What They’re Really Thinking: Hide the knives and rope edition.


Hell froze.

Pigs flew.

It snowed in June.

The sun went ’round the moon.

And now I’ve managed to slip into a treacly Vanessa Williams song when I should be slipping into “Crying” by Roy Orbison or “Everybody Hurts” by R.E.M. or “End of the Road” by Boys2Men or “Where’s God When I’m Scared” by the Veggie Tales.

The point is, the impossible happened and the Steelers lost to armpit hairs.

In the wise words of Tiger Woods, “I will wear you out.”  No, wait, I mean, “When’s the last time you got [bleeped]?” No, not that one either.  I mean, “You can always get better.”

Yes, that one.

And seeing how horrible the Pittsburgh Steelers are right now, and seeing how very hard they are digging in futility at the bottom, trying to get BENEATH the rock, there is nowhere for them to go but up and there is no possible way they can get worse.

Ugh. Game:

1.  Eff.

2.  EFF!

3. [sob]

4.  STAB! [Hiya, Ike Taylor voodoo doll]

5.  First person we need to talk about is The Boss.  The Man.  Mike Tomlin.

He promised to unleash hell in December and then unleashed nothing.

He promised to not go gently into the night and then sent his team to bed like good little kids on Christmas Eve.

He promised changes. CHANGES.  BIG CHANGES, PITTSBURGH.  I’m going to bench asses, yo! is basically what he said, and then he did …


A big giant pile of nothing.  Same starters.  Same stupid plays.  Same stupid mistakes.  SAME!

I believe it goes that doing the same thing and expecting different results is the very definition of “crazy” and lo and behold, Mike Tomlin HAS GONE KA-RAZY, because look at what he said after the loss to the Raiders:

Moving forward this week and beyond, we can’t continue to do what we’ve been doing and assume that that pattern of behavior is going to change and those outcomes are going to change. So we’re analyzing all aspects of what we’re doing here, specifically this week, and are going to be aggressive in terms of looking at potential changes in not only what we do schematically, but who we have do it in all three phases.”

Maybe he was talking about the phases of the moon or something because nothing is making sense.

It gets better.  He then said:

“We can’t stay status quo in terms of how we’re approaching this thing and expect the pattern of behavior or outcome to change,” Tomlin explained. “That’s unrealistic. That’s hoping. This is not a hope business. I’m not a hope-mentality person.”

To be quite honest with you, I’m getting so riled up writing this post that I’M MOVING MY LIPS AS I’M WRITING THESE WORDS!   I’m also typing with BOTH of my middle fingers sticking up in the air.  That ain’t easy, yo, but that’s how much I care.

I still love Mike Tomlin, but I’m having trouble remembering him as the Smokin’ Hot Burgher wearing the Sunglasses of Football Justice and instead I’m seeing him as, well, CRAZY!


That, or Carl Winslow.  Put away the crazy and bring back the hot, Mike.

7.  Because he’s a badass, Hines Ward played with a pulled hammy, dropped a potential touchdown pass, and of course, wept on the sidelines after the loss.  As per his usual.


SO glad I got him that pacifier.

Look, even his Mickey Mouse tattoo is all, “Talk to the hand, whiny bitch.” [gasp!] I’m being mean now. Meh.

(h/t Norm)

8.  The Special Teams of Suck continued their suck by allowing Joshua Cribbs to have another huge punt return.

Only good thing that came out of that was watching Daniel Sepulvedanomnom once again school Jeff Reed in the art of the tackle.

Seriously, if you missed this part of the game because you were maybe vomiting or something, go watch the video.

I know this is probably a weird word to use to describe Daniel chasing down Cribbs and bringing his ass down, but, DELICIOUS!

9.  However, I can’t say a bad word about Skippy today because he scored EVERY ONE OF OUR POINTS! Go get yourself some sluts, my friend.  I think Tiger might have some he’s no longer using.

10.  Mendenhall and Parker had less than 20 carries between the two of them in a game where the wind was strong enough to send Casey Hampton airborne.  Gerry Dulac, who predicted the Steelers would lose, wrote:

To run just 12 times in the first half and only 15 times in three quarters against one of the league’s worst rush defenses — and with 45 mph wind gusts — was inexcusable.


11.  The O-Line is gone. Vaporized. Or they were just holograms because the Browns were running right through them on enough plays to allow The Duke to be sacked EIGHT times. By the Browns. EIGHT TIMES! BY THE BROWNS!  WHO PREVIOUSLY COULDN’T SACK POTATOES!

How does that even happen?

I think maybe this witch had something to do with it.


