No Kobe. No Calvin. No Colorado. We've had enough of those stories.
But the Sex Desk at Page 2 is the hub for global news on sex and sports; while other news outlets cut back on international coverage, we enhanced it, spanning this big blue ball from Norway to New Zealand, Canada to Croatia, Illinois to Italy, Charlotte to Czechoslovakia.
Someone's got to do it.
To get you, um, in the mood, a few quotes. Note that Murphy Brown is a fictional character.
"It's kind of like a trip to Disneyland. You get so excited about a ride on the Matterhorn, and then when it's over, you realize you wasted all that time in line for a minute and a half upside down and the chance to throw up."
"The cable TV sex channels don't expand our horizons, don't make us better people, and don't come in clearly enough."
"Is sex dirty? Only if it's done right."
Hmmm. Wonder how Sergeant Joe Friday would handle this one
Has anyone seen Maradona's missing penis? That's what Argentina's police are asking. No, this isn't another John Wayne Bobbitt episode. They're looking for a plastic model of unknown length and girth that the former soccer star filled with clean urine to pass his drug tests when he played in Italy.
Terrell Owens and Jeff Garcia, back in happier days.
"Like my boy tells me: If it looks like a rat and smells like a rat, by golly, it is a rat."
--Eagles WR Terrell Owens, to a Playboy query about whether he thought former teammate/Browns QB Jeff Garcia is gay.
"It is really a waste of my time to sit here and to have to answer to such ridiculous, untrue comments that are made out there in the world today. So many people know my situation here. It has never been a secret."
"I didn't say that he was gay. Like I said, the conversation and interview was loose and from my knowledge I'm not sure if Jeff is gay or not."
"No real driver would take an additional twice 400 grams of extra weight along in the car ... She's not a pro, she has no experience. If she gets into a crash, her breasts might burst."
"The rabbi asked us what our purpose was."
"It was purely sex for money, money for sex, sex for money, money for sex."
The "piece" is owned by a Buenos Aires museum and disappeared on a traveling soccer memorabilia exhibition. (One U.K. newspaper dubbed it "the wandering willy.")
"We're confident we can sniff it out," said a police spokesman, but we've yet to receive news that it's been recovered.
Yeah, those Erectile Dysfunction ads work wonders
New Media Strategies reports that 57 percent of "254 likely Super Bowl viewers " said they'd be "more likely" to have sex after seeing "this year's slew of sexed-up Super bowl ads ... and three E.D. promos." Six percent said they'd only get it on if their team wins, and another six percent said drunken gluttony would keep them from coupling. New Media Strategies CEO Pete Snyder said, "Advertising works ... almost too well. It is very clear that most Americans have more on their mind than football at this time of year."
It's that kind of insight that gets you to the top.
Manna for George Carlin ...
A recent game program for the Oakland Catholic High School (Pittsburgh, Pa.) basketball team included an ad for a company that provides (gulp) exotic dancers, male or female, for your next party.
The ad, reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, was on page 50 of the program, put together by parents to raise money for the team.
"Oh, my," Father Lengwin, a spokesman for the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh, said when reporter Ron Cook explained all the details in an almost-fruitless effort to get an official response. "That kind of ad is contrary to everything we stand for. It goes against our academic mission and educational purpose."
A new market for Questec?
In response to an increasing number of billboards touting Missouri's porn shops and strip clubs, the Show-Me state's senate passed a bill defining nudity as "any bare exposure of the skin located on a person's body below the armpits and above the knees." And banned such nudity from billboards.
As the Kansas City Star notes, "That's the entire strike zone, baseball fans!"
Well, they're good, so they don't have to "reflect"
It's not just the national pastime in China. It's so big there it's called "national ball." It's table tennis, and the Chinese national team took a hit when four potential Olympians were suspended for "dating." One male player and three female players were sent back home to "carry out deep reflection."
But what's up with that one male and three females? Our beating hearts first suspected some kind of wild after-practice action, but the unbalanced numbers had only to do with double standards. Seems that some of the daters actually had long-term relationships, and, as a matter of practicality, an official said, "We let the more important person (in the couples) stay because they have the heavier burdens and responsibilities."
Who will thrive in 2005?
We're now part of the pantheon. There's Playboy's Playmate of the Year. Sports Illustrated's swimsuit cover girl. And Page 2's hottest female athlete. If you're not aware of the deep tradition, dating back almost to the turn of the century, you should review our 2002 winner (with pics, of course), Anna Kournikova; 2003 winner Jennie Finch, in a landslide; and in 2004, former Philadelphia Charge star Heather Mitts. And in 2005? Our money's on Franziska van Almsick. She's more than a great swimmer ...
Maybe if we TiVo the couch, we'll remember
Hallmark, in an apparent effort to create some new theme cards, surveyed Canadians and found that 12 percent of couples have sex while watching hockey on the tube.
|OK, she's no longer Page 2's hottest female athlete. Heck, she's not really much of an athlete anymore. But ESPN Motion cameras tracked Anna Kournikova earlier this year.
