Tuesday, May 14, 2013
That's why they play out the games, sports fans! The last few minutes, the final seconds, that one last pitch. You never, EVER!, know what's going to happen.
It never ceases to amaze me that fans will expend so much time and energy getting to the game, spend so much ticket-parking-hot dog money, and then leave a game early to beat the traffic because "this one's in the bag" or "well, we blew that one." when I go to a professional sports event I pay to watch the players play. Win or lose, I go to watch them play, and I want my money's worth. I don't walk out of a movie or toss a book aside because I think I've figured out the ending. You gotta see it through!
Not even God knows who's gonna get the W until the final whistle blows, the last out is called, the fat lady sings. Nobody knows that better than a Boston sports fan. We've seen our fair share of games, series', titles slip away after we've started prepping our celebrations. But we've seen our share of resuscitations as well, witnessing a comeback as we're mentally dragging down the empty cartons from the attic to put the cheer gear away for "next year." For surely there'll be a "next year." There always is. But wait! WAIT! This year is not yet done! Les dieux sportives de la saison, the sports gods of the season, have once again provided us a reprieve. One more series to show these Bruins are the real deal. And then, dare we wish, another series after that, and another to once again bring home the cup! Lord Stanley's ever growing monstrosity of a trophy, one of the most recognized and definitely the most kissed and dinged up in sport? And the most shared between its winners and fans. Seriously, with what other trophy can a winner actually dump Wheaties from a box with his picture on the cover into his team's trophy and eat his breakfast out of it? What other sport allows the victor to fill the trophy with microwaved popcorn, or bottles' worth of ice cold Coke and some straws, and then sit down in the basement media room slash indoor practice rink to view Miracle or The Mighty Ducks or, even better and more apropos, Slap Shot with The Chiefs. What other sport allows fans to do the same after winning "A Day with The Cup." Well, that is, unless you are living near Madison Square Garden and the Stanley Cup trophy has not been exempted from the Michael Bloomberg guide to appropriate drink sizes. Which is reason enough to beat the Rangers and keep them from filling the cup with diet soda or worse, non-alchoholic beer.
But back to the game. Or as it will likely come to be known as "The Game." The unfreakingbelievable winning game that won the series that brought Boston sports fans back into reality. That helped us escape from that alternate universe where others, even others amongst us living AS us, held us captives of terror, our culture, the freedoms we hold so dear, the freedoms they were enjoying after having been brought into our fold once they'd escaped political persecution in their homeland, as those others attacked us and terrorized us and we tried to make sense of it, we had the games. We had the Boston Bruins who helped make us BostonStrong. The Bruins who helped us honor our fallen and our heroes. The Boston sports traditions that crossed the foul lines in Fenway to jump the boards at TDGarden as fans sang Sweet Caroline. And not just in Boston were the blue and yellow Boston Strong ribbons highlighted on playing surfaces, were the choruses of Sweet Caroline echoed, were people remembering, and hugging, and setting aside rivalry for just those seconds to share camaraderie and compassion. Ball fields, basketball courts, ice rinks, in America and Canada, all sharing support, all recognizing our commitment to being BOSTONSTRONG.
Yes, back to "The Game." The one that will be the "Hey, it ain't ovah yet, boys. Remembah dat game seven in '13 when we was down 4-2 to da Leafs in the thoid?" game.
Yes, that's why we play out the games. Last night was no exception. Except that is was exceptionally awesome! Which means it was pissah! Wicked pissah!