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04/19/2007


NFL Scouting Combine: The Beefcake will not be Televised

Tombrady2_8

The NFL Scouting Combine will no longer be televising the shirtless weigh-ins, FOX Sports Reports:

Tombrady3_5"'There was concern from current NFL players that the participants would be more comfortable if they were not paraded around without their shirts on,' combine director Jeff Foster said Saturday. 'It was an entirely appropriate suggestion. The weigh-ins should never have been televised.' Foster didn't know which players lodged the complaint, but it's believed to have come from NFL Player Association representatives who attend the Combine for union matters. Foster said any drills that would potentially involve a shirtless player also are off-limits to NFL Network, which has exclusive television rights to the Combine...There are modesty issues as well. A photo of Tom Brady wearing only gray gym shorts from the 2000 Combine was shown during the NFL Network telecast of December's regular-season finale between New England and the New York Giants. 'I am so happy they didn't videotape my Combine,' NFL Network announcer and former wide receiver Cris Collinsworth said as Combine footage of Brady aired."

Tombrady4_4Last week, Outsports noted that Michael Silver of Yahoo Sports "describes the whole spectacle as kind of creepy, with apparent straight, older men ogling young male flesh like other guys do to the waitresses at Hooters." And sports blog Deadspin said "The NFL Combine has always creeped us out."

Basically it's a reaction to the icky homosexual subtext underneath it all. Go figure. The thought of men admiring other men for purely physical reasons is something that professional sports can't seem to handle, no matter what the context. Although, overseas, top players in professional sports have no problem courting the attention and even financially gaining from the physical objectification. In fact, it has spawned cottage industries, particularly with the French rugby team who seem to have no problem shedding every article of clothing for the Dieux du Stade calendars.

So, the plan is, the combine meat market will go on, it just won't be televised. Deadspin notes: "We would like to remind everyone that the NFL Draft Combine is yet another vivid reminder that the NFL does not measure success by heart, or guts, or grit. They measure it, simply, by meat."

NFL Network won't show shirtless players [fox sports]

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Grizzly Adams Celebrates Beards and Bears at the Super Bowl

Beard

Anybody catch the segment yesterday in the NFL Super Bowl countdown celebrating the beards/bears of the New England Patriots and hosted by none other than Grizzly Adams?

The segment, heralded by trumpets, is amusingly tongue-in-cheek but thoroughly built for bear lovers. The Griz narrated an analysis of "five guys who embody" what a beard means: "The unified facial front of the Patriots offensive line."

Beard1 Beard2

Left tackle Matt Light was compared to Matthew McConaughey. Said Light: "We don't get scared. That's part of a beard." Left guard Logan Mankins' beard was compared to Merlin Olson's. Said Mankins: "It's got a lot of girth on it right now, so...it's a pretty good beard."

Beard3 Beard4

Center Dan Koppen was dubbed the "resident redbeard". Tom Brady said "he looks like he got kidnapped by an Amish family." Right guard Stephen Neal's beard was compared to that of businessman, governor, senator, and civil war general Ambrose Burnside.

Beard5 Beard6

Right tackle Nick Kaczur was told he looked like Abraham Lincoln. Said Kaczur: "I don't really like having upper lip hair really."

Then they launched into Brady. "There was a time when Tom Brady was one of those guys, a time when he wore the robust badge of courage along with his brothers in the trenches. But oh how times have changed.

Said Light: He's actually sported some upper lip plumage over the years. Added Koppen: "He needs to, sort of cover up the butt on his chin that he has, but Tom's one of those guys he's the best dressed person in America, or the world. I don't think us five can sway his personality."

Finally, Grizzly Adams concludes: "The beard. It's become an unbreakable bond of solidarity."

Of course it has. Just ask the guys attending Bear Week in Provincetown, where there's no doubt also plenty of talk about male bonding, girth, butts on chins, and brothers in the trenches.

Here's the clip. Enjoy:


Giants Hand Patriots Stunning 17-14 Super Bowl Upset

Manning

So Tom Brady's not perfect. Mama's boy Eli Manning took the New York Giants to a 17-14 upset win over the New England Patriots, sending the undefeated Tom Brady to Boston defeated.

