Ice follies.

Burghers, brace yourselves.

The Penguins are holding auditions for an ice crew.


Some of them will be girls.


I’m assuming that half of you just went, “HELL YEAH!” and high-fived yourself in your cubicle and then toasted other officemates with lukewarm cups of Starbucks.

I’m assuming the other half of you just went, “WE DON’T NEED NO STINKIN’ CHEERLEADERS!”

The Pittsburgh Penguins will introduce a skating “Ice Crew” for the 2010-11 season – a team of energetic girls and guys who will help clean the ice, interact with fans and take part in other promotional activities.

Putting the crew on skates will add a new level of excitement to the Penguins’ game presentation as the team enters a new era at CONSOL Energy Center.

So, you guys remember how I spent that game searching for ways I could be hired to attend Penguins games?

And do you guys also remember that one time I wrote on OMG Pittsburgh! about how much I rule at sucking at ice skating?

I love to ice skate except for the fact that I cannot ice skate.

Every year I accidentally (wink!) watch some ice skating on TV and become convinced that I must have a natural ability to glide effortlessly on ice and perhaps even whip out a double axel or two.  How hard can it be?  It’s just a swish swish toepick spin spin land “ta-da!”  Cake.

So I go ice skating with either family and friends and each time I am convinced that the little nuggets of ice skating awesomeness that have lay dormant for three decades are going to burst out singing the Ice Castles theme all, “Bam!  There you go.  Work it, girl.  Show that Kristy Yamaguchi bitch how it’s done.”

“Nuggets of Ice Skating Awesomeness activate!”

But instead of suddenly whipping around the rink to the sweeping sounds of Please, don’t let this feeling end/it’s everything I am/everything I want to be, while others stop skating to look on and marvel, “My God.  Look at her.  I think I see stardust shooting out of her fingertips,” my soundtrack goes more like [scratch scratch scrape] OW! Bam! Crash! Ka Pow! Someone call 911.  There’s blood! Woo-wee-woo-wee-woo-wee.  Ma’am.  Can you hear me?  Why the hell did you launch yourself headfirst into the cold hard ice and then choose to break your fall with your nose?

Not sexy.

Since I’ll never be on the Ice Crew for my skating prowess, I have another idea.

Do you agree with me, Burghers, that it is boring watching hot, young, tight-butted girls and guys skate around showing us all just how tight their hot young butts are? Isn’t that what we have Smuckers Stars on Ice for?

If it’s excitement and entertainment the Penguins are looking for, what they need is the slapstick antics that come from putting people like me on the ice. You know, moms who can’t skate and who instead of doing ice crew duties spend their ice time crawling precariously over the frozen surface to reach the now-empty Penguins bench where they’ll try to lick the spot that previously housed Evgeni Malkin’s butt?

Or, imagine the entertainment that would result when one of those ice crew moms who can’t skate tries to steal hockey equipment from the bench and then attempts to escape security while flipping and flailing all over the ice like a just-born horse. Hockey magic.

All stalking jokes aside, here are some other fantastic reasons the new crew should be called the Ice Moms:

  1. Moms do a hell of a job at cleaning up blood and puke without batting an eyelash or holding back a dry heave, and therefore the Ice Moms could be used to do the little body fluid cleanup jobs in between Zamboni runs.
  2. For a mom, a hat trick cleanup is nothing more than a quick redding up of a teenager’s room. We’ll even Febreeze that shit.
  3. Moms are used to driving huge unwieldy conveyances while being surrounded by noise and chaos. We could take over Zamboni duties and do it with one hand while sucking down a coffee in the other and we’ll write, “We love you, Mario” on the ice.
  4. Anyone throws an octopus on the ice, we’ll make a quick, delicious ceviche and serve it in the Igloo Club.
  5. Moms are good at enforcing time outs for misbehaving children. Put us in the penalty box and we’ll guilt the player into behaving better from now on. Then we’ll gently pat them on the bum when their time is up.
  6. Moms are used to keeping order. We’ll take care of any rowdy fan with the simple use of a threatening expression, a pointed finger, and a mouthed, “Just wait until your father gets home.” Works every time.
  7. Moms don’t take no crap from nobody when kids are involved, and we would rain hell down on any opposing player that dared hurt our Penguin babies. [crash] [bam] [punch] SHIT. HERE COME THE ICE MOMS AND THEY HAVE STICKS.

And we’ll look pretty damn hot while doing it.

What say you, Mario?


