Past Sports from the
Past sports article for the week of 9/13/06
Around The World Race Reopened
With New Rules
By, Grey Sports
The event made famous in the adventures of the fictional Phillius Fogg,
creation of acclaimed author Jules Verne, the around the world race, has
seen many incarnations as a real life event.
Most frequently it is a personal matter between a handful of individuals,
a way of making a normal vacation more interesting and rarely involving
circumnavigating the globe.
The idle rich also indulge in this pastime, ostensibly to engage in something
challenging, more frequently to avoid becoming another Howard Hughes.
These are the people who turn the event into a competition, forbidding
certain equipment, routes, or other such rules.
Now one of their number has decided that wealth alone should not be a
factor in the event, and has offered to sponsor any team in an Around
the World Race, while others have put forth an attractive prize package
consisting of novelty cheeses, bath soaps in the shape of busts of Canadian
Prime Ministers from 1950 – 1987, and something about rare and valuable
gems lodged in a monkey’s butt.
In order to “make things interesting” a number of restrictions have been
included. Firstly only modes of travel available in 1887 are to be used,
although modern equivalents may be. Hence all trains, boats and Chinese
are legal, yet aircraft and Yetis are not.
No more than a single bill or other token of currency may be spent. This
has led to a variety of different strategies as teams chose either all
large bills, all small bills, or the universal currency: bullets. However
spending those without a gun may be difficult.
So far several groups have joined the competition, spurred on by adventure,
fame and the contents of a primate’s buttocks.
Several more prominent groups have already risen to the spotlight.
There is the traditional group of feminists out to prove that women can
do anything men can do, along with fierce rivals, men who want to prove
they are men and can do anything women can do when they’re doing something
to prove that they can do what men do.
Less popular are the reform Nazis who want to extol everything that was
positive about the Third Reich, which is apparently snazzy uniforms and
an inability to live up to their ambitions. Also there are the reform
Communists, slightly more popular yet plagued with leadership woes as
Stalinist, Leninist, Maoist, Castroist and Carterist influences vie for
control of the group.
It should also be noted that there is a reform Enron group, though only
because there is a sizable bounty on their heads.
Whilst backers have sworn that this will not become a cheap Reality TV
show there has been a great deal of interest in these groups akin to fans
of sports teams, leading to hopes that this may become a regular, truly
world wide, sporting event.