Oh, bollocks. Of course we’re not hanging it up. And of course we’re not 100. It’s just that…our humble little blog here has turned 100, as in 100 posts! Yippee! (I mean, really: Could a senior citizen have the moves and finesse that B-Dawg exhibited during his dancing extravaganza?)
To commemorate this important milestone in TSO history:
1. Thank you to the readers who have placed TSO among the Wings blogs you read on the regular. I know we’ve said thanks before for various things. (Remember those Reader Appreciation Days? I don’t. They were that amazing, duuuuuuude. High five!) But taking a five-out for serious time: I mean, we don’t even always discuss hockey on here! (Like, er, this particular post. But really, would you rather me recap last night’s shit-tastic loss to the Islanders for post #100? 6-0? You know, the one in which a win would have bumped us to #8 in the West? Here goes: It blew ass. Or would you rather me distract you with my razzle dazzle, celebratory blah-blah-blah? That’s what I thought.)
2. TSO has existed for roughly three and a half months. In that short period of time, we’ve made connections with people, literally around the world; we’ve become part of an amazing community, full of knowledgeable and creative fellow bloggers and fantastic and witty readers alike. My understanding of how awesome the Wings’ fans’ community is increased tenfold when I joined Twitter and began participating in real-time conversations with many of you for the first time. Another solemn statement: You guys rock.
3. On a personal level, starting this blog is something I am so indescribably happy I finally did. I’ve always written about various things--privately, since being out of school--and since becoming a hockey fan, I’ve wanted to share my feelings and observations with the rest of Red Wings Nation. My biggest triumph, in reflecting on these first 100 posts, is that I feel Brian and I have managed to write in the matter in which we watch the game, which is to say, completely irreverently and acerbically. Is this everyone’s cup of tea? Doubtful. For fuck’s sake, I did put “balls” in the headline today. (And don’t forget Brian’s infamous “cock punch”, “shit the bed”, plus our various other diction choices that would force my mom to disown me and encourage George Carlin to adopt me from the grave.)
4. There are just so many damn good sites out there. Seriously. The pantheon of Wings’ sites runs deep with fans who know their hockey and write superbly and entertainingly. One of the most challenging things for me has been the stress of conveying our own voice in the midst of so many other blogs we admire. For example, if I’m planning on writing a game recap, and I don’t write and post it until the next day, I refrain from reading anybody else’s recaps before I write my own ideas, lest I get what one of my high school English teachers described as “tennis ball brain” (nope, the use of “ball” is not intended perversely this time, kiddos)—that is, the inability to extract your own ideas from somebody else’s that you read first. It’s difficult enough that we’re writing about, literally, the exact same things—the games we just watched, players who make us happy, players on our shit lists, and so forth. The point I’m making here is that writing and maintaining a blog has made me a better reader of other people’s work; I appreciate even more now the effort it takes to create your own, unique perspective, especially given the narrow niche of writing about a specific hockey team.
5. Blogging is harder than it looks from the outside. One of my friends has blogged for a couple of years now, and while I had a general idea of the time she invested in maintaining her site, creating content, and interacting with her readers, I never realized just how time-consuming it could become. Obviously, you can determine the posts on here that aren’t as well prepared (see one labeled “PashaPashaPasha” from back in the day, for example, or not, if you think the aforesaid title fully conveys the inanity). But really, the blog has become an extension of our experience as fans; it hasn’t taken over any particular part of my life, but rather, it’s enhanced the experience of watching a game. Now, instead of having only each other with whom to discuss the Wings, we can turn to the blog, put our thoughts out there, and talk it out with anyone who wants to participate. Face it: We’re all addicted to hockey. I wouldn’t spend hours writing on here, and you wouldn’t spend the time reading this and other sites, never mind talking about it on live blogs and Twitter and comment sections, if you weren’t a junkie, too. Blogging is the democratization of the experience of being a fan; we all have an outlet to express ourselves, no matter whose site we’re on, and for me, the ability to communicate with so many fellow addicts enriches the entire experience.
All of this is to express our thanks to the readers who support our site with their readership and commentary, and our fellow bloggers who have been supportive and helpful from day one with their shoutouts and feedback. If it weren’t for all of you, I’d have hung this up after 20 posts and gone back to talking to my dog about hockey. Don’t believe me? A snapshot of my life sans TSO:
Me: Why does Ville Leino suck at life, Lucy?It’s just not the same.
Lucy: [Quizzical expression.]
Me: I mean, why won’t he live up to his potential?
Lucy: [Sniffs my hair.]
Me: You know, I really didn’t mean that I hate-hate him; I guess I’m just disappointed.
Lucy: [Waltzes over to coffee table and puts her nose against her goody box. Conversation over. End scene.]