Glowing Globes Gazette
I am pleased and proud to present the first ever official Glowing Globes Gazette article. Thanks to Spanked Sweeties for the young lady with the glowing globes above. Our roving sports reporter Beth has filed her first report on the recent Women's World Soccer Cup.
In early June, I received a phone call from Debbie Downunder asking if I would like to work for Glowing Globes Gazette and cover the 2011 Women’s World Cup. Once I recovered from my shock, I said I would love to. I had covered women’s sports for the now defunct Bared Affair magazine and thought my days of sports reporting had come to an end. The fact that Debbie phoned me long distance from Australia also gave me the hope that Glowing Globes Gazette had money and that I might actually get to stay in hotels on this trip instead of youth hostels. I packed my bags and headed for Germany.
When I arrived in Germany, I presented my press credentials to FIFA. They were not very familiar with Glowing Globes Gazette, but when they found that I had previously written for Bared Affair, they were more than accommodating to my requests for interviews and access to teams. It went without saying that I would extensively cover the US team, but I wanted to check out other teams as well. The first team I touched base with was New Zealand’s Football Ferns, as they are called. As I had lived in New Zealand many years ago, I was especially interested in meeting the players of this team.
The Football Ferns
The New Zealand Football Ferns logo.
A group shot of the team.
The Football Ferns were playing in their third World Cup but had never even tied a match in their previous outings. This year they had high hopes for much better, perhaps even making it out of their group. Although they still have yet to win a World Cup match, they did get their first point, coming back to tie Mexico in dramatic fashion, scoring their first goal in the 90th minute and adding they tying goal deep into stoppage time. I interviewed several players to find out what the difference was for this year’s team.
Team captain Rebecca Smith credits the turnaround to an idea presented by teammate Ali Riley. Ali played soccer for Stanford, which was also the college well-known American star Julie Foudy attended. Ali had picked Julie’s brain to find out some of the American secrets. One of them was the use of spanking as a team motivator and for discipline. If it worked for the Yanks, why not the Kiwis?
Initially, some of the players were not too sure about using corporal punishment. Corporal punishment has been illegal in New Zealand schools since the mid-1980s and in the home since 2004. Many of the New Zealand born players had never been spanked growing up. However, New Zealand has several players who were born in the US to New Zealand parents, and they were more familiar with the concept of spanking. Some of the New Zealand natives had also grown up getting their bottoms smacked, and they also attested to spanking’s curative power.
Katie Hoyle was the first one on the team to embrace the idea, once it had been presented. She was no stranger to getting her bum smacked, as she put it. “Usually, Mum just gave me a couple of smacks with her hand on my bum or the back of my legs if I was doing something stupid, like playing soccer too close to the street and then running into the street to get the ball,” she told me. “If I got too cheeky to Mum, Dad would take the strap to me. Five stingers with that would cure my mouth for months and months. I figured if smacking helped keep me in line growing up and helped the Americans to two World Cups and several Olympic gold medals; it couldn’t do our football team any harm. I said go for it.”
Another big supporter of the idea was Anna Green. Anna was born in England and then moved to New Zealand. Her English parents are big believers in spanking, and Anna was quite familiar with the sensation of a sore backside while growing up. “Spanking can be a huge motivator. When I was growing up, Mum just had to mention getting the ruler to improve my behavior. Like Katie, I got the strap for really big things. The only thing that saved my backside after age 14 was a change in the law,” Anna added.
Ali Riley on the field.
Katie Hoyle training.
Brave and responsible team captain Rebecca Smith.
It's up to the coach.
During the team meeting, the Football Ferns decided they were tired of simply being happy to make the World Cup or make the Olympics. They wanted to leave their mark on the world stage. The next step was to approach their coach, John Herdman, to see if he would be willing to use such methods.
“Quite frankly, I was surprised at what they wanted to do,” Coach Herdman confessed to me. I’m English, so I’m no stranger to the concept of spanking, but I wasn’t quite sure about the propriety of me, as their coach, spanking grown women. However, the players were quite keen on the idea, so we established some ground rules and procedures. One thing I insisted on was that a spanking could never be compulsory. Also, if a player was to be spanked, there would always be two witnesses, and if the player preferred it, a woman would give the spanking instead of me.”
Coach John Herdman observes his team from the sidelines.
“As team captain,” Rebecca Smith related, “I felt an obligation to set the standard of conduct in practices and games. One day in February, I was having a really bad practice. I just could not seem to get it in gear. At the end of the practice in the team huddle, I told the team that I needed to be punished for my poor efforts on the pitch that day. I insisted that Coach Herdman spank me. Although I could see on his face that he didn’t want to, he agreed. Our team protocols called for me to be punished in front of the team since I’m the captain. We went in to the locker room, and Coach got the team strap that we had procured for discipline.
“We understand the Americans spank on bare bottom, but Coach Herdman said absolutely not. At most, he said he would punish over knickers, and frankly, I’m glad he feels that way. I pulled down my shorts, bent over a locker room bench, and he gave me ten stingers with that strap. I could see why the Yanks spank,” Rebecca confessed. “After taking my strapping, I felt clean and forgiven. I haven’t had a poor practice since. In fact, the work ethic that strapping helped instill in me gave me the strength to score that first goal in the 90th minute against Mexico.”
From Firmhand Spanking. A strapping similar to that undergone by some of the Football Ferns in the pursuit of excellence.
Hannah Wilkinson, who scored the tying goal against Mexico in stoppage time, is also a big believer in the strap. “I was never spanked growing up,” Hannah confided. “My parents don’t believe in it. At 19, I’m young to be on a national team, and sometimes it goes to my head. I haven’t always been responsible for taking care of myself when it comes to diet and rest. I’ve gotten the strap twice, and it has really changed how I approach not just football, but also how I conduct myself away from the pitch. It’s a pity that it’s now illegal for parents to smack their children, because I can see the benefit of such discipline.”
Two things are certain after New Zealand’s World Cup 2011 experience. First of all, the Football Ferns will no longer simply be happy to make it to the world stage. After their strong showing in this tournament, they expect to win matches at this level in the future. Second, and perhaps the reason for their confidence, is that spanking works and will be a part of the Football Ferns program for the foreseeable future.