Five Questions for …

You guys know I love the guys at the Pensblog, right?  I mean, they are completely famous and they have a killer blog and they’re awesome.

I don’t want you to think that I’m taking issue with them in my latest post over at the magazine about Michelle, The Knitting Lady, who you often see on TV knitting in her seat at Pens games.

Well, the guys at the Pensblog noticed her just this past November and they wrote their game summary under the headline, “Who knits at a hockey game?”

Indeed. Who knits at a hockey game?

The writers didn’t say anything too terrible about her, but their readers had lots of things to say.  Some defended her, but others weren’t too happy:

  • Shame on the knitter, wtf? that’s some kind of message to the pens bench…
  • Have to comment on the knitter- she sat next to me at Game 6 of the SCF. We were in Igloo W for that game; seats on the glass. She was knitting then too. That pissed me off more than the Wings fan on the other side of me who tried to eat my hot dog.
  • it may be calming, but it’s also lame…knit at home.
  • All knitting supporters are jokes! There was a woman in my row knitting at the Pens/Caps game last season in DC and we thought it was quite fitting for some twatbag to be knitting at a Caps game. The fact that someone was doing it at the Igloo during the game is embarrassing; let somebody who wants to watch the game go and go knit somewhere else.

Outside of the Pensblog, you can find mention of her in other places, usually fans asking or tweeting, “Did you see that lady?!  What the hell?!”

Go read the five questions I posed to her via email and you’ll learn why she knits at games, how she became a hockey fan, and how she felt about the anger and insults directed toward her.

I hope it will help you understand her a little better and come to recognize her as a die-hard Penguins fan who likes to knit.

Also, I seriously covet that scarf she’s wearing in the second picture.


  1. Beatrice
    April 16, 2010 1:21 pm

    Wow — what a cool lady! Keep on knitting, Michelle!

  2. mike
    April 16, 2010 1:24 pm

    I was completely unaware of this lady until reading this post. What’s funny is that about an hour ago I was getting my hair cut, and the girl cutting my hair was describing how she always has to knit while watching the hockey game because it’s the only way to calm her nerves.

  3. butcher's dog
    April 16, 2010 1:24 pm

    Pensblog writers are OK. Most of the posters are haters. I’d much rather read Ginny and her following any day.

  4. Me
    April 16, 2010 1:29 pm

    I knit watching the Steelers (at home — don’t have tickets) but it calms me as well. And any decent knitter doesn’t have to look at the project to knit.

    It always amazes me how judgmental people can be about stupid crap that doesn’t effect (or is affect — I suck at that one…) them.

  5. empirechick
    April 16, 2010 1:29 pm

    “I am not texting, talking on the phone, banging on the glass, being obnoxious, abusing other fans, shouting invectives at the players…”

    Amen Michelle! The kids in front us text CONSTANTLY (no idea how they see any of the game), and the jackass a couple rows behind us makes the entire section nuts with his constant bellowing at the players, even when they are at the opposite end of the ice and don’t have a chance in hell of hearing him, even if they cared what some yayhoo in the cheap seats thinks of their decisions (E18, you know who you are).

    Knit away girl, and thanks for not bugging everyone around you!

  6. Erin
    April 16, 2010 1:31 pm

    Aw, I like her! And I wish I knew how to knit.

  7. barbian1
    April 16, 2010 1:34 pm

    I LOVE this! I may take up knitting, too. For crying out loud, if it helps with my stress level while watching Pens games I’ll knit for the Steelers as well. (:

    Good for her. Great, great story and boo to the people who don’t like her positive focus.

  8. empirechick
    April 16, 2010 1:37 pm

    PS: All the haters over at Pensblog are just jealous of Michelle because even though they live in Mom’s basement, they blow their allowance on videogames and Mountain Dew and can’t afford to get to a game, let alone sit in a luxury box beside Mario and the Genos.

  9. BB
    April 16, 2010 1:48 pm

    love it!

    but, for the record, the luxury box next to the owner’s box isn’t up for grabs…meaning, you can’t buy tickets to sit in there. the box is owned exclusively by pj dick & trumbell and the people sitting in there are employees, or friends/family of employees. how do i know this? bc my father in law works for the PJ and he has scored (and shared) his box tickets with us. :)

  10. empirechick
    April 16, 2010 1:54 pm

    @BB – Michelle says she was at Verizon Center in DC when she was next to Mario

  11. bluzdude
    April 16, 2010 2:26 pm

    There’s nothing wrong with it at all… it sounds like a good way to keep one’s hands busy. I’m a compulsive “fidgeter”, so I can relate. (I have thus far, refrained from bringing my Koosh-ball to any games.)

    I think a lot of the Pensblog commenter animosity comes from their thinking she isn’t paying attention.

    If it’s OK with Le Magnifique, it should be OK with everyone else.

    Funny though… I totally know her husband. We talk hockey in line at our work cafeteria every so often. I had no idea his wife was Knitting Lady.

  12. somecows
    April 16, 2010 2:29 pm

    it seems to me the important question here has nothing to do with knitting. i want to know how she gets all those tickets, and how she has access to all the players etc for the photos. mostly i want to know about the tickets. do they just spend a lot of money and buy them on craigslist or whatever? not that it’s any of my business. can u ask her, ginny?

  13. BB
    April 16, 2010 2:38 pm

    *DOH!* smacks head! that’s what i get for skimming!

  14. Sooska
    April 16, 2010 2:40 pm

    That is fan dedication in my book. Season tickets for Michelle!

  15. smith
    April 16, 2010 2:42 pm

    My mother in law is the biggest baseball fan you will ever find and she knits at home during games and doesn’t miss a play. At games, she’s too busy filling in her playbook, though!

  16. one-eyed dick
    April 16, 2010 2:45 pm

    OK, this isn’t much of a story. Call me when they start knitting in the penalty box…..

    And, did he say “twatbag”???? That deserves an 8″ Crystal Palace Single-Point #2 needle right in the eye!

  17. TripleC
    April 16, 2010 3:13 pm

    Uggh, now I feel like a complete tool. I would get so irritated when I saw her knitting on tv, and the sad thing is that I’m not even sure why.

    With that be said, you go girl, keep knitting away!

    Great story.

    Oh, and I wish I could afford to go to that many games.

  18. Al
    April 16, 2010 3:18 pm

    You know what… I’ve seen Michelle during TV broadcasts seated right behind the players bench and thought to myself “Who the hell would waste those seats by knitting during the game?!?!”

    Now I feel like a tool.

    Good for her. I wish I had some kind of hockey prozac to calm me down when we play the Flyers.

  19. Kathy
    April 16, 2010 3:22 pm

    I’m a knitter that knits at baseball games, so my opinion is colored, but I don’t understand why the Pen blog commenters are such haters. That said, thanks for giving her a chance to comment and tell her side of the story. Oh, and there was a woman that was knitting during the Olympic hockey game. A Canadian game. And nobody cared. So there. Haters.

  20. Lauren
    April 16, 2010 3:23 pm

    Wow. Her and I have lived reverse lives. I got my boyfriend (now husband) interested in hockey, and then we moved west to Arizona. And I can’t knit to save my life. And instead of finding a constructive way to manage my nerves like knitting, I scream, yell, cuss, and throw things at my TV. She is super awesome. I, on the other hand… : )

  21. Pa-pop
    April 16, 2010 3:40 pm

    1. I really admire Michelle’s dedication to Penguindom.

    2. “Knitting as anger management.” Love the concept. Wonder if it might work for, you know, oversexed football players.

    3. There are worse things one could do at a game, to wit, a famous bit of dialogue from the movie “Slapshot”:

    McGRATH: Reg…Reg, that reminds me, I was coaching in Omaha in 1948 and Eddie Shore sends me this guy who’s a terrible masturbator. Couldn’t control himself. He would get deliberate penalties so he could get all by himself in the penalty box, and damned if he wouldn’t, you know…[pantomimes whacking off]

    REGGIE DUNLOP [disgusted]: Aw, Jesus, Joe…

  22. Pensgirl
    April 16, 2010 3:59 pm

    Guys, you just have to understand that a lot of the Pensblog commenters anymore are teenaged (or not far removed) boys. In other words, they’re professional “haters.” The authors are clever and I love the site too, but much about their humor appeals to dumb, young dudes who have taken the “[insult] wooooooo” mentality to the limit and pretty much live to just slam everyone in sight. There’s no point in getting het up about what amounts to a bunch of kids being stupid. Just enjoy the Q&A and ignore the dumb.

  23. Karen
    April 16, 2010 4:13 pm

    As a knitter and a hockey fan — thanks for writing this Ginny! It is a great way to keep the hands occupied and yes, even a novice knitter can knit while paying perfect attention to a game!

  24. bluzdude
    April 16, 2010 4:32 pm

    Special added bonus… those knitting needles can come in awfully handy at Flyers games, to help keep the animals at bay.

  25. Jerry
    April 16, 2010 5:09 pm

    sounds like a helluva fan to me

  26. Katy
    April 16, 2010 5:27 pm

    I’m a knitter and a hockey fan and can totally understand why she knits at a game!

    Knitting is supposed to be very meditative in nature. Of course, my lack of knitting lately says otherwise.

  27. richrovs
    April 16, 2010 5:37 pm

    Knit away, F%&* the haters. Just stupid kids with nothing to do but trash what others do. What kind of life is that.

  28. babelbabe
    April 16, 2010 8:15 pm

    @Kathy – *I* noticed the woman knitting during the Olympics. I wondered if she was participating in the Knitting Olympics (yes, they exist) and what she was knitting.

    I knit wherever I can – it especially makes watching kids’ movies with my boys better. And, yeah, you’re not gonna knit Fair Isle while watching a movie (or a game) but most any semi-experienced knitter can knit a simple project and play attention to something else.

    I’m sorta shocked no one has yet offered to knit you that scarf – I love your blog so much, I may have to do it for you. but I have to finish the one I am knitting for my son first.

  29. Judy
    April 16, 2010 8:27 pm

    This is a great article! I’ve been wanting to learn how to knit…anyone know of anywhere to learn near Zelienople/Cranberry??

  30. Wendielu
    April 16, 2010 9:54 pm

    That is awesome, you go on with your bad self Michelle!!! Makes her happy, doesn’t hurt anyone else, and WTF? Don’t we all have superstitions? So, this is her “Thing”! Double like. Super like.

  31. Donncha
    April 16, 2010 10:42 pm

    Twatbag? What a thing to say. Shame on him. He’s not even worthy of being called a name in return.

  32. Bojack
    April 16, 2010 11:32 pm

    She’s Burgh Mme. DeFarge @ the red line guillotine!!!! :-)

  33. CarolineFB
    April 16, 2010 11:53 pm

    Many people knit at red lights! And it’s true, if you’re really good you don’t have to constantly look at your project so you can absolutely watch a hockey game! A group of us gather every Saturday night at the Panera Bread in Irwin. We always attract attention from the patrons.

    More power to her! Nothing like a pair of handknit socks.

  34. USCMike
    April 17, 2010 12:56 pm

    I got a tear in my eye reading this story because my mother, God rest her soul, knitted and crocheted through every sporting event we ever watched. She was just as amazing as Michelle and since my mom suffered from high blood pressure, knitting did calm her down and allowed her to get through some pretty intense games over the years.

    To think that there are these ignoramuses around us that think she’s being disrespectful to them or the team, I say Michelle should knit them a gag!!

  35. gunnlino
    April 17, 2010 1:38 pm

    I guess I’m late for the party, but why can’t someone who lives in Maryland have season seats?

