The Badger has a secret, and like the face of an acne-ridden beauty queen, it has been concealed for many years. The Badger likes wrestling. There was a time when it was cool to like wrestling; the Badger does not remember exactly when this was, but people’s hair was higher, shirts were more flaming, and dungarees were hip and happening.
Nowadays, the Badger must hide this interest away from the general public, for fear of being stoned. But the Badger will defend his watching of last week’s Wrestlemania, because he believes that there is nothing wrong with watching greased up, muscle-clad, tights-wearing men toss each around a ring; it’s like a masculine ballet, but with grease.
Wrestling may be scripted (and while the Badger is ruining childhoods, he might as well tell you that Santa doesn’t exist) but having watched sport over the past few months, the Badger is now of the belief that other sports should be scripted. Collapsed scrums, Man City falling off the top of the table, Barcelona on course for the Champions League; it all reeks of inevitability.
Sadly, the most intriguing thing about football at the moment is Mario Balotelli and the re-runs of Dream Team on Sky 2.The Badger knows that Lionel Messi is the best player in the world, and is completely bored by it. The Badger wishes that Messi would hit the referee on the head with a steel chair, take the La Liga trophy and run off to join Real Madrid. It’d be a lot more interesting than scoring another fifty goals.
Post-match interviews have become duller than the Badger’s bath water, although, in fairness, the Badger has some very interesting bath water. It’s the land of the neutral, where PR personnel have more control of the mic than those speaking. With the exception of some fantastic Ian Holloway quotes, nothing ever comes from these interviews. Is there really a problem in letting players cut a Pro-Wrestling style promo? To go on the air and talk about how large their genitalia is and how far they’ll stick their boot up someone’s ass in the next game? The Badger sees no problems with it.
Having an Irishman at the top end of the WWE is another plus for wrestling in the Badger’s eyes: current World Heavyweight Champion, Sheamus, is Irish, though the Badger never would have guessed it from his name. Rory McIlroy is sitting pretty at the top end of the Golf World Rankings, but let’s face it, golf sucks; Katie Taylor is one of the world’s best female boxers, but the Badger has seen Million Dollar Baby, so stays clear of women’s boxing. There are few other Irish people who can claim to be the one of the best, although Paul Green and Glenn Whelan are certainly pushing for a spot on next year’s Ballon d’Or shortlist.
And so, as the Badger prepares for a summer of fruitless transfer talk, Ireland losing on their tour of New Zealand in rugby, and putting up a fighting spirit in the Euros, which will ultimately culminate in Spain once again winning the prize, he must ask, who writes the awful script for sport, and why won’t they let the Badger write it instead?