12. I don’t know what more I can say.  It’s as if they gave up and bailed out of there like their plane was floating on the Hudson.


You are now free to move about the country, because you guys sure as hell aren’t going to the playoffs.

Next week.  Packers.  I’m fully expecting that post to start with, “LETS GO PENS!”


  1. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9. 10, 11, 12
    December 12, 2009 4:27 pm


  2. mis
    December 12, 2009 4:33 pm

    Every time Ben got sacked my 12 year old daughter would yell “Let’s go Pens!”

  3. butcher's dog
    December 12, 2009 4:34 pm

    Let’s Go Pens indeed. And I repeat from an earlier post: please, please, PLEASE no Tomlin/Hines Ward video messages during this year’s playoffs (the hockey ones, you know, the only ones to feature a Pittsburgh team this year).

  4. La Reina
    December 12, 2009 5:02 pm

    Tomlin didn’t unleash hell on the Brownies, he unleashed poodles. And kitties.

  5. facie
    December 12, 2009 6:18 pm

    I still love Mike Tomlin. He DID, as you noted, look like a seal. And he IS talking in some other language. I loved how after the game he said the team had fight or were fighting, or something that they clearly were NOT doing during that game. Thank God I kept flipping back to the Pens game. If I had to watch the entire 60 football minutes, I would have probably screamed for 60 straight hours.

  6. Carpetbagger
    December 12, 2009 6:47 pm

    So I tried watching last year’s Super Bowl, just to cheer myself up. And damn if the Steelers’ D didn’t give up a 13-point lead in the 4th quarter. I was like, “Damn, this thing started last year!” It just made me sad.

    As bad as we have played, if the special teams makes three tackles, we are sitting at 9-4 instead of 6-7.

  7. Jill
    December 12, 2009 6:48 pm

    They unleashed hell all right. They just didn’t say what KIND of hell they were going to unleash…

  8. Luke Steelerstahl
    December 12, 2009 7:10 pm

    I’m changing my name to Luke Penguinsstahl – because the Steelers suck to much even for me.

  9. bluzdude
    December 12, 2009 7:18 pm

    I believe Thursday night was one of the foreseen signs of the Apocalypse.

  10. Kevin In ABQ
    December 12, 2009 8:22 pm

    My 5-year-old, just before halftime, said ‘thirteen to zero? How are Pittsburgh losing to The Browns?’

    and, like explaining Christmas, I had no good answers.

    Again, in perspective: we’ve won more in this depressing season than Detroit in the last 2 3/4 seasons. And the last time we had a season like this, we got Number 7.

  11. Still A, Fan
    December 12, 2009 8:45 pm

    @4 La Reina:

    …and the poodles and kitties were wearing snuggies

  12. PA Girl in VA
    December 12, 2009 9:34 pm

    I was going to mention the fact that there’s no #6, but Ginny is mad and I am scared.

    I knew it was bad when I went to work on Friday and I couldn’t even make fun of the Browns’ fans. That’s a horrible feeling.

    Late Thursday night my facebook status was updated to say, “At least there’s hockey.” Let’s Go Pens! (I’m watching them now and THEY are winning!).

  13. JenOH
    December 12, 2009 10:15 pm

    I’m not a Steelers fan so please don’t hate me for saying this, but Ginny, you’re extremely funny when they lose so “What They’re Really Thinking” is very entertaining to read.

  14. Tony
    December 13, 2009 3:10 am

    Very simple equation actually:

    Too much passing + not enough running – crappy special teams = 6-7

  15. bucdaddy
    December 13, 2009 10:50 am

    Can’t win ’em all.

  16. Pa-pop
    December 13, 2009 12:49 pm

    Are you sure that’s Mike Tomlin and not the baffled guy from the Aflac commercials?

  17. typingmom
    December 13, 2009 2:55 pm

    Only 62 days until the Daytona 500!!! Nothing else to look forward to now. What to do in Jan and Feb in the Burgh?

  18. joe
    December 13, 2009 11:08 pm

    I’m telling you, watching that dandruff commercial playing just before they cut to Troy bundled up on the sidelines was like watching Bradshaw and Mean Joe on screen in Smokey and the Bandit II when it opened on that hot summer August 15th day in 1980, just as the 4-time Super Bowl champs were breaking camp toward a 9-7 record and a playoff season at home nursing the turf toe.

  19. red pen mama
    December 14, 2009 8:29 am

    Brilliant. I especially liked the Veggie Tales shout out. Funny.

    Actually, that picture of Hines had me weeping with laughter. When did the dirtiest football player in the NFL turn into such a whiney baby?


