Prepare to be insulted. Because next month the world's most popular magazine edition hits newsstands, and the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue is a slap in the face to all sports fans. How's that, you say?
Follow me on this one: I love sports. I also have a healthy, often ravenous desire for the female form. But like church and state, ice cream and roast beef, Bill Parcells and the Dallas Cowboys, I consider -- prefer, actually -- them to be mutually exclusive. Yes, I likes me some Anna Kournikova. But in a sweat-stained tennis skirt at match point, not in a gauze bikini all Photoshopped and posing faux-seductively on some wooden pontoon in Sri Lanka.
Memo to SI: We don't want, much less need, Rick Reilly to point us in the direction of a pretty girl any more than Lance Armstrong would appreciate a new bike equipped with training wheels. When we want porn we pretty much know where to find it, and the first place we look won't be a mainstream magazine. (Right, Robert? Ed. note: "Sure, Richie, whatever you say." Bible Girl?)
At the risk of becoming the subject of a "Gay or Not Gay" segment on KTCK-AM's (1310, The Ticket) "BaD Radio," this year I'm canceling my swimsuit issue. You can, too, simply by turning to page 12 of a recent issue (like the one with Jeff Garcia on the cover) and finding the gray box at the bottom titled "If You Don't Want the Swimsuit Issue." Call 1-866-228-1175 and make a stand for sports over smut.
According to CNN, last year's issue sold 5 million copies but was seen by 60 million, making it the planet's most exposed exposure.