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The Weekender: Highly sprung in Columbus

With the weekend fast approaching, take some quick stock of your current surroundings. If you lived in Columbus, Ohio, you’d probably be enjoying a bit more sex than you are now.

At least, that’s what Men’s Health would lead you to believe. Yes, their surveys and Top 10 lists are infamously ridiculous, outlining their case for which city has the worst teeth (Baton Rouge, La.) or taking liver disease into account when it comes to the drunkest city in America (cheers, Fresno, Calif.)

But this time, Men’s Health is on point. A 2008 report on the Most Sexually Satisfied Cities fixed its gaze on Columbus, which came in at No. 2—behind Indianapolis, of all places—and miles ahead of traditional hotbeds (!) like Los Angeles, Miami and Las Vegas.

Breaking news? Hardly. The report is two years old, after all, and any Ohio Stater is bound to admit there are more perks to being a Buckeye than dotting the “i” in the Ohio script during football games.

Can it really be just a coincidence that the Columbus Crew—those hard-working league originals known for lunch pails instead of loins—also won the their first MLS Cup in 2008? Doubtful.

The Crew famously toiled for 12 years in MLS before winning their first league crown. They lost Brian McBride and Brad Friedel to England. They watched a baby-faced Edson Buddle flame out long before he became today’s goal machine. And the Crew franchise itself tore down the North stands where the die-hard supporters laid their claim, opting instead for a concert stage that now hosts acts like Rascal Flatts and Kenny Chesney.

So imagine the relief Crew fans felt when the MLS Cup was finally theirs in November 2008.

Things have not gone quite as swimmingly in Columbus since. The Crew stunningly bowed out early during their title defense in 2009, foiled by a Real Salt Lake team few saw coming. The definitive moment came at Crew Stadium, where RSL scored a late goal to oust the defending champs.

This weekend, RSL are back at the scene of the crime on Saturday, struggling to defend a league title of their own and facing an unbeaten Columbus team few fans completely understand.

What can we say about the Crew right now? They have played only two matches so far, having enjoyed two separate bye weeks. They’re either rested or rusty. They’ve either stayed sharp against college teams or slipped off by not facing stiff competition. For his part, Crew coach Robert Warzycha is savoring that anonymity, saying this week that he’s happier outside the spotlight, letting Los Angeles and New York soak up the attention.

But this weekend, the Crew are front and center. Spring has sprung and libidos are on the rise nationwide. You could opt to spend Saturday night in Manhattan Beach or Manhattan, but an afterparty in Columbus is the place to be.  

At least, until Indianapolis gets an MLS franchise.

We’re Watching: You Don’t Know Jack
Nothing quashes pillow talk like Euthanasia, but Saturday night’s new HBO biopic on Jack Kevorkian is the highlight of the weekend. Al Pacino shines in his role as the Michigan doctor of death, with Susan Sarandon and John Goodman rounding out the cast for director Barry Levinson. Pacino, for one, owes us. He’s been largely cringe-worthy of late, forcing us to turn back the Netflix clock and watch Glengarry Glen Ross to remind us of the good old days.

Top of the Queue: Crazy Heart
With J-Lo highlighting another dismal weekend at the box office, abide with a rental. Jeff Bridges won an Oscar for his turn as downtrodden musician Bad Blake that should have gone to Colin Firth for A Single Man, but no matter. Lebowski’s, er, Bridges’ performance is the savior of a redemption film that’s been done countless ways, and done better.

Listen Up: The Black Keys’ Rubber Factory
The Keys aren’t from Columbus, but they’ll do more than get you through the weekend. Blues-rock, garage rock, electric Delta blues, whatever. Fans of all three genres are eager for the new album and second straight Danger Mouse collaboration from the Akron duo “Brothers,” set to release in May. In the meantime, turn back the clock to this 2004 release—perhaps the band’s best. I dare you to find a fan in the Crew Stadium parking lot who can’t dig this.