Monday, February 25, 2013

Am I Missing Something About NASCAR?

After reading about how 28 people were injured as a result of a car wreck at Saturday's Nationwide Series in Daytona, I was just thinking about NASCAR and how people either love it or hate it. I also thought of the film The Final Destination. Let's roll.

Oh, NASCAR. How I've avoided writing about you for so long. I guess that ends today.

Since Monday has rolled around, most major news outlets have been showing countless replays of the horrific crash that occurred Saturday afternoon in Daytona on their evening news reports. While this event wasn't exactly the "main event," so to speak, it has practically overshadowed Sunday's Daytona 500, in which Jimmie Johnson took the checkered flag and Danica Patrick took eighth.

The main question that I have had swirling in my head for the longest time is simply this: What makes NASCAR so popular? Believe it or not, there have been more instances of freak injuries occurring at these events than any other sporting event when it involves fans. Why is that? Considering that there are spectators that are up-close and personal while at these events--albeit some aren't just sitting there, they are at concessions stands and such--there's more risk for injury. There are people that will argue that there are guard rails and fences to block any debris from flying into the stands, but here's my counter-argument: What happened on Saturday? Debris flew over and through those fences and injured over two dozen people. Awesome, right? When spectators go to an event like that, they have to throw caution into the wind because anything can happen at any time.

Regardless of what happened on Saturday afternoon, Sunday's main event went off without a hitch, and numerous spectators cheered on their favorite racer.

With that said, I've also thought this: Have I missed something?

I understand that the idea of racing has been a long-standing sport of sorts. From simple foot-races to chariot races to those kinds of drag races you see in film, it's been a kind of "sport" that might not be seen as a "sport" to the people that turn a blind eye toward it. When it comes to races that don't require full-human effort and participation, it doesn't exactly seem like it would be one. This is when I start throwing physics and biology in your face. When it comes to something like driving a car at nearly 200 MPH and making quick turns and gear shifts, you have to be able to fight gravity and do a lot of resistance and weight training to prepare for it. C'mon people, we think it's a chore to drive a corkscrew doing 35 MPH--they would have to do something equivalent to that at nearly 200. These racers are absolutely jacked in the muscle department. It's almost as if the driver inside of the vehicle is controlling an animal--like four horses. Do you see where I'm going with this now? 

It's a sport more of intellect and indirect warfare than anything else. When it comes to cutting a driver off and risking your own neck for that to work, you're considered a maniac in my mind and a team player to your crew. It takes a lot of guts and smarts to pull off an impressive driving performance while going at that velocity. Plus, you have your teammates (the pit crew, basically) giving you the heads-up advice you need along the way. So what if you've got a bubble in the tire? They've got you covered. Boom. Teamwork. There's a madness and a method to each pit crew's routine. The faster they work, the faster they can get their teammate back on the track. There's also that "common courtesy" piece where if there's a problem on the track, everyone is forced to take a breather and use caution while things get fixed up. Then stuff gets real again on the track.

Maybe it's been a sport after all of this time. When it comes to someone like me who is more of a traditional sport-lover who thought that NASCAR was weird, its sport-status makes a little more sense to me now. Does that mean it will win me over now? Not necessarily. To each his own. NASCAR fans see this kind of stuff as a religion and raise their kids in it. Milk is a delicacy, and the modern-day chariot race is a marathon full of literal twists and turns and crashes and burns. While it might not be my cup of tea, I respect the people who take all of that in and make the most of their experiences while watching the race live or on television. I'm pretty sure it takes a lot for one person to truly appreciate the concept of NASCAR and even indy-car racing. There's a massive adrenaline rush that flows when there's high-speed action involved in a sport, and sometimes that's what appeals most to the fans. That rush is what makes this unorthodox sport exciting. It might not be a traditional sport, but it has evolved from something so incredibly simple, and it still delivers the same kind of feel and message today.

Is there anything else I missed about this sport?


Saturday, February 23, 2013

Red Whines: Pistorius'd Off

Would I get a gold medal for title wit?

Back on February 14th, Paralympic runner-turned-Olympian Oscar Pistorius of South Africa was taken into custody for the murder of his supermodel girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. After much tears and testimony, Pistorius was granted bail on Friday, but will not be permitted to return to his house or leave the district in which he lives in. He will have to return to court in June.

