Saturday, December 18, 2010

Redemption, Closure and Hockey


This was such a sad story.

Brittanie Cecil. And Espen Knutsen.

I clearly remember feeling awful obviously for the family but also for Knutsen and the then-young BJs organization (the Wild's expansion brothers) at the time.

So, to read about both the family's and Knutsen's grace, of them needing, seeking and (hopefully) getting closure from each other, was very uplifting.

It's easy to get lost in statistics and (ultimately empty) tough words about bad losses as a fan. All fans of all sports do it (or entertain doing it). The tricky thing is that, in doing so, you risk losing the ability to see the forest for the trees. At least I do.

And, we as fans of sports are, at some point, trying to live vicariously through our teams and their employees. Their triumphs are our triumphs. Their failures are ours as well. Some fans are better equipped to deal with those ups and downs than others, but that all just amounts to sociology.

However it therefore stands to reason that, if I seek triumph through my teams, should or could I not also seek redemption? If I can justify paying the employees of my teams abnormal sums of money so that they would endeavor to bring me joy, can I not also justify seeking redemption from those same people?

Brittanie Cecil, her family and Espen Knutsen. These stories are important because they allow us opportunities to re-calibrate our internal fan calipers. So that, the next time your team blows a lead, hopefully the measure that you take of yourself as a fan is reconciled against at least the backdrop of a bigger picture. So that, maybe you can ascribe some level of....something bigger than yourself and your material needs to the holidays.

Consuming sports is consuming entertainment. It's being entertained. Unless and until something tragic happens. Being killed while or as a result of being entertained is something that is, thankfully, so remote in our minds as to not warrant conscious thought. Until it isn't.

This was such a sad story.

But now, it's also sort of a good story.

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