Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Morning Skate Remembers for November 11th

After another loss, it's always good for some perspective. And today is a good day for perspective. I think I said this in last year's Remembrance Day Post but I want to say again - I hate it when sports announcers and journalists and even players use war metaphors to describe games. War is war; sports are a diversion. Sports aren't life and death, even though sometimes we treat them that way. Soldiers fighting to protect our freedom is really life and death. Remember that.


Habsfan10 said...

Amen to that, 29.

lawyergirl77 said...

In Flanders Fields - John McCrae. Written in May 1915

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

(Too depressed to write anything original. I'm getting awfully sick of disappointment on and off the ice...)

KML said...

"be yours to hold it high" - probably the thing we all forget most on this day.

Moey said...

Great pics posted at HIO of Price's Rememberance Day Mask. Kudos to him and Cammy for supporting our troops.

Boob Gainey said...

A minor point, but the soldiers in Afghanistan are not fighting to protect our freedom.

Habsfan10 said...

Another minor point: Nowhere in 29's post or in anyone's comments does it mention the troops in Afghanistan. We're all well aware that what those soldiers are doing is different from what the men and women who fought WW I and II were doing. But for the record, going over to that maelstrom deserves respect and support too.

eyebleaf said...


Anonymous said...

Those soldier fighting in Afghanistan are not necessarily fighting for our freedom, but are fighting for our safety and are fighting for the freedom of Afghans. They deserve respect and solidarity.

BTW, i love this site!

Robbie said...

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower, speech, American Society of Newspaper Editors, 16 April 1953

Michael said...

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! – An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling,
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime . . .
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est
Pro patria mori.

Wilfred Owen
8 October 1917 - March, 1918

dwgs said...

Just got back from the ceremony, I go because I'm lucky enough to be the first male in my family lucky enough not to have been to war. Both grandfathers in WW1, one grandfather, my father, and two uncles in WW2, and an uncle in Korea.
I don't go to honour the armed forces, I go to honour the soldiers.
I'm not a big fan of the mission in Afghanistan as it stands but my problem lies with our gov't and it's policies, not the guys (and now girls) we sent to do their job.

lawyergirl77 said...

@Michael - Wow. That's really powerful. I had never read it before. Can't say that it lifted my spirits (there's no lifting them lately), but thanks for posting it!!

And Wordy McWord to all of you re: why we're honouring our veterans today. The tributes in here are pretty amazing.

I may dislike the reasons for sending them off to war, but I will never have anything other than respect and admiration for the men and women who are willing to put their lives on the line for something they believe is right. It's a type of courage I could never fathom.

Boob Gainey said...

Another Wilfred Owen:

Move him into the sun -
Gently its touch awoke him once,
At home, whispering of fields unsown.
Always it woke him, even in France,
Until this morning and this snow.
If anything might rouse him now
The kind old sun will know.

Think how it wakes the seeds, -
Woke, once, the clays of a cold star.
Are limbs, so dear-achieved, are sides,
Full-nerved, - still warm, - too hard to stir?
Was it for this the clay grew tall?
- O what made fatuous sunbeams toil
To break earth's sleep at all?

Mr. Mills said...

Never posted here before. But always come a couple times a day for the funny. I liked the Remembrance day post and like many out there it seems that I too respect the troops if not the machinations/missions.

Shout-out to Michael for putting up the Owen piece. McRae's poem has been so twisted over time that it's easy to forget that it's a poem that actually attempts to validate war, and would curse us should we give up fighting. Owen's piece posted above by Mike B. puts paid to that propaganda b.s. all the while allowing us insight into the soldiers' experiences so that we might respect their sacrifices even more.

I for one could use more Owen and less McRae.

I'll be back tomorrow for the funny.

lawyergirl77 said...

Point taken, Mr. Mills, point taken.

KML said...

+1 to Boone and Boob for the Owen pieces. It's a shame that they are not better understood and more prolifically taught.

At the high risk of sounding like a snotty poli-sci student (which I once was, now I'm a snotty law student), we joke a lot about the idiocy of nationalism here at FHF, but Owen's work is a great reminder of the terrible things that can be done in the name of an "imagined community."

Boob Gainey said...

Owen was good, but Goya will always be the best teacher of that particular lesson.

moeman said...

Some thoughtful posts today. Lest We Forget.

Picasso had an powerful take about the subject discussed..

Tom said...

According to the Society for International Hockey Research, there have been 368 NHLers who have served in war.

Two of those players, Joe Turner and Dudley “Red” Garrett, died in service before thier careers ever got started.

I think the NHL would do a lot of good to remember these folks, especially at this time of year.

x-ine said...

Thank you for this. Today is about the people who risked (and risk) their lives on behalf of our country, and that is that.

Lest we forget...

Baroque said...

"Dulce et Decorum Est"

I read that in a high school English class, and it really struck all of us.

Glad that someone else remembered that poem.

L Dude said...

Remembering my Dad today. He stormed Juno Beach on D-Day. Lost his best friend there. Always enjoyed Remembrance Day at the Legion with his boys.

Onto hockey. For something less depressing, for those checking in this evening Habs vs. Sabres in the 1993 Wales quarterfinal on NHLTV. Maybe that'll cheer me up.

Number31 said...

Do the players put a poppy decal on their helmets? I think that would be a nice touch. I also hope Price gets a game to show off that lovely mask other than warmup...