Kluwe's Sparklepony carries him back to Minnesota

Chris Kluwe
Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe, center, was one of the featured speakers at a rally against the proposed marriage amendment Monday, Oct. 29, 2012 at Northrup Plaza at the University of Minnesota.
MPR Photo/Jennifer Simonson

When the Pride parade headed down Hennepin Avenue in Minneapolis last June, the grand marshal was a hero of the GLBT community: Oakland Raiders punter Chris Kluwe.

The former Vikings player became a celebrity last year for his vivid denunciation of a Maryland state legislator who opposed marriage rights for gays and lesbians. Kluwe's vulgarity-laced letter went viral, and he became a popular speaker on behalf of the same-sex marriage movement.

The Vikings released Kluwe in May after eight seasons, and he signed a one-year contract to play for the Oakland Raiders. His new book, "Beautifully Unique Sparkleponies," is a collection of essays he's written over the last couple of years. He joined The Daily Circuit to talk about recent news on the marriage front and other topics.


NFL Player Chris Kluwe Shows His 'Beautifully Unique Sparkleponies'
Mr. Kluwe's particular talent as a prose stylist lies in his creative use of inventive swear words. The book's absurd title comes from a censored version of an often obscene open letter Mr. Kluwe wrote to a Maryland politician, Emmett Burns, in 2012. The letter, which was published on the sports site Deadspin, savaged Mr. Burns for his opposition to gay rights after Mr. Burns criticized another pro football player for speaking out in support of gay marriage. Mr. Kluwe reprints the letter in the book, replacing curse words with nonsense phrases like "BEAUTIFULLY UNIQUE SPARKLE PONIES" and "DISAPPOINTED LEMUR FACE WITH SOLITARY TEAR TRICKLING DOWN TO CHIN." (Speakeasy blog, The Wall Street Journal)

MPR News is Reader Funded

Before you keep reading, take a moment to donate to MPR News. Your financial support ensures that factual and trusted news and context remain accessible to all.