Sunday, November 29, 2009

Varly T-Shirts and Coming Out in Hockey

I got two great emails over the weekend that I wanted to share with you, the readers of The View From 419.

The first email is from a Capitals fan named Sarah who Neil and I met when we went to watch the scrimage at the end of development camp this summer. Neil was wearing his I love Var llama v T-shirt and Sarah thought it was really funny.

Since she was the first person to compliment it, I sent her the design and she ordered some shirts for herself and a friend. I had not actually heard from Sarah since I sent the design and was very surprised to get an email from her telling me how much she and her friend love the T-Shirts:

"Just wanted to let you know that I love my llama T-shirt. A friend and I each got one, and we wear 'em all the time."

Sarah then recommended that I submit my shirt to Puck Daddy who has made a list of funny hockey shirts (some slightly vulgar, beware).  Wish me luck! (Thanks for the tip, Sarah)

And now for a completely different topic. A friend of mine who knows how obsessed I am with hockey sent me an email linking to this article this weekend.

I found the story of Brendan Burke inspiring and discouraging all at once. I suppose there aren't many, if any, professional sports where being openly gay is commonly accepted. I just hadn't really thought of it before.

Let's be honest, I didn't even think about professional sports at all until a couple years ago. It's been a slow awakening.

Brendan and his dad are really brave, as are the people around them in the hockey community who are speaking up in support of them. I hope that some day (sooner than later) hockey will be a place where talented athletes can be themselves, no matter their sexual orientation, and be accepted by teammates and fans alike.

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