  20. bucdaddy
    December 14, 2009 9:38 am

    What to do in Jan and Feb in the Burgh?


  21. Lauren
    December 14, 2009 9:58 am

    What to do in Jan and Feb in the Burgh?

    Watch hockey. Srsly. More to life than football people : )

  22. Chris
    December 14, 2009 10:00 am

    ME: You know the Browns actually lost to Detroit.

    14 Year old son (eyeroll): We suck this year. At least we can watch hockey.

  23. NaysWay
    December 14, 2009 10:01 am

    Hey, I’m from Cleveland and even I know our team SUCKS HARD. That game was driven strictly by voodoo. Sorry ’bout that.

  24. Sooska
    December 14, 2009 10:24 am

    Me being an English major: based on the formal definition shouldn’t that be “poop-tainted cloaca,” or is that redundant?

    In any case, the Steelers fell into the cloaca and did not come up smelling like a rose.

  25. Pensgirl
    December 14, 2009 11:06 am

    Great post as always Ginny. I don’t know what’s worse – that they lost to the Browns or that I’m not even surprised. At least I didn’t watch!

    Seriously people, if you can’t find something to do in Pittsburgh besides watch football, then you have spent entirely too much time watching football and not enough time doing anything else. I enjoy the sport too and I am a Steelers fan, but for the love of God, there are PLENTY of other things to do all year round!

    Here are just the things I thought of off the top of my head, and not even including the Pens:

    – Plays/musicals/dance shows, from tours to local productions
    – popular-music concerts
    – our wonderful symphony
    – the Warhol
    – the science center
    – any of the other Carnegie museums (have you revisited the dinosaur exhibit since it reopened? HAVE YOU?)
    – the nationality rooms (have you seen the newest ones? Do you recall the originals with such clarity you never need to see them again?)
    – stand-up comedy
    – ice skating at Schenley, PPG Place, or any number of indoor rinks
    – Phipps
    – the Aviary
    – the zoo
    – Pitt basketball
    – high school basketball
    – the trivia nights that basically every city has now
    – hit up a new restaurant
    – drive somewhere ACROSS THE RIVER from where you live/work
    – classes at the Center for the Arts or the glass works or CCAC

    And if all else fails you can go to the movies, read a book (join a club), get off the couch and exercise, or play board games with your families (remember those people?).

    Pittsburgh is FILLED with things to do.

  26. Cnik
    December 14, 2009 11:40 am

    @Pensgirl…. sure there’s plenty of other things to do in this city…but unfortunately PennDOT hasn’t figured out that cold + rain = ice so the city (including the nearly nonexistent public transportation) grinds to a halt.

    I’d suggest the library too.. but apparently this city would rather build stadiums and dig under rivers than help to fund libraries.

  27. USCMike
    December 14, 2009 11:41 am

    Someone asked what to do in January and February, so I’m offering the following:

    (1) Assist Steelers with draft prep so we can find some cornerbacks.
    (2) Assist Steelers in their recruiting efforts to get a true offensive coordinator instead of one who’s just calling plays that are, quite frankly, offensive and painful to watch.
    (3) Teach the Duke of Fug to count to three after taking the snap and then throwing the ball instead of hugging it like it’s a casino hostess.
    (4) Teach the O-line how to block. Perhaps they can bring Faneca in over the off-season to teach them since we weren’t willing to pay him while he was here…

    I guess I’d be less bitter if I saw some true professional effort, but after watching the above all season, I’m wondering just what Tomlin’s saying during the coaches meetings.

    I’d have enjoyed watching Dennis Dixon handle the Browns rather than Ben and that sack-filled extravaganza.

    Maybe Ben needs a few more trips to the UPMC Concussion team, because it was clear his time-space continuum wasn’t the same as the O-line’s, that’s for sure.

  28. SC 'Burgher
    December 14, 2009 4:34 pm

    Wish I could get FSN Pittsburgh in South Carolina. Go Pens!

  29. bucdaddy
    December 15, 2009 10:43 am

    Say it with me, and say it loud:

    The Steelers of Suckitude!

    Embrace it, Pittsburgh.

    Three months/two weeks to opening day.

  30. Summer
    December 15, 2009 10:37 pm

    Maybe they should have put a river between the Pirates and the Steelers instead of a couple of parking lots … the suck has migrated.

  31. lovesthenorthside
    December 16, 2009 12:29 pm

    just now reading this post…am i the only person who had to keep looking at the last picture of ben and wonder he was doing some kind of thrust thing with his feet pointing backwards? ha.