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Gary Hall Jr.: There's no crying in hockey

February 18, 2010 | 10:47 am

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Q: When do you see a hockey player cry?

A: When it’s a girl.

“There’s no crying in baseball!”
 
        -- Tom Hanks in "A League of Their Own"
 
You might be a sexist if you think girls are more prone to crying.

In my opinion baseball players are vain, un-athletic and emotional sissies compared with hockey players. I said, compared with hockey players -- so don’t freak out about that comment, in some kind of steroid rage, if you’re a baseball player. Swimmers are pretty high up on the sissy list too. Baseball players can take consolation in that,and their steroid-laced Doritos.

I’ve never seen a hockey player cry before. I’ve also never seen a male hockey player with all of his teeth. Male hockey players outside of the net sometimes wear a protective eye shield. On the other hand, the female hockey players wear a face mask that covers the entire face and they all seem to have a full set of teeth.

Do the female hockey players wear a mask because they value their face and teeth more than their male counterparts? Is it too vain for male hockey players to wear the entire face mask or is the toothless/broken nose look a badge of honor for these hockey-playing tough guys? If it is too vain for male hockey players to wear a full mask then are female hockey players vain? Or is it a double standard or Olympic rule for the fairer gender?

Could it be that if you have all of your teeth you’re more prone to crying? Because I saw a hockey player with all of her teeth cry at the Olympics. It wasn’t stifled crying either. It was like a Johnny Weir just broke a fingernail type of crying.

We love you, Johnny. Somewhere in the “smart” part of my brain I know that it’s OK to cry, whether you are male or female. However, I did NOT know that hockey players cried. I never before questioned if hockey players cried. I just assumed they did not.

Because I am not a sexist.
 
These are the types of thoughts that circulate in the mind of an unstable orangutan, which is why I get along so well with unstable, teeth-missing orangutans. So many questions I have, so much confusion.

 -- Gary Hall Jr.

The Times is pleased to have Gary Hall Jr. blogging for us during the Olympics. Hall has represented the United States in international swimming competition for 16 years, racing in three Olympics and earning 10 medals. This experience built a global network of media, corporate and political contacts that came to his support when he was diagnosed with Type 1, or insulin-dependent, diabetes. Gary has served as a diabetes advocate and consultant to some of the largest companies in the diabetes industry, including Johnson & Johnson's LifeScan division, Novo Nordisk, BD Medical and Eli Lilly & Co. He has testified before Congress on healthcare issues, campaigned for diabetes awareness and headed patient outreach programming, education initiatives and fundraising efforts for important diabetes research. Hall currently serves as the director of  business development for B2d Marketing, a leader in business-to-doctor marketing and business development.

Photo: Are there tears behind those masks? Credit: Luis Acosta, AFP/Getty Images.

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