  1. T
    July 12, 2010 10:11 am

    Great post! I am not a mom, but you’ve convinced me at least! We do not need cheerleaders, we need in between intermission entertainment!

  2. NewBurgher
    July 12, 2010 10:20 am

    I noticed they’re “interviewing” the girls first. Hundred bucks the “guys” portion never materializes.

  3. Kathy
    July 12, 2010 10:27 am

    Natural nuggets of talent, activate!

    Hahaha… love the 80’s.

  4. Carpetbagger
    July 12, 2010 10:31 am

    Strictly for educational purposes, here is the Chicago Blackhawks Ice Crew.

    And here. Hold on, I need to go get some more education.

  5. Suz
    July 12, 2010 10:31 am

    Are the Penguins going to exploit the Ice Crew for their, um, talents or will these be real union jobs?

  6. Rob Carr
    July 12, 2010 10:42 am

    I can *not* get out of my head this image of you trying a triple Lutz as halftime entertainment.

    People would pay to see that. UPMC Sports Medicine clinic might even sponsor you! “Whether you’re a professional hockey player or someone who should really stay off the ice, UPMC’s Sports Medicine clinic on Pittsburgh’s South Side offers the rehabilitation services you’ll need to walk again.”

  7. rose
    July 12, 2010 10:47 am

    you forgot to mention that you could incorporate your curling expertise into this!

  8. Ash
    July 12, 2010 10:47 am

    I am a mom and a huge Pens fan soooo sign me right up… GREAT IDEA….

  9. bluzdude
    July 12, 2010 11:02 am

    May be the greatest idea ever.

    At minimum, they could raffle off guest spots to non-skaters, so that the job would still get done, as so not to disadvantage our boys, but we still get the high entertainment value.

    Regarding the Black Hawk Ice Girls pic, I suddenly have an inexplicable yen for a Bud Light.

  10. Shane
    July 12, 2010 11:06 am

    What happened to the Delta Dental Pens Patrol?

    And not to burst anyone’s bubble, but I’d rather see tight butts.

  11. No Princesses Here
    July 12, 2010 11:13 am

    Love it! I’m a mom who’s awkward on skates too. Pick me! Pick me!

  12. Roxy
    July 12, 2010 11:48 am

    damnit it’s going on while I am on vacation!

  13. Sooska
    July 12, 2010 11:58 am

    ..and if you’re a hockey mom you can drive the players to practices and games. YEAH BABY. THAT’S what I’m talkin’ about.

    Ginny I am really laughing so hard. I am IN (though I can skate. is that ok?) I’d do ice bowling for free – no prizes necessary.

  14. Suburban Nor'Side Girl
    July 12, 2010 12:05 pm

    Didn’t really take the time to read all the above posts, but I get the general idea that I’m gonna be the only party pooper here. Personally, I think this idea is right up there with that Steely McBeam nonsense. And since when did Penguins hockey need “a new level of excitement?”

  15. NewBurgher
    July 12, 2010 12:29 pm

    @Suburban … I’m actually right there with you.

    I appreciated the fun made of the idea by Ginny (and it should be made fun of), but do the Penguins really need sex to get their fans to the games? If they do, they should quit playing.

  16. Yinzer Expat
    July 12, 2010 12:51 pm

    It had been a few years since I’d been to the Igloo, so I took my kids to a home game last spring. I did notice the Pens still an ice crew of portly (presumably union?) middle-aged guys in windbreakers and jeans. I thought it was a nice old-school throwback move…

    I assumed by now *every* team in the league (or at least the East Coast) had young little hotties to sweep up the ice during TV timeouts, based on seeing games in a few other cities.

    (Although Chicago definitely takes it to a “new level of excitement… WHOA!! Carpetbagger, consider me educated, especially about hypothermia!!)

    At the risk of sounding like my dad, I have the sinking feeling the new building will be generic, antiseptic, and completely lacking any unique or distinguishing feature, just like every other arena built in the last 10 years. Now the Pens can start copying all the same “promotional” and “entertainment” gimmicks every other team does, including a more “energetic and interactive” ice crew…

  17. Pensgirl
    July 12, 2010 1:04 pm

    I’m not sure what I like better, this proposal or the Puck Huffers’ retort to the Pens’ claims about the “crew.” Just goes to show even the supposedly tuned-in Pens don’t actually understand its (sizeable) female fanbase.

    If this actually happens, I demand the players also wear midriff-bearing tops (like the ones the organization is requiring female applicants to wear to the tryouts).

