Originally posted on NY Rangers Blog  |  Last updated 1/26/13
Even today I'm still in disbelief at the Rangers decision to post their infamous "Girls' Guide to Watching Rangers Hockey." Hearing Rangers will now be forcing female fans to take a Blueshirts knowledge test before allowing them into MSG. Better start studying that guide ladies. In all seriousness, man you women were pissed yesterday. And I don't blame you. That was beyond denegrating. So to help with the healing process, I decided to post this response to the "guide" from reader Jessica M.: I am not a hockey player.  Never have been.  Like many male hockey fans, I, a female, do not posses the skills we so enjoy watching on the ice.  These facts make me no less avid a lover of the game, nor less knowledgeable about how it works.  I am simply a fan.  One day I would like that to be just a fact of my life, not something considered “cute”, not something I constantly need to defend the reality of.  Yes, I know what icing is, no I do not like the loser point, yes, I do think fighting is a necessary part of the game. My family has had season tickets to the New York Rangers for over 40 years.  I have been attending games since I was a young girl.  I was hooked immediately and deeply.  It has been, and always will be, my number one sport.  I have been to just about every game I attended with my single mom.  She introduced me to the game of hockey.  I was at the Garden for Matteau to wrap one around the net and to see Mess raise the Cup with unimaginable joy on his face.  After one of the many lockouts in my lifetime, I was there to see the Rangers raise the Stanley Cup Champions banner.  I won’t even go into all the rough seasons and moments I shared with my team.  I know what being a Rangers fan means. When I was in junior high and high school in the 90s I suffered plenty of taunts for my hockey fandom.  Some coming from those too ignorant of the game to keep up, most from other hockey fans that couldn’t deal with a tiny little girl knowing as much or more than them.  In high school I was taunted as a lesbian with the only reasoning being that I constantly wore hockey jerseys and knew more about sports than I did “female” pursuits.  Thankfully, these were things I could easily laugh off as juvenile nonsense. I went to college in Boston, a hockey town for a hockey girl.  Slightly more mature attitudes prevailed there and I could easily parlay my hockey knowledge into male adoration.  However, there would still always be the need for the pop quiz.  The test to prove that I wasn’t a female just faking it to be cool (and really, would I have picked hockey of all sports if I wanted an in with the majority of the male population?).   This indignity continued well through my 20s in bars from the Causeway to Hell’s Kitchen.  I’d like to thank all those inquisitive boys for helping me learn the type on men-children not to date. In my professional life I have interned for the Rangers, worked for the NHL, and run a free hockey program for youth in Harlem.  Love of the game has never been just a hobby for me.  There were certainly situations in all of those endeavors which made me question how much my sex was holding me back.  There is and will sadly probably always be a boys’ club working in sports.  That is just reality.  However, I have always chosen to believe that exists on a case by case basis.  There are opportunities out there for us but sometimes you also need a little luck to be working alongside the more open-minded.  I did a lot of travel to various NHL cities and organizations and all are certainly not created equal in their approach to employing and marketing to women.  Whether it be a team, league, or youth hockey program, women will have a difference experience than their male counterparts in the same roles.  If she is somewhat young and marginally attractive a woman has certainly had to hear the unjust attack of “puck bunny”.  We always know there is a little something extra we need to prove to belong. There have been several occasions I have considered writing something akin to a female’s perspective on being a hockey fan.  Write what you know and all.  The problem is it is not about some generic female perspective.  Some list of dos and don’ts that are more about how we look to men than about our own passion and experience.  Some anecdotes about how being a female fan makes us different.  The only way I feel different than my male counterparts is not in my reactions to the game I love but in the reactions of others to me. I love hockey.  I watch games constantly.  I have favorite players.  I hate the entirety of the non-Rangers contingent of the Atlantic Division and take great joy in each new Flyers goaltending joke.  That is a tradition that was passed down to me from my grandparents.  I did not grow up with a father or with brothers.  It was the women who really hooked me.  One of my favorite memories of my now passed grandmother is her constant insistence between puffs of her cigarette that Mike Richter had an incurable five-hole weakness and the Rangers power play was never gonna get better (oh how some things never change).  In my family we were all just hockey fans, male or female. So can we stop trying to be cute?  Stop making suggestions about how the ladies can learn better for their men?  Can we stop with the pink team apparel until there is actually a team whose color that is?  Stop with the adding of rhinestones and glitter on female merchandise?  Stop only making the really cool stuff in men’s sizes?  Stop putting horribly researched lists of hot hockey players in women’s magazines and maybe instead do an actual profile on a player and the sport.  Ladies, can we most of all stop doing these things to ourselves?  Can we expect better?  Demand better.  We are not female fans.  We are just hockey fans, so happy to have our game back on the ice, telling ourselves it will be just as sweet if our team holds the Cup in a 48 game season as in any other. ...amazing response Jessica. Way to bring the thunder! ...i can't tell you how many times I've been corrected by a female on the blog. And not once have I been insulted or embarrassed because to me there's no gender, race or religion when it comes to the Rangers. All I see is red, white and blue. To the Rangers credit, they have apologized for the mishap... Today's article was posted by a fan contributor. We determined article was inappropriate & took it down. We apologize to all offended fans. — New York Rangers (@NYRangers) January 26, 2013 ...if nothing else, the Rangers succeeded in stopping their fans from talking about how dreadful the power play is. ...to me this apology should end it. It was an error in judgement with no malicious intent. Time to move on. So how about that terrible power play? Remember to follow me on Twitter & Facebook or e-mail me at nyrfan94@yahoo.com.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Panthers owner Jerry Richardson being investigated for workplace misconduct

WATCH: Gronkowski refuses to discuss suspension, walks out of presser

Cousins complains refs unfairly target him on technicals

FIFA threatens to expel Spain from World Cup

Muhammad Wilkerson not traveling with Jets due to ‘coach’s decision’

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Floyd Mayweather says UFC offered him $1 billion

Porzingis: Knicks fans should show Carmelo ‘love’ in return

Pete Carroll, Sean Payton fined for going onto field

Hot mic catches what LeBron James said to Lonzo Ball

Carlos Santana reportedly signs three-year deal with Phillies

Browns GM: Anything short of competing for division title in 2018 'unacceptable'

Sports & Politics Intersect: Mr. Jones goes to Washington

The 'It's the most wonderful bowl of the year' quiz

NHL Weekender: Bolts keep striking, Preds on the hunt

Chargers are the AFC team no one wants to play in January

Donald Trump's quotes vs. the sports world in 2017

Five MLB teams that should trade for Manny Machado

The 'It's always chilly in Indiana' quiz

NFL puts safety entirely on players, again

Eight NFL teams who simply need to start over

Most important player on every team in each bowl matchup

NFL Week 15 Predictions

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Boogie, Z-Bo reach out and punch someone

Rangers News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Sports & Politics Intersect: Mr. Jones goes to Washington

NHL Weekender: Bolts keep striking, Preds on the hunt

The 'It's the most wonderful bowl of the year' quiz

Donald Trump's quotes vs. the sports world in 2017

Chargers are the AFC team no one wants to play in January

The 'It's always chilly in Indiana' quiz

NFL puts safety entirely on players, again

Most important player on every team in each bowl matchup

NFL Week 15 Predictions

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Boogie, Z-Bo reach out and punch someone

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker