After Eugenie Bouchard, the 19-year-old top Canadian singles player, won the quarter-finals at the Australian Open this week, CBC presenter Samantha Smith asked, on behalf of Bouchard’s male fans, “If you could date anyone in the world of sport, of movies — I’m sorry, they asked me to say this — who would you date?” Bouchard's response was diplomatic and patriotic: embarrassment and “Justin Bieber.” It was a pretty condescending question for a young, female athlete who had moments earlier achieved new heights in her career. But it’s only sexist — as many have argued — if no one asks these questions of men. And I wish more sports journalists would.
I read with great interest, for example, about whether Rafael Nadal had brought his girlfriend to the Australian Open — which he discussed in response to a question from Jim Courier following his first-round win. And I am equally if not more curious as to whether Tomas Berdych wants to have children with his model girlfriend, how Roger Federer and wife Mirka divide childcare duties (they have twins), and what diet splurge Stanislas Wawrinka most craved after his four-hour upset of top-seed Novak Djokovic.
The solution to the Eugenie Bouchard problem, for me, is not to to spare young women invasive personal questions, but to aggressively ask them of men too. (Related: BuzzFeed’s ranking of the top twenty male tennis players by hotness.) The lady-mag line of questioning doesn't need to come before or at the expense of tennis questions — but it is just sports, after all. We're not wasting precious airtime with foreign leaders. And many athletes (including Bouchard) invite curiosity by rolling their personal lives into their public personae on social media. In the glorious moments after winning a televised sporting event, men and women alike deserve the opportunity to float a long-shot crush.
Most Viewed Stories
Khloe Kardashian Sued for Sharing Photo of Khloe Kardashian
Succumb to the Siren Song of Unflattering Pants
11 Pairs of Unflattering Pants That Will Make You Look Ugly-Cool
The Most Depressing Ways The Bachelor Couple Have Described Their Relationship
Hey, Did You Know That French Presidential Candidate Emmanuel Macron Is Married to His High-School Teacher?
Joe Biden Went Off on Male College Students in Speech About Sexual Consent
My Big Boobs Look Great in This Plus-Sized Bra
The Craziest Mom I Ever Met Was Obsessed With Being Popular
Kim Kardashian Talks Caitlyn Jenner’s ‘Hurtful’ Memoir, Says Paris Robbery Was ‘Meant to Happen’
A Snazzy White Blouse With a Colorful Purse Is a Good Look
The Cut’s Latest Love and War FeaturesA Holiday Season Weekend Through London
A good guide for avid The Crown fans.It’s About Time You Learned Tove Lo’s Name
The singer has crafted pop hits you’ve heard a thousand times by now.Marina Abramovic Has Outlasted Her Lovers and, She Hopes, Her Critics
The world's most famous performance artist at 70.The Wing: Do Women Still Need a Space of Their Own?
This exclusive social club for women, is part sorority, part start-up.In Virtual Reality, Women Run the World
A new generation of female artists is making VR the most diverse corner of the male-dominated tech space.The Novelist Disguised As a Housewife
Shirley Jackson wrote 17 books while raising four children — and she couldn't have had a successful career without them.Ava DuVernay on Hollywood Racism, Modern-Day Slavery, and Why She’s Still an Optimist
The director, whose new documentary The 13th chronicles America’s history of racial subjugation, talks to Rebecca Traister about Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, and the modern criminal-justice system.What No One Tells Couples Trying to Conceive
It helps to be rich.The Hidden Black Women Who Helped Win the Space Race
A segregated unit of mathematicians born of desperation during World War II became the secret to NASA’s success.Slut-Shaming Squids Are Everywhere
The “Bermuda Square” comic strip is back.
The collaboration that dreams are made of.Good Morning America Host Amy Robach Apologizes for Saying ‘Colored People’ on Air
She quickly apologized.Unknown NFL Player Tries to Get Attention by Asking Aly Raisman Out in Video
That’s one way to do it.Don’t Mess This Up, Mischa Barton
Marissa Cooper is poised for a comeback ... maybe.California Votes to Remove Time Limit on Prosecuting Rape Cases
In light of the Bill Cosby case.Beyoncé’s Behind-the-Scenes Lemonade Photos Belong in a Museum
She had the "Boycott Beyoncé" sign already in formation on set.The Rise of the Male Celebrity Full-Frontal
An ex-publicist explains.Gabby Douglas Will Be a Miss America Judge
The gold-medal gymnast will help choose the 2017 pageant winner.Camille Becerra’s Photo Diary of Rockaway Beach
An ideal trip to add and cross off your summer bucket list.Sorry Nerds, Ian McKellen Won’t Officiate Your Expensive Lord of the Rings–Themed Wedding
Not even for $1.5 million.