Last week the Penguins hosted the Flyers at Heinz Field for their outdoor Stadium Series game, and as part of the pregame pomp, seven live penguins—named Crosby, Malkin, Kessel, Kunitz, Letang, Murray and Sully—tottered around a tiny rink.

Also as part of the pregame pomp, they set off some fireworks above the stadium.

I think that video clip is sad, then funny, then sad because I find it so funny, then it all settles into some sort of quantum sad-funny superposition.

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PETA, as you would expect, didn’t see any humor. The organization sent a letter to the Penguins today, condemning the use of live animals and the situation that sent the little guys “scrambling in terror after being paraded in front of a screaming crowd and in close proximity to ear-splitting fireworks.”

The Pittsburgh Zoo, which provided the penguins, has responded with a letter of their own:

I guiltily enjoyed this grammatically and anatomically suspect sentence:

“The loud pop from the pyro technical display temporarily started the penguins and their first reaction, similar to a human’s when startled, they flapped their wings.”

No harm, no fowl.

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Now if you’re here for a sad penguin, let Werner Herzog narrate this footage of a depressed penguin trudging off into the wasteland to die.

[Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]