It’s the godawful holiday season, which means it’s time once again for me to enjoy complaining bitterly about the sexist nature of sport. When the Olympics rolls around in a couple of months I’ll get to really tear into this, but until then:
It’s no newsflash that nobody watches women’s sports on TV unless the “sport” involves premenstrual nymphet children in sparkle makeup and crack-crawler leotards. But that’s not even what I’m complaining about today. Check out this eye-bleedingly dull report on County Girls Basketball from the Wabash Plain Dealer. Don’t bother trying to read it; the tedium will melt your face. Just scan for the names of the teams.
That’s right. Here it is a week before 2006, years after the 19th Amendment and the Pill and Title IX, and the default gender for a sports team is still Heterosexual Male. It is still of paramount importance that everybody know it.
Here’s what’s goin down in good old Wabash: The Lady Squires. The Lady Knights. The Lady Apaches*. The Lady Norsemen.
Lady Norsemen! I’m not even kidding!
Why don’t they just get it over with and call’em the Lady Dudes? The Ineffectual Boring Lady Dudes?
They’ve got quite a few lady dudes playing basketball in Wabash. There appears to be some anxiety in the community that hapless sports fans might omit to remember at all times that these teenagers have female reproductive organs the virtue of which has never been encroached upon by any of the non-lady Norsemen. This community anxiety over the femininity of its young females is mitigated by appending the word “lady” to the name of the virile boys’ team. This reassures everybody of the girls’ status as auxiliary athletes and as human beings of secondary importance.
That’s because “lady” is a term for a woman whose pussy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of her family or her community or her cult. It is what patriarchy calls a dainty non-male without personal sovereignty.
Based on this Lady Norsemen model, the sane person would expect at least one boys’ team in Wabash called The Gentleman Norsewomen. But this is America, and few sane people are left.
The boys’ teams, it will interest you to know, are not called The Gentleman Norsewomen. I know this because I read another article in the Wabash Plain Dealer, one which preceded in importance the article about the girls because it is about boys. Through this article I discovered that the golden male sportifs in the Wabash Metropolitan Area are just generic Squires and Knights, with no references, explicit or implied, to their purity, daintiness, or reproductive organs. I also learned that chroniclers of high schools sports refer to boy athletes by their last names, whereas girl athletes are called “Miss Demure Heterosexual.”
Boy athletes celebrate their love of patriarchy through emulation of white male supremacy. Their sports teams are named for groups of men-only organizations from days of yore commonly believed to have exhibited valor and heroism in some political or warlike capacity discharged while defending patriarchy. Knights, for example, were pillagers who flitted about the countryside oppressing the peasantry with clubs. The squires were the knights’ butt-boys. To a teenage American male basketball player, this apparently represents the pinnacle of human achievement.
I realize that sport venerates patriarchy, so in addition to The Gentleman Norsewomen, here are some high school boys’ team names I came up with that could balance out the Lady Norsemen. I draw, naturally, for inspiration on some of the historical roles for women as beloved and celebrated by patriarchy as are the knights and squires.
The Slutty Male Hos
The Virgin Dude Brides
The Raped Slavewomen
The Straight Guy Airbrushed Supermodels
The Obedient Male Secretaries
The Well-Hung Trophy Wives
The Non-Lady Kidnaped Squaws
The Teen “Male Lesbian Schoolgirl Prostitutes
The Dandy Church Ladies
The Pussywhipped Suffragettes
The Gentleman Manicurists
*”Apaches” as a team name is an odd exception. There is nothing in the word “Apache” that suggests, as do other team names, “white male racist.” One assumes, in fact, that actual Apaches come in all the usual sexes and genders, so a girl’s team could easily be called just plain old “Apaches” without causing uncomfortable gender-bending complications. But in Wabash, as in most of North America, Indian women are so invisible it is entirely forgotten that they exist. The default Apache, in Wabash, is a dude.