Wednesday, November 15, 2006

11-14-06: Rangers 3, Devils 2

You know that old saying, "It ain't over til it's over"? Well, nobody actually believes that. Most of us believe we can see the outcome coming long before the competition is officially finished. But it turns out, sometimes, even when the end is starting to look like a foregone conclusion, everything changes.

  1. Have you ever wondered what hockey would look like as played by a bunch of Prussian bureaucrats circa 1883? Well, wonder no more, for I give you: the New Jersey Devils (Motto: There is nothing even remotely Satanic about our game.) Yes, these guys have somehow developed a style of hockey so well-organized that it almost can't be described by the verb 'to play.' They don't play hockey, they don't even perform or execute or enact hockey. In fact, I'm not sure I can think of an active, transitive verb to describe what exactly they do to hockey. They participate in a hockey match. There we go.
  2. My daddy always told me that you can't fight bureaucracy. "E, " he would say, "You can't fight the system and win. The more you fight, the more power you give it." Bureaucracy is like python- the more you struggle, the harder it squeezes. The point is not that one should give in to bureaucratic power structures, but that you have to learn how to manipulate the system, subvert it, exploit it, find loopholes. For two periods, the Rangers tried to fight the system with ever-dwindling enthusiasm, and got exactly nowhere. Then, they found a loophole.
  3. So, in conclusion, many thanks to Jagr and Shanahan, for reminding us all that sometimes it is enough to play brilliantly for 90 seconds, that it is indeed possible to beat even the most comprehensive bureaucracy, and that it really isn't over until it's over.

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