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Monday, August 10, 2009

Canuck makes the big gaytime

In Australia, the high profile winter sports are rugby league and rugby union in New South Wales and Queensland (making up about half the population), and Aussie Rules (also known as AFL) in the rest of Australia.

Aussie Rules followers tend to be passionate devotees of the game and their mood on Monday morning can easily depend on weekend results. Aussie rules followers usually don't know the difference between rugby union and rugby league and couldn't care less.

Rugby union and league followers refer to the still pretty tough but less collision-oriented AFL as "gayFL". From the headline, you can probably guess which side of the border this blog sits.

The games and cultures of the rugby codes are vastly different to Aussie Rules, as exemplified by the fact that players have virtually never successfully crossed over from rugby to AFL or vice versa. In fact, over a hundred years or so, it is something that until recently, is rarely even contemplated.

The story of the Canadian rugby union player, Mike Pyke, who has made a successful transition is remarkable not just for his personal achievement, but because he may end up being a pioneer of cross-traffic between the codes.

(Thanks to the ShadowLands' correspondent minicapt for the link to Canada's National Post.)

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