The Wax Conspiracy

Prodding a Basted Pig (Kings vs Razorbacks - State Sports Centre 20/10/02)

It was a Saturday morning and the Ripping Friends were just about to take to the air when a phone call shook away all of last night's attempt at sleep. The invitation was from a friend to watch a match between the Kings and the Razorbacks. While not being much for a fan of sports or crowds I decided to go along. Thirty hours later and the car ride toward the Pig Pen was a success given the fact that with each ditch in the road it looked more and more likely that it would just suddenly fall apart and perhaps explode into a comical heap of Datsun history. But it was a free ride and I wasn't complaining. Parking some streets away from the venue turns out to be quite a saver and I sure as hell wasn't going to chip in for a gold coin, seeing as though I didn't have any money at the time.

Arriving early we got to our seats to find a bar sitting right in front of us and on both of our eye levels. Fearful of people falling from the stands - which just happened to be steep and sparse on comfort - the barriers are constructed of metal wires that would easily slice of anyone's head if they accidentally slipped their neck onto it. Tip-off wasn't for a half-hour so I just dropped flyers that were on the seats from the balcony. These were A grade seats but felt like C. Walking in there wasn't much of an odour coming from the 'Pen. In fact, if anything, it was devoid of an actual smell. But there was a horridly foul stench coming from somewhere. Right next to us some guy had taken off his shoes/sandals. It would have been better for everyone had he gone either barefoot or with boots that lace up and take five minutes to undo.

Cheerleaders for the home team, the Lazors, were lining up just below. Their outfits - as I was told - were less skanky/trashy than previous meets. There was much sparkling to behold. Milling around them was the mascot, Jack the Razorback, waving to a kid in a corporate box. The kid turned casually away only to have the masked chunk of blue fur sidle right beside him and nearly shake the fear of the mascot back into his dismissive eyes. It still didn't work. There was no respect coming from this kid. The announcer introduced the cheerleaders in twos. The final group had a guy in their ranks. I have no problem with male cheerleaders but he didn't have the pompoms the girls were whipping about. At least he was distracting me from the smell of the other guy's rancid feet. With a misplaced public holiday the entire stadium stood silent for 40 seconds, if you didn't count the babies that wailed on during the entire thing.

The guy on the PA mentioned that some forgettable merchant was sponsoring the 3-pointers coming from the Razorbacks. On each "bomb" they would launch four t-shirts into the crowd. Image is everything when it comes to business and this merchant - might have had something to do with a duty free shop - sure picked the wrong way to go about it. The team only managed a few paltry shots "from downtown" while the Kings managed an unrelenting slew. They should have also checked up on the kids throwing the t-shirts into the stands. Metaphors and analogies are everywhere; promotions are no different. On each rare 3-pointer the kids would gently throw the rolled up tees into the boxes with sponsored families. Not only did they not throw with any enthusiasm - possibly taking note from the Razorbacks who trailed for every quarter of the game - they chose only to target a small section of the crowd. Nepotism was on show and it wasn't doing anyone a real service.

Back from a costume change shaking their thing the cheerleaders dragged out a few people ready to be taught the Ketchup Song. One of the great things about watching cheerleaders is the fact that they do it on heels, although watching them tackle the dance moves in stilettos would have been better. The lone guy in the troupe seems to fulfil the role of the dancing partner.

Throughout the game I had to shift endlessly back, forth, up and down, all just to watch the game free from obstruction. It was that damn bar. Watching the basketball live not only meant that I watched the game but that I had to really watch it. There was no instant replay for those who just joined in. The game was billed as a sell-out but the hundred or so empty seats belied that claim. They might have been in the standing crowd, ready to leave as they watch their home team getting slaughtered by perennial losers, the Sydney Kings, who have yet to lose a game since the start of the 2002/03 season. Most of the pig slashing was from the two Sydney imports, Chris Williams and Kavossy Franklin who scored 33, 25 respectively. A couple of the players had these shoes like they'd just been done kicking the blue shiny blood-gel from a lost and bewildered alien. The Kings held onto to their effortless victory, and as the post-slaughter interviews were being conducted, everyone turned into a river and I found myself nearly clipped by a deranged driver.

Sydney Kings defeat the West Sydney Razorbacks 122-94 and are now on a 4 game winning streak

Ethan Switch

Reviewed on Tuesday, 22 October 2002

The Wax Conspiracy




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