Mix in part American Gladiator competition, one part Maxim model competition and many tequila shots, shake up the hell out of it, and you have the spectacle that is the 2011 Cuervo Games.
I, along with three other brave Bleacher Report staffers hailing from our San Francisco office, jumped at the opportunity to challenge our physical relay race skills and keeping our minds functional amidst an onslaught of heat (99 degrees), booze (this is a Jose Cuervo event) and sleep deprivation. All in the name of representing B/R.
Our dream team consisted of (left-to-right) Writing Internship Manager, Max "Schwagger" Tcheyan, Deputy NFL Editor, Dylan "I drink Fernet" MacNamara, our agile Senior Content Producer, Jeff "Big Cat" Kneis and yours truly, Communications Manager, Aron "Chazz Steckler" Glatzer.
We participated in the first round of mayhem on Saturday, May 7th, in Scottsdale, Arizona. Check out the two remaining Cuervo Games if they stop through your town in Dallas, TX. on May 21st, and Tampa, FL., on June 18th.
Here we are in a post-competition celebration of Platino shots with our PR event party contact, Kellie Cunningham of Taylor Strategy. I'm not typically a tequila shot guy, but when in Rome, err... Scottsdale.
But let's breakdown what led us to the bar...
No, your eyes are not deceiving you.
Big Cat Kneis is getting vertical to start us off, climbing a slippery rock wall, braving buckets of water being poured to slow his ascent. Undeterred, Kneis flew up the wall to knock off rooted fake agave plants at three separate section to start us off.
Although we were guinea pigs in the event, competing as the first team in a "Media Grouping" prior to the event opened for teams signed up on the Cuervo Games Facebook page (apps.facebook.com/cuervogames), we did our best to show a model example to others on how to get it done.
Aron Glatzer is a pretty competitive guy. Don't mess with him when it comes to pick-up basketball, co-ed softball, Billy Idol karaoke or competitive dance-off battles.
But he has nothing on his American Gladiator "Bro" alter ego, Chazz Steckler. Steckler zig-zagged his way through an inflatable maze, under mission impossible wiring, up and over a wall before carrying this huge margarita across a stage. Humility is not a strong point of Steckler's, as he was the only contestant to give the glass sweet victory thrusts to celebrate his strong performance, before high-fiving MacNamara to start the next obstacle.
See Steckler's post-race interview at Maxim.com.
Those are real wooden barrels. I saw one guy's collarbone break later in the competition after being hit squarely between the shoulder blades heading back down these steps.
They're also inflatable, but weigh enough to knock you off balance. Dylan used his former D-III football moves to run complex routes up the steps to grab flags at the apex of the massive temple of awesome.
Later, we saw dudes repel themselves down in one leap from top to bottom, for you death-defying strategists out there.
Following another high-five from MacNamara, Max Tcheyan takes the task of anchor on team B/R with some serious bravado, and cojones.
It started with a long cargo net climb (made even more difficult with the loosely slacked way it was built), before Tcheyan needed to move across a high-rise routine of ropes and a couple foot stools from one landing spot to another. He handled it with ease, before we officially finished the race.
Rumor has it, Tcheyan took his same intensity to the El Jefe bar for the after-party following the event.
B/R is known to be on the cutting edge of sports journalism and technology. Why would our philosophy be any different when it comes to swag?
Here we are post-event, posing with one of the Maxim girls, preparing for the Maxim "Hometown Hotties" pageant that evening judged by a variety of NFL players, including New York Jets All-Pro, Darrelle Revis.
MacNamara nearly made the cut to host, but Maxim decided to go with names the crowd may have actually heard of, versus one of the true up-and-comers in the hotness judging game. Haters.
Rumor has it that the guys told several cute girls that Bleacher Report hired them as promotional models for testing in the top-5 percentile of hot v-neck wearers in the United States. I can neither confirm, nor deny, this report.
You tell me. Who has more appeal? The hot Maxim chick from the last slide, or Steckler in front of a mist machine?
I think the temperature outside rose to 102 degrees following this shot, true story.
Stellar taste in shades isn't the only thing B/R shares with the Lingerie Football League.
Here, the boys strike their Heisman Trophy pose with one of the members of the Lingerie Football League. Finally, a B/R slideshow with these girls that we're the center of attention in. About time.
From here, it was off to the bar for shots with Kellie and Jenna Rathke of Taylor Strategy, before starting the night off when everything opened to the public at 7 p.m.
I really like this photo. In the back, you can see a couple of the NFL guys talking with last year's winner of the Hometown Hottie contest.
In the front, you are seeing the Cuervo Girls throwing the finest B/R t-shirts that money can't buy. These were given away free to the audience, while the announcer gave the site a plug.
For a moment, it felt like we were actually doing work on this trip. From here, the evening took a turn to drinks, drinks, the Madden brothers of Good Charlotte starting a set by saying, "I hope everyone drinks a bunch of alcohol, as this will not be a very good show," and Big Cat being challenged to a dance-off by one of the cute bartenders.
The Madden brothers were right in their assessment, but the bartender was wrong in hers.
Don't challenge Big Cat to a dance off. Just don't do it. Don't poke the bear.
See you guys in Dallas on the 21st, and Tampa next month.