It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...well not entirely. With all apologies to Mr. Dickens, there's no debtor prison in 2012.
Anyways that small tangent aside, this weekend saw a pair of Wild-related jerseys show up which elicited very different reactions. Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in the fun of things but there is always a time to be serious.
First is former Twins and current New York Mets pitcher Johan Santana, who this past weekend wore a personalized Wild jersey on the team's trip to Toronto. Every Met donned one in what seems to be a new Major League tradition when teams face the Blue Jays although the Rangers and Devils still being alive can't hurt either.
The only question is how Santana got a personalized jersey. There are probably many explanations but the simple answer, doing "Lets Play Hockey" before a Minnesota game, never happened according to Wild PR. I'd selfishly like to think he went into the Hockey Lodge and specifically ordered it but that's just me. It's cool to see Santana along with the rest of Mets (especially Canadian Jason Bay rocking the old school Hartford Whalers jersey) wearing hockey jerseys and for the former Twin to remember his roots; even if we can't remember who he was traded for.
The second jersey isn't even a Minnesota Wild jersey but brings tears to our eyes nonetheless. After finishing the World Championships with a silver medal, Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara wore the late Pavol Demitra's Slovakian jersey in his honor. Demitra, who played for the Wild between 2006 and 2008, was killed in a plane crash along with 43 other Lokomotiv players and personnel last September. Before that he was a major presence on the Slovakian team and they were playing for him.
It's unfortunate that they couldn't beat Russia (Slovakia lost 6-2) but the effort and feeling, good or bad, to not forget is what matters most. We need never be ashamed of our tears.
(h/t Tommy and Sean Leahy)