(Note: When you're reading this thing, please don't send us nasty e-mails saying we have no right to play God with your jersey, tell you how to spend your money or how we're full of it. We know we have no right to play God with your jersey, tell you how to spend your money and that we're full of it. We're just trying to have fun. You should too.)
Almost nine months ago, we issued a set of decrees that impacted the free world in a way only the Magna Carta could rival. We of course are talking about the now legendary Jersey Foul Bill of Rights.
From that moment on, anyone who wore a hockey jersey was subject to a set of clear cut rules. Some were followed without question. While others, such as the sixth amendment (AKA The Hood Rule) created nothing but unscrupulous controversy.
So with that in mind, we are now offering a series of additional amendments that will hopefully alleviate some of fuzzy parts of the original ten and to address any fouls we overlooked back in December:
11.) Tuck Rule
This was perhaps our biggest oversight with the Jersey Foul Bill of Rights. Tucking a jersey in. Unless you're Wayne Gretzky and you want to free up your right hip to shoot, you can under no circumstances tuck your jersey in. It just doesn't work that way. We feel kind of stupid even having to spell it out in this forum. It's just that obvious.
Under no circumstances can you wear a jersey and another piece of clothing with another team's logo from another sport. Don't ask why. You just can't. The primary reason for this rule is the clash of colors. It's not that big of a deal here in Pittsburgh given that our professional teams are primarily black and gold, but could you imagine living in Philadelphia and wearing a rust red Phillies hat and a Flyers' jersey? Just one article of clothing from that pit of hog slop is bad enough.
13.) Pop culture exemption
Fictional jerseys from movies or other media are permitted under any circumstances provided the jersey you are wearing is of the sporting event you are attending. If you have a Lester Averman, John Biebe or Tim "Dr. Hook" McCracken jersey, feel free to wear it without any trouble.
14.) Creative control
We've been watching HBO's "Hard Knocks" which has been profiling the Cincinnati Bengals over the course of the past month. Bengals wide receiver Chad Johnson Ochocino said one of the smartest things we've ever heard during the latest episode. "Just because you have money doesn't mean you have to spend it." So with that in mind, just because you can spend $170 on a Capitals jersey that gives us your opinion of Sidney Crosby's skills, doesn't mean you should.
Note: Should you be able to get some free schwag from the object of your scorn, you are granted an exemption.
15.) The Hiding Hood - Clarification
Easily the most controversial of the original 10 amendments of the Jersey Foul Bill of Rights, (We believe the National Hood-Wearing Association is considering not holding its 2011 convention in Pittsburgh out of protest), the hood rule needs a bit of a clarification. The rule is not an issue if:
- You have a jersey with a name on it. If your jersey is blank. You're not obstructing anyone's name. No harm, no foul.
- You've managed to position your hood in a way that it's not blocking the name. See the above photo.
- You're actually wearing your hood and therefore not blocking the name.
The whole point of the rule is to prevent the obstruction of the name on the back. If you can manage to avoid that sin, you're in the clear. If you're wearing a Milan Kraft jersey, that's probably more of a life foul.
16.) Youth exemption
If you're under 18, you're exempt from all rules. If you're not old enough to buy tobacco or vote, we can't expect you to know all the rules.
17.) Bad sports
This one is pretty simple. At a hockey game? Wear a hockey jersey. At a baseball game? Wear a baseball jersey. At a football game? Wear a football jersey.
We love patches. They add distinction to jerseys. They say you remember a certain season or a certain series. They can display how sharp of a fan you are. But when you recklessly put them on a jersey they display your ignorance. When you get a patch, do a little research. Make sure the patch you're getting belongs on the jersey you have. In other word, don't get a Stanley Cup Final patch on your blue throwback. The team never wore that patch with that jersey. You shouldn't either.
19.) Robitaille Rule
If you have a Luc Robitaille Penguins jersey, you just rule.
Robitaille was only a member of the franchise for one short season - the 1994-95 season which was shortened by a lockout - but he was one of the team's top players during that time. And he almost helped them win that one Stanley Cup title against the Blackhawks. One of the downfalls of buying jerseys for any sport is that players rarely stay with a team for more than a handful of seasons. You can get so emotionally invested with someone like Robitaille Marian Hossa that you buy his jersey. But then he bolts to another team. You might feel like a dope stuck with that jersey but in several years, that jersey will stand out. While everyone is making their way around Consol Energy Center in their Crosby, Malkin or Fleury jerseys, you'll be the one in a Snoop Dogg Style Robitaille jersey. And you might end up in some newspapers' hockey blog.
20.) Players exemption
All players are exempt from the jersey foul rules provided they are wearing their own jersey. They're the reason we want to buy these things. They can do what they like in them. Now if Marc-Andre Fleury were wearing a Mike Zigomanis jersey...
(Photos: Jagr-Jim McIsaac/Getty Images; Fleury-Penguins; all others-us)