The game itself was amazing, and when Kane made that final goal, I almost cried – not because it was an emotionally profound moment, but because I was screaming so loud that that pain from slaughtering my vocal chords caused my eyes to tear.
For two hours after that, people lost their senses. They ran through the streets twirling their shirts in the air, regardless of gender. Illegal fireworks went off in every direction, and car horns honked repeatedly and almost drowned out the sound of the emergency sirens. I’m a little disappointed there was no rioting (at least not in my neck of the woods), but there will be time to correct that next year.
Then there was the parade. I was downtown that Friday for class, so I got to see some of it. I’d expected maybe 100,000 people. At most. Figured it wouldn’t be too busy. Turns out, there were 2 million people downtown that day.
Since then, the Blackhawks have been passing the cup around, taking it with them to bars and baseball games. Apparently, if they happen to show up at the bar where you’re drinking, chances are you’ll not only get to hold the cup, but you’ll get to swig some beer out of it, too. See, that’s why the Blackhawks fucking rock – yeah, they’re awesome on the ice, the team runs like a well-oiled machine, and people don’t call their goalie the Finnish Fortress for nothing – but after making Chicago a hockey town again, they’re honoring our time-honored tradition of mingling sports in booze in such a way that one forgets the one can exist without the other. Thank you, 2009-2010 Chicago Blackhawks. You are kings among men.
P.S. Duncan Keith is up there with Ted Williams and Zidane on my list of Super Sexy Sportfellows (the SSS – ‘We Have Sexier Uniforms’). Why? The man lost seven teeth in one stroke courtesy of a speeding puck during the playoffs, and then, after spitting out the remaining splinters of enamel (there wasn’t much – most of his teeth were vaporized on impact), he went right back out on the ice and played the rest of the game. If that doesn’t make your thighs melt, you’re dead inside.