Really Rucking Funny: Best Manlove Video of 2011 (SFW)

This clip by Irish comedy outfit Dead Cat Bounce called ‘Rugby’ has to be my favourite video of 2011. Even if it strongly suggests that, in Ireland at least, my work here is done and it’s well past time to retire to the touch-lines. There’s much to admire here: the lightness of touch, the hilarious blend of the accurate and the absurd; the joshing, bantering, boyish affection — both for rugby and manlove. I even like the tune. But I find myself especially mesmerised by the lead […]

The Press Still Love-Hates ‘Twinkletoes’ Ronaldo So

Cristiano Ronaldo’s latest fashion foible, painted toe-nails has provoked the usual bitchy, mocking response that is attached to anything Ronaldo in the Anglo media. Despite – or perhaps because of – the way they seem to regard him as a sure-fire way of selling newspapers. The announcement of the birth of his son by a surrogate mother last week also presented another opportunity to give him a good kicking. Some, like Celia Walden in The Telegraph, really going overboard in the expression of their tainted, […]

Fight Club: How Gay is MMA?

Mark Simpson attends an epic UFC event and finds himself turned on to the charms of ‘gay porn for straight men’ (Originally appeared in Out magazine, June 2008) IMAGINE THE SPACE SHUTTLE taking off with a really fat customized exhaust pipe. Or Visigoths sacking Ancient Rome with kicking bass tubes fitted to their 4-by-4s. Or 20,000 supercharged male orgasms. Simultaneously. And you have some idea what it sounds and feels like in Montreal’s famous Bell Centre tonight for Ultimate Fighting Championship 83, as a spunky […]

We Loved You Really, Ronaldo

By Mark Simpson (collected in Metrosexy) Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the best footballers ever to play in this country – and one of the best looking – brought out the worst in the English. He prickled you see, our ugly, mean-minded, spiteful, spitting jealousy. We were jealous of his talent, his looks, his body, his youth, his money and most of all of his total lack of interest in what the English media and terrace culture thought of him and his dress sense and the […]

Sporno on Steroids

Now that’s what I call pushing back. Taking the sporno trend to parts it hasn’t yet reached – and what parts! – while spreading the famous French ‘pro’ tartiness of the Dieux du Stade calendars to these shores, the latest ad campaign for Powerade’s ‘InnerGear’ isotonic sports drink features several UK pro rugger buggers in the buff snapped by the photographer Alan Clarke. Including, most spectacularly, most spherically, England Rugby Union Captain Steve Borthwick (above), keeping his spornographic end up for the Queen.  And nicely […]

Why The Sun Can’t Leave Ronaldo’s Legs Alone

Britain’s best-selling newspaper The Sun has been working itself into a confused lather about our metrosexual footballers, again. Like me, it just can’t leave them alone. In a long, hand-wringing – and graphically illustrated – article spread over the centre pages last Friday headlined ‘Preen Team’ they ask ‘What the hell is going on with our footballers?’ Led by the Premier League’s arch-metrosexual Cristiano Ronaldo, football has this summer gone camper than a row of tents. This week Ronaldo continued his holiday tour by hanging […]

Naked Rugger Buggers Buggering About

The New Zealand and South African Rugby teams made the news this week with their nude rugby match on St Kilda beach. (UPDATE: In fact, the NY Daily News story cited here appears to have got a little over excited: the players were NOT from the All Blacks and the Boks but local amateur players taking part in a mid-winter naked rugby tradition that has gone on for years – see Uroskin’s comment below and on his blog.) Held before their official match, and sponsored by ‘Bottom […]