No, not the NFL, the AFL! And no, not the league where the Patron Saint went deep way before the Sex Cannon. We’re talking about the league where the men wear super-tight tops, ball-hugger shorts, absolutely no pads, and ram the absolute shit out of each other all for the pleasure of gorgeous Sheilas like this:
The 2015 season starts in full this weekend! Yes, one game has already been played, but no one counts the Thursday Night game here anyway and neither should you.
The rules are pretty simple. It’s basically a modern-day version of Smear The (um, what’s the 2015 acceptable PC version of this? PFTCommenter would know…) except when you get close to the opponents’ end, you score if you can get your ball in the middle of large upright poles. If you get it completely in the middle, you get a goal worth 6 points. If you get it in between the outside poles and the middle poles, you get a behind (yes, that’s what they call it) and 1 point. Oh, and if you happen to have the ball hit the actual pole, you either get the behind or nothing.
The game consists of 4 quarters of 20 minutes each. The game stoppages are called Quarter Time, Half Time, Three Quarter Time, and Full Time. Imagine five things better than Pheeel Simms trying to say Three Quarter Time. YOU CAN’T!
One of the best aspects of Aussie Rules (as the locals and pretentious Americans call it) is that, if the ball goes out of bounds, there is no possession decision. The ref merely says “Fuck it” and tosses the ball in the air behind his back and lets them have at it.
The NFL should really think about incorporating this. I guarantee Belichick has this in his back pocket and is just waiting for your mom to get off him to pitch it to the Competition Committee.
But, I’ve saved the best for last. The reason why everyone should get on board with the AFL is this: It’s the perfect sport to watch drunk. It looks like it’s mostly disorganized mayhem and the collisions are breathtaking.
Compared to the NFL, I mean, come on! The other reason why it’s perfect to watch drunk is the time difference. Game times start late into Friday/Saturday nights and early Saturday/Sunday mornings depending on your US time zone. At those times, people are either in bars getting drunk or at home getting drunk. Either way, this is the perfect thing to have on while you’re drinking yourself pretty.
In the US, Fox Soccer Plus carries the games and any decent bar will have that channel. If you’re drinking at home, you can get a whole season of streaming for $139 USD through the AFL’s website and app. If you’re lucky enough, like Why Eagles Why, to actually live in Australia, you can watch the games on Rex Ryan’s favorite channel, Fox Footy.
The favorite this year is once again the Hawthorn Hawks, who are the Seattle Seahawks of the AFL except their coach believes in running with the ball and that jet fuel can melt steel. They are the two-time defending champs and this week (In Round 1, as they call it) they take on my team, the Geelong Cats. I have chosen them based on the fact that they have a team history similar to the Steelers and I’m probably one of those Steelers fans you hate that doesn’t live in Pittsburgh.
Also, try and tell me this isn’t the sweetest-looking jersey you’ve ever laid your eyes on:
Here are this week’s matchups:
Carlton 11.12 (78) Richmond 15.15 (105)
Melbourne v Gold Coast Suns
Sydney Swans v Essendon
Brisbane Lions v Collingwood
Western Bulldogs v West Coast Eagles
St Kilda v GWS Giants
Adelaide Crows v North Melbourne
Fremantle v Port Adelaide
Hawthorn v Geelong Cats
One more thing: St. Kilda may be lucky to win a game this year. If any of you Raiders, Jags, Browns, or Bucs fans want a team you can relate to, this is it
See you at the bar!