Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Open Letter to Ryan Kesler

Dear Ryan Kesler,

I was devastated when I read that you apparently said "I hate Canadians". I was devastated and fuming mad.

You were the first Canuck I got behind when I moved to Vancouver. And not just because you grow the hottest playoff beard on the team. I loved the way you played aggressive but clean. I loved the passion you seemed to have for the game. I loved your sense of humor (walking arm-in-arm with Ohlund after you had a media-worthy dust-up in practice).

I defended your hair (your flippy airplane wings/faux hawk combo is adorable!) And I even had a nickname for you: "Leg-Kick Kesler" because you almost always kick your leg up when you shoot. My fiance actually ran into you once and got his picture with you. When he told me about it, the conversation started like this; "I'm so sorry that I saw Ryan Kesler without you. Don't kill me please."

Most importantly I spent $300 to see you play with Team USA against Norway and endured hardcore attacks from everyone I know for also buying a Team USA T shirt and American flags to wear/bring to the game. As a Canadian girl, during an Olympics on home soil, you should realize that I almost had to go into the witness protection program for that one! (Which in Canada I am fairly certain means moving to Winnepeg.)

And then I hear "I hate Canadians". And I think... wow. He hates me. He hates us. The people who support him in-and-out through every season - and even when he's not in a Canucks jersey (did you hear the cheers when they put the medal on your neck? Just your neck, no other Team USA players) Ryan Kesler "hates" us. Wow. Like Brodeur said in the same article, "hate" is a strong word.

But tonight TSN announced you swear you were "misquoted". They say that you now say you don't hate Canadians, you just get miffed that they claim the game of hockey as "their own".

Dude... Those Coca-Cola commercials got to you, huh? (Please note I am using "huh" instead of "eh" ... trying to speak American, out of respect, of course).

I can sympathize because after you & Ryan Miller smoked our butts in that first USA-Canada match-up I threw up a little in my mouth every time they played that damn ad. I wanted to file a harrassment charge against Coke with the CRTC.

But think about it Ryan - you've lived here long enough now, you must know. Hockey is all we've got! Our basketball team here in Vancouver lasted 3.5 seconds, the Raptors are.... the Raptors. We don't have an NFL team. The Expos are R.I.P and the Blue Jays might as well be. And until there's more MILF Curlers to keep the Olympic interest going year round ..... it's just hockey, Ry. Just hockey.

We don't boast about anything else. Ever. And we apologize for everything - except hockey... and Nickleback even though we owe everyone a BIG "sorry" for them. We need to own hockey - or else all we have is Health Care. We can't have a Health Care Night in Canada, Ryan. That's not going to gather generations of families together around their television sets every Saturday. And seriously, what the hell would Don Cherry do if we didn't have hockey - sell used cars? Or worse, Toyotas?!

But you almost left us with just that. You, your incredible goalie and the rest of the well-oiled, fine-tuned machine that was Team USA. You almost took our only game right out from under us. (and we don't hate you for it, btw)

Silver isn't a consolation prize, Kes. It's an achievement. One Ovechkin didn't manage to come close to. Or the Twins. Or Demitra. Or Salo. Seriously, you should be proud. You were so good out there for those 2 weeks, we'd have sacrificed a moose in a satanic ritual if it meant we could have had you on our team.

I think many Canadians were surprised to realize when the lines were carved in the ice that you weren't on Team Canada. Because we love you & admire you like you are one of us. That's why the alleged "hate Canadians" comment hurt so much.

Trust me, considering you one of us is the best compliment we could give you. It means we think you aren't just playing OUR game.. your playing YOURS too.

Does that help a little?

If not please also keep in mind - Coca-Cola is an American company.


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