Thursday, June 16, 2011

a cup of chaos

For any hockey player, the Stanley Cup is what dreams are made of. You work hard all season long, fight for your place in the playoffs and then battle to the best of your ability to make your way through three rounds to find yourself only four wins away from raising the coveted Cup over your head. Game 7 of the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals was last night between the Boston Bruins and my hometown Vancouver Canucks and for me and many hockey fans, it’s a night of uneasy excitement and high hopes. I had hoped I’d be able to write today about how happy I was to see the Canucks take it all but unfortunately, things didn’t quite go that way and, instead, I’ve got to offer my congratulations to the competitors as the Boston Bruins outplayed, outlasted and outscored Vancouver and are now the Stanley Cup Champions. A great season for the Canucks, a great series for the Bruins and a great sport that I truly love to watch.
{via}
And while it was certainly a disappointing loss for the Canucks, it soon became a disappointing night for the city of Vancouver. I sat and watched the news in horror as live coverage of the violence and riots that followed the game continued to escalate into total destruction and disregard. How could these people treat our city this way? How could so many people be so violent and vulgar? How do a handful of hooligans inspire hundreds of hockey fans to turn on each other, on the people and places around them and commit crime after crime? So many questions of utter disbelief as the chaos of the city overshadowed what should have been a night all about hockey and a win so well deserved by either team.
{via Andy Fang Photography}
I woke up this morning still proud to be a Vancouver fan but so ashamed that by being one I was going to be associated with the shenanigans. And while negativity has certainly surround the chaos, out of the darkness has come the light. The police, firefighters and city workers were joined by volunteers from all over this morning to help rid the city of the destruction. While it didn’t take long for the trouble to take over last night, it was just as quickly wiped away by so many proud people who came together to breathe some life back in the city. Heavy boards may cover the broken windows and be a reminder of the ruckus, but they have quickly been filled by messages of love and congratulations, by messages of pride and promise, by messages of apology and sadness. The city has calmly responded and while it doesn’t make us forget that our reputation might be tarnished, it certainly has shown that we our proud of our team, our city and our country - we won’t let the actions of a small minority ruin the fun for the rest of us. It is truly inspiring to see people come together to make a positive change.

Are you a hockey fan? What brings your city together?

16 comments:

PoetessWug said...

What a lovely post...My hubby and I are not regular hockey fans. In fact 'So you think you can dance', which was on the other channel at the same time the game was on last night, got the major part of our attention. But we couldn't ignore it all together! After all we are Massachusetts residents!! LOL Boston is a neighboring city. I was very happy for all of the smiling Bruins fans last night. And tonight I'm also happy for all of the Canuck fans too...because they were very well represented by your lovely post. Made me want to come to Vancouver and say 'Hello!' :-) You're a very good writer too! {Coming from a chatter-box Poet! LOL}

SJ said...

i saw pictures about the riots and had assumed they were political protests so I was really surprised when I saw it was about the hockey.

it's such a shame when this happens. it doesn't happen a whole lot here in australia (we don't have ice hockey teams but we do love football and cricket) but when I lived in the UK there was always a really strong police presence, a lot of them on horses, every time there was a big football/soccer game in london. i think a lot of people just get caught up in the chaos and no doubt alcohol just fuels the fire.

it's certainly something the compeletely baffles me as well!

Jessica said...

I'm not a big hockey fan, but that probably has somehting to do with the fact that I live in the Deep South and rarely see a puddle freeze let alone a larger body of water... Hockey's not really a passtime for us.

However, my husband is a huge sports fan so I've seen the coverage on ESPN... and I couldn't believe it! I hate that a minority of unruly fans ruined it for everyone. it's a real shame.

I'm glad to know first hand that your city is banning together to make things right.

Tara said...

I was in Vancouver a few years ago and remember it as a beautiful, clean city filled with friendly people, so I was also disappointed to hear about the handful of hockey fans who took things way too far. Here's hoping everything gets cleaned up and fixed up soon!

Starlight said...

I'm not a hockey fan but I'm very angry that things like this happens all the time all over the world. I think sports should unite and unify people. I know all fans are not alike and most of Canucks fans didn't want something like this to happen so I hope that everyone understands that this was (and I really hope it was!) a lonely incident.

Erika @ ~TiptoeButterfly~ said...

i was borderline obsessed with Hockey - we had season tickets for YEARS - never missed again - ice level - it was amazing - (NJ Devils fan) - then i moved to FL and i dunno hockey just got put in my past - i use to rent ice to play and everything - i was SUPER into it . thought i was gonna be first girl hockey player :o) haha - for realz tho!

THE ALTERNATIVE WIFE said...

I am a HUGE hockey fan, have been my entire life, and I was routing for the Canucks all the way. So sad to see what happened afterwards. Vancouver is a beautiful city which I've visited many times and I can attest to the fact that the people of Vancouver are warm, friendly and so accommodating. A far cry from the disorder that took place Wednesday evening.

It's nice to see how the city has responded and I hope this doesn't shed a lasting negative light on such a wonderful place.

Have a wonderful weekend, sweetie xoxo

Melissa Blake said...

I'm not a sports fan of any kind... *hides head in shame*

Rhiannon {Hey Gorg} said...

Since I'm from the GTA I can appreciate hockey like any other Canadian; and am certainly a huge fan! However, after watching the riots on tv I am a little ashamed of how we acted and how big of a poor sport we were. Sigh. It's so unlike us to act like this!

la petite coquine said...

I understand the excitement and pride a city feel when they win a championship (Hello, SF Giants). What I don't understand is the desire to break things, burn things and hurt others whether things go the way you hoped or not. I'm glad you guys are safe!

kimbirdy said...

both my dad and my husband are from boston, so there was much rejoicing in my family. i only discovered a love for hockey a few years ago, thanks to my dear colorado friends, which means i attached myself to the avs pretty early on. oh well. :)

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

I just don't understand why people feel the need to get out of control and break things.

Around here you get a lot of baseball fans and football fans. Since we live in WI but on the border on MN you get MN Twins and the Milwaukee Brewers fans and a HUGE Vikings and Packers rivalry. However I've never seen any celebrating get out of control around here.

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

I'm a big hockey fan and I was pretty surprised by what happened too. I think that some people just love to ruin it for everyone. I'm glad to see and hear that the city is turning it around.

Ren- Lady Of The Arts said...

man- I was sad vancouver lost and even more sad with the rioting- it sucks how a few bad apples can tarnish the image of such a great city.

this free bird said...

I am an Oiler fan--grew up during the Gretzky reign in Alberta and it was such an electric time for the game. It was devastating to see Vancouver get taken over by a band of fools. I was so happy to see its true citizens awake the next day and take back the city.

xo,
C

Dancing Branflake said...

I hear ya on this! It was really sad but you're right- it's a minority of people who ruin it for everyone else. I can't help but think there was alcohol involved. Maybe, maybe not. But it's sad to think people do this with a sober mind.