  36. Kathy
    April 17, 2010 2:38 pm

    V — love the story – and what a great story idea it was for you to do it!! I totally agree with Michelle’s statement about not causing anyone around her any problems…if only everyone at a game could be that courteous, how much more pleasant it would be for all!

    You go Michelle!!

    And I agree with the others — they should be allowed season tix!

  37. Bojack
    April 17, 2010 2:52 pm

    In today’s UBER-NANNY mentality she’s lucky to even be allowed anywhere with her knitting needles!

    You ain’t gettin’ near S. Zappala’s office with ’em!

  38. bucdaddy
    April 17, 2010 5:59 pm

    More power to her! Nothing like a pair of handknit socks.

    There’s REALLY nothing like handknit tampons.

  39. jann
    April 17, 2010 6:52 pm

    “Great article. Hopefully those other “fans will quit making comments about other people until they
    walk a mile in their shoes…

  40. Sean
    April 17, 2010 11:02 pm

    Nice article! Plus, I’m happy to know that the cable guy in the Verizon commercials is a Penguins fan!

  41. butcher's dog
    April 18, 2010 12:23 pm

    empirechick #9 had it pretty well wired. One omission, though: some of them have to leave occasionally to go to the place where they pay minimum wage to say “Please pull around to the second drive-through window.”

  42. Amanda
    April 18, 2010 6:59 pm

    As a knitter, I totally understand her perspective. I knit through football, hockey, movies, tv shows, car rides, meetings, and my commute. It is relaxing and doesn’t require as much attention as one may expect it too. Especially a simple sock, which she typically knits during games. Thanks for helping us learn more about Michelle!

  43. Politicalpartypooper
    April 18, 2010 7:07 pm

    I noticed on your Twitterpated feed that you were discussing the awesomeness of your Pirates. Since I will not ever have a Twitter account, I’ll dialogue with you here.

    Your Pirates play my Brewers six out of the next nine games. Since we usually get healthy playing you guys, I don’t think it’s a stretch for me to predict a six game sweep. Having said that, you should be able to count on some decent offensive performances during that six game stretch. My Brewers, you see, have the absolute worst pitching staff in all of baseball, and by all of baseball, I mean Major Leagues, Minor Leagues, College, High School, and Little League.

    Rumor has it that last night, Ken Macha (our Pittsburgh Manager) shut the doors on his pitching staff and told them that High School Seniors could pitch the way they do, and they’d do it for FREE!

    Anyway, good luck in those six games, and please promise not to hate me just because we win all six. :D

  44. MM
    April 18, 2010 8:25 pm

    @Politicalpartypooper, try getting a Twitter account. It’s easy. Or try contacting her through email.

  45. Politicalpartypooper
    April 18, 2010 10:26 pm


    Nope, no Twitter. Won’t do it. Literally can’t do it. The SEC would have my balls in a bear trap (yes, you’d need something that big) if I said the wrong thing and caused a market crash. Not that it would be likely, but you never know. With a blog, I can remain almost totally anonymous. Twitter is more traceable.

    But I might try the email thing. Do you know how it works? ;D

  46. MM
    April 18, 2010 11:05 pm

    @Politicalpartypooper, perhaps you should try to the Contact Me! button at the top of the page. Certainly a person who is entrusted with such important information, as you seem to be, can think of a better way of contacting Ginny regarding baseball than to comment on a story that is quite specifically about a fan of the Pittsburgh Penguins. There are many forums for discussing the Pirates and/or Brewers, but this is not one of them.

  47. Politicalpartypooper
    April 19, 2010 12:33 am


    Am I back in high school?

  48. Bojack
    April 19, 2010 6:02 am



    Wrong table in the cafeteria??

    ps- email me, I have some great naked short-sell picks!

  49. Bojack
    April 19, 2010 6:09 am


    Thanks for pointing that out!

    Exactly where is the toilet for discussing sham, money-scam,
    carnival-hustling, fraudulent schemes, AKA Pittsburgh Pirates &
    the sleazeball Nutting family?

    As Larry King says- “discuss!”