Dogs, monkeys and moose, oh my! A glossary of longtime Penguins broadcaster Mike Lange's wild world of play-by-play calls.

By Craig Meyer



Scratch my back with a hacksaw

A favorite post-goal call. In Bob Smizik’s “Tales from the Pittsburgh Penguins,” Lange credits a Pittsburgh mall security guard with giving him the phrase. After giving Lange directions to a location in the building, the guard gave him a piece of paper with the phrase written down on it.

Shave my face with a rusty razor

Another post-goal call. Like scratching one’s back with a hacksaw, this sounds like an incredibly painful and masochistic way to celebrate a moment of ecstasy.

He’s smiling like a butcher’s dog

Used when a player, presumably, is happy because a butcher’s dog, presumably, is happy to get to eat scraps of meat. Or, possibly, the dog is happy because it can watch his or her master go about his or her work without having to worry about being cut up. Though if we’re in a country where dog is a menu option, this phrase takes a very dark turn.

And ladies and gentlemen, the kitchen’s closed

When there’s an end to something, usually when a game has been decided. In Smizik’s book, Lange said the call was inspired by a time he tried to eat at a restaurant, but an employee very curtly told him the kitchen was closed. The finality of the phrase stuck with Lange and he thought it would translate well to his broadcasts.

She wants to sell my monkey

I’m lost on deciphering the meaning of this one. Either way, Mike, exotic pet ownership should not be encouraged and your female companion should be commended for finding a better home — I’m guessing a zoo or refuge — for the monkey in question.

Call Arnold Slick from Turtle Creek

Lange’s recognition of some of Pittsburgh’s outer boroughs when something good, usually a goal, happens. The phrase only works, though, if “Creek” is given the proper Pittsburghese pronunciation of “Crick.”

Buy Sam a drink and get his dog one, too

A celebratory call of Lange’s. Much like owning a monkey, giving dogs alcohol isn’t exactly pro forma.

Get in the fast lane, grandma! The bingo game is ready to roll!

The time to stand idly by is over; it’s time for something of importance — be it the game, an important power play or penalty kill, or an overtime period — to begin. Don’t underestimate an elderly person’s ability to cast aside their physical limitations to get moving when it comes to bingo, though.

You can slap me silly, Sidney

Lange’s oft-used call for when Sidney Crosby scores a goal.

Make me a milkshake, Malkin

The same as it is for Crosby, just with Evgeni Malkin.

It’s a hockey night in Pittsburgh

Lange’s opening broadcast line since the first Penguins game he called in 1974.

He beat him like a rented mule

When one player so thoroughly outclasses or, in some cases, even embarrasses an opponent on the ice. Lange credited a stockbroker with saying the phrase to him when Lange asked him how his day was.

[Goalie] just lost his liquor license

Used when a goalie is operating at a level several pegs below that of a sieve, letting any puck in his general area slip past him. The implication is that the goaltender has lacked any semblance of order and control that he has been stripped of his dignity, much in the same way an establishment will lose its liquor license for similar, albeit alcohol-related, problems. That, or the goalie is the owner of a liquor store and drowns his sorrows and shortcomings in booze, drinking so much of his own product that he leaves the state with no other choice.

Let’s go hunt moose on a Harley

I’m not sure if this is meant to be used in celebratory moments, but either way, this sounds like a terrible and reckless idea.

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Stanley Cup Champions

The Cup comes to Pittsburgh

Winning one more for Badger Bob

Stanley Cup returns to Pittsburgh

Older and wiser and champs again

The beginnings

Birth of a franchise

Remembering the Igloo

The original black and gold

The Players

Mirror image

Top ten Penguins

Wearing the 'C'

More Penguins

Top ten Penguins' games


Trusting the market

Better sweaters