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Stanley Cup Riots In Grafton

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Stanley Cup Riots In Grafton

May, 2012

by John Leahy

I watched the final Stanley Cup game for the New York Rangers at my home in the small woodsy town of Grafton, New York, in the Taconic Hills near the Massachusetts and Vermont border. The Rangers lost and were knocked out of the Cup and I began looking around at my options for post Stanley Cup loss rioting.

Decisively, I got into my old Chevy pickup truck and gunned it down my dirt road. A squirrel scurried out of my way. Two minutes later I arrived at my neighbor’s house. The lights were out. I threw a beer can out the window onto their lawn. I revved my engine and took off.

In the center of town I pulled up at the stop sign. One of my kid’s crayons was on the front seat and I grabbed it and quickly scrawled “Potvin Sucks!” on the stop sign. I sped off looking for other symbols of governmental authority and oppression to direct my rage at. Outside the post office I spied the mail box. I got out and heaved a heavy rock at it. The rock bounced with a booming gong and left a barely perceptible dent in the front of the mail box. A dog jumped up on a porch across the square and stared out at the public disturbance and then laid down again and went back to sleep.

I looked around for signs of the police to do battle. “Where are the damn pigs?” I muttered. I noticed the van for the Senior Citizens Center and realized I had found my target. I gathered some grimy old newspaper from the floor of my truck and piled them under the van. I took the ancient book of matches from my glove box and struck the first match. The match tip crumbled. I tried all 7 of the remaining matches with the same result. I threw the empty match book at the van’s windshield. The glass did not break. I drove over to the Country Store to get more matches, but it was closed. I saw a dried out pine cone on the ground and I slung it at the store’s window. The dried out pine cone curved to the left and bounced lightly off the wall.

I got back in my truck and took off. A car came towards me and I flashed my high beams at it. The car honked angrily as it passed. My pulse raced. Now I am truly in the rioter zone. I passed a house with a tricycle on the lawn. I screeched to a halt and jumped out and grabbed the tricycle and threw it into a decorative shrubbery. Two houses down I stopped by a neat stack of firewood and began slinging pieces of firewood from the top of the wall into the vegetable garden. I slung at least four pieces of wood before leaping back into my truck to continue my rampage.

The low fuel warning light came on the dashboard panel. I thought of going back to the Country Store for gas, but then remembered that it was after 7 PM and the store was closed. I had enough gas to get this guzzler back home and to a gas station tomorrow. I parked in my driveway. I saw some BBQ fuel and matches in the garage. I looked at my house…………………………..

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3 Cheers for Joel Ward

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3 Cheers for Joel Ward

April 27, 2012

As a New York Rangers fan, hating rivals like the Boston Bruins or The New York Islanders is a part of the game and as such I was happy to see the Washington Capitals knock the Bruins out of the Stanley Cup on Thursday night with an overtime goal scored by Joel Ward. What I did not know until I saw the post-game interviews was that Ward is black. Since there are not many black hockey players, I noticed the color of his skin, but only as an interesting rarity and in no way in any negative perspective. I was therefore surprised and totally disgusted a day later to read news articles reporting the racist comments that Ward has received, especially coming from social networking sites like Twitter.

Joel Ward entered my consciousness as a marginal player that I had never heard of (I don’t see much of the Nashville Predators where Ward played before coming to the Caps) who made a splash with his series winning goal and a then day later is suddenly the center of a racist whirl storm as bigots and twitter toting idiots across North America took aim at the man who had the nerve to be a black minority player in a game dominated by Caucasians. To Ward’s great credit, he has responded with tremendous class and integrity. He has stated that he is not concerned about the follies of an ignorant minority and that his experience in hockey has been almost entirely positive. Ward’s reaction shows a generous spirit and a mature attitude that his racist hecklers would do well to emulate.

The National Hockey League and the Boston Bruins organization have both condemned that racist tweets and declared that there is no room in hockey for this type of obnoxious behavior. Anybody expressing such a mean spirited attitude, especially from the faceless vantage point of anonymous internet commentary, should be ashamed. This seems so obvious as to not be necessary to write, but apparently there are still ignorant oafs out there that are willing to show the world how stupid they are by expressing these kinds of sentiments. We can only hope that Joel Ward has given the world a visible example of classy behavior, which is worthy of respect and which will be emulated. Thank you Joel!

And I would add “Go Caps!” except I am a Rangers fan and the Caps are now the rival team in round 2 of the Cup. So……sorry Joel, but I hope you don’t score any more goals this season. Even though you are a new hero, I still want the Rangers to win the Stanley Cup.

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