Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Raging Bull

In yet another example of animal-rights activists not quite thinking the whole thing through, the cockfighting aficionados at Undismayed bring news of 38 roosters "saved" in a raid in California, High-fives all around! But since fighting cock meat [note to self: possible band name??] is inedible and the birds make obviously lousy pets...

the birds -- groomed, trained and pumped full of chemical supplements to make them fighters -- are not eventually bound for some kind of retirement refuge for rehabilitation.

"They can't be put up for adoption. They can't be around other birds or they'd fight," said Judi Adams, the SPCA's humane investigations supervisor. "They may need to be euthanized."

Statistically speaking, 19 of them could have avoided that fate for at least a while. We have yet to take in a cockfight here, but there's plenty of bullfighting to go around, including live broadcasts every Sunday from Mexico City. A few weeks ago I was watching a televised bullfight and saw something I had never seen before: the bull walked out alive, thanks to the gross ineptitude of the torero. Like baseball, the televised fights have a play-by-play a guy and a color guy. "He's off to a comfortable retirement?" asked the play-by-play. "No, they will kill him now," said the color guy. I can only imagine the look on the bull's face.

For a while this weekend it looked like another bull was going to waltz out of the ring in Mexico City. The Mexican bullfighter Leopoldo Casasola is seen here hitting the dirt for the third time, the 1100-pound bull having just run his horn through the sleeve of his jacket. A few minutes earlier, he ran his horn through the thigh of his trousers and, before that, as you can see in this picture from the newspaper, he gently opened up the dude's fly at 20mph. Bullfighting outfits aren't exactly baggy, so Leopoldo may be the luckiest man in Mexico at the moment. If I were him, by the way, I'd wear that torn outfit for the rest of the year, just to scare the shit out of the bulls.

Also on the bill was a rejonedor, which is a bullfighter on horseback. This has gotta be the most difficult equestrian sport in the world, but it is to bullfighting what dancing bears are to dancing. Also, they somehow manage to dress even fruitier than the regular bullfighters. You can see some video (same guy, different bullfight) here.

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