FEB. 19, 2007
Hmmmm … wouldn’t it be great if someone invented a sport that combined sex and violence and speed … and maybe the fakeness of reality TV? How American would that be? More American than pro wrestling? Way. Pro wrestling has its pageantry, no doubt, and it’s practically oozing homoeroticism, but the Greeks beat us to it by a few thousand years – along with Democracy, bathing, pedophilia, and catapults (those things fake German Volkswagen engineers use to pimp rides). Ancient Greeks didn’t just work out at the gym, they invented it. Damn those Greeks. They also make a nice salad dressing. In fact, they probably invented salads – or at the very least tossing salads. Like Americans, the Greeks were very fond of oil. They even coated their wrestlers with it, which must have created epidermal sheen not unlike that of modern American pro wrestlers, who glisten with the patina of some unwholesome artificial lubricant. No doubt about it, oil is hot, especially when slathered over nubile young women in bikinis. American oil wrestling is sexy, but not particularly violent, and the wrestlers seem to be more interested in prolonging the match interminably, which probably brings home more gold than actually bringing home the gold. Plus, as much as we’d like to call it our own, the fact is that the Turks have been oil wrestling for centuries, and just because watching a couple of muscled greasy Turks snake their hands up each other’s leather shorts doesn’t put the lead in your pencil doesn’t mean it isn’t a legitimate sport. Legitimate? Yes. American? Maybe not-so-yes. So what does that leave us? Apparently Roller Derby, especially since not even a svelte James Caan could kickstart the sport of Rollerball, no matter how intelligent a sport it was. Roller Derby, on the other hand, has it all. You have your sex (aided and abetted by overtly theatrical costuming), your violence (people moving that fast are bound to get hurt at some point, especially when they have to run the gauntlet of “spankers alley”), your fakeness (if they were really going at it, you’d have to sweep up the teeth with a push broom, and toothless chicks are only sexy in the abstract or a very dark room), and lastly, your speed, without which no sport can truly be called American (think about it, what is more American than NASCAR – a sport watched primarily by the prime demographic for methamphetamines?). So, while you may recoil at the thought of watching a bunch of trampy, tattooed, curvy chicks skating around in circles pulling one anothers’ hair, kicking, punching, and clawing their way to victory, remember, it’s the American way – at least until someone figures out how to slather them in oil. This Saturday, you can see an unoiled Lonestar Rollergirls match between the Putas Del Fuego (whores of fire?) and the Cherry Bombs in the classy confines of the Austin Convention Center. Or maybe you just want to continue riding around on your high horse.