To say the least, the numerous news reports had many people drawn-and-quartered as far as leads and what kind of evidence was being presented. For example, there were numerous reports on how Pistorius lived life on the edge, the possibility that "roid rage" was involved, how he had a love of guns, and how there may have been claims of a rough relationship between Pistorius and Steenkamp. There were even reports on how people were making the plea for him that he wouldn't survive in a South African prison because he's handicapped.

In a way, I'm sort of glad that Pistorius was granted bail. Based on the research that I did, the South African prison system that he would have been a part of could be seen as unsafe and inhumane according to middle-class standards. Whether he's an Olympian or not, no man would be given a fair enough treatment in a place like that. Then again, since he's an internationally-known star athlete, he may or may not have been given a more special treatment. Despite my opinion and research on this matter, Steenkamp's family haven't taken this lying down, and they will be looking to fight for their daughter and strive for family justice in this case.

(If you want to read more about the prisons and more trial information, you can go here and educate yourself a little more on the matter.)

It was rather hard for someone like me (who, truthfully, overanalyzes anything and everything) to really draw out a decent conclusion as to what might have happened. Of course, there are more trials to come in June, but these "digital re-enactments" and other conclusions on Pistorius' personal life and hobbies outside of sport were a lot to swallow within a week's time. It was as if the whole idea of a "speedy trial" was heavily taken into consideration so that there was a quick overview for the magistrate on whether Pistorius would be imprisoned or whether he could post bail and wait for trial elsewhere. Nobody wants a dragged-out trial, but I was hearing enough "new information" every day that it was starting to make my head spin a little bit.

With the resume of the trial occurring in June, we should have more information straightened out and less falsehoods spewing out everywhere.

Side Note: I forget where I saw this, but someone called this the "next OJ Simpson trial." What? We're calling this by that term so early in this case? Okay then.

Of course, there will be the process for the next three months or so that there will be "new details" coming out about Pistorius and how there may have been a rocky relationship with Steenkamp and such. There has been enough of that already, but my response to that is this question: Have you ever played Jenga? I'm serious. Jenga.
What most media outlets will be doing for the next three months until the trial resumes will be taking old blocks of information that other news outlets may have mentioned in passing fairly early in the case. Then, they'll just pile it back on top of the tower and pass it off as "new details." In a not-sports-related example, they did the same exact thing in the Casey Anthony case. This will be no different.
There's a slight flaw with my theory though...I haven't decided what it may mean if the "Jenga tower of news" happens to topple over due to lack of concentration. You can figure that out for yourself on your own time, I guess.

To the average person that may be following this case, you may have already begun to form opinions and believe that testimonies have changed slightly and that the South African legal system is once again put in the spotlight. One thing's for sure is that this case will be a summer blockbuster [that hopefully Nancy Grace will not have to say "tot mom" for] in many sports conversations all around the world. It's never great to see a successful athlete like Pistorius in a position like this, but a questionable personal life outside of sports may begin to catch up to him and run him over. I am so sorry for that pun.

I'm not a person to really delve into details of an athlete's personal life, especially when it comes to their hobbies and their relationship status. However, this could be eye-opening for a lot of people when it comes to culture and international relations. We're watching a whole new ballgame with this case, and if people are really that invested in this case, we're going to see a lot of bickering between parties about codes of ethics and the psychology of why people do the things they do. It's quite inevitable, don't you think?

You know that if I thought about this case a lot, it's kind of a big deal. It's not that it makes me angry, but good gravy, there's a swirling nebula of confusion in my head about this case, that's for sure. Let's see what the next few months have to bring.


Thursday, February 21, 2013


Not a sports-related blog post. I'm basking in my successes today.

I still can't get over the fact that I stuck with something for over three years. Go me!

It was about this time of day three years ago that I created The Sports Nut Blogs. While the site didn't exactly look like this (it was black with a purple banner, for those who don't remember), it was something that has given me much therapy and means of procrastination while I was still in college.

Three years, over 200 posts, and over 10,000 hits later, here we are.

I wasn't sure on how to celebrate this considering that I celebrate the blog's existence by writing in it as much as I do. While it doesn't get the biggest of exposure like most sports blogs, I'm certainly proud of what I've done with it. It gives me a release in life. It's not written in the traditional style of reporting--heck, that was the last thing I wanted to do. If you actually take a look back at the first two months' worth of posts, they're A - lousy, and B - poor attempts on trying to be an editorial reporter. I had eventually gotten my niche over the first summer and since then, I feel like a way better writer than I had ever dreamed of.

