School’s almost out and outdoor summer fun is in. So pay closer attention to parks and playgrounds the next time you drive to the store. These public places of recreation are usually as empty as the seats at Comerica Park. If you do see young people, they’re standing around on corners and moving so infrequently the neighbors worry these teens are permanently frozen and might affect property values. Times have changed, and outdoor physical activity doesn’t seem to occur unless it’s precisely organized by adults for adults and/or allows for opportunities to buy new “equipment.”
For an illustration, consider the $339 Worth PST Powder Shell 2001 (www.bats-softball.com) made with vanadium. According to Worth, U.S. Defense Department technology involving metallic compounds was the source of this advancement in bat production. But maybe you can’t accept softball as the alternative to baseball and long for the good ol’ days of Tiger Stadium. Visit the all-around cool site about the ruins of Detroit, www.detroityes.com, to see a fine photo of the urinals in the men’s room.
Basketball seems like a simple game with few opportunities for commercialization, because supposedly only a rim and a ball are necessary to play. That’s not the case, though. First, consider the shoes; everybody always wants new basketball shoes. Next time you need a fix for new kicks, forget Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan, go back to one of the pioneers of hoops creativity and funk: Dr. J. At www.eastbay.com, get a pair of Converse Dr. J Classic high-tops for $39.99. If they don’t heal your game, then maybe you need a dose of Vertical Blast 2000 (www.verticalblast.com). Only $39 for a bottle of creatine-based serum that guarantees “Rapid Vertical Jumping Ability!” If you still can’t jump high enough, get a pair of Plyometric Training Shoes ($124.99 at www.eastbay.com) which are regular basketball shoes with what appear to be springlike devices on the bottom. I’m not sure how or why, but there’s clearly a connection between jump height and penis length. There’s got to be.
It’s kinda funny that the most “outdoorsy” of summer sports occurs at golf courses that have been built to look just like regular nature with the bad parts eliminated. (You don’t really think grass looks that green by itself, do you?) Since, on the golf course, all golfers tend to look alike (poorly dressed, white and male), we sometimes need clues to figure out a player’s personality. The reasoning isn’t exactly clear, but golfers place their woods, not their irons, in covers. A lot can be read from a player’s choice of golf club covers. A variety of stuffed-animal covers can be found at www.wonderfullywacky.com for $12.95 each. People with dogs or birds on their clubs simply shouldn’t be trusted due to their very uncreative ways (needing to appear cute). But if you see a duffer with old white tube socks (and colored stripes) slung over his woods, you’ve spotted one tough son of a bitch.
The next time you get stuck in a place (doctor’s office, Dad’s car, etc.) where you’re forced to listen to “oldies” music, or the next time you’re stopped at a light right in front of a pseudo-A&W joint’s parking lot filled with classic cars (and don’t think it won’t happen, buster, because as a matter fact I think I hear the terrifying sounds of Beach Boys music, and it ain’t Pet Sounds, rapidly approaching), think about how warm-weather car fun has drastically lost speed. Baby-vroomers once drag raced on Woodward Avenue; today, we inch down Jefferson Avenue or Seven Mile Road. We still love cars; there’s just no socially acceptable, legal place to drive really fast. So we just leave it to the professionals at the Michigan International Speedway. Stock car racing is something you need to see at least once. At what other sporting event do you get to bring your own beer into the arena? NASCAR races are like a cross between a Grateful Dead show and a hoedown, with way too many males and way too few minorities. Still, give it a try Sunday, June 10 (the Kmart 400) or Sunday, Aug. 19 (the Pepsi 400) — tickets are available at www.michiganinternationalspeedway.com.What grabs your attention? E-mail [email protected]