BradyGiants co-owner John Mara called it the "greatest victory in the history of this franchise" and it certainly was a stunning upset:

"Manning connected with Plaxico Burress for the winning touchdown, a 13-yard pass with 35 seconds remaining in the game. Manning drove the Giants 83 yards in just over two minutes after the Patriots had marched down the field to take a 14-10 lead. Manning was named the Super Bowl most valuable player a year after his older brother Peyton won the same award for the Indianapolis Colts. It was, fittingly, a brutal sack of Brady by Jay Alford with 20 seconds remaining that all but ended the Patriots’ final chance of saving their unblemished record. Brady heaved the ball nearly 80 yards in the air in a desperation shot to reach Randy Moss with 10 seconds left, but the fourth-down pass fell to the ground."

Here are a few pre-game moments — Paula Abdul's taped performance of "Dance Like There's No Tomorrow" and American Idol Jordin Sparks singing the national anthem.

John Travolta flew his own plane in to the Super Bowl and managed to get a chat in with Seacrest before the game:

Travolta

Said Travolta: "I'm a New York boy and I like the Giants except I did choose the Patriots 34, Giants 24. I want a good game. I think you got the best team vs the hottest team and we will all hope for the best game possible, because I come to the Super Bowl for a Good Game."

No doubt Travolta was pleased that the hottest team won.

Photographer Paolo Pellegrin took a look inside the Giants locker room for the New York Times.

Giants1 Giants2

Players pictured here are Plaxico Burress, wide receiver; a reporter; and Zak DeOssie, linebacker (left) and Reuben Droughns, running back; David Tyree, wide receiver (right). Click to enlarge.

Citing rules that restrict favoritism, FOX declined to run any candidate ads during the Super Bowl but Barack Obama found a way to get in on the Super Bowl Sunday right before Super Tuesday.

The Obama campaign made a local ad buy in 20 Super Tuesday states to run this ad.

Hillary Clinton watched the Super Bowl at a Sports Bar in Minneapolis, where she was campaigning, the AP reports:

"When New York scored the go-ahead touchdown with 35 seconds remaining, Clinton leaped up and high-fived some young people standing near. 'That was unbelievable,' she said. 'Oh my gosh.' Filing out of the room after the game, Clinton gushed to reporters. 'I'm so excited, I'm thrilled,' said Clinton. 'It was a fabulous game.'"

There was no major "Snickers-style" controversy in the Super Bowl ads this year. AfterElton felt the two ads above were slightly homophobic. The Prison Break ad, because the bisexual character was tackled, and the Bridgestone ad, because Richard Simmons is targeted by a reckless driver.

Although I see their point, I don't feel as strongly. I think Richard Simmons is viewed as more of an annoyance by most than as a gay person, and that's why he was used here, although there is that stereotypically 'flamboyant' element to his character. But I do feel the Bridgestone ad could have appealed to a wider audience had the driver targeted Ann Coulter. Just sayin.

I was a bit disturbed by the Amp Energy ad with its car battery nipple clamps, however. Don't try this at home.

View all the Super Bowl ads here.


Tom Brady to Get Buzzed Before Super Bowl

Brady

Tom Brady has a stylist on call named Pini Swissa who plans to have at him before the Super Bowl:

"Swissa, who operates the creatively titled Salon Pini Swissa on Newbury St., is in Arizona this week to cheer on the Patriots as they tangle with the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLII. He's also brought his barber shears and said he plans to give Brady a close crop Saturday evening before the big game. In fact, Swissa says he's on call in the Grand Canyon State. He's already trimmed Brady's locks once this week and said teammates will phone him with a time and location for another Brady haircut on Saturday. 'I did Tom Brady (Tuesday), and right before the Super Bowl, it's a surprise for everybody. Saturday night, I'm gonna cut it off. Saturday night, we're gonna cut it really, really off. We've been doing it the last couple Super Bowls, and Tom Brady is the last person to be superstitious. Every Super Bowl, I cut his hair off. I hope the helmet's gonna fit after I cut his hair off.'"

Pini should give him a 'boyzilian' while he's at it.

By the way, we have a little Super Bowl poll going on over in the right hand column.

(via deadspin)

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Towleroad Guide to the Tube #237

TOM BRADY: Gets a marriage proposal on Super Bowl media day.