Believe me, I look back on the first two months of the blog and I go: "What on God's green planet was I thinking then?" The truth is, I was trying to get started on something. I had originally figured that if I had gained strength at something that interested me that this was the way to start. As some of you might know, my sister is also a writer/blogger as well. I will admit that she's a better writer than me, but that doesn't mean I won't be giving her a run for her money soon. Like I've said in my profile, I wasn't really an English person back in high school. Grant it, I loved theater and stuff, but writing wasn't my strength (although I could spell you under a table) and I hated doing research. Once I had rekindled my love for sports, that's when it all started to collide. And that didn't suck at all.

These are several things that I learned while writing in this blog:
-- Technically, I can't really refer to my blog as SNB without getting slammed somehow. For the uninformed, SNB is short for Swiss National Bank. As you can tell, I didn't think things through when coming up with a name.
-- When I came up with "Sports Nut Blogs," I didn't make it clear that the word "Blogs" in the title was supposed to be a verb. Now you know that it's supposed to be a verb.
-- I have to make sure that when I use an online image that it's from a site that's safe for work. The one picture I used in a post about golf had dangerous content on it. And I was wondering why I was having a difficult time with blog maintenance that week...
-- I seriously don't mind not getting paid for this. I mostly use this for training and therapy. However...if you see this and would like my services, I would have to ask for pay. Sorry folks.
-- I personally don't care if not a lot of people read this. It's mainly here for people who stumble upon it and would like some humor or some fast facts. When it comes to my writing, I don't care about the quantity of posts; I care more about the quality of posts, and when people give a good reaction to quality over quantity, that's what I care about most.
-- My first 20-or-so posts on this blog are awful. If you want to read a college student attempt to be cool, read them. Buyer beware.

This has been a great three years of learning and writing. I have no idea where my writing could take me down the road, but I hope it will be to a sunny place where I can sit outside, drink tea, listen to the Phillies on the radio, and be happy with what I'm doing in life. That would be cool.

Here's to another three years!
Ah heck, I'll throw this link in here too. It's a catchy tune.

Happy 3rd Birthday, The Sports Nut Blogs!


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Bowling is an Unsung Hero. You Think I'm Joking.

I was at a diner with my mother on Saturday morning. ESPN was showing on one of the televisions nearby and a commercial came on for the upcoming bowling championships. It had just hit me: I had never written about bowling before. I mentioned it to my mother, who was a part of a bowling team back around when I was in grade school. After I had brought it up to her, she said, "Who writes about bowling?" Truthfully, she was right. Nobody really does write about bowling.
I'm breaking that law today.

Bumpers. Black lights. Pizza. Soda. Beer. Arcades in the background. Those shoes. The pixelated screen. Without even mentioning the balls and the pins, you can already tell that I'm describing a bowling alley to you. Whether you've played for a team, at a birthday party, or just out of boredom with friends on a Saturday night, this sport goes down in history with miniature golf as a fun time that any person can pick up on at any time. Yes, it can even be fun for those people that aren't well-coordinated.

Bowling is an interesting sport. While it has many competitive sides to it, there's also that richness in ice-breaking and bringing people together. Even though it's a highly competitive (and scientific) sport, it's an underrated social pastime that people might not realize how great it may actually be. It's like meat and potatoes. Or, if you're a vegan, it's more like veggies with peanut sauce.

To me, bowling is like that adorably fuzzy grandfather you only see maybe once or twice a year and they always treat you like a jewel whenever you stop by to visit them (not to mention slipping you a $20 bill for no real reason).  It's one of those things that give you good memories and funny stories of events that happened. Heck, I remember one time where a friend of mine from high school threw the ball and screamed, "This...Is...Bowling!" in the style of the film 300. He turned to me and my friends, grunted, and got a strike. You don't forget gold like that. Bowling is also that kind of fun competition where you know you might not be that good and you don't feel bad because your friend may be just as bad as you are. I never quite understood the philosophy behind that, but when it comes to something like this, you really don't feel like questioning it because you may open up a can of worms somehow.

What you just read may have made you feel warm-hearted on the inside. At least, I hope it did. Now's where the EXTREME parts come in. Don't be scared. I'm just going to give the potatoes part of the "meat and potatoes" of this blog post.

Have you ever watched professional bowling on TV? Now, I've watched my mother play for her bowling league before, and compared to what I have watched on television, the stuff they do on TV is not human.

