Winning the low-ball $20,000 lottery jackpot in Missouri must feel pretty damn good. I imagine if you’re the average “Lou” resident, you take your winnings in one single payout and start shaping things up. New clothes, new house, the lost Nelly tapes you could never afford…they’re all yours now. You stroll into the Mercedes dealership and get talked into some $100,000 sedan financed to the hilt and drive it over to the jeweler, who convinces you that Timex has to go.
And now you’re set.
This is what we in the business call “new money.” It’s spent quickly and foolishly by people who don’t understand their actual value, who haven’t been around rich people long enough to put their worth into perspective and who don’t have patience to be smart with their money. They get a little currency…a little weight…and they start throwing it around. Pretty soon, it’s all gone.
To the outsider, it looks silly. To the old money crowd, we just sit back and laugh, shaking our heads and ordering another round of single malt from the waitress in the bunny outfit. We’ve seen this before, this tale of sudden success…surprising relevancy…and we know how this usually ends. It ends back where it started, with the little upstart, having run his mouth too loudly and spent his funds too quickly, looking around to realize the financial stool he was standing on was missing a leg…then two…and eventually all three.
I couldn’t be happier to see what’s going down right now between our good friend JJ over at Winging it in Motown and some new money chump from St. Louis Gametime named “Destroyer”…a nickname that I am positive he regrets hitching his creaky little wagon onto. I love JJ’s breakdown of the whole thing. It’s adorable to see a fan like Destroyer run, screaming and breathless from one shitty franchise (the Avalanche) to another team that, frankly, I’d forgotten even existed for the past decade (The Blues). As far as I’m concerned, the Blues’ relevancy to anyone outside of St. Louis ended with this and we haven’t heard from them until a few months ago, when they hired some fat Dallas castoff to come patch things back together.
Make no mistake – St. Louis has a great team this year. They’re tough to play against, they’ve got solid goaltending and despite my earlier jab above, they’re led by a coach with a noted ability to get teams to lock down defensively. They are absolutely going to be a pain in the ass this year and they’re another big reason that the Wings’ division is the toughest in the league to do business in.
What I’m fascinated with is how Blues’ fans are handling this success. …or more specifically, how “Destroyer” (I’m still having a hard time with that) is handling it. Let’s just…for simplicity sake…accept this improbable, Mitt Romney-like tale of flip-flopping and allow that “Lil D” actually is a passionate Notes fan. It’s easier that way, right? What I can’t get over is why he’s sitting there on his wobbly little stool of self-righteousness, beaming with hubris over his Blues’ recent success, throwing bombs at Wings’ fans like JJ. Are we arrogant and a pain in the ass to deal with as Wings’ fans? Absolutely. But the timing just seems a little off. I would have thought Blues’ fans would be more relieved than anything right now that they’re not a complete doormat. The scale seems off too. It feels personal. Really personal. It feels like the kind of argument you have with someone you’ve been griping with for years, not someone who is punching above their weight class for a bit and destined to get put in their place.
Lil’ D, here’s a bit of advice. We’ve been here. We’ve been here for a long time. We’ll be here long after your little surge is over, your new found currency gone, and you’re back in your cave, jerking it to some Gretz card you saved from that 10 minutes when he was saddled with playing for your sad little franchise.
While I thoroughly enjoy tapping out this little missive to you and anyone else in your merry band who might have similar ideas about rolling up on us, I do so with a cigar in one hand and my laptop perched on the legs of the stunning blonde sitting half-naked on my lap. She doesn’t even speak English, but when you’ve been a member of the “Teams Who’ve Won The Cup Club” for as long as we have, they let you bend the rules.
That’s what old money does. We don’t sweat this stuff. We have our fun with it…we let you hang around long enough to amuse us, but we keep it in perspective. We ride it out, we know our place, we appreciate history and can project, with a reasonable sense of certainty, that this respect for history puts us in a good position to see it repeated.
Go back to your hole. Go back to your little sad tub of cheese curds and life size Pujols blowup dolls that you used to romance back on those lonely St. Louis spring evenings when we were busy winning Cups. You’re out of your league, son.