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Gay flag football, not Rick Perry, brings much-needed rain to Houston

Maybe God does listen to the gays. Houston -- like the rest of Texas -- is in the middle of a terrible drought and in April, Gov. Rick Perry issued a proclamation officially praying for rain. His prayers were ignored, the drought continued and then Gay Bowl XI came to town this weekend. Sunday saw the city deluged with 3 inches of rain, the most in 16 months. You're welcome, Houston.

What was good for the lawns and reservoirs of Houston, though, was bad for the 26 teams assembled for the Gay Bowl, held by the National Gay Flag Football League. The rain and -- more importantly from a safety standpoint -- the accompanying lightning caused cancellation of Sunday's action, wiping out all the consolation and championship games (see video of the flooded fields after the jump).

The result is that for the first time in the event, there is no champion. The most disappointed were players from the four semifinal teams in the championship bracket -- the New York Warriors, Phoenix Hellraisers, San Diego Bolts and San Diego Toros. As one San Diego player told me, it was three months of practice and hard work for nothing.

My team, the L.A. Motion, lost to the Warriors in the quarterfinals, yet technically will enter the 2012 event as defending champions; it was a hollow consolation for our team and a group of us gave a mock toast to our "title defense" as we sat in a sports bar with the rain pouring down. We then named Mother Nature as team MVP.

Besides Houston, the Gay Bowl has had a history of weird weather -- a cold pounding rain in Boston in 2003, record heat in New York in 2007 and the coldest Oct. 11 in Salt Lake City history in 2008. Next year's event is in late September in Denver, so expect a blizzard following by a plague of locusts.