As you might have figured, there's a lot of physics involved in the sport of bowling. Most people will see a 7-10 split and cry where these pros say, "psh, no problem," and then grab the spare. From the work of the wrist to the spin of the ball, it's a sport based on such precision. The pros that make it to the big time have worked on their craft so much and so long that they make the job look so easy. To watch the ball naturally curve the way it does is hypnotic through a layman's eyes. If you're awful at science, you just simply have to ask, "How on EARTH did they do that?" There's a method to every bowler's routine. Their discipline and their patience are as heavily matched as professional golfers or archers: they must not waver when it comes to any distraction. Plus, another side to this sport is that there really isn't a true age-limit here. You could see men and women into their 60's playing competitively. When you see a veteran in this sport, you really see a veteran. There's such an inner science to this sport that the uninformed person may not be able to fathom. It's a religion to these guys, and you have to admit that it's pretty amazing to watch these pro bowlers.


Bowling, like golf, keeps people more active in their later years. Since these sports are treated like a social gathering where the chances of injury are rather slim to none (unless there's the ridiculous chance you develop tennis-elbow or carpal tunnel), it's a good way to stay in a relatively good shape and remain social with friends and family. Even though there's a competitive edge to it when it comes to team play, it's seen as a friendly rivalry, and it will certainly keep things fresh in your friendship. When you play a sport like this, you don't realize the inner benefits that are provided while playing. There's physical, mental, and emotional strengths that are gained here--it's quite therapeutic, if you ask me. When you hit stuff...c'mon, don't lie, it feels good.

I will be one to admit this: bowling is a really underrated sport. It truly is an unsung hero in sports since it takes a lot of precision and grit to become a virtuoso in the art. Sure, people will raise the argument where "if it doesn't make you sweat, it doesn't count as a sport," and I say 'nay' to that. It's a large-scale recreational activity that will bring people together and test people's skill and attitudes. It might not be a physical sport, but it's one of strategy, and there's no room for joking when one plans out a strategy.
I have a lot of respect for the people that follow bowling and have made it a part of their lifestyle. It certainly isn't the easiest of sports to master, but it's something that's simple enough for the average person to pick up, play, and enjoy regardless of the underlying physics of the sport.

Bowling is just a good time.

For the record, you shouldn't mess with me in Wii Bowling. I've got that thing figured out. I like to call myself the Turkey Hunter. No, I don't. I made that up. I'm still pretty awesome at Wii Bowling though.


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The IOC: Killing the Classics Since, Well, Today.

Writing about wrestling is awkward.

As I was Twitter-hunting Monday night, I found news that I wasn't unfamiliar with. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) was voting to put another Olympic sport out of it's misery after the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games. After the ax of baseball and softball after the 2008 Beijing Games, wrestling became the next sport to get the boot from the Olympics after the voting reveal Tuesday morning.

While I thought its inclusion in the possible cuts was sad and all, someone brought up a good point to me after reports were singling out this sport yesterday: this was one of the originals. Yes, my people, this sport will be removed after 120 years of being a part of the Olympiad. Even though it was taken into consideration that it was, in fact, one of the classics, they also took into account several other areas of the sport. For example, they looked over the performance-enhancement scares that have been plaguing almost every sport, the overall popularity of the sport worldwide, and the big one: whether people actually cared to watch this sport. As the wrestling universe is in uproar, many modern pentathletes and field hockey players took a sigh of relief as they, too, were on the verge of being cut as well.

You almost have to wonder what modern sports is coming to. Okay, they had Olympic tug-of-war once upon a time, and it's great that they got rid of it. On the upside, they're introducing golf and rugby in the next Games. Well, technically, golf's making a comeback, so that's a nice thing to see. However, I look at some of the other events that people are still vying for to become an Olympic sport and I begin to lose faith in humanity. For example, there are still some people out there that are looking to get poker in as an Olympic sport. I read reports about that and I give the death stare to the people supporting it. In my view, a sport is something that requires physical activity. Archery does it, heck, even shooting does it. Something like wrestling requires a heck of a lot more brainpower and skill than poker does. I could be wrong about all of that, but watching something like The World Series of Poker puts me to sleep. No offense.

Seeing the cutting and adding of sports makes you question on whether the classics are really up to standard to today's society. Most viewers are satisfied with weightlifting when it comes to feats of strength. When it comes to craftsmanship or physical force, viewers will turn to judo or boxing or even fencing (where women scream their heads off when they score a point).

