Thursday, February 15, 2007

Hockey Feedback Fantastico!

Oh, fun...debate!
Who'd have thunk that the ole Hockey Rant would have stirred such feedback? Then again, it is hockey and well, we are obsessed. Oops, there I go again.
First of all, thanks to everyone who weighed in. I got some great emails and some equally entertaining comments - almost all of them intimating that I equated a non-love of hockey to being gay.
So first things first - this is not my belief - merely a reaction I've received personally when telling people I'm not that into hockey. Not from everyone, mind you, but at least from some. So it was a personal experience. More so, its a horrible stereotype and I'm sorry to have used it. Point of fact - I happen to think all guys who skate for 18 minutes a night get paid millions are gay. Kidding. kidding. Put down the torches.

Secondly, and most importantly, I do no hate hockey. I could care less, but I do not hate it. Nor would I pin canada's general apathy for all things non-hockey on the NHL. My sincerest (well, somewhat sincere) apologies if that came across.

Look, hockey's popular - and barring intense global warming, it will likely stay that way. What I am asking is to let loose our fanatical grasp on the game and expand our horizons. Just imagine what could be achieved if Canadians got behind other facets of Canadian culture with equal support and passion. Think of how much more we could contribute to the world if we stood behind our other talented exports as much as we do hockey.

I'm also concerned with the way we're portraying ourselves to the world. Hockey's dominance in all media and culture constantly re-enforces the stereotype that we're all beer swilling hockey watching hosiers who aren't so much engaged in world affairs as we are with the latest match between so-and-so and 'that team from the city I grew up in, therefore they're like family'.

It goes without saying that Canada has much more to offer than great stick handlers, and that's really my main fear; that if we don't start sharing our passion for the game with our other assets and talents, that we'll miss out on the attention we could be receiving from other equally important cultural highlights.

So how do we do this? That's a great question....

Pike87oil makes a great point about taking the fight for local arts and talent straight to the local and federal powers-that-be. I couldn't agree more. Sure he may not work for the best station in Red Deer, but its a valid point none-the- less. He also advocates getting out and actually showing support for local theatre or sports or, hell, whatever. I say - do it! Not only will you be shoving me off my soapbox, but you never know - you just may like what you see.
(p.s in my defense sir pikey, I've recently suffered through a local production of Scrooge - and had the chance to take the stage in a few productions up north. So I'm doing what I can, honest. Next stop, puppetry of the penis.)

And that's really all I'm saying - turn off the hockey - just try it. Watch little Mosque in the Prairie, Corner gas, Bill Strombo-whatshisface - get out to local theatres or comedy clubs - support other sports - get behind upcoming Canadian entertainers before they're forced to go American to become famous - likewise get interested in what Canada's doing on other fronts (i.e medical - did you know we might be the ones with the cure for cancer but since it's so dirt cheap to produce and sell, it won't make a profit and thus is having trouble getting picked up by big Pharma companies?).

In general - let's crack this Canadian egg open and release the love for everything we do.

On a less serious note, I didn't mean to say that those who loves hockey ignore their family, rob from the poor and/or eat babies. That said, if you had a choice between gold tickets at the Stanley Cup and your son/daughter/puppy's graduation, which would you choose?
If you had to think about this...well....I'm just saying...

So to recap - people who don't like hockey aren't gay. Hockey is not evil and Canada would do well to spread that riot-inducing mania elsewhere...for once.

Anyways - keep the feedback coming!


Steven James Howard the First said...

Hmmmm, an apologies with stipulations. I guess I can accept that.

However, there are a couple assumptions in your argument that I'm wondering what they are based on:
1) What makes local arts good enough to attend (as opposed to watching the hockey that comes with my cable subscription) - I'm not saying they're not...but you can't just assume they are.

2) Does Canada have the resources to keep truly great talent in Canada? If there is a local comedian/actress/singer that is truly that great, how is it we assume that we could keep them here when a car ride away there is always 10 times the money. Is the problem support or the value society puts on the dollar?

3) Why are we assuming that local arts aren't supported? I am as hockey mad as anyone (well, Leaf-mad) yet I still get out to Yuk Yuk's (you can vouch - even for amateur night), the occasional local theatre presentation, concerts, etc. Even in my time overseas I did my best to promote Canada's finest (Barenaked Ladies, OLP, Alanis Morisette, Shania Twain...not Celine Dion though.)

Anyways, those were just my thoughts. Just some of the assumptions that were implied made me wonder whether this is truly attributable to hockey and the time it consumes, or whether that is just the best alternative so far.

Hey, even though there was a game on, did not 95% of Quebec vote in the separation referendum? When there's something better to do, we do it.

In closing, I'm still waiting for the newest videogame review...are you going to post the link on here?

Attention Whore said...

Ahem...Puppetry of the Penis? I happen to know of a little LOCAL production taking place that will knock the proverbial BALLS off that one...of which I still have tickets for sale...of which I happen to be a part of....of WHICH I HAVE MISSED hockey games ahem ahem...

Creative Freakin' Genius said...

Hey, screw hockey. How do I get tix to this puppetry of the penis show?