SARAH SILVERMAN: Silverman and Damon get revenge on Jimmy Kimmel.

ROMNEY'S LAYOFF CACKLE: Some people, like Mitt Romney, laugh when it's inappropriate.

STATE OF THE UNIONS: Jeanne Moos looks into Washington relationships.

Check out our previous guides to the Tube here


News: Asteroid, Dennis Quaid, Bullying, Oprah, Chile, Pope

road.jpg Pope's New York itinerary released.

Oprah_sarcophagusroad.jpg Remember the sculptor who created the Dead Prince Harry? Behold his latest work, the Oprah Sarcophagus.

road.jpg Nearly 500 same-sex couples in the Czech Republic have registered their partnerships since it became legal in July 2006: "... legal registered partnerships were concluded by 353 homosexual male and 134 female couples. In 43 cases, one of the partners was a foreigner, especially from Slovakia, but also Azerbaijan, Taiwan, Israel, Mexico, Kazakhstan, Armenia, the Netherlands, the USA and Canada. Homosexual couples were prosecuted in the former Czechoslovakia until 1961. The law on registered partnership of same sex couples was passed by the Czech Chamber of Deputies in March 2006 when the Chamber overrode President Vaclav Klaus's veto by a narrow majority."

road.jpg Bello men's fashion magazine to launch online tomorrow.

road.jpg Australian chicken restaurant entrepreneur pleads 'not guilty' to murdering his gay partner: "Gerurdas Gerrit Heijne, 44, appeared in Stirling Gardens Magistrates Court via videolink from Hakea Prison. His partner of more than 20 years, Frank Cianciosi, was found dead in the apartment on January 4, but police have not revealed how he died. Mr Heijne did not apply for bail."

Bradyroad.jpg The Brady Bunch: Results of a Patriots QB look-alike contest.

road.jpg Obama's rebuttal to Bush's State of the Union address breaks YouTube records: "By Tuesday afternoon, 'Barack Obama's response to Bush's final State of the Union' was the most watched clip in the world, drawing a over 300,000 views in under 20 hours. The public has shown overwhelming and sustained interest in hearing from Obama directly. This is the third Obama video to shoot into YouTube's top three in the past 10 days -- past clips of naked celebrities and Scientology rants -- and the first video that was shot specifically for web viewers, rather than broadcasting documentary footage of a speech."

road.jpg Inside the sex diaries of John Maynard Keynes.

road.jpg Madonna becoming workout cyborg.

Antihomophobiaroad.jpg Anti-homophobia campaign launched in Australia: "Sergeant Scott Davis from the Police Gay and Lesbian Advisory Unit says police want people to speak up, and send a message to perpetrators that their actions will not be tolerated. The posters will be displayed throughout metropolitan Victoria and in all Victorian police stations."

road.jpg T-shirt companies refuse to munch on Gay Bigfoot's banana.

road.jpg Transgender student denied dorm room because he has not yet undergone sexual reassignment surgery: "Osborn was denied a male dorm room because, while his driver's license shows him as male and he is undergoing hormone treatment, he has not had gender reassignment surgery to complete the transition. Osborn and Walton contend that it should not be a requirement to undergo costly medical procedures if one is unable or unwilling to do so in order for the university to recognize Osborn as a "real" transgender person."

road.jpg Dennis Quaid joins cast of GI Joe.

road.jpg Gay Chilean website is actually aligned with homophobic Evangelical fundamentalists?

Asteroidroad.jpg Asteroid coasts by Earth, just outside the orbit of the Moon: "Were TU24 to have struck land, it might have caused a magnitude seven earthquake and left a city-sized crater."

road.jpg Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) in Britain to launch new guidance on homophobic bullying: "The new guidance recommends that if a pupil makes persistent remarks, they should be removed from the classroom and staff should talk in detail about why such language is unacceptable. Similarly, in severe circumstances, schools should consider permanent exclusion for physical bullying. Much more needs to be done to prevent such bullying in the first place. Stonewall and Each advise encouraging positive role models. But Sue Sanders, co-chair of Schools Out, which campaigns against homophobia in education, says a big problem is that teachers find it hard to be out themselves. 'The government and local authorities need to celebrate the existence of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teachers,' she says. 'If teachers don't feel safe to be out, how the hell will our kids?'"


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