I read a very interesting article titled ‘The Truth About Being A Female Hockey Fan’. It talks about what it’s like to be a woman non-athlete in the hockey world. While it’s well written and I agree with most of it, I must say that most of my sports friends are females. They truly enjoy the game for the sport. Hockey is, in my personal experience, the most open when it comes to female fans. Especially compared to football, basketball, and any other sport. We have a couple of pages on Facebook that are for ladies only and are very active. Most of the content are things like the player biographies of the past and present, biographies of a Hall Of Famer of the week, highlight reels, and trivia questions. Girls often come on them to simply ask a question about a rule or something they’re having a problem understanding because if they ask on any of themain team or hockey pages, they are made out to be stupid and get heckled. Though I’ve been a fan of the sport since the Tampa Bay Lightning franchise came to life in my home town, it’s only been the past couple of years that I’ve come to actually learn the rules. I’m a ‘ya gotta see it to understand it’ kinda gal. The NHL games move so fast that it is hard to learn from watching them. I didn’t want to ask anyone or post a question on the internet because I didn’t want to feel stupid. I attended local beer league games with friends who didn’t judge me on my lack of knowledge, and explained the details of the rules to me as events happened in the game.
The article that I read brought up media and commercials geared toward men. If you watch a soap opera or a game show, most of the commercials are marketed towards housewives. Cleaning products, make-up, and diapers. During sports the commercials are usually about beer and food.I love a cold beer once in a while during a game. Look at the ‘Go Daddy’ adds that air during NASCAR. Seeing Danica Patrick tease about taking off her clothes does nothing for me. It down right aggravates me. There are a ton of female NASCAR fans. You don’t see Jimmy teasing about showing his Johnson or Denny Hamlin in a speedo flirting with a girl as he brings her a bottle of Bud. You will see, however, a girl with long flowing hair and big breasts in a bikini bring a guy a cold one.
That leads me to my next point from the Yahoo article. There aren’t many woman sports announcers or journalists who are taken seriously. There are a few like Erin Andrews. She knows her sports and she’s absolutely beautiful. How many older, overweight, or non-attractive looking females do you see covering a sport professionally? I can name quite a few men who are older, overweight, or not attractive at all to look at who are all over sports media. Who cares what they look like? If they are knowledgeable of the game then I say let the go for it! We as women have to work twice as hard to get anywhere in the sports world. My dream is to get full media credentials, be able to hear the interviews, and interview players myself. Honestly it wouldn’t affect me if I was in the locker room for post practice and/or game interviews with sweat, stinky men who might possibly be walking around in their underwear or even naked. I’m a happily married woman and could care less what the guys are or are not wearing. All I care about is being taken seriously and being given a fair chance at real sports journalism.
As a woman we can’t have a favorite player. God-forbid we smile at one or ask to have a picture with him. Don’t try to talk to a player because that means that we are flirting. (yes, I’m being sarcastic.) There are the idiots that make us look stupid like the ‘puck bunnies’ who dress like ladies of the night to go a game, flirt with the guys, give them their phone numbers, and hold up signs saying ‘Will you marry me?’ They, and sites like While The Men Watch make it hard for us to be taken seriously. (I’ve said my thoughts on that website before.) Don’t get me wrong, they are entitled to their opinions. It does make the majority base us as females on those few air-heads.
I have covered what it’s like from my point of view to be a female fan and what it’s like to be a female sports writer. Not just hockey, but sports in general. I’m not a feminist or anything like that, and I know that not all men judge us that way. I simply wanted to make the point that as women we want to be treated fairly. Reading that article brought me back to the 2011 Lightning playoff run when a guy actually told me that I belonged in a kitchen and that I didn’t know what icing was, aside something that i put on a cake. In the same respect, I do not judge a guy’s manhood if he isn’t into sports.
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