Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Last Pink Rant (For Now...)

In honor of my 500th post and on the heels of a brief rantlet about pink hockey shirts, I thought it would be fun to go on a little tour of the league to seek out those truly horrific things for which they expect smart women to pay money. Because the problem here isn't necessarily the pink or sparkles (both of which, in the right place, aka not a hockey arena, are fine, I guess) - it's when the NHL insists on underestimating not only the number of true hockey fans who are women but women's intelligence in general. Selling pink crap to the so-called "fairer sex" is one thing; shamelessly talking down to them is another. Observe:

First up we have a pink tee with every woman's fantasy - a glitter logo on the chest. That's bad enough, but then there's the marketing language: "Look cute while rooting for your favorite team..." Yeah, because that's my goal when screaming and yelling, jumping up and down while surrounded by beer-bellied, mulleted hockey fans. Looking cute.

Incidentally the picture is an Anaheim shirt but this one popped up in many team's baskets. It's called the "Sugar Logo" t-shirt. Indeed.

And then there's this beauty courtesy of the Sabres. Oh, good, I was hoping for a shirt that combines pink, hearts, and the hideous Buffaslug. And once again we get the 'c' word: "You will look cute rooting for the Buffalo Sabres..." Vomit. Also available in Red Wings pink, Devils pink, Rangers pink, Penguins pink, and Sharks pink. Next?

Excellent - a hat, complete with the assurance that it "proudly displays the embroidered pink and white team logo on the front." Proudly? Not the word I would use for the pink and white team logo, last time I checked Stan Mikita wasn't wearing pink on his jersey. I could be wrong about that, though.

Now here's an interesting piece, despite the logo actually being in the correct colors. Ignore for a moment the emaciated model wearing this latest piece of crap, which is an issue for another day (and probably a different blog). My favorite part is how they try and sell it: "You will be cool and comfortable wearing this officially licensed Minnesota Wild Spaghetti Strap tank top..." Because I hear in Minnesota in the wintertime, it's really hard to stay cool. Especially in an ice arena.

Philly came up with an interesting way for women to shout "I love my team!" by rolling out these sparkly accessories for the well-heeled woman. Quote, "[s]porting these Philadelphia Flyers Rhinestone Flip Flops...will show everyone you're a loyal fan." Or something.

Okay, I know this isn't's just ugly. I am impressed that they managed to do the impossible and make an already hideous logo look worse.

Moving on...

Ah, the rhinestone-covered travesty. Most teams had this one, and I'll give them credit - at least they use the actual colors. In fact, if you pick off the all bedazzling these shirts are pretty cute. But until I see Markus Naslund sporting rhinestones on his jersey, these have got to go.

And of course, the beast that started it all:

So who got it right? Every team had the requisite tiny tees in team colors and the hideous jewelry, but there were a few things that worked. One in particular was a long-sleeved shirt cut for women in *gasp* the team colors. Of course, only 5 teams even offer this - Atlanta, Colorado, Montreal, Phoenix and Chicago. Fascinating.

Oh, and if you're looking for a female jersey, keep looking...I found one and it was a St. Louis Blues jersey, marked down because naturally it's the old style jersey and no longer "official".

I applaud the NHL for at least attempting to market to women, I really do. But maybe they should try getting some female fans, women who actually buy tickets to and watch games, into a focus group. Show them something with pink hearts on it. Show them your rhinestone-encrusted and glitter-covered shirts. Show them the *shudder* butterfly sweatshirt. And then, and here's the tricky part...listen to what they say.

Or what about this - send all the players into the streets wearing nothing but these and see how many women start going to games...just a thought. Ladies, you with me?

I guess I'll end my rant with a question to all you hockey fans out there, male or female: when you see someone wearing a pink, sparkly shirt, do you think "serious hockey fan"...or someone you're going to need to explain the meaning of tripping to?

I know what my answer is.


Chris & Sarah said...

Come on, you're missing the foresight that the NHL has about how involved women will become. Take the spaghetti strap tank top. Perfect for those roasting summer days playing street hockey, while dreaming for the off season to end and training camp to start up so you can spend those oppressive high heat index, igloo melting late summer early fall days in a nice cool ice rink.

WFY said...

I read in ESPN Mag that Alyssa Milano's Touch will be coming out with NHL, NFL and NCCA lines. She doesn't like pink.

Shelby said...

I will admit that at one time, I wanted the pink jersey. (That's actually physically painful to say.) However, I was very young then and can't be held accountable for my actions.

The Caps haven't done a horrible job, exactly. I'm actually fond of the sweat (or rhythm sweatpants, as they say) and the plain t-shirts and tank tops. If the PJs weren't really ugly and not of the Caps colors, I'd probably own them (because I'm a logo ho like that).

But, why, exactly, must there be pink alternatives to everything? Is anyone buying them?

Isleschick said...

We don't even have the option of many items because I root for a very unpopular team. :( I wouldn't mind wearing the "Women's Baby Long Sleeve Thermal" which is only for 8 teams.

Elly said...

Sadly, and while I am fully aware that there are female fans who just like pink, I see a woman at a hockey game (over 13) with a pink jersey and I cringe. I also feel that rhinestones are unnecessary on most things...or, rather, everything.

To comment on the rest, those shirts are just truly horrifying (especially the buffaslug one, egads), but really...I'd wear the the last Penguins one, haha. Maybe it's just because I like dorky clothes with big, honking logos for my team? And it isn't pink! It's a plus.

The Peerless said...

uh...."tripping".....that's when a gaggle of pink-clad hockey fans go on a shopping trip?

Chris & Sarah said...

And is "checking" what they do at the end of the "tripping"

Interchangeable Parts said...

CC, congrats on the 500th post! I've never understood the pink thing at all. I commend the NHL for attempting to market for women, but at this point, they should be marketing to women FANS, not the women who are dating/married to fans.

Biff said...

"And once again we get the 'c' word: 'You will look cute rooting for the Buffalo Sabres...'"

"In fact, if you pick off the all bedazzling these shirts are pretty cute."

Now you're just messing with us.

HG said...

Well said. Congrats on the 5-double-0. How was the cake?

The Acid Queen said...

Gratz on 500!

And your pictures are broken, so I can't retch errr revel in the fugliness of the "cutesy" garbage the NHL is trying to push.

CapsChick said...

Whew, I'm behind! Lots of comments, I feel I should probably offer some sort of response ;)

chris & sarah: Nice rationale. Employed by the NHL's marketing department, are we?

wfy: I never thought I would say this, but I just got a little more respect for Alyssa Milano. Her stuff's a little skanky for my taste, but no pink? Good girl.

shelby: You're in time out. Go sit in a corner...I kid, I kid. Youngsters in pink is one thing. I think my issue is with the women 40+ wearing these babies.

isleschick: those aren't bad, sans the little rhinestones. And I don't want to hear about unpopular teams from someone who's team has won the Cup a few times - at least you've got championships to back you up ;)

elly: it's not the whole shirt that's bad, it's really just the crap around the arms. Oh, and the crap on the front, but for a different reason! (There's my daily Penguins dig for you...)

Peerless/Chris & Sarah: okay, that's just funny. Good team effort!

IPB: True. Very true. Some of us go to games willingly, not because we were dragged by husbands/boyfriends, thank you very much.

biff: ...hush.

hg: thanks, darlin'! It was'll see it in a few weeks ;)

AQ: Thanks! Fixed it (I hope). Feel free to retch, er, revel at your leisure.

Did I miss anyone?

Elly said...

Haha, you mean the gorgeous logo of awesomeness on the front? (Although yeah, it'd be better without the crap on the arms. Who designs this stuff?)