by Nick Logsdon
1. Raising Arms Up And Down With Palms Turned Upward: Come on, my fans! Scream, cheer, and whistle louder than you ever have before! We must tell the opposing team that we are the greatest footballers, and they suck at this sport!
2. One Finger Held To Closed Lips: Hush, and be silent, my fans! I have scored a goal, and you must be reverent of this because goals are rare and sacred. But more importantly, you must be kind to the opposing team. Do not make them any sadder with your songs of passion that remind them how much they suck.
3. Sliding On Both Knees: Wee! The other team sucks!
4. Ripping Jersey Off, Jumping: Here! Let me show you how I was able to put the ball into the net. I spend hours in the gym doing crunches and massaging warmed baby oil on my bare stomach—which has an adorable little mole next my navel—wearing nothing but skin-tight compression shorts. Also, notice how ironclad my jawline is, and how much definition is added with my deliberately patchy beard. It is because of this sex appeal I scored the goal to prove the opposing team sucks.
5. Holding Up Heart Made of Thumbs and Index Fingers: Love will win the day as long as you go out and vote the leaders into office who can make it so. Hate no man, woman, or team besides the one we’re playing and who sucks.
6. Rubbing Tips Of Thumbs And Index Fingers Together: I have lots of money. And this goal that I just scored, will make me more money. It will also make money for Gatorade, Adidas, and Etihad Airways, my brand partners because you will purchase products only those brands can provide. I love my brand partners, and they love me as long as I do not suck, like this team I just scored on.
7. Salute: Often called, “The Lieutenant’s Goodbye,” this celebration doesn’t have a syntactical translation. Rather, its symbolism has roots in every footballer’s appreciation of military hierarchy, even if they don't quite understand it. The other team sucks.
8. Rolling Giant Invisible Bowling Ball Into Human Bowling Pins: When someone grows up in a two-bit town, they can lose sight of what matters, or never take their eyes off of what doesn’t. Pryor, Oklahoma is a two-bit town just outside of Tulsa. There wasn’t much to write home about, but there was a Mega Lanes. Each year, Mega Lanes hosted a bowling tournament; all the men in town round themselves up and compete for the crown of Mega King. It was tradition even if you couldn’t tell the pin from the ball. If you we’re a man, you were going to bowl. It was around the quarterfinals of the tournament when everything came crashing down for one man, Murphy Bingham.
Murphy knew the only way he way he’d ever see his family again is if he could be crowned Mega King, claim the cash prize and pay the ransom his family’s kidnappers demanded. Murphy’s only problem? He couldn’t tell a pin from a ball. So you can imagine how his family felt (while watching the tournament via live stream provided by their kidnappers) when Murphy first stepped up to the lane, walked all the way down it, picked up a pin and threw it into a trash can. Luckily, a fellow competitor, Lyle Brandy was kind enough to explain the rules of bowling. But, soon after, Lyle would think twice about teaching Murphy. What happened next was nothing short of miraculous. Murphy bowled a perfect ten every round until he reached the quarterfinals. But, Murphy was a fragile soul, and often, sadly, a fragile soul will let success go right to his head and. Murphy’s lust for strikes grew so thick he forgot why he even played, and whom he was playing for. He hadn’t even won, but Murphy was already boozing, schmoozing, and soon, losing.
On the eve of the quarterfinal match, after paying to participate in a come one, come all orgy, Murphy overslept. Not only did he miss that match, he slept so long he would have missed the next one the following day. Eventually, Lyle won the entire tournament, was crowned Mega King, and used the prize money to save the kidnapped Bingham’s from what would have been certain death. Some say Murphy Bingham never awoke after that orgy. Others are sure they’ve seen him around at other sex parties. I wish I could say I knew.
I first read about this story, while traveling to Turin for a friendly against Juventus, in a Lufthansa in-flight magazine blurb titled, “Peculiar Places That Start With P.” The story inspired me so much; I decided to craft a celebration to silently honor Lyle, Mrs. Bingham and her children—both of whom were welcomed into Lyle’s family with open arms. Of course, this celebration is the symbolic translation of the story of the tragic hero, Murphy Bingham: even the sturdiest of pins will fall, and the weakest ones fall first. It’s meant to provide a lesson to all competitors in sport or otherwise. Never lose sight of why you play, but most importantly, don’t suck so much that you lose sight of me slipping to the back post for an all-too easy top corner header.
Nick is a writer based in Los Angeles and a recent graduate of Loyola Marymount University. He likes to brag that his apartment has a hot tub.