Mother/Daughter Bonding Courtesy of Spike TV

Is it inappropriate that we bond over Pros vs. Joes? Thursday nights in my home involve a pre-midnight snack and the satisfying sounds of smug IT specialists, cocky gym teachers and loudmouth bartenders getting slammed, tackled, out-dribbled and outpaced on my favorite TV show, Pros vs. Joes.

I love how blow-hard, trash-talking weekend warriors who think they’re better than former pro athletes get their come uppance on the show. I think many women can relate to having to listen to loudmouths who think they’re pro-athlete caliber whinge on about their talents on the ball court, when they’re at work, in the elevator, maybe even at home.

So they take on these former pro athletes in simple basketball or hockey shootouts, football drills and sparring in a boxing ring…And get their asses whupped most of the time. Even though the Joes are mostly in their early thirties or younger, and the retired athletes are in their 40s! Love it!

Anyway, my daughter has started watching it with me, and gets a kick out of it too. And I can feel not-overly-guilty about this, because, unlike the increasingly aggressive world of junior sports leagues, on Pros VS Joes, you’ll find that:

1. Athletes whole-heartedly shake hands, high-five, hug or tap one another’s helmets affectionately after each match-up

2. There aren’t any stadium-side parents that run out to scream abuse at the other players or referees

On another topic, as much as I try to refrain from making too many broad strokes re: gender (OK, that’s a lie, but whatever), I honestly don’t think there’d ever be a Pros vs Janes because, well, that doesn’t rhyme, and also because if average women got on the show, we’d be standing around all like:

“So Gabrielle Reece, you look so awesome! You rock! I love your column in Elle! How many lunges do I need to do each day to get thighs like yours? And what percentage of fat is in your daily diet?”


“Brandi Chastain, you are a fantastic role model for our daughters. And, can I just say, your abs look fantastic. Do you have kids?”

You get the picture.