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May 21, 2007 | by  | in Opinion |
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If Sports Were Band T-shirts

If sports were band T-shirts, you wouldn’t be too surprised to see those ragamuffins up Cuba Street sporting the latest in handball gears, or the hottest print-on-black lawn bowls get up. That’s because this week’s column is dedicated to sports that are so incredibly indie and alternative, that pretentious scarf-wearers would be clouding up your MDIA 205 tutorial with discussing them rather than, say, The Decemberists (not that there’s anything wrong with The Decemberists at all, right me hearties?).

The opening set is dedicated to the much maligned sport of table tennis. Mocked for its dinky little paddles and penchant for rampant nerdery, it has seemingly found a niche here in Godzone, with our own national table tennis side, the Black Bats, in the midst of preparing for the Commonwealth championships in June. Success-wise, our paddle-friendly ping-pongers haven’t enjoyed much, with a fourth place in the women’s doubles at the Commonwealth Games being the only blip on the radar. None the less, the team that has been assembled is a nice mix of youth and experience, a concoction described by Table Tennis New Zealand as being “strong”. It won’t be long ‘til we see how strong we are at the pong, am I wrong?

The crowd’s more-or-less fizzing by now, so what better time than now to introduce the aged squires of desire – New Zealand’s lawn bowls team. Bowls New Zealand’s website is perhaps the fanciest of the three I sampled, and it certainly has the results to back it up. New Zealand has enjoyed a notable bounty of success in bowls over the years, despite being drawn with Australia for this year’s world team championship. According to the fancy-smancy site, “The World Teams Cup is a new event on the world circuit, incorporating men’s and women’s teams from the leading countries and is played in sets and on indoor surfaces for television audiences.” This is a bold step for the sport, but innovation breeds exclamation. Needless to say that if the New Zealand team doesn’t enter the arena to its own theme music and pyrotechnics, I’ll be severely disappointed.

Rowdiness and drunken euphoria has rendered the crowd a hapless mess, and dare I say it, it’s the perfect time to wheel out tonight’s main set. It may be regarded in many circles as something so ridiculous that it resembles more a primary school disco than a sport, but that’s not to say the sport of handball should be treated with any less enthusiasm. Regardless of the fact that the web site hasn’t been updated in over a year, and that it also includes a rather amusing ‘Handball music video’, there appears to be a real attempt to turn this maddening melee into something resembling the makings of a legitimate sport. The excitement is palpable – as is the riot billowing through the crowd right now. This gig’s a disaster. I swear to God, you sports better have enjoyed this exposure, because it could be a while before we see you on stage again.

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About the Author ()

Kia ora, biography box, kia ora.

Comments (13)

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  1. Ted says:

    I think you’re talking about the wrong type of handball you fuckin tool. You should come to handball training and give it a go before you decide to bag it. I bet you have never played sport in your life and in fact you are an emo muso. If you played handball you would hit the hard wooden floor faster than The Rolling Stones hit the music charts.

  2. mick oliver says:

    I bet u think you’re smart too!!! I read some of your articles and they are shit IMAO!!!!!

  3. Ted, why are you so angry?

  4. Jackson says:

    Ted’s probably angry because of you, and the fact that mick is not up to play with all the acronyms that all the cool kids use… (it is L M A O – laughing my ass off – not I M A O, which I can only assume means Inserting Muffins Anally Often)

    CHILL Ted… take it easy, maybe have a Scotch… its just a shitty article written by someone with a very limited knowledge of… well … umm… anything at all. Handball is pretty sweet. Not as good as handjobs, but well you win some you loose some.

  5. Jimmy says:

    Exactly – it was clearly tongue-and-cheek, nothing TOO scathing, and certainly nothing to get on your rag about.

    I’ve played a bit of handball myself, and I’ve seen guys roll with punches more devastating than this. Lighten up, Ted.

  6. Clay says:

    Man, I had some cornflakes just before, they weren’t that good!!

  7. Michael Oliver says:

    Oh me, oh my
    I love my little country pie

  8. Michael Oliver says:

    guys can’t we all just get along

    you can keep playing your bizzare netball-with-soccer-goals sport that’s really big in, what, estonia or whatever, and I can continue appearing on the same page as the women’s issues column (good read, by the way)

    maybe one day we’ll be able to shake hands and balls and declare peace in our time.

    c’mon jackson give us a smooch heh heh hehhh

  9. Jackson says:

    I will regretfully decline on that generous offer Michael. Unfortunetly I associate the name Michael to my priest when I was a child, he said the same thing…

  10. Michael Oliver says:

    You are so channelling David Strassman right now Jackson, it’s truly… er…endearing.

  11. Michael Oliver says:

    counting my money, driving my money truck

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