It's said that fans don't have a voice, but that's not historically true. The letter writing campaign of "Star Trek" fans earned the show another season back in the 1960s. Fans of the TV show "Roswell" sent The WB 6,000 bottles of Tabasco sauce to help it thwart cancellation and thrive for another two seasons (as much as a show on The WB could have thrived).
As the NHL lockout continues, three hockey fans decided to attempt their own proactive protest through the mail — and used one of hockey fandom's most iconic traditions in doing so. With creepy, somewhat gross results:
That's right: No hockey, no beards.
And when you remove said beard, mail the clippings in protest to NHL headquarters.
"You immediately get the mental picture of Gary Bettman sifting through people's hair. And probably pubes," said Eamon Conway, one of the movement's founders.
Eamon, a Pittsburgh Penguins fan, and Pat Conway have a production company called Slugriders. They had a viral hockey hit back in April with a "Because It's The Cup" spoof that mocked the Philadelphia Flyers.
Their friend Chris Davis is a Columbus Blue Jackets fan from Chicago. Together, with their lockout angst fueling them, they wondered if there was a way to strike a blow for the fans.
"What can we do to galvanize fans and kind of piss off the NHL?" recalled Eamon.
They started brainstorming ideas online: Having fans watching youth hockey instead of the NHL; having fans openly weeping on video.
Their attention turned to playoff beards, and how they symbolize the greatest time to be a hockey fan — so could shaving those beards help symbolize the lowest point for locked-out hockey fans?
They thought about doing something akin to a public service announcement. Then Chris had an idea:
"Let's mail our beards."
They couldn't stop laughing.
"We're big hockey fans, and playoff beards are a signature piece of hockey fans. We wanted to do something funny. So we're like, 'Why don't we just send them in the mail to the NHL?'" said Eamon.
Granted, they aren't sure if it's even legal to send massive bags of human hair through the mail in a post-anthrax attack world. But that matters not when three disgruntled hockey fans are trying to turn Gary Bettman's desk into a barber shop floor.
So far, the video's been a viral hit and fans are taking notice. Whether that leads to sacks of beards being delivered to NHL HQ in Manhattan is another story. Eamon for his part, would rather see the lockout end now than have time for a hirsute revolution.
"I'd trade all the traffic for the video to get the [expletive] Penguins back on the ice."