  18. OldNorthSider
    July 12, 2010 1:33 pm

    I smell a sponsorship opportunity here for the ICE MOMS…moms can peform all of the essentional job functions while ‘icing’ ourselves! Last week my 21-year old daughter and her girlfriends introduced to the term, ‘iced’ — a verb that conveys the act of drinking a Smirnoff Ice on one knee as fast as you can, following the presentation of the ‘ice’ in a clever manner. (Little did they now that I got iced on my 40th birthday ‘several’ years ago! :))

    I’ll get Smirnoff’s on the horn & pitch them.

  19. Beatrice
    July 12, 2010 1:40 pm

    After seeing the picture of the Chicago ice babe, I think this is dumb. Lot’s of ladies in the audience at these games — at least in Pittsburgh. The few times I’ve gotten to go to a game with my hubby, I love sharing the whole Pens energy with him. Hot chicks on the ice would be kind of a buzz kill for me as I sit there with my nachos and bulky jersey.

  20. izzy
    July 12, 2010 1:41 pm

    Oh, I HATE this……………yuck

  21. Magnus Patris
    July 12, 2010 1:49 pm

    We don’t need no stinkin’ cheerleaders (well, maybe the Pirates do), that’s what Hooters is for. I can imagine the Pirates cheerleaders, foam Pirates sword in one hand, cold Iron City in the other, always depressed, a little chain smoking action going. Maybe they can be called “Nutting’s Nuttin’s”.

  22. WI Pitt Fan
    July 12, 2010 1:51 pm

    I will have your back, Ginny- where can I sign up?

  23. Carpetbagger
    July 12, 2010 2:00 pm

    I only imagine the ‘Burgh version would be more family-friendly, toned down version.

    I think the Blackhawks ran an ad that read: “Looking for strippers who can skate.”

  24. who me?
    July 12, 2010 2:37 pm

    @Carpetbagger yeh i would hope so, but probably not. i have to agree with everyone who has said this is a bad idea.

    the first cheerleaders that i remember seeing at an NHL game where the ones at the Carolina Hurricanes arena, clapping and fist-pumping and exhorting the crowd to, well, you know…cheer.

    it is so corny and embarrassingly bad, but i suppose it panders to the demographic that modern sports franchises want to entice, so it will no doubt happen. blech.

  25. unsatisfied
    July 12, 2010 4:33 pm

    only if they’re MILFs.

    or, GILFs.

  26. Summer
    July 12, 2010 5:56 pm

    I can imagine what you would do to Scott Hartnell if he dared bite Letang again. The entire Flyers organization may never darken our collective doorway ever again.

  27. NewBurgher
    July 12, 2010 6:18 pm

    My main disappointment in this lies with Mario Lemieux. From everything I had heard I would have assumed he was a very family friendly kind of guy – but after this it doesn’t appear so. I wonder, how comfortable he would be with the idea that when his oldest daughter turns 18, she could be out there, in one of those sleazy outfits, while half-drunk 30 and 40-something old men leer at her. My guess is that he wouldn’t be that crazy about it. So why is it ok to put someone else’s daughters out there?

  28. VAgirl
    July 12, 2010 6:48 pm

    Love the ice mom idea, I can’t skate but boy can I tube! Drag me behind the Zamboni. As for the ice crew I am gonna wait and see what develops. Hopefully it will not degrade or insult women and if so Mario and his fellow corp may hear from his female ticket owners.

  29. tim
    July 12, 2010 7:57 pm

    THANK YOU, Carpetbagger. And I hope NewBurgher is right.

  30. DG
    July 12, 2010 9:59 pm

    Pittsburgh sports does not need cheerleaders. Period. I doubt it would even help the Pirates.

  31. balf
    July 12, 2010 11:16 pm

    it will be a refreshing site to se young girls, and even guys clean the ice and entertain when needed. it will be better than the old, fat , out of shape union idiots who did it before.

  32. Really?
    July 13, 2010 12:31 am

    I agree with Newburgher…as soon as I read that article, I thought to myself “They’ll never even have guys audition!”

  33. aunt penny
    July 13, 2010 2:08 am

    howza bout ice grannies.

    just sayin.

  34. 7000th Nerd Girl
    July 13, 2010 2:45 pm

    @the “no cheerleaders” commenters: they’ve had …what are they called? The Spirit Squad? – for a while now. They don’t skate or clean the ice, they just bounce around the arena waving at the camera and such. They’re pretty low-key as “quasi-cheerleaders” go, but they fill the same general role.