Thursday, December 9, 2010

An Open Letter to Don Cherry

Dear Don,

I know you read my blog just like I never miss Coaches Corner. I have bought many of your Rock Em Sock Em Videos and both your books (I don't think I'll be getting your latest this Xmas) Unfortunately you have crossed the line and I not sure whether I will be able to watch you anymore.

Now you and I are the biggest Bruins fans in Canada. You came to the Bruins as coach following the Bruins' loss in the Stanley Cup finals. I wasn't initially too happy with you as coach, we all remember what happened that first season. I was even more sceptical when you traded Esposito. To the Rangers of all teams. But you started to get results, there were the two Stanley Cup appearances, and of course the heart-breaking game 7 overtime loss to Montreal. By the way I like the way you have always taken the fall for Don Marcotte. And of course we loved the way the Bruins played during those seasons, a true team that played hockey the way it was supposed to be played. And a team that has continued to play that way for 31 years after you left them.

I was delighted when you started appearing on Hockey Night in Canada which was at that time the lamest broadcast around. Finally somebody who would tell it like it is, criticize people and wasn't afraid of stepping on toes. Every hockey broadcaster in Canada owes you a debt of gratitude. I like the fact that unlike many ex-NHLers, you chose to come back to Canada. You could have stayed in the US, you married an American after all. I love your support for Canadian teams, including the way you stuck up for our World Junior Team. I also loved your support for our Women's hockey team right from the start.

Lately however you have betrayed your lunch pail roots. That was what we loved about you and Bruins their lunch pail work ethic, how hard they worked for everything. You have instead become a shill for the right wing elite. That's right the right wing elite. There is no left wing elite, Don. Your new conservative friends have always been in power, they have been the elite.

Part of your hagiography Don is your working class father. Well Don, I suspect your working class father was able to afford a house, maybe a car and was able to pay for your hockey equipment so that you could make a career of hockey. And you were probably able to have a pretty nice lifestyle on just one parents' salary. How many working class people can say that nowadays? That's right Don, working class lunch pail guys made a living income back then because they had things like unions and even some "liberal elite" politicians who gave a shzt about them.

Your conservative friends, Don have over the past 25 years conducted a war on the lunch pail guys. They have transferred much of the tax load onto them, allowed industries that employed them to close or leave the country and lately caused the economy to crash. Wages of the lunch pail guys have not kept up with the cost of living. And all those poor dead soldiers who bring you to tears every few weeks? Sent off to Afghanistan to prop up a corrupt government that oppresses women, Christians and ethnic minorities.

What really pisses me off Don, is your latest statements about cyclists. I ride a bike Don. I ride to work, I ride for pleasure, I ride for exercise. Lots of us Bruins fans do. But your new friends don't like cyclists or for that matter lunch pail guys who take the bus to work instead of driving. Now Don, I ride my bike for pleasure but when I go to work early every morning, I pass lots of lunch pail guys riding their bikes to construction sites and factories. They aren't riding for fun Don, they are riding because they had to decide between a car and a place to sleep at night. All they and I want Don, is to feel safe when we go out for a ride.

And those "left wing elites" Don? These are the guys who actually care about those lunch pail guys. Not like your new friend Rob Ford. I don't think they make a lunch pail big enough for him. Rob Ford isn't a lunch pail guy. He inherited his business and all his money. I suspect that after the Leafs are out of the playoffs he cheers for the Habs (maybe even before the Leafs are out). He even pulled a few dirty tricks, that even Scotty Bowman would have been ashamed to try, in order to get elected.

O yes Don. What do you do for a living? You work for the CBC. All of your new friends know that the CBC is a hotbed of the liberal elite. You make a pretty good living from those liberal elites, high 6 figures I heard. Not bad for a 12 minute broadcast.

So Don, why don't you stick to being a buffoonish caricature of yourself between the first and second intermissions and stay the hell out of politics. Because Don, at the hockey rink, left and right wings are positions you play, not positions you hold.

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