Girljock Stuff

Knee Drama
January 16, 2008, 11:33 pm
Filed under: Media

In the 1953 film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes Marilyn Monroe sings “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend” but as a soccer player I’ve often thought fondly of legs. I like them more than sparkly expensive rocks. Even my own legs can still walk all over the place, play a little soccer, make it through an aerobics class or two, and attempt to do some yoga. I may never be stretchy like a dancer but the world already has a lot of stretchy dancers. While I can still get out and play soccer with the guys, the latest reincarnation of the sports carpet wonder astroturf has been giving me a new set of aches and pains, and this time its a bit in my right knee and my hamstrings. I recently read an article saying that someone wrote a computer program that will interpret or translate the barking of dogs. Well I’ve got my own barking dogs that need some translation, I’m talking about my legs. I could use a computer program to translate my knee and leg aches into some common sense, but that hasn’t been released yet.

One of my old friends called and told me she was playing some fun soccer this weekend and she suddenly, when no-one was even trying to tackle her twisted her knee in an odd place and it made a funny sound, she fell over like a suddenly floppy rag doll, and now has trouble walking. The next day the doctor told her either its a torn cartilage or a bone bruise. She’s having trouble straightening her leg. This Sunday she’ll be deep inside the MRI chamber, while they have a good look into what really is going on there under the kneecap.

Exercise is supposed to be good for us and make us feel better, stronger, and more peaceful. Yet after my friend’s story, I started to wonder if there is some mysterious amount of soccer games each of our bodies will allow us to play. If that is so, I will happily go back and then add up how many games I’ve ever played to see if I’m close to the magic number. I really don’t want to have to excuse myself from playing due to some career ending injury. Yet I know the odds are good that at some point most women soccer players get an ankle or a knee injury. I have started to feel more like perhaps I am an addicted gambler stuck in my own soccer rut since I’ve had two serious sprains on my right ankle (so bad the doctors have warned me that the next time I will require surgery) and I have sprained both my right and left knees. I have a plastic fake ankle I’m supposed to wear when I play. I almost never wear it though. How many more close calls will I get?
My first right knee sprain was bad enough that I quit playing soccer for five years. However like a moth to the flame I could not stay away forever and I returned again. The sport is exciting, you get to run all over the place, its a lot of exercise condensed into just a few hours, and its mesmerizing. Plus I missed the camaraderie with the players.

Perhaps I should either get a special sweatshirt made that says: “Over the Hill Player, Handle with Care”, or else get out all my calendars and count the number of games I’ve ever played. Either way I have to wonder how much longer I can get away with still playing the sport that makes me ache as much as it actually does. Today my right knee is throbbing, and both hamstrings are on fire. I already wear the largest sized shin guards that are available, if I wear a bigger size they will cover my actual knees. While I used to , as a younger person, train hard to play on the best of teams, that has all changed. My personal challenge is never winning or losing, it is just walking off the field. And just last Sunday, my friend didn’t get to do that.

It makes me wonder when should we throw in the towel? Do we wait till the sport makes us say Uncle and we have to pay a lot of money to some surgeon to fix us up and put the body parts all back in place? Or will I just wake up one day and know how lucky I’ve been to have had all those great times playing on all the grass covered fields out under the sun and rain? Will I just magically know when to say “enough” or will the game itself spit me out like well chewed tobacco?


Hot Cowboy Love
February 3, 2006, 4:36 am
Filed under: Media

by Ann Harrison

Me and my fellow cowgirls are waiting for the rain to stop here in California so we can trial ride without our horses getting swallowed up in evil, black mud. We thought we’d kill a little time one afternoon by taking in the new cowboy romance movie, “Brokeback Mountain.”

As the rest of the nation surely knows by now, this is a doomed gay love story featuring a couple of hard body cowboys named Jack and Ennis. Our heroes ride through some fine Wyoming rangeland en route to their sheepherding job up on the mountain. We get some classic cowboy erotica as they share whiskey by the fire and Jack sneaks furtive glances at Ennis washing his privates.

Our cowgirl crew was hollering “hell yes!” when Ennis finally has the sense to snuggle down with Jack one cold night and our man Jack spits into his palm to create that all purpose cowboy lubricant.

“I aint queer,” says Ennis. “Me neither,” says Jack. Oh heck no fellas you’re just doing what comes naturally after a day in the saddle. Pass the biscuits.

After all the moaning and grabbing and some hot post-sex wrestling and cigarette smoking, Jack and Ennis get caught by the rancher who is of course pissed that his cowboys are stemming the rose instead of guarding his sheep. “You guys sure found a way to make time pass up there,” says boss man.

Jack wants to run off together and start ranching with Ennis. But sadly that’s just not to be in Signal, Wyoming in 1963.

The real disappointment comes in when Ennis’s wife Alma starts getting all weepy on us because she just Doesn’t Understand that cowboy love is a Force Of Nature. We want to watch Alma get stuffed and mounted under the stars too, but no. No scenic cowgirl longing in this movie.

We do get to see Jack’s wife, Lureen do some barrel racing suitably impressing Jack who ride bulls on the rodeo circuit. Lureen’s a fine little rodeo queen and good to go in the backseat. But she is diminished by a bad bleach job and gets all caught up in her work at the office. Happens to the best cowgirls.

Poor Jack cruises the rodeo bars and the rent boys in Mexico but just can’t get Ennis out on the trail enough to satisfy. “I’m not you,” he tells Ennis through his tears one morning. “I can’t make it on a few high altitude fucks a year.”

