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Sep 20 2005

Twisty Eye For The Sporty Lie

Sports news, I am sorry to say, has a way of slipping right past me. It shouldn’t, because sport in Western culture pretty much exists to reaffirm the dearest principles of patriarchy, and you know how irritated I get when that happens. But the sports section is the one I roll up to hit giant cockroaches with, so I am always the last to know when it turns out that Grand Slam tennis tournaments pay women less in prize money than men.

That’s right. I just found out that the US Open and the Australian Open pay equally, but the French Open won’t take on the outlandishly radical challenges of pay equity until next year, and you can forget Wimbledon, which is inextricably mired in Renaissance-era pay scales. In 2000 fucking 5!

Tennis players at this level are all pretty much on easy street, and I’m not losing any sleep over what may potentially deprive this year’s female French Open winner of a new Birkin bag, but paying her less than a guy with a dick is pure fucktardery.

And you know what else? OK, this is going to sound fairly loony coming from an inhabitant of the homeland of professional bike-ridin’ rock star datin’ doper cancer patient Lance Armstrong, but look, not everybody in Austin has a bike growing out of their ass. OK? So I just found out that the Tour de France is a dude-only dealio. Not only that, but my research indicates that there is no women’s bicycle race of commensurate prestige. How fucking bogus is that?

Here is a condensed version of my views on these matters.

8 comments

  1. Sam

    Again you get me with the LOL bordering on the ROTFLMAO. Terrific condensed version.

    I’m a bicyclist and a Swede-ophile of Norwegian descent, and while I don’t know much about prestige, I know there’s a Swedish Cycling Association that puts on the world’s largest all woman race called the Tjejtrampet. About 8000 women go a distance of 100 km in Stockholm each May. I will bike in this race one day, oh yes, even if I can’t afford it for Spring 2006 like I was deliriously and half-bakedly planning.

  2. Xavier Harkonnen

    It’s stupid that anyone gets millions for playing a game. However, millions of people pay to see certain people play games. Supply and demand. I bet the same reasoning goes into paying women less for a given sport, since womens’ sports have notoriously fewer paying fans. If that does not apply to these tennis events, then I retract my comment and share your incredulity.

  3. norbizness

    Well, the women DO only play the best out of 3 sets, whereas the men play best out of 5 sets. So I encourage Wimbledon to stand its noble ground, load up some strawberries and cream in a big tank, and discharge this national foodstuff with a fire hose if any so-called “anti-patriachy” protestors get within 100 yards of the All-England Tennis Club.

    And no offense to anybody not already offended, but I am not overly enamored of urban cyclists in Austin in full I’m-playing-dress-up-in-some-Spandex-shit-from-Run-Tex gear. Please take your shit to the country where I don’t have to witness it.

  4. ae

    [Coveting screensaver.]

  5. Veronica

    Here’s a little news on a related topic — in this land of the rising sun, women’s professional golf tournaments get more corporate sponsers than the men’s, which translates to more prize money for women than men. 2 years ago, the highest ranking male made less money than the 3rd ranked female!
    Apparently, this is because of the surge in cute, teenage golfers getting higher rankings, more people(mostly men) are either tuning in or showing up to watch the womens tournaments.
    I’m not sure how I feel about this, though. I like the idea that women are getting paid more, but these women are still being treated as sexual objects of sorts.

  6. Twisty

    Please take your shit to the country where I don’t have to witness it.

    If by “the country” you mean “Siberia,” I’m all for it. The hill country is already crawling with’em.

    I like the idea that women are getting paid more, but these women are still being treated as sexual objects of sorts.

    “Of sorts”? It sounds to me like the genuine unadulterated article. The only time women ever make any money in this world is when they submissively solicit boners.

  7. Steph

    Professional sports (and most amateur sports associations that feed into them) are patriarchy with spandex and they suck.

    Let’s see: beach volleyball–guys where shorts, women wear almost nothing, because the TV people said that’s the way it’s supposed to be (seriously, that’s how it made it into the Olympics)

    Gymnastics–teenage girls are weighed and must remain thin and pre-pubescent to look right while they’re twisting around.

    Women’s hockey–most pro’s work at Home Depot to pay the bills because there’s no money in it for them.

    And of course there’s the fact that sport can’t be fun anymore–it’s all about being a pro instead of kicking around a ball.

    And I heart the special message. I imagined it as a public service announcement at a commercial break during Monday Night Football.

  8. jenofiniquity

    appreciating the screensaver…and the music!

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