Are our nation’s stadiums amplifying the work of a child molester and pornographer? Apparently they are. Gary Glitter, whose 1972 anthem “Rock and Roll Part 2” is a sports-arena staple, is about to go on trial in England for producing and possessing a collection of child porn. He was arrested last year after the hard drive he brought in for repairs was found to be loaded with lurid images of young kids. Glitter also faces various charges of indecent assault and serious sexual offenses involving a young girl— possibly as young as eight. (Glitter’s lawyers have vigorously protested his innocence.)
None of this, however, has stopped any professional sports team from keeping his song as part of their regular rotation. As a matter of fact, not one organization we contacted (including the NFL and NHL offices) was aware of Glitter’s alleged criminal conduct, and most didn’t even know the tune until it was sung for them (it’s better known as the “Hey” song). According to an Islanders spokesperson, the song was used as recently as Saturday, but is being phased out, along with other songs, in favor of hipper, newer music. The Islanders wouldn’t comment on Glitter; instead the team requested that Jockbeat send articles about his arrest.
Devils and Jets representatives did not return our phone calls, but it seems there is at least one Meadowlands-based team that places a premium on family values. “Now that you’ve informed us, we won’t be playing it again,” said the Giants’ Rusty Hawley. “There are plenty of other options.”
For the Love of the Game
You won’t learn how to flatten your abdominals in Amy Love’s Real Sports, a new women’s sports magazine launched last week. For that alone Jockbeat is grateful . . . and pleasantly surprised— women’s sports magazines usually have as much to do with actual athletics as does Sports Illustrated‘s swimsuit issue.
Take Women’s Sports & Fitness. It once covered everything from international athletics to nonrevenue sports to Title IX updates. But WS&F became queen of the sellouts with its recent purchase by Condé Naste (and subsequent merger with CN’s fluffy Sports for Women title). This month’s issue hypes “The perfect 10 moves for your abs, arms, back, butt and legs” and has Gabrielle Reece pondering American women’s poor body image. (Note to Gabby: Check out the bod on WS&F‘s cover model. Now go figure it out.)
A women’s sports magazine from Sports Illustrated briefly surfaced a little while back, though we remain uneasy as to what that says about SI. Was it an unspoken acknowledgment that it’s specifically a men‘s sports magazine? Doesn’t really matter, since we haven’t seen an issue of Women/Sport in over a year now. It figures— in its second issue, the SI spin-off dropped most of its forced assertions of heterosexuality and seemed more on its way to covering actual contests and female sports issues.
“This market has been so painfully ignored for so long,” Real Sports namesake Amy Love tells Jockbeat. The magazine and accompanying Web site (www.loves-real-sports.com) attempt to remedy this void with helpful information on girls’ and women’s leagues, awesome action photography, and helpful advice to young jocks. It’s perhaps too young, though— the articles have the peppy, shallow feel of a teen magazine, and Love (who fought back after being kicked off a boy’s soccer team as a nine-year old) says she’ll steer clear of politics in its pages.
So the quest continues. In the meantime, you won’t catch us anywhere near a gym without the latest from WS&F: “play sports with grace, agility . . . and a hint of mascara.”
The Quotable Archie Moore
Former light-heavyweight champion Archie Moore died last week at 84 with a prolific fight legacy— 199 wins (145 KOs), 26 losses, eight draws. Moore’s two full pages in the Ring Record Book reek with colorful names of victims past, including Piano Mover Jones (1935), Pocahontas Kid (’36), Four H. Posey (’36), Dynamite Payne (’37), Sammy Slaughter (’37), Honeyboy Jones (’39), Shorty Hogue (’39), Big Boy Hogue (’43— related?), Battling Monroe (’44), Alabama Kid (’49), and Toxie Hall (’53). In his final bout in 1965, the Old Mongoose, as Moore was nicknamed, was 52 when he knocked out one Nap Mitchell, a man he’d flattened 20 years earlier.
Over his long career, the eminently quotable Moore regaled writers with an unfailingly unique perspective. To George Plimpton, on the vista of freeway trucks passing Moore’s living room: “What I like about this view is that it is always changing.” To Thomas Hauser, about Muhammad Ali’s brief training with Moore: “The boy needed a good spanking, but I wasn’t sure who could give it to him.” To Ira Berkow, explaining his own wife’s reaction to a freshly grown beard: “A girl doesn’t mind going through a little bush to get to a picnic.”
contributors: Frank Ruscitti, Joanna Cagan, John Stravinsky sports editor: Miles D. Seligman