Do you know why I love the Vancouver Canucks? Because when it comes to unifying this city, this beloved city of mine, Vancouver, the best city in the world to live in, there is simply nothing else that brings people together other than the Canucks.
You know I’m right. Besides the brief flash of the 2010 Olympic flame, nobody around here really cares about anything. Strikes. Unions. Elections. Natural disasters. Dictators in North Africa. Charlie Sheen. Homelessness. Drug addiction. H1N1. Air traffic controllers falling asleep. Really good sushi. The 2011 Grey Cup. The Vancouver Giants. Climate change. American military policy. I could go on forever. None of these things inspire this city (and Vancouverites worldwide) to take action or do anything at all en mass.
Except the Canucks.
When playoff time rolls around, the change in this town is unbelievable. Suddenly, everyone is in Canucks jerseys! Every car flies a Canucks flag! Every establishment in the city is advertising “Watch the Canucks here!!!” Everyone is leaving work/piano lessons/church/family dinner early to get to a TV, any TV anywhere, to catch the next game. The talk about town is all Canucks: the last game, the next game, the first game, the series, who we play next, who we might play next, and of course, what route the parade will take when we win the Cup this year! In the grand scheme of the universe they matter very little but as an experiment in psychology and sociology, there is nothing that fascinates me more, nothing I love more, than the Vancouver Canucks.
And this year presents something special. In our 40th and most promising year, we are presented with our best team ever, who has achieved the most ever and is most prepared to win it all. We were (and still are, need I remind you) a single win away from exercising our biggest demon and moving on in our most anticipated playoff run yet.
And you know what I hate?
All of you.
You know who you are. Virtually every “fan” I know, and certainly every member of the media, broadcaster’s group, blogosphere, and so on who doubt this team. This is our BEST. TEAM. EVER. We won three hard-fought games in round 1 and after two quick goals in the second period of game 4, you all turned on them. You should be ashamed of yourselves. In an instant you did a 180 and attacked the very team you said you loved. You are my friends, my colleagues, even my own family members, saying, “Choke Canucks Choke!” You laughed at me for wearing my Canucks jersey to the family gathering on Easter Sunday… when we were still up 3 games to 2. You told me it can’t be done, the Canucks can never beat Chicago. The Canucks just don’t have it. Suddenly we have no goaltending. The Sedins are girls. Kesler blows. The defence is soft. No killer instinct. No mental toughness. The regular season doesn’t matter; if you can’t get it done in the playoffs then it means nothing… nothing.
You told me, to put it simply, the Canucks suck.
You know what? The hell with all of you. When I say I’m a “fan” I don’t mean I follow the team and spout opinion at the water cooler. I mean that through thick and thin, I am ON the bandwagon. So long as there is a single second of a single game left in this season I am on my feet cheering, even when the situation is so “dire” that we lost 7-2 and are ONLY up 3 games to 1. The only reason this series against Chicago isn’t over yet is because in the blink of an eye, everyone stopped believing and started doubting. I believe. And when the Canucks win game 7, and everyone comes rushing back to the bandwagon, and all is forgiven, I will still believe. And when we are down 3 games to 1 next round and you’re all circling the Canucks like wretched vultures again, I will believe. And when we are down by a goal in game 7 of the Stanley Cup final with 30s left in the third and Kesler starts the rush up the ice from his own zone, I will believe. That’s what a true fan does.
Canucks in 7. Believe it.Tags: Charlie Sheen, natural disasters, NHL, playoffs, US military policy, Vancouver Canucks