Whenever there is an international women’s sports competition that Americans win, the press announces the late breaking news that:
Women Athletes Are, For the First Time Ever, Cultural Heroes and Will Finally Be Getting To Do Endorsements.
And then, being a guy sports fan with a good memory, I always ask questions like: What about all the women jocks who did tons of commercials when I was young, like tennis player Chris Evert or golfer Nancy Lopez, or those two lady jockeys who were everywhere in ads in the mid-1970s? What about when US Olympic swimmer Gertrude Ederle got a ticker tape parade down Broadway in 1926 for setting an (all-sexes) record in swimming the English Channel?
But what I now realize is that the vast majority of women are less nostalgic about the past than are men. Women are more interested in fashion and the new.
And, of course, sports nostalgia differs by orders of magnitude between the sexes.
So, men have sports icons who take generations to fade from fame: e.g., Ted Williams, Arnold Palmer, Wilt, Sandy Koufax, O.J., Bird, Gretzky, Jordan, etc. (E.g., go look in a convenience store at all the Arnold Palmer beverages.)
The most male thing anybody ever said is Walter Sobchak’s line from The Big Lebowski:
Three thousand years of beautiful tradition, from Moses to Sandy Koufax, you’re goddamn right I’m living in the f—-ing past!