This is an Extremely On Brand safe space, and the URL alone should have tipped you off to it. I have now drifted completely into “Old Man Yelling At Clouds Dot Meme” territory by registering a space on the web dedicated solely to shouting hockey thoughts into the ether with no real targeted audience in mind.
I’ve always thought writers need to keep their audience in mind when writing for mass consumption. I always tried to when I wrote for, then managed, DefendingBigD or when I wrote stories for WFAA, the local Dallas ABC affiliate. I wasn’t always successful, but I did always start out with the goal of writing things I would want to read. I wanted them to be interesting, well written, and somehow meaningful to, well, anyone.
I’ve spent most of my life trying to provide value in some way to other people. I come from a broken home. On Monday I submit papers to a judge I’ve never met in Houston legally breaking up the home I tried to make with someone, officially ending a journey I started in early 2005. Ultimately all I ever wanted to do in those situations or in writing about hockey is just provide something useful or valuable that makes a positive impact on some level on someone else’s life.
The circumstances, and life experiences I’ve dealt with, and behaviors I’ve learned, have all too often made me a bitter person who has been an asshole to people, many times for no real reason at all other than extreme social awkwardness. Those interactions add up. They make people respond to you differently and often in ways you never in a million years intended. I think in my case I was always too immature to know any better, and I’ve beaten myself up over it almost constantly for several years.
It’s impossible to go find all of those people and apologize and expect them to shrug it off like you weren’t an asshole to them. The reality of the situation is that those interactions limit your audience and isolate you from sectors of a larger, mostly welcoming, community. The conflict between limiting your audience through being a prick and wanting to provide something valuable weighs on me a lot.
Over the past few years I’ve worked to be less of one, but years of it are going to leave their mark on other people. In thinking about things I’ve realized that what I want to do is create. The feeling of knowing you’ve written something you can be proud of, and knowing it is the best work you can possibly do, has always been something I have craved. I know the best work I can do is pretty good. I’ve missed that mark more than I would like to admit, most of the time due to the pressures of real life.
And I think that is the entire point of my rambling introduction to what I want to do here. Writing about sports is real life to a large number of people. At one point I think I had delusions that it could be my real life. It never came to be despite some brief moderately serious flirtations with the possibility.
Writing about hockey is my escape from real life, not my real life. I find it therapeutic. This site is a 100% selfish endeavor meant to help me cope with real life. I have no expectations of an audience or to make any money off of anything anymore. I only want to write about hockey as I see it to maintain some level of sanity, and to use this space to collect old things I’ve written so they aren’t lost for my own sake.
This is barely a website right now. It reminds me of the houses for sale in Katy that still have damage from Hurricane Harvey. They’re all missing drywall, but many of them still have fully painted dry wall panes with pictures hung up and well adorned fire places. This place is my hockey writing equivalent of a Hurricane Harvey distressed home in need of renovation. Over time I expect it will look nicer, but with no editor, deadline, or boss of any kind who knows when that will be?
I have no idea if anyone has actually read this, but it’s actually nice to not be worried about that. I think I can actually get three hours of sleep now. If nothing else comes out of this I’m calling it a success.