Friday, February 19, 2010

I'm not gay, but my column is

Chicago Sun-Times ports columnist Rick Morrissey should just come clean and confront the issues he has with how he sees other males sometimes. In his column on Friday, Feb. 19, he once again wrote hundreds and hundreds of words which left left the reader wondering, "huh?" at its end. And, once again, he showed that he has some issues with what he sees as a lack of masculinity in male athletes sometimes.

The column this time around started off innocently enough, as he praised Chicago-area native Evan Lysacek for winning the gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics the night previous. But he couldn't simply congratulate Lysacek for his gold and get on with it. He had to attack the man's sport, as well as the effeminate nature of some who participate in it and watch it.

In discussing the matchup between Lysacek and the Russian who came in a very close second to him, Morrissey noted that, "Thursday wasn't an arms race. It was style vs. might." He added, "There's a raging battle in figure skating between the people who want athletic jumps to be rewarded more and those who think artistry should be recognized more. Some want higher and faster. Some want more chiffon."

"Chiffon." He was just getting started, though.

"I don't presume to speak for all men, but I will say that many of us would enjoy the sport more if one's vertical leap were valued over the spangled piping on one's pants."

A little uncomfortable watching the figure skating, are we?

But wait, there's more.

"Here's an added bonus, football fans. Lysacek managed to look halfway OK in his outfit."

"Football fans"? Why should anyway give a rat's ass what "football fans" think of figure skaters? Do people who like, say, hockey, worry about what those who like tennis think of their sport, for instance? That's almost like saying, "Here's an added bonus, steak eaters. The salad is halfway OK." It makes no sense at all and there is no reason to draw such an analogy.

Are you steamed, yet, readers? No? Well, what about this, then?

"This is sport as envisioned by college theater majors."

Attention theater majors, theater professionals, and theater schools: The offices of the Sun-Times are at 350 N. Orleans St., if you need to find it for your protests. It's in a building called the Apparel Center, which is next to the Merchandise Mart -- you know the place, where dozens, if not hundreds, of interior designers, kitchen and bath places, tile, rug, antique and decorative glass wholesalers work out of. It is also the home of an art and design school, as well as a couple high falutin tea and coffee shoppes. It's a really gay place -- wonder how comfortable Rick feels working there.

He then wrote, about the outfits, "I also know that there was a skater wearing a tuxedo with spangles (he fell) and another dressed like a swashbuckler (down went Errol Flynn!).

The Czech Republic's Tomas Verner, in a rhinestone-studded vest, skated to the music from ''The Godfather,'' bringing to mind what Luca Brasi said to Don Corleone: ''And may their first child be a masculine child.''

I know! He cannot help but write about the figure skaters' costumes, but he qualifies his comments by saying, more or less, that these skaters are soooo gay.

There's more: "Jeremy Abbott of the United States smacked the ice hard while attempting a quadruple toe loop, but at least he tried. However, points should be taken off for the blue satin shirt buttoned to the top.

Why doesn't somebody break out and wear something different? Jeans and a T-shirt. Muscle shirts. Anything."

So, let me get this straight (ahem) here -- Rick Morrissey seems to be saying, in this pointless column, in effect, that "figure skating is so gay. It kind of makes me feel a little gay, which I don't like. Maybe if I just could root for figure skaters to fall down and snickered about their outfits and wished they wore more masculine clothes, I wouldn't feel so uncomfortably gay."

Mind you, this is the same guy who addressed the "scandal" that was a few of the Chicago Blackhawks players being photographed shirtless in a limo in Vancouver earlier this season by saying the thing he had the problem with wasn't that they were caught with their shirts off, literally, but that they looked like they belonged in a boyband, and not a hockey team. Morrissey wrote that he wants his hockey players to be hairy and have chipped and missing teeth and look like smelly mouth-breathing types, and not like young, smooth, wrinkle-less, doe-eyed boys that he ... well, I don't want to go all the way there, but why would he criticize hockey players for looking good with their shirts off if it didn't make him uncomfortable with the way in which he saw these men?

And, let it be noted that when he was with the Chicago Tribune, he spent a column-worth of prime newspaper space commenting on how he did not care for Chicago Bull Kirk Hinrich's very plain haircut.

Morrissey ended Friday's column by writing, about men's figure skating, "after (flamboyant figure skater Johnny) Weir, (Lysacek) looked like a wing-tipped businessman in a sleek, dark outfit. Maybe there's hope yet for this sport."

There may be hope yet for this sport, but not for Rick Morrissey.

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