From what I have read, many IOC officials were rather sad to have to make the decision, but since it was a secret vote, they had no choice but to really comply with their results. I understand that. I would hate to lie about results like that myself.

It's painful to see any sport get cut in the Olympics. I was especially sad to not see softball (a sport I had played for many years) back at the 2012 London Games, but because it wasn't as appealing as, say, Women's soccer, it was forced to be cut along with its male counterpart. To see a perennial sport of strength and power get cut from the Olympics like this is like saying you're no longer going to have cake on your birthday. Wrestling is one of those things that you expect to see. More or less, I'm saying that it's a major staple that's being removed, and it's not really gonna seem like the Olympics without it.

I wouldn't consider the people of the IOC to be bad guys or anything, but they need to take priorities into consideration. What made them? They have to look at the powerhouse countries like Russia and the other European nations where wrestling is big and see what kind of effort and passion these guys are putting into the sport. It's as if they're giving them enough credit in efforts. If the IOC had a hard enough time promoting the wrestling program over the past ten years (c'mon, you introduced the women's division in 2004 in Athens), FILA [the head honchos outside of the Olympic realm] should have been fixed if it were broken.

All is not lost with wrestling, however. They, along with other sports that have either been cut or are looking to introduce themselves to the grand stage will be appealing to the IOC this upcoming May for a slot in the 2020 Olympics. These guys still have a chance, as do many others. However, there's only one spot, so each international sporting organization has to dig deep and find a way to come back.

See, even fighting for a spot in the Olympics is a sport of Olympic-sized proportions.

I'm East Coast, and it's MS Paint. Deal with it.
We might not know their true fate until May, but for now, rest up, Olympic Wrestling.


Friday, February 8, 2013

Eleven Men Out

This is apparently a big deal, and the U.S. hasn't shown light on this until this week. Awesome.

With the amount of sports research that I have done over the course of three years, I'm not a stranger to the concept of betting in the world of sports and the numerous cartel and gang activity involved in international sporting events. Almost all of these practices are illegal--other practices I will mention later--but some are so immense that they cannot truly be stopped by the government (and even the military) in various nations; therefore, they are a not-so-underground sensation that has been a sudden driving force in sports.

This week, news reports have been increasing in the United States noting that there have been many suspicious results in soccer matches. They have been occurring mostly in Europe and in places like Singapore. Normally, it's one of those things in which you might just see one and go, "Okay, this is just a one-time thing, and they'll get in trouble for it." This time around, it looks like there have been way more cases than before, and because it is all suspicion, nothing can really be done to erase any results or the like. Guys, we're talking almost 700 cases here. If there have been wonky results and suspicions taking place in events as big as the UEFA Champions League--the European soccer "World Series," as it were--you know something's wrong.

There may be the saying that "All the world's a stage, and we are merely players," but this is only the tip of the iceberg here. How exactly are athletes "playing?" Are they playing the games honestly, or are they playing with plans of a plot twist in the story? Even if they are playing, are the game officials playing along instead? Is it the people outside of the game, where booking and betting are getting a bit more extreme in influencing match results?

Is this what sports is coming to? Is this becoming almost as staged as professional wrestling? We've heard of many cases that have come around betting and fixing games, such as the Black Sox of 1919, the Andres Escobar murder case from the 1994 FIFA World Cup, and even the recent "Bountygate" with the New Orleans Saints. It's a general understanding that sports is a form of entertainment, but it could also be argued that the whole idea of entertainment is engulfing the idea of what a sport truly is. The one thing that should be brought to mind is that betting and gambling is a huge form of revenue around the world. Yes, it can be considered a major worldwide business. As crazy as it sounds, it's a more common practice outside of the United States. Think betting on horse races on a grander scale. 

However, since it's getting out of hand, it needs regulation from outside resources. Organizations like FIFA and UEFA can't control these forms of "business;" practices such as gambling and betting can only truly be controlled by the police and organizations such as Europol and Interpol. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a very complicated process that will take a very long time to chip away at and get to the bottom of. Seriously, it is pretty nasty. It isn't like the whole betting thing has been ignored, it's just that it's happening so frequently that international soccer organizations haven't been able to keep track of all of them and inform police officials on it.

I understand that many of you American readers don't think too highly of soccer as much as the other sports you watch, but truthfully, be thankful that you don't have to worry much about controversy like this. It has become a very serious thing, and numerous teams and leagues could be under investigation due to betting and match-fixing. This is worse than steroids, people. This stuff could get people killed and/or thrown under the bus for illegal practices.

