Canuck Fever reminiscent of the 2010 Olympic celebrations. Flashbacks to Whistler splendor and street parties on Granville and Robson.
This past week I ventured downtown to watch the first 2 games of the Stanley Cup finals. It was exciting to participate in exchanging greetings with the electrically charged crowd. Spirits were soaring and strangers exchanged high 5’s, hugs and pats on the back. Fans were decked out in souvenir jerseys or t-shirts, faces painted, carrying hockey sticks and waving flags. Smiles were beaming and eyes twinkling.
As I wandered through the masses I noticed immediately that it was a mixed crowd. There was no dominant age group or ethnicity, no protesters or naysayers. All were in agreement on one issue “The Canucks must bring home the cup” Cameras and cells phones recorded the orderly surging of Vancouverites and their declarations of victory.
Go Canucks Go!
People were whistling and cheering; car horns honking and cowbells ringing while drummers beat and dancers danced. The air was intoxicating and steamed with diversity. (Not to mention the occasional waft of BC Bud) Police stood casually in strategic positions with watchful eyes. They dealt mainly with transit inquiries and public relations servitude while peacefully down-playing minor infractions. I saw one cuffed suspect who staggered unsteadily with officers politely flanking him to censor his grotesque display of drunkenness.
It marked a genuinely inspiring moment in my history. I felt proud of my land, my people, and mankind in general. The wars and disasters and economic downfall pushed to the back burner while visions of victory quickened my heart-beat and lightened my foot-step. During the 2010 Olympics I experienced a similar phenomenon when visitors arrived in Vancouver and were welcomed with open arms and exemplary hospitality. There was bragging not booing, just praising and cheering for all countries and people.
Like music or cinema, sports can be a powerful unifying force.
If a hockey came can unite a city and Olympics Games can unite countries, shouldn’t our local and global focus be on supporting more healthy competitions and cultural exchange than the tyrannical warmongering and politics that divides us?