Archive for ‘project: objectify’

June 24, 2009

Dear Marat Safin

Look at you. You’re awesome.

Why, then, must you make supporting you so hard? Seriously, yesterday’s match? What *woundikins* was that? (And Levine was brilliant, and I’m glad for him and all, but ffs)

April 4, 2009

Homesickness (or the Return of Project Objectify)

I miss cricket. I miss watching it at home, hearing other people’s radios talking about it, going out and seeing it as the default on restaurant TVs.

On Friday morning on my way to college the bus stopped at a red light near a school. Kids in blue and white uniforms were playing cricket in the grounds, and I noticed the man sitting in front of me watching and grinning. It was actually really tempting to grab his shoulder and demand to know why he was smiling and did he like cricket and did he play. I did none of these – it’s alarming to be grabbed by random strangers on the bus.

Lack of television, etc. have not blinded me, however, to something I noticed over the Christmas holidays while I was staying with family who did have TV.

J.P Duminy. Pretty.


Also, A.B de Villiers. I cannot imagine why I have paid such little attention to South African cricket.

(Edit: Blogger is still running on Delhi time, and I’m quite a few time zones behind it. I wrote this on the evening of the 4th!)

October 10, 2008

The Return of Project Objectify: Kevin Pietersen

I have walked right into a city of Liverpool fans (from my taxi driver at the airport down to random people in pubs) and this pleases me. But what with no television, a residence hall largely populated by American students, and, well, being in Ireland, I’ve been having minor cricket-withdrawal. Cricket-based manflesh is the obvious answer.

So here’s someone obvious for you to salivate over – the startlingly pretty Kevin Pietersen.

July 30, 2008

I fail at objectification

When Shreyas sent me this link this morning I was so amused at Yahoo’s ineptness at player identification…

…that I completely overlooked the state of the front of JT’s shorts.

June 19, 2008

Objectification of coaches

Shreyas thinks that Germany’s coach Joachim Low is amusing, with his generally glum face during matches. I agree. Kavita thinks Low is edible. I agree with this too.
If there’s one thing we learnt from tonight’s match it is that Low is pretty even through a double curtain of rain and dirty glass.
Admire him:

And as a special treat, Low and Donadoni.:

June 7, 2008

Some football

I realise I have been ignoring the French Open on this blog – possibly because I outdid myself at Wimbledon. But Euro 2008 has just started, and this is an entirely good thing. Tonight I watched Portugal v Turkey with the family. Mum was appreciative of a number of young Portugese players (particularly Nuno Gomes. I’m not sure why; only once have mum and I shared a crush on a sportsperson*), Dad was wholeheartedly abusing Turkey for failing to score, and I was gawking at the Turkish keeper, Volkan Demirel. Here’s why:

Certain excellent people have declared this Female Sexual Desire Week, and while I have utterly failed to take full advantage of it and use the time for sports objectification, others have. Purtek has a great post-Stanley Cup edition up. It pleases me. I hope it pleases you too.
Also, go and grin in a dazed fashion at the alarmingly gorgeous Roberto Donadoni. (Thanks, Ros)

*Jason Gillespie

May 7, 2008

How not to help women’s sports

Via Feministing, the WNBA has decided to market their players more effectively. This is necessary, of course, because women’s sports never do get the level of marketing or coverage that men’s sports do. So how are they doing this? They’re giving the players makeup and fashion tips.
The thing is, for me, it’s not just that women’s sports get less attention and air time (8%, someone quoted in the Feministing post said?), it’s what sort of coverage they get as well.
A year and a half ago, I wrote:

It gets worse when it comes to women’s sport. I was in England during Wimbledon this year, and even The Guardian felt that it was more important to talk about Maria Sharapova’s screams and grunts on court than her tennis. FIFA’s Sep Blatter said a couple of years ago that female footballers needed to wear sexier shorts, and every teenaged boy knows that the Australian women’s team once posed for a nude photograph – the only thing about women’s football that they know.

This is just more of that, isn’t it? If women want attention to be paid to women’s sports, they’re just going to have to be pretty and feminine. But then, of course, no one is actually paying attention to the women’s sports any more.

“You’re a woman first,” Brown said. “You just happen to play sports. They enjoy dressing up and trying on outfits, where back in the day, everyone just wore sweats.”

I’m reminded of this incident.

In the meantime, The Huffington Post reported that the passion fruit recipe had appeared under Mrs. McCain’s name in the Jan. 16 issue of The New York Sun, in an article that also included a recipe from Michelle Obama (apple cobbler) but not one from the spouse of the other Democratic presidential candidate. The article did include Hillary Rodham Clinton’s recipe for oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.

You’re a woman first. You just happen to play sports. You just happen to be a presidential candidate. You just happen to be at this convention. You’re a woman first. And this means (it has to mean) you like to wear make-up and pretty clothes. You are “mothers, daughters, sisters, nieces and entrepreneurs”. You bake cookies! You have breasts. Does anyone really believe this is helping?

