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A 'zine for your sporting scene

Friday, January 23, 2004

A column by Joe Scalzo, Vindicator sports staff
Do you lack direction?
Are you stuck in a dead-end job, with a dead-end life on a dead-end street in the midst of a dead-end metaphor in a dead-end column?
Have you always wanted to jump into the fast-paced, high-class, fun-filled world of Upland Bird Hunting, but sat paralyzed on your couch for fear that you might pick the wrong dog?
Relax. I've been there.
And I have the solution.
For just $24.97, you can get a one-year subscription to Gun Dog: The Magazine of Upland Bird and Waterfowl Dogs.
Now I know what you're thinking: "Joe, I hate to be skeptical, but I've been burned by so many other Waterfowl magaziness in the past. I'm afraid to open up my heart again."
Yes, yes. I feel your pain. But this one is different. For less than what it costs to buy a novelty flamingo mailbox, you can get six jam-packed issues of Gun Dog, filled with these exciting features that I couldn't make up even if I tried :
UWhat to do on your next North Dakota road trip.
UThe most challenging aspect of teaching your dog the blind retrieve.
UAnd, for you softies out there, a story on The French Brittany: Big Dog, Small Package.
(Insert your own joke here.)
Other options
Of course, there may be a few of you out there who don't particularly like Upland Bird Hunting. You might prefer a more relaxed activity such as, say, Paintball.
Well, you're in luck.
Barnes & amp; Noble in Boardman actually offers four paintball-related magazines, including Action Pursuit Games, which touts itself as the "World's Leading Magazine of Paintball Sports."
This is not to be confused with Splat Magazine: Paintball's Newest, Fastest, Hottest .... Splat doesn't seem to take itself quite as seriously as APG, evidenced by the fact that a healthy portion of the magazine consists of women in bikinis wearing paintball gear.
Here's a quote from an actual headline, "Let Dianah and her friends fog up your goggles."
(My guess is that APG appeals to a different audience than Splat.)
And that's just the beginning. There's a magazine for just about every sport you can imagine -- and that's just counting the ones at major bookstores.
Like trail running? There's one of those.
Like to go kayaking? There are two of those.
Like hunting and fishing? There are at least 20 of those -- including my favorite, a fishing magazine called Crappie.
Want more? We got more
Wakeboarders, rock climbers and rollerbladers all have magazines, as do skateboarders, triathletes and -- for all you wealthy, overbearing, live-through-your-kid parents out there -- figure skaters.
And, of course, there are golf magazines. Lots and lots (and lots) of golf magazines.
There are magazines that offer tips on how to improve your drives, how to improve your putting, how to pick the right pair of ugly pants and how to bore your friends with countless stories about how you used a three-iron to reach the green on your second shot on the 374-yard No. 11 at Swirling Meadows Country Club, which set up a nice 10-foot putt that dipped just right at the end, causing you to misread the line and lip out.
(Note to golfers: Nobody cares.)
There's even a magazine called Golf for Women, which had just one small picture of Natalie Gulbis this month, which probably explains why it's not called Golf for Men.
Alas, if you like NASCAR, you won't find what you're looking for in Barnes & amp; Noble's Sports section. All the auto racing magazines can be found in Transportation, which in my opinion just isn't fair.
They should have been put next to Crappie.
XJoe Scalzo is a sportswriter for The Vindicator. Write him at