American vernacular is a bizarre amalgam of self-help pep talk, Left Behind doomsaying, and theocratic fascism). From the gridiron metaphors in your pastor’s sermon to the scripted locker-room banter of local TV newsdudes, joshing about who’s gonna open a can of whupass on who, to the Fantasy Games geek at the office watercooler maundering on about who “had six touchdowns and no interceptions in 12 pass attempts this season, posting a 124.3 passer rating, while outside of the red zone his rating on play-action was only 79.7 and his five touchdowns have to be measured, after all, against nine interceptions”(actual ESPN quote), the assumption that every red-blooded American—or at least every red-blooded American guy who isn’t a wussy—would give his Truck Nutz for Superbowl tickets is as unconsidered as it is ubiquitous.
Image found on the Web; copyright holder unknown.