Why do I do this? Because it’s fun and shallow and easy and I like looking at hot sweaty men? Well. Yeah. But there’s more.

April 25, 2008

Americans, Zebras and What I Learned From Sweet Valley High

I was going to write a flippant (hopefully funny) post about the IPL’s imported cheerleaders, and about cheerleading in general. But I’ve read far too many Funny Posts (and articles) about them now, and pretty much everyone who wrote one has come off sounding like an asshat.

U. Roy illustrates this in a Hindustan Times column about how cheerleaders should expect lewd remarks from crowds because of what they do (of course, he’s not “going down that dodgy route of ‘If you wear a mini-skirt in a dark alley expect the worst’ logic. He’s said he isn’t, so obviously he isn’t), how if the lewd remarks were in English the cheerleaders would feel complimented, and how amazing it is that a woman from Uzbekistan has actually been able to communicate her discomfort with said remarks.


As a youngling, one of my first moments-of-great-realization was had while reading Sweet Valley High # 70, Ms. Quarterback. In which Claire, who aspires to be on the football team, offers her opinion of cheerleading (unasked) to a cheerleader.

The disdain on Claire’s face was obvious. “Don’t you think being a cheerleader
is just a little bit sexist?” she blurted out. “After all, it’s just a bunch of
girls prancing around in cute little costumes….I think you’d do yourselves and
everyone else a lot more good if you played a sport instead of jumping around
and screaming.”

As awful as it is to base ones politics on bad teenage literature, this actually brought a lot of things together for me. I’ve always been a sports fan, and while this has meant occasionally being patronized by males who kindly attempted to educate me about sports (since I couldn’t possibly be as informed as them), it’s also meant that I’ve been taken more seriously for being interested in Important, Serious things. You know, sweaty men chasing a ball. Not frivolous things. Why does Claire wish the cheerleaders to play sports? Is it because sports will give them a better workout and be good for their health? I doubt this. My cultural references for what cheerleaders do are limited, but I’ve always had the impression fitness and decent gymnastic skills were a part of it. No, sports is serious business because it’s associated with boys. Regular readers of this blog know how I feel about this, and it’s why Project:Objectify exists. Men’s sports need to be taken less seriously and knocked off that pedestal, and I say this as someone who cries at great moments in sport.

(It amuses me that men’s sports tend to have far more frivolous, spectator-friendly add ons than women’s sports, simply because there are more spectators. Women’s sport is thus closer to pure sport than men’s.)

But. Cheerleaders are basically supposed to up the enthusiasm of the crowd, yes? Why on earth do we need them then? This is India and cricket – our problem isn’t a lack of crowd interest, it’s an excess of it. If any sport needed cheerleaders it was our national football league. A couple of years ago they obtained a troupe of Shiamak Davar trained cheerleaders called the ZeBras. Sadly, even the addition of scantily clad women couldn’t raise interest in the league, and the ZeBras don’t even merit a mention in the numerous articles about this new! American! feature in Indian sports.

And as a connoisseur of all that is Shiny in sport, and a caster of stern glances upon the patriarchy, all I can really do is demand glittery-thonged male cheerleaders for women’s cricket. It’s the least we can do.

(People who watch televised US sports, answer this because I don’t know – when cheerleaders are televised are there usually this many up-skirt/crotch shots? They’re all I seem to be seeing on a lot of the sports and news channels.)

January 22, 2008

7. Antonios Nikopolidis

Just. The pretty. I’m one of the fangirls who only discovered him during Euro 2004 (older fans regard us with some contempt). I also object to the widespread belief that he looks like George Clooney. It’s the hair, I suspect, and grey hair is a thing of beauty. But, more importantly. The Pretty!

January 18, 2008

In which the scope of Project: Objectify is widened

About a month ago, Swatie asked me why project:objectify limited itself to only sportspeople, when it would be equally efficient to objectify pretty much any famous attractive male. she had a point, of course, and I will soon be doing a special, politician-objectifying post. I do plan to stick to sportspersons though, mainly because there’s more raw material to work with (actors don’t count).

But women don’t necessarily need to be famous for an unnecessary emphasis to be placed on their looks in whatever career they choose. Most women aren’t. And while I am not likely to objectify men-who-aren’t-famous here (because why would any of you care?) it would be nice to know someone was doing it.

So my joy when Shreyas linked me to this knew no bounds.

Peter Burkill, a British Airways pilot, seems to have prevented a crash landing from turning into an utter disaster. This is good. But far more relevant is this, from his neighbour, one Valerie Firminger:

She said: “He’s absolutely gorgeous. He’s all you imagine an airline pilot to be. He’s very good looking, very calm.

I propose that Mrs Firminger be made an honourary member. Effective immediately.