A young female hockey player’s satirical video clip on “Stupid questions female hockey players get asked” has gone viral.
Kirsten Toth grew up playing hockey with the Aldergrove Minor Hockey Association (AMHA) and currently plays defence for the UBC Thunderbirds women’s team. She’s enjoyed some outstanding successes on ice with Team BC and the Notre Dame squad in Saskatchewan, but she says she was motivated to make the clip to draw attention to “inequality in sports… (women) get asked silly questions all the time by people who have no idea.”
For example, “Stupidest question I’ve been asked: Do you wear pink gear?” says one of the players in the video. She retorts, “Only when I want to look pretty,” as she puts on a pink helmet.
Toth told The Star that the video was one of her projects for her creative writing in new media class. The project was to make a video “go viral” and with almost a million views since its debut on Youtube last Wednesday, Toth is likely to get high marks.
“It was the first time I made a video, along with two friends who edited and filmed it, and the hockey players, the actors we interview in the video are from our UBC team,” said Toth.
“I directed and produced the script but there are a lot of ad libs, the actors played off each other with their responses.”
The video was uploaded on Nov. 25 at 11 p.m. and Toth says she was pleased to see it have 1,500 views by the next day. She then uploaded it to Reddit, which is when CBC found it and featured it on Thursday’s 6 p.m. news slot.
It grew from there as TSN called Toth Friday and did a piece on it for the Saturday broadcast. This was followed by CTV and Global, with the latter planning to film a segment with the entire team on Dec. 1.
However, Toth says it’s Facebook which has been most successful at helping the video go viral.
“Facebook has had over 800,000 views of my little video clip,” says Toth.
“The traction is that it’s an issue which has needed to be addressed for a long time, even if we make fun of it in the video.”
Toth started out in Aldergrove Arena, taking skating lessons at age three, and then moved on to play with the AMHA from age four. Her on-ice successes have been featured in The Aldergrove Star many times over the years.
Now aged 21, Toth was signed to the Notre Dame team at the age of 16 and did her grade 11 and 12 at the Saskatchewan school, while playing for the team. In 2011 she helped the team win the Esso Cup in the Canadian National Midget Championship. She also played for Team BC for two years and was picked up by the University of Alberta.
After three years with the UofA team she transferred to UBC this year.
“I was red-shirted because the CIS (Canadian Intercollegiate Sports) doesn’t like transfers from one school to another but I appealed it and won conditional support.
“So the next Thunderbirds game will be my first of the season.”
Toth and her family in Aldergrove are looking forward to the games, set for Jan. 8 and 9 at UBC’s Thunderbird Arena against the visiting Mount Royal squad. The Thunderbirds currently sit at third place in the league for the first half of the season, and Toth is looking forward to improving that standing too.
U 0f A Pandas defenceman Kirsten Toth, seen here grappling with Dinos forward Hayley Wickenheiser in Calgary in February of 2013. (QMI Agency)