WE WIN! WE WIN!: Manuel [above], manager of the bulls, celebrates the team's first championship killing in 14 years. "We're the fucking Yankees of bull running!" shouted another bull.
The long championship drought that has subjected Spain's bulls to years of ridicule, last-place finishes and snickering remarks about "how could that nation even ever get an Armada together?", is over: a bull finally got a human at the annual running of the bulls at the San Fermin festival in Pampalona, Spain today.
"I haven't been this happy since Mad Cow disease was discovered," joked Manuel, manager of the bulls and one of the few competitors in the 2009 race who also participated in the last fatal goring of a human, back in 1995. "Hell, I was only a steer back then," Manuel joked. "I thought you got one [a human victim] every year. That's what I tell the young [bulls] every year: if you get one [a human], enjoy it: it may be the last one you'll ever get."
Manuel credited the victory to Cappucino, a strapping bull who fell to the ground early in the race, and thus separated from the pack. Once he got back onto his feet, Cappucino managed to secure victory by goring the human in the neck and lung. As victorious bulls celebrated all around, the dying human lay on a stretcher, his face and neck stained with blood and his eyes only half-open - all as an emergency medical worker futilely tried to staunch the blood with a Q-tip, and the stadium sound system blasted ABBA's The Winner Takes it All.
The victory for the bulls was their first since 1995, when a 22-year old human specimen was gored to death. Long-time bull run fans remember, though, the long-disputed 2003 championship when - in Manuel's first year as manager - he himself managed to trample a 63-year old human, landing the human in a coma. While the 'kill' finally up and died a month later, having never come out of his coma, Major League Bull Running ruled that the bulls could not be credited with a championship, as the human hadn't died during the actual running. "We were fucking robbed," said Manuel at the time.
Not on Friday. While it is unknown over the hundreds of years how many times a human has been bagged, MLBR began record-keeping in 1924, and Friday's championship marked the 15th kill for the bulls. "We're the fucking Yankees of bull running!" screamed a bull named Ishmael.
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