You don't mess with sports. Somehow, people like to cheat death and do it anyway.

There isn't much for me to say about the matter since I've mapped a good amount of it out for you here. This is just a really big issue that is going to take a long time to straighten out and clean up. Grant it, this means big money loss in areas, but there are just times when pushing the envelope should not be an option. The overindulgence of match-fixing has really screwed up the sporting atmosphere and now people are going to get in trouble for it. This is why we can't have nice things, people. Betting and booking means money, but again, you just don't mess with sports. It's like you're taking natural talent and moving them around like pawns. It's a game, but it shouldn't be that kind of game.

What do you think?


Sunday, February 3, 2013

AZ's Slant on Sunday - Man's Best Friend and Competitor

This post has been in development hell since the last Super Bowl. I am not kidding.

I don't know whether it's a good thing or a bad thing when you get an idea for a post by watching the Puppy Bowl on Animal Planet. I've either got a really wicked groove or my head was wired incorrectly at birth.

[Aside: PETA is probably going to either really really like this post or really really hate it. Hey, they're the masters of controversy, so all I'm doing is playing the same game. ;-)]

Dogs are pretty cool animals. Cats are pretty interesting too. Horses are pretty spectacular. In certain religious teachings, animals were created to serve man. Those scientist people out there believe that animals have evolved over time due to natural selection and that's why animals are so advanced in instincts and form.

In human terms, instincts usually refer to feelings and in some cases survival. Survival of the fittest: It's a sport of life. OH. SHOT OF RELEVANCE. FEEL IT.

Sure, some of these forms of sports may prove to be unethical in some standards, such as greyhound racing, bull riding, some forms of horse racing, and even those old school rodeo pig-chasing competitions. But this stuff isn't what I will be referring to in this post. I'm going to refer to the power of friendship and how they make us stronger. I'm going to use the film Rocky as an example here. Before this memorable scene, Adrian buys Rocky a dog from her pet store so he would have someone to run with. When in shape, dogs will push you to keep going when you give up. If not for that dog, I don't think Rocky would have dared to go up those steps in the first place. Maybe not, but you understand where I'm going with this. Pets can be seen as workout partners and friends that help boost one's motivation when it comes to aiming high for something.

A lot of real-life athletes own pets and even support what I'd like to call "pet equality." A lot of them are advocates for animal rescue and often try to go for runs and play games with them. It looks rather obvious that many athletes realize the importance of having a pet in one's life when it comes to competition and management of stress.

Speaking of...

When it comes to stress and the usual struggles in life, these buddies can also make you feel better. I can't begin to tell you how pleasantly surprised I was when I saw so many Facebook statuses and Tweets about this year's Puppy Bowl. I won't lie. I'm a fan of it. I remember when it was a big deal in my house at first because the late Harry Kalas did play-by-play for it and I wanted to see what was up with that. Men, this program will probably make you want to punch a wall out of cuteness in order to gain your masculinity back.'s just totally adorable, right?

 Look at this. LOOK AT THIS. It reeks of cute.

Sure, it probably isn't the absolute best alternative to "Super Sunday," but it's definitely better than watching pointless television during the day.

My point is, the animal kingdom isn't exactly a stepping stone for the human being, but they're practically equals in their own right. Think about it: In sports, humans want to work hard to be the very best at what they aim for; with that said, our natural instinct is to work out and get strong enough to take down the competition. It's in our genes, more or less. Animals don't necessarily have concrete forms of "sport," but through their instinct, they compete in what they specialize. For example, horses run. Even though it's mostly human-driven, they're still doing something natural that is in their nature: running. When it comes to something silly like the Puppy Bowl, puppies play. This is their own form of competing. The last time I checked, animals have no conscience, so they just do what their instinct tells them to do. We--with the ability of having a conscience--see their form of "instinct" and call it a sport.

At the same time, we see their efforts and it almost forces us to be better at what we do. Not only is the human body an amazing thing, the body of an animal is just as amazing. Animals (or pets in this case) are constantly evolving. They help us physically and emotionally; it's a known fact. They truly can be man's best friend and man's best competitor. I may believe in the whole "circle of life" thing, but we're all here on this earth to help each other out. We're all here to get stronger and better in life, and we're all in it together.

I was going to end this with what Bob Barker used to say at the end of every broadcast of The Price is Right, but I'll just let him do that for me.