A Tale of Sound and Fury . . . Signifying ???
Not long ago, the male host of a local rock music radio station ("Elliot in the Morning" on DC 101) engaged in a little trash talking about the Mystics, claiming that he and his studio crew could beat the Mystics -- a team of professional female basketball players. Typical trash talk by guys. Very stereotypical. How many Sunday morning male duffers think they can outdrive Annika Sorenstam? Lots, unfortunately. How many really can? Excuse us while we roll on the floor laughing.
So how did the Mystics respond? Well, Alana Beard got on the line and started a little trash-talking of her own. To make a long story short, the Styx decided to play the radio guys and the game was held this morning at Comcast Center. To the surprise of no one who's actually seen the WNBA, the Mystics destroyed the testosterone radio jocks, 83-23.
At the end of the first quarter, the score was 21-4; the Mystics shut out the guys in the second quarter, heading into halftime with a 42-4 lead. After 3 periods, 60-12. And it wasn't even the "real" Mystics who were playing, as Nikki Blue (who'd just flown in from her overseas team yesterday) was the only player on the court from last year's Mystics. The rest of the team were Mystics wannabees, mostly the young kids fresh out of college competing for the limited open spots on the roster. So what does that prove? That college and professional female athletes can thoroughly destroy a bunch of guys (plus their one token female reserve) who make their living sitting on their butts talking into a microphone? Yes, it does prove that. Otherwise, what does it prove? Well, nothing, really.
The BasketCases are torn about all this. On one hand, the Mystics got a lot of free positive publicity from the radio station this morning, as the game was broadcast live. Not to mention all the trash talking from both camps leading up to the game. So if you subscribe to the theory that any publicity is good publicity, then this was a major publicity plus for the Mystics.
But we also believe that women professional athletes owe nothing to trash-talking guys. They have no obligation to prove themselves better than a bunch of couch-potato men. In fact, it doesn't matter whether they are or they aren't better; they don't compete against male professionals. And the fantasy that some men have that they can beat women at a sport that the women play professionally is just that, a male fantasy. We wonder if it isn't a bit demeaning for women professional athletes even to dignify macho trash-talkers by actually playing them in a game.