7-11-19

The Trans Men Who Get Abortions, The Bonkers History of Ultimate Tazer Ball and the Secret Lives of Spelling Bee Champions

Quinn Myers’ in-depth history of Ultimate Tazer Ball’s brief cable-TV domination is, sadly, the first time I’ve ever heard of Ultimate Tazer Ball, a game that sounds like something prison guards would make inmates play for the amusement of the staff. I am worse off for it; watching a bunch of former pro paintballers run around tasing each other for sport to the middling applause of daytime TV fans sounds like something 2012 me would have had serious interest in.

Somehow, though, I can’t help but think that it wasn’t Tazer Ball’s third-rate athletes or mismanagement that sunk the sport. It was probably that goofy-ass balloon ball they were using:

Image result for tazer ball

Not exactly as iconic as the ol’ pigskin, is it?

Must Read

“The Trans Men Who Get Abortions”
Within our culture’s rudimentary-yet-expanding understanding of gender, pregnancy is still believed to be something only a woman will experience. But trans men and non-binary people can — and do — get pregnant, and while an exact number is difficult to parse, a percentage of those pregnancies will end in abortion. Unfortunately, though, trans men are often left out of the abortion conversation entirely. That, however, doesn’t make their experiences any less important. READ MORE

The USWNT Have Big Mouths, and That’s a Good Thing

Why is it, that when men run their mouths during a game it’s chalked up to platitudes like “competitiveness,” “fire” and “grit,” but when women do it, it’s somehow bad sportsmanship? That’s the situation the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team found themselves in during the Women’s World Cup, when players like Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe were raked over the coals for being too cocky for their in-game and post-championship celebrations.

The problem, though, isn’t the amount of shit they’ve talked — it’s that they haven’t talked enough shit, considering how badass they truly are.

The Untold Story of… Tazer Ball!

Who woulda believed that, if you took soccer, rugby, dodgeball, American Gladiators and fuckin’ tasers, then mashed it all together, you’d get an “alternative” sport that people would watch?

Here, then, is the story of the rise and fall of Ultimate Tazer Ball from the very people involved in making it almost happen.

Go to Bed!

Leave dudes to their own devices, and they might never go to sleep. Cue our extremely reasonable and patient partners who, without fail, do the heavy lifting and tell us that when 11 p.m. rolls around, it’s TIME TO GO TO BED.

Anyway, Miles Klee is one of those dudes, and he’s got 1,000 words on the topic. 

Ghost Map

Snapchat’s Snap Map, one of the social video app’s most controversial features, has also been one of its most popular since it was introduced in 2017. Designed to allow users to track their contacts’ locations, it was conceived as a great way to see where your friends — and perhaps more importantly, your crushes — are at any given moment. Interestingly, however, that’s not all it’s being used for. In fact, for Gen Z, Snapchat’s most significant demographic, it’s no longer how they connect. It’s how they ghost.

Special Tacos

Over the last several months we’ve been interviewing men about the dishes that — either through nostalgia or comfort — fill the soul. The dish that fills the soul of L.A. Taco’s Javier Cabral, are, unsurprisingly, tacos. But the tacos Cabral likes aren’t just any ol’ tacos. They’re special, borne from an age-old taco-making tradition in the birthplace of carne asada, Hermosillo, the largest city in the Mexican state of Sonora.

It’s a food that, for Cabral, represents coming full circle with his inner child, a picky eater who wouldn’t eat his mom’s food, but always had room for some asada. Here’s how he makes them.

Spell Bound

What happens to a spelling bee champion when they grow old? For one thing, they never lose their eye for the orthographic. Nor their keen attention to detail. But other than that, their lives turn out very similar to everyone else’s. That doesn’t mean, however, that being the nation’s top speller doesn’t have its advantages — even if they won their title 40 years ago or more.