• Anna K's Day, Part 1
• Anna K's Day, Part 2
But some of the fans were so distracted they couldn't even answer the nooky question on the survey with a simple yes or no.
"Interestingly, about 10 percent (of those couples) were probably so wrapped up in the play that they were not sure if they'd actually made love or not while the hockey game was on," said a Hallmark mouthpiece.
Mark Roberts crushed by Janet's breast
The famous serial streaker executed his perfect plan flawlessly, getting onto the Reliant Stadium field just before Super Bowl XXXVIII's second-half kickoff and dancing almost naked ... and almost nobody noticed.
"The guy was lining up to take the kick. He just looked totally confused," Roberts told the (UK) Scotsman.
"I was there, naked, apart from a plastic American football over my nether regions held on with Sellotape, doing a Riverdance in the middle of the Super Bowl, and nobody was coming after me.
"The two teams were looking at each other, trying to work out what was going on, so I started to Moonwalk.
"Then I started doing crazy body poses -- and that's when the whole of the Houston police department came chasing on the field."
Roberts also expressed disappointment about the halftime "wardrobe malfunction" that preceded his performance. Janet Jackson "took my thunder," he said. "If she hadn't done that, I would have been front-page material."
Hands-on coaching? Multiple orgasms? Sign us up
Gymbox in London (where "anything goes") now offers a regime called "The Shag Workout," which, reports Ananova.com, is designed to "increase the frequency, intensity and quality" of customers' orgasms.
The Tantric-based workouts are said to build endurance, improve technique, and boost confidence, and have been so successful that some clients have reached orgasm at the gym. "Once inhibitions have been lowered and specific muscles targeted, 25 percent of women participants in the test classes have reported experiencing the elusive and much-sought-after multiple orgasm for the first time in their lives," said a Gymbox spokesperson.
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The creator of the workout added, "There is now a proven, embarrassment-free way to improve your sex life through hands-on coaching."
Playboy's twist on bowling: the designated distracter
If you're one of the few who thinks lingerie football is totally hot, your money might be better invested in Playboy TV, which now offers its imaginatively titled "Naked Sports" program every weekend.
Among the sports: darts, pool, golf, bowling, basketball and football.
The March issue of Playboy details the rules, including this unique add to bowling. "In Playboy TV's version of the sport, naked bowlers are encouraged to think up inventive ways to distract opponents. You try picking up a difficult spare when your opponent is flashing you, grabbing your butt or blowing in your ear. Actually, don't."
Lingerie Bowl falls flat, but bounces back
Rest easy, sports fans. The Lingerie Bowl will be back in 2005, bigger than ever, because now it's the "Lingerie Football League." It's a unique format which skips the entire regular season and goes straight to the playoffs (maybe the NHL should try this?). "Garter & Lace Championship Sunday," on January 30, will be a doubleheader: the Chicago Bliss vs. the New York Euphoria for the East title and the Los Angeles Temptation vs. the Dallas Desire for the West title. It all leads up to the big game, what the LFL calls "The Ultimate Catfight," on February 6.
And what's in store? The Fridge and LT are likely to be prowling the sidelines again as celeb coaches. And, according to the company that stages the PPV event, "The uniforms are a lot sexier. The bottoms and tops are skimpier, and the shoulder pads are smaller."
Good move. As the Cablefax newsletter notes about the 2004 Lingerie Bowl, "Ironically, for $19.95 viewers got less nudity than the competing broadcast fare."
Last year Horizon Productions predicted that 1.5 million fans would shell out $19.95 to watch the PPV event; the actual number of viewers was probably closer to 100,000, according to industry pubs.
Yet, it keeps getting bigger and bigger ... there's been talk of a reality show based on behind-the-scenes league action (lots of talk on that, no action), and of a video game with players you can piece together yourself.
Streakers in Madden 2006?
A table soccer game in England, Subbuteo, doesn't have any fancy computer graphics, but you can't say the game's creators aren't trying to be realistic. Among the new offerings: a female streaker and a male streaker (each sold separately). The Web site's description: "A great addition to any Subbuteo match. Use your streaker to disrupt play and stop your opponent from scoring that winning goal. This set comes with 1 female streaker, 1 female Police officer and a set of rules."
What are the odds?
David Beckham's rumored extramarital sex life, front-page material all over the UK, is barely (no pun intended) noticed stateside. Here's the skinny: Rebecca Loos, his wife Posh's former personal assistant, told the rags (for money, of course) all about her affair with Becks. Both Beckham and the sourest Spice Girl have denied all, but Loos says she knows about bodily marks that only an intimate would know about.
In traditional British sporting style, after this revelation gamblers could lay odds on what, exactly, she knew. "Mole on his bum" bought 5-1 odds. "Left boot here" tattooed on his left foot returned 100 pounds on a 1-pound bet. We're still awaiting results.
Jeff Merron has been compiling his annual "Sex and Sports" since 2000.