Well praise the Lord Jack, we understand. Us cowgirls would have watched those sheep for you and kept your womenfolk happy while you and Ennis ride off into the sunset. Let’s make the world safe for hot cowboy love.

Poo on Your Shoe?
January 27, 2006, 7:08 am
Filed under: outdoors

It’s one thing when a girl has to knock mud off the bottom of her cleats, but what do you do when you accidentally step in something a little stickier, I mean stinkier? We aren’t the only mammals to enjoy running in grassy fields. When grass gets taller, more than just earthworms hide between the blades. A guide to cleaning poo from your shoes:

1. Do not try to de-poo your shoe indoors. Reduce contact between the shoe and your indoor environment. You may need to remove the shoe immediately. You may also need to remove the other shoe. If indoors, take the shoes outside. Check for any skidmarks.

2. Do not lift your shoe to ask, “Does this smell like poo, to you?” Your friends won’t help you.
3. Quickly determine the full area of poo exposure. If you have gotten a squish up your sock or on pants or sweats, don’t panic. We’ll get right to that in a minute. First we must address the poo on your shoe.

4. Get a stick. Knock off the big bits. Wipe the shoe in the grass. Tap your foot in a puddle.

5. Try the mud-dilution technique. If there is sticky good mud around you can step in the clean mud, and it will help pull the poo out of the grooves in your shoe. Good sticky mud can be a true dirt vacuum cleaner, and suck the poo out.

6. The extremely large leaf trick. This again should only be tried with very large leaves. You can do a wipe maneuver with your hand, then discard the soiled leaf.

7. Sidewalk curbs offer free rectangular public space, where you can do a footsole slap and slide move. This can shake out quite a bit of clogged poo.

8. Beware the double shoe slap. This well known technique is great for freeing mud or leaves or grass from your shoes, but the energy released in the slap of one shoesole on another can send many small objects flying. The last thing any of us want is to release a flying poo bomb.

9. Head for the garden hose. Place your upturned shoe or shoes in an area where a little released poo won’t do much damage. It is really just fertilizer, fresh, scented, something animals contribute back to the environment. Perhaps a flowerbed or some other dirty area. Make a really strong spray with the hose, and wash away the poo.

10. Poo does thankfully wash away. Soon the only bit left will be the memory. Unless you got some on your clothes as well. If you got it on your clothes, perhaps you should remove them and worship again at the temple of the garden hose. Do be sure and put something else on after you remove the offending garments and before you spray, unless you live someplace tropical.

The thing about stepping in crap, is that unless you have recently done it, you never think about it. Luckily human brains are blessed by both the ability to remember and the ability to forget. Usually I do not think about dog poo. However a few short hours ago I stepped in a vicious pile of dog feces. The smell crept up all the way from shoe to nose. I considered whether an underground animal had exploded a supersonic fart, then did my own shoe check. My check led to a large-scale shoe excavation, and then I had to write this story. In putting down these words, I forgot the smell. It’s gone, and I’m safe, until the next time.

If you have a suggestion to add, please send it in!

The Advil Tango
December 30, 2005, 3:01 am
Filed under: sports equipment

Advil is not just a pill to women athletes, it is equipment. Search the bag of any woman athlete and you will find a bottle or a few pills, tucked away for some future moment of dire need. Whether it gets used for cramps or bangs or strains, it is part of the basic women’s sports toolkit. Coaches buy the really big bottles and put them in their ball bags, they bring them to practices along side the water bottles and bandaids. A few months ago the doctors told me I was different than other women I knew. I had become allergic to advil. The little pill was no longer my friend, in fact, it would only hurt me worse and worse, and I was to stop taking it.

My main doctor, who is a good 10 years younger than I am, was not pleased that I am allergic, because that means there are a whole class of drugs (including aleve) that she can’t give me. It was a pity, and she sounded like she hoped it was not really true.

“Advil’s just the best thing for menstrual cramps,” she told me, “I don’t know what I would do without it.”

She’s a card carrying member of the Advil club, as you can see. She loves advil so much, I have decided to give her a new name. A name that celebrates her world view. Ready? She is Doctor “Advil.” For a brief moment I wondered if I was going to either have to change my lifestyle or go crazy in a world without advil.

Thats when I remembered my life before advil had ever come along. There was an entire world without advil. I know it because Advil only came on the market after I was in my twenties. That seems like it was in the dark ages, and I really couldn’t remember the details of how i lived, so I grabbed my old journals from them and searched deep for what I used to do. I came up with some interesting alternatives I’d like to share them with any of you who are younger than I am. If it turns out you are also allergic, you will know what your options are.

1. Tylenol. Doctor “Advil” doesn’t think this drug works well for menstrual cramps. It does! It cuts the pain by at least half, and that is good enough for starters. I have made it through the last two periods only taking 3 small tylenols per day of cramps.

2. Heating pads. Good old fashioned heating pads actually help relax the cramping area.

3. Don’t force yourself to do stuff. If you have cramps and feel nasty, take some time to yourself. Get selfish. Take the afternoon off. Relax.

4. Eat chocolate if you want to. I think this can help with cramps, but I’m not sure why.

5. Swearing. This is a very important alternative. If you are in pain, show it! Cuss a little. Try and be creative and use word combinations you have never used. Take a bit of a your favorite swear word, and mix it into say, your grandfather’s favorite swear word. The challenge will help you to forget why you are cussing in the first place, and if you are really lucky, you will make yourself laugh. Laughter in turn helps the cramps to go away.

I can’t just write about swearing without having to sign off and cuss a little. See you all soon.

Hello world!
December 14, 2005, 7:34 am
Filed under: Media

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