Brendan Shanahan…Dad? Dad!
Ignoring the fact that we have the same first name, that our last name is equal in terms of number of characters, and that our dashing good looks gains us as much renown as the skill and honour with which we bring to our jobs day in, day out (daily/nightly), Brendan Shanahan and I still have much in common.
Seriously, we are essentially a case of “Mother doesn’t know who the father is, father refuses to take blood test.” I know this because I’ve written many a letter to Brendan Shanahan and asked him to take the test, just one silly test, just a little bit of blood, not like he hasn’t left plenty on the ice; and each time I get the same response: Nothing. Or, in some cases: Stop writing to this address or, worse yet: This isn’t the address of the Hockey Player Brendan Shanahan, I’m a f***ing veterinarian. Please leave me and my family alone.
Anyway, he’s been like a father to me. He’s always been there for me when I needed him. Game 6 against Colorado when he iced it, I really needed that insurance. The win? 2-1? Good enough, yes, but please remember…I’m a Detroit Red Wings fan. I don’t just WANT the empty netter, I NEED it. Just ask anyone who hasn’t yet wiped Game 5 of the 2008 Final out of their mind. I needed him to ice that isht. Him and I were so happy about it, we even forgave the over-excited fan who reached over and slapped his beautiful man-grille.
Later in life, he continued to be my favourite hockey player, and one of only two (other being Ozzie) who can claim the honour of having a framed poster somewhere on the interior walls of Sully’s bedroom. The Depot, as I call it. Since I’m armed to the teeth. Get it? Depot? Whatever, you guys suck. Anyway, fast forward a bit and he fights the only fighter in the NHL bigger than him in Derian Hatcher, and does pretty damn well. And even if you think Hatcher won, Shanny wins in the end because, let’s face it, both spent time with Detroit, one was a hit, the other was hit with a brick in the face on his way home after a game.
So what? Why do I bring this all up? Because, Shanny is my blood and hero. In that time period, he was my favourite player. Sure, Steve Yzerman was the Greatest Leader hockey has ever known, and was to Hockeytown what Paul Atriedes was to Arakis, but I was an outsider looking in to Detroit, so Steve Yzerman will always mean more to that City than he ever will to me (*tear drops as I dictate this*). Shanny has never done wrong, in my book. Not even when he signed with New York and won all of their games for them with wristers from the low slot. Not even when he signed with Jersey Shore, got a tan, faux-hawked his hair and won all of their games for them with one-timers from the low slot. He’s never, ever betrayed the fact that he got all of the “GOOD” Irish genes ever, in one being, and did nothing to make me upset at the fact that he abandoned my mother to raise me alone save for a toe-headed stocky Irishman who fights by swinging upward, rather than downward, claiming to be my father. He’s never done anything like that.
Want more? Want to know what it’s like to have your Dad tell you “You’re adopted?” Want to know what it’s like to have your Dad tell you “Oh son, the reason I’ve never given you anything on your Birthday, Christmas, Easter, or St. Brendan’s Feast Day is because I’ve actually used my entire career to change the All-Star game into a Sidny Rosby Alex Ovechkin Pickup Hockey Game where the only two star players who won’t be picked are two of the three: Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg or Nicklas Lidstrom.”