Subtitle: "Everyone Else Has a Metaphor; Why Not Me?" Even if you hate hockey and wish I'd shut up about it--and given the interminable wait for the Stanley Cup, I will for a short while--there's a little twist at the end. I'm also not going to talk about the same-sex marriage cause for a bit after this, because I'm trying to learn more about North Korea and General Motors and Sonia Sotomayor like everyone else. Please indulge me now.
Came home to something awesome last night. I was so ready to accept a win of any description after the protest, including two dollars on a scratch-off lottery ticket.
That's right--Penguins swept the Hurricanes, won the Eastern Conference championship, and are now headed for the Stanley Cup! Last year I learned that it's supposed to be bad luck for the team's captain to touch the Conference trophy, because it, not the Cup, would be the last trophy he would get to touch that season. I love to learn about other peoples'' superstitions, and accepted this one. So did Sidney Crosby last year. This year, as you can see above, he carried it. (That would be Evgeni Malkin, the other half of Pittsburgh's Two-Headed Monster, next to him.) It's not that he stopped being superstitious--just the opposite, in fact. "We just wanted to change things up. We didn't touch it last year. Might as well grab it and get a picture with it and move on and go after the one we really want." I am extremely superstitious, super-superstitious if you will, and really couldn't have become anything different given how both my parents were. I liked that.
Technically it's not over--as I type, the Blackhawks are playing exactly like a team that doesn't want to end their season just yet--but they'll almost certainly be meeting the Red Wings again. Last night was the last time L'Ailee could say anything remotely complementary about the Pens. She will strenuously deny that she owns, let alone ever wore of her own free will, a tight black Malkin-in-Cyrillic T-shirt. (Which she looked really rather hot in, by the way.) I truly understand now why some fans of Florida's college football rivals, the Gators and the Seminoles, have "House Divided" stickers on their cars.
It's even sweeter this year. The Penguins started out being such a mess. They were discouraged by the Cup loss to the Wings, everyone had their own agendas, former coach Michel Therrien lost their attention, and Crosby got frustrated and let every single opponent get well inside his head. Then Coach Dan Bylsma (not "interim" anymore!) was hired in February, and some really inspired trades were made, and the Pens made their fans proud again this spring! This is exactly why you can't lose hope.
Actually, it's pretty appropriate for me to talk hockey, since I only got into it through marriage to a very patient longtime puckhead and amateur player. We missed most of the game by going to the Day of Decision protest, and we're so glad we did. It felt damned good to go out in the street and be counted and *say* something! There was a lot of sadness and anger in us and around us. L'Ailee and I have never been west of the Mississippi, except for a flight to Alaska. So we don't know Iowa or California. But we had these ideas in our heads that Iowa was "conservative" and California was "liberal." To lose "liberal" California, then, is particularly maddening.
But there's a rematch here, too! There is already an effort to get a measure repealing Proposition 8 on California's ballot in 2010. And, um, the New York State Senate has both a marriage equality bill and GENDA to work on before the end of session!
I believe in my heart that my teams will ultimately take it all.