Eric Shanteau puts on a brave face

David Salter | July 22, 2008

Eric Shanteau
I'd like to make up for last week's news about frightening behemoth Warren Sapp's upcoming stint on Dancing With the Stars, complete with photo, with a little eye candy.

Well, actually, Men's Journal is providing said ocular sweets in the form of a cover story and photo shoot about U.S. Olympic swimmers Ryan Lochte and, of course, my man Michael Phelps, rivals separated by less than three-tenths of a second in the 200 meter individual medly.

I'm usually one to stick to my men no matter how hard they seem to fall from grace (I still love you, Andy Roddick), but I have to say that after reading the article I am almost as attracted to the spry, playful 23-year-old Lochte (who apparently enjoys playing the flaming-bag-of-poop trick... on his girlfriend) as I am my tall, spindly hunk of meat Phelps, who comes off as a bit morose and, dare I say, possibly washed up in the article.

My favorite part of the article was a quote from Lochte's old blog, talking about his recent commercial for Got Milk: �You know that the milk mustache thing is not really milk. it is a quarter milk, a quarter ice cream, and a quarter of cottage cheese. Ewwww!�

Not smart. Doesn't need to be.

In his new book Giant: The Road to the Super Bowl, NFL Wide Receiver Plaxico Burress writes about the gay rumors surrounding his former Pittsburgh Steelers teammate, quarterback Kordell Stewart.

While he says most of the players had heard the rumors and no one knew for sure, �it would have made everybody uncomfortable. If some player was gay, I don�t think he could come out while he was still playing.... It would mess a team up mentally and it wouldn�t be good for that person.�

Stewart, who retired in 2005, apparently � just insulated himself after a while,� according to Burress, and never led his team to the Super Bowl.

Combined with Martina Navratilova's recent opinion that a tennis pro will come out by 2010 and semi-high profile gay Olympian Matthew Mitcham, Burress' opinion helps show that it's hard out there for a homo.

Speaking of hard, Emporio Armani has seen rapid increases in sales of their line of briefs famously modeled by David Beckham's package. However, medical experts continue to warn of the possible dangers of restricting one's member so much (particularly one seemingly as robust as Becks').

A Sheffield University researcher wrote recently: �Very tight pants damage fertility. The reason you have testicles outside the body is that they stay cooler there.�

This makes the question of how Clay Aiken got somebody pregnant even more baffling.

Now we move back to the Olympics, where there is some good news, some sad news, and some, well, gay news.

The good news, at least for those of us who secretly (or not-so-much) have Bring It On on replay in our DVD players with Chinese subtitles, is that Beijing has rounded up over 200,000 cheerleaders for the upcoming Olympic games.

Most of the volunteers will be more like your average junior varsity pep squad, with noisemakers and simple dances, although 28 teams of more elite dancers and gymnasts (and we know China is full of those) will be on hand to perform routines taught by the likes of the New England Patriots squad.

�Everyone knows cheerleading is a Western activity, but we hope we can find a Chinese way to do it [and] show the world,� said one cheerleader, referring to planned dances with nunchucks and Asian techno music.

The squad will be an equal-opportunity force, cheering for all teams, which, coupled with China's recent attempt to better Americanize their food menu items (no more offerings like �steamed crap,� according to NPR), should make for a gay old time for all involved, regardless of country of origin.

The U.S. Swim Team was shocked this week to find out that 24-year-old Eric Shanteau has been diagnosed with testicular cancer.

The Georgia blonde beat out heavy favorite and former world-record holder Brandon Henson in the 200-meter breaststroke at the recent swim trials in Omaha, Nebraska, just after learning of his diagnosis but before revealing it to the press.

Shanteau currently plans to postpone surgery until after Beijing, although his doctors will monitor him closely to ensure the cancer does not spread in the meantime.

Whether it's good looks or an overwhelming display of sheer guts, the U.S. Olympic Swim Team is going to make one hell of a show next month in China.

On a lighter note (for us, not for the subject involved), don't expect to see any bulging onesies in the synchronized swimming events in Beijing, despite the best efforts of Kenyon Smith.

Synchronized swimming, possibly only the second lamest �sport� besides rhythmic gymnastics to be in Olympic competition, is for females only.

�We cannot allow men in a women�s sport,� says Ginny Jasontek, the president of United States Synchronized Swimming. �Men don�t compete against women in gymnastics.�

The disappointed Smith, who plans to appeal in 2012, said, �If I could have gone, I would have been on the team.�

If I may quote Margaret Cho, that is the gayest thing I have ever heard in my entire life.

That is, I thought it was until I uncovered this final blip of a story, which can truly only be told with photographic proof.

Last week was the latest Turkish Oil Wrestling tournament, which its official website describes thus: �Historical Kirkpinar Oil Wrestling is the oldest wrestling festival in the world which has been continuing since the first contests in 1357 in Rumelia.�

Apparently (and I am not joking, folks) one of the best ways to win is to slip your hand down your opponent's pants and position your well-oiled fist threateningly against his rear end.

The things we do in the name of sport. – Issued by Gay Link Content

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