Much has been made of how we as hockey fans should feel as a result of the ongoing lockout. It's ridiculous, however to take our cue from a journalist or a message board when we should already know how to feel or what to think. To that end, I won't dare to presume to tell you how to feel about this or anything else that may hit close to home.
That's not to say when something happens that scares us all (or should anyway) that we shouldn't talk about how it makes all feel. I'm speaking of course about the horrible tragedy that took place last Friday in Newtown, Connecticut. Something like that throws into sharp relief what ought to be more important to us. As opposed to a potential lost season for a sport that is spinning down the drainpipe towards irrelevancy.
For the sake of clarity and sanity, I won't rehash the events as we all know by now what happened.
I noticed that a local journalist asked in a column today titled: "How Do You Respond to Heartbreak?" A worthwhile question to ponder, and unfortunately also one with no easy answer. Again, I won't assume to have any magic answers save one: find a way to go on. Easier said than done of course. And of course for those of us who would usually try to get some normality back by enjoying a NHL game or three, that option just isn't available. But as it turns out, there's a lesson to be learned and it's the fact that there are bigger things in this world we need to take the time to acknowledge.
As for me, I can say this much: I have a daughter as well as a stepson and stepdaughter. In their own way they've shared my love of hockey, or at least tolerated it. I have to admit however, I may not have always let them know how important they are. I plan on telling all three that they mean the world to me. More than most other things I come across, and certainly more than NHL hockey at this moment. That's the only piece of advice I feel fit to impart, being a parent. Do right by your children while you can and let them know how you feel.
And if you don't have children, take stock in your own life and figure out what matters most. You might be surprised what you discover. Life is a gift and not something to be tossed aside. Now if only we could just remember that. Because there's one "L" word that should mean more to us than "lockout." And that's love.