Wednesday, March 13, 2013

*Ahem* Toronto Marlies *tap, tap, tap*

Yep, that was my annoyed mom voice and mom toe tapping. So I went to my first Marlies game, it was very pleasant. I'm a Toronto girl and I cheer for my Toronto teams, particularly hockey. Yeah, yeah, insert Leafs joke, I'm a special breed of loyal and crazy, I know.

Anyhow, everyone was in a great mood, the bathrooms didn't have a lineup 40 people deep, concessions were better priced, and they let me keep my caps for my water bottles. It is in the middle of God's nowhere so that's a minus, but for the most part I had a great time.

There is one issue though...cheerleaders. Hockey...Toronto...cheerleaders. They were called a dance troupe, but it's pretty clear they're cheerleaders. Dance troupes spend a lot of time practicing and perfecting and while this isn't a personal slam on these gals, there wasn't much to write home about when it came to their dancing. However, their short shorts, tank tops and sneakers in an area where most people didn't so much as take off their outdoor gear suggested something else together. Because really, if they were there for their dancing, they could have wore way warmer clothes and still would have had to work hard for a sweat. So what I'm saying first is that I don't like being sold a line, just call it what it is, cheerleading.

Secondly, I'm a hockey fan, I know many many many female hockey fans coast to coast of every sort. Can we not go somewhere where we're not reminded of the fact that the female body is constantly meant to be on display for some men stuck in puberty? I cannot think of any place more redonkulous to have women dancing around half clothed and not have it glaringly obvious that this is sexist than at a hockey arena where it is only a few degrees above freezing. I get that the majority of hockey fans in Canada are male, but come on, give us gals a little respect. We're more than puck bunnies and the purveyors of beer and snacks for our beloveds on Saturday nights. Go to my friend's blog Tales From a Hijabi Footballer, tell her the Habs suck and you'll get a good idea of how much us gals love hockey too and it would be nice to be respected when we put money into these franchises by having a place where it is about hockey, not T'N'A and hockey.

Next, how many times do I hear that hockey games are a great family tradition. I dunno about you guys, but I don't feel like bringing my boys to places where gals are freezing their asses off as they swing them around for some insane reason (I'm getting to that). I'm trying to teach my boys how to respect women, and that's very hard when I'm putting money into something that has women in itty bitty clothes, dancing around during some scraps of time in a freezing arena. That's not very respectful to me! My 7 year old asked me why they were dancing around and why weren't they dressed more warmly. I couldn't get into a proper age appropriate diatribe there, but will address it in the morning, in the meantime, I'm burning off steam here.

And you know what is the crazy thing? I watched these girls performing, you know how much attention they got? Zip! I saw another thing, the MC type people started getting a wave going during a break, and it died the moment the game started again. In fact, people were pissed because they were distracted by the wave for a half second and the other team scored. I've watched the strange and funny creature known as the Canadian male. They do like the female variety plenty, but if they're a hockey fan and watching an important game on the tube, or if they are at the game, the gods themselves are hard pressed to distract them, nevermind some gals dancing in itty bitty clothes in a freezing cold arena.

I do understand that there are countless spaces inside a game to squeeze in a little more commercialism in, entertainment in, and I don't have a lot of problem with that, but I do have a problem when it crosses a line of being funny and silly (mascots, dumb contests, even the kissing camera) to being superficial and yet another place where half naked women have to be slipped in, to make money.

So other than that, the night was great, but it's a shame that an otherwise great night was marred by something that really doesn't have a place in hockey, it doesn't have a place anywhere, but considering this is affecting me personally and like every other Canadian hockey fan, I feel I have a stake in hockey and the way games, and the games around the games are conducted.

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