Sockem Hockey and Gentlemen’s Disputes
I went to an NHL hockey game last night. Halfway through the game, two of the players dropped their gloves, circled, and closed for a fight. The crowd loved it; the home team scored a goal immediately after, high on the moment.
As I cheered the fighters on, I reflected with surprise that I was enjoying what I think many would consider a barbaric practice – what I used to consider a barbaric practice.
But that was before. It used to seem so horrible and pointless for two guys to go out back and beat each other to a pulp. Why not talk it out? Except these days, it seems that nobody takes it out back unless they have a knife in their hands. Or a gun. As a result, trifling arguments which used to result in black eyes or bruises, now end up with obituaries. Barroom brawls are scary things, these days.
Last night it occured to me that I now view fistfights with nostalgia – the gentleman’s way to settle a dispute. I can’t say that nobody gets hurt – but at least nobody dies. Temporary boo boos for nowhere-near-life-or-death squabbles. Compared to the daily news, two guys fighting without weapons seems like a crazy thing to be upset about. Too bad it isn’t more common. Twisted logic, I know. But then, it’s a twisted world.