I do not follow sports. Amateur, professional, it doesn’t matter ‘cuz I don’t follow them. I never did. The closest I ever got to following sports is with MMA. I love the UFC.
The English football club Arsenal was the talk of the Twitter-town a few weeks ago and I thought, as I always do when I hear their name: What a great fucking name for a sports club! It’s the kind of name that makes me want to watch football just so I can root for them. Go Arsenal! I’d wear the jersey and everything. Paint the club name on my car, too. They’re named after a cabinet full of guns! Cannons, bombs, black powder kegs!
“Don’t open that cabinet!”
“Why not? What’s inside?”
“It’s an arsenal!”
“Aaaaaiiiiggh! We’re gonna die!”
It’s a way better name than anything America has come up with in sports. Especially in baseball. The name Arsenal is way tougher than “The Cubs” or “White Sox.” Really? There’s a team called the White Sox? What the fuck do they do? Play with laundry? They’re going to whack a ball of laundry into a field and you’re not going to be able to get it out because there are too many weeds? That’s a tougher team than ARSENAL? Arsenal will take your weedy field and burn it up with hot lead artillery! Well sure, they’re two different sports, but isn’t it the tradition to have a tough-sounding team name? I mean, when you win you talk about clobbering, assassinating and annihilating the opponent, but it’s hard to use that imagery when it’s the Wizards beating Magic. Wizards don’t *beat* magic, they utilize magic. They utilize magic to defeat thieves and clerics. But there’s no basketball team called The Clerics. They’ve got the Celtics, but that’s not the same thing. And some say it’s mispronounced. But a team that’s named after a stockpile of death — we’re going to put them against the Sox? We have a sports club named after destructive weapons, and they’re going to fight today. They’re going to fight a really bad-ass team. A team called Sox. Guns vs. Sox. Are you shitting me? Guns shoot through socks. If you’re on a team called the Sox, you’re going to wish you were named The Bullet Proof Vests! And then there’s a SECOND American baseball team named after socks. The Red Sox! You can’t wash the white sox with the red sox or you’ll get pink sox. Everybody knows that.
Jazz? That’s the name of a basketball team? The Jazz is supposed to strike fear in my heart? I just think of Bill Cosby in an ugly sweater doing one of his stupid dances. Jazz beats the Nets. How? With a saxophone? Did Jazz seduce the Nets, have their way with them and then dunk baskets while the Nets slept off the shame?
If you really want to sound tough, name your team Full Blown AIDS. “In local sports, Full Blown AIDS took the life of the Cowboys.” Poor Cowboys. You’d feel bad about it if they lost. It was a real shame too. They had a fighting spirit and a lot of heart. But sometimes there would be good news like when the Buccaneers beat AIDS. Yay! The Buccaneers won their battle against Full Blown AIDS! Must’ve been all of those limes they ate!
Now Manchester United is a tough-sounding club. Masculine and strong. Having United in their name makes ’em seem like they’re a force to be reckoned with, like a goddamn country or a continent! “In business news today Manchester United gained 2.1% against the dollar.” WTF?! 2.1%? That’s pretty good. Manchester United sounds like something Cesar Chavez came up with after eating a shepherd’s pie! Huell Howser’s there, standing in front of the framed, gilded, bronze plaque; The sculpture depicting Cesar Chavez strolling down Brooklyn Avenue in Los Angeles, working to unite the migrant field workers — well, yes — he came up with the name Manchester United! Manchester sounds like it’s a bad-ass quarry in the middle of Asskickshire and you don’t wanna fuck with those sods or they’ll bash you with a slab of granite. The Mighty Ducks? Fuck the what? What are the ducks going to do? Flap their wings and nibble at your fingers until you feed them grain? I think I’ve got a quarter — where’s that damned grain dispenser?
But it’s not all muscles and back sweat with these European football clubs. There are a lot of pansy names across the pond as well. Daisy Hill? Isn’t that where Snoopy was born? Crystal Palace? Dorking? Lordswood? Longwell Green Sports? Ringwood Rangers? Team Bath? You’re gonna soak in your fragrant bubbles instead of competing in a soccer match? Calgon, take you away!
[c] 2009 Russ of America
PS: No actual slight is intended to the teams I have slighted. Please don’t hurt me.
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