Friday, August 07, 2009

Hit Like a Girl-Put the Sticks Away Ladies

In regards to the Boston Red Sox, I’m not even going to go there right now. Doing so would result in intense frustration and clumps of my own hair strewn on the ground around me.

Instead I’m going to write about something that I find equally frustrating. Women’s sports. More specifically, any women’s sport that involves a stick.

No, not that kind of stick perverts.(Editor's Note:Oh,damn.)

I’m talking about women’s hockey, field hockey, and lacrosse. You know, those fantastically violent sports that, when played by men, have fans on their feet and spilling their $8 beers on the person seated in front of them. Except field hockey. Field hockey will always suck.

For those of you who are unaware, women’s stick sports are different from men’s stick sports. Let’s take ice hockey, for example. Half the fun of watching hockey is the fast pace and, of course, the checking, fighting, and ass kicking. In 1990, because women are frail things meant for cooking and baby-making, someone decided that body checking would be eliminated from the sport. Maybe it was because if women hit each other too hard our uteruses would be rendered useless and that just ruins our purpose in life. Anyway, if you body-check another player it is a minor or major penalty depending on whether or not the ref is PMS-ing that night. I can’t fathom hockey without checking. I’m aware that it doesn’t take much skill to throw your body at someone else as hard as possible, but you can’t tell me that seeing someone slammed against the boards doesn’t make you scream, “HELL YEAH!” Go ahead, lie to me.

In addition to being unable to kick ass, women have thinner pads. I assume this is because players are not allowed to physically touch anything but the puck, but still. I say, if you’re going to play hockey, which in my opinion is intended to be a bit messy from time to time, then play it right. Don’t play a man’s sport if you can’t play like a man.

(Feminists around the world are headed for my apartment right now…)

Moving on.

Lacrosse is another fantastic sport, and one that doesn’t get enough attention. If you have never done so, please watch a lacrosse game in the spring. The pace is quick, the players agile, and the sticks are not only used for passing and scoring goals, but for chopping at the arms of your opponents. As with hockey, women’s lacrosse is significantly different. Women playing lacrosse don’t wear pads. Why? Because women are delicate flowers. In men’s lacrosse players walk away from games with welts on their arms and legs from being repeatedly slashed during fights for possession. Women skip off the field and go drink a Manhattan. Okay, so I’m really over-exaggerating there, but when you remove 90% of the contact in a contact sport it becomes uninspiring.

Finally, we have field hockey. Actually… I’m not even going there. If a field hockey player so much as looks like they’re going to lift that puny stick above their knees the whistle gets blown. It’s the most maddening sport I’ve ever watched. I spent most of the game thinking, “BUT SHE DIDN’T EVEN TOUCH HER. WHY ARE WE STOPPING AGAIN?!”

Buck up ladies, you’re boring me. Women’s stick sports leave something to be desired. It’s almost as though taking out the contact takes away the passion. I’m telling you, there is no better feeling than slamming into an opposing team member, all your weight behind you, and hoping they hit the ground hard. Plus, it makes for a more interesting game to watch. No, I’m not neglecting the awe that comes along with watching a player with actual skill and finesse. But there are sports for that. Go play tennis, or soccer for Christ’s sake. If you’re going to play a sport with a stick, I expect you to use it.

Samantha Lewis is the author of "Hit Like a Girl". She is the Creative Director of Northshore Editorial in Salem, MA and can be followed on Twitter.



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