Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Well, the weather outside was...brutal! Single digit temps, high winds, way below zero wind chills. BRRRR! My lips are still chapped. But it was dry and sunny, I'll give it that. Actually, it was a perfect day to see the Rams and the Rams Cheerleaders in the Edward Jones Dome. As long as the car started, driving was easy and toasty inside; no fans were tailgating, so I could park right next to the Dome; and the poor folks who do the pre-entry "pat downs" had to do it outside before you enter the stadium, so they we anxious to get the fans through (the poor fella said to me, "You can keep the cameras, but I'm taking your gloves").
It was, as always, a pleasure to see the Rams Cheerleaders. As I have noted before, I love the access that the Cheerleaders give the fans. As the gates open at 10:30 (game at noon), the Cheerleaders are on the field circling the periphery, selling calendars (for $10!) and autographing most anything requested. After the game, the cheerleaders do not march off, but usually stick around to talk to fans and pose for last photos. The last cheerleader left the field at 3:30, five hours after they were first on the field. Plus, there are Cheerleaders in the concourse to sell calendars all game long.
Besides the accessibility, the Rams Cheerleaders are a great dance squad. I think their hip hop routines are always high energy and numerous. As expected, there were lots of performances to Christmas songs of past and present.
There have been some changes since last season. I can't find the reference, but I think they went to one less line this year. So the Rams Cheerleaders, instead of four lines of performers near the four corners at the goal lines, now have two big lines of ladies at opposite corners that rotate at the end of each quarter. Therefore, if you are sitting near the goal line, you will only see cheerleaders in front of you for two quarters. Now, I don't want to get into the Rams business, but I really think complete coverage of the field by the cheerleaders could have changed some of the close home games to the Rams favor (biased opinion of someone who would like four quarters of photographs instead of two). Also, there were only three cheerleaders in the concourse signing calendars at any time this year rather than the entire line. This seems fair since these talented dancers joined the squad to perform, so if this means more can be on the field, that seems preferable.
One interesting thing was that the beautiful mom of Lauren of the Ben-Gals came down to the front row, taking a couple photos of the Rams Cheerleaders because Lauren wanted to post it to another blog. Apparently, there is a member of Lauren's family who is a Rams fan, but I will not divulge in case she would get Bengal demerit points.
As I said, the Rams Cheerleaders are excellent, and it was great to see them again. There are so many notable cheerleaders; Erin is a such a talented line captain, as are line captains Valerie, who is going to the Pro Bowl this year, and Emily who went last season. Christa was simply amazing, Shannon has boat loads of personality, and Lucy is one of those cheerleaders that you don't realize how photogenic she is until you have to sift through dozens of great Lucy photos when you get home.
And my Sideline Standout of the Game is Kate, whose outstanding dancing, warm smile, and tan to die for could warm up the coldest elf working on Santa's assembly line.
As the last home game ended, there were lots of sidelines hugs with the staff, indicating the end of this season. The cheerleaders lingered for their last moments on the field, including Michelle carrying a bouquet provided from folks in the stands, and Erin climbing up on a chair near the stands because some 49ers fans wanted a photo with her as the Dome lights were being turned off.
Erin and Michelle
[St. Louis Rams Cheerleaders]