I thought this story (discovered via Kukla’s Korner) was incredibly cute. Apparently, the HNIC towels that we see draped over the shoulders of NHLers in interviews are highly coveted status symbols for the players. Hockey Night In Canada keeps them under tight lock and key, and the only way to get one is to appear on camera in an interview, and the only way to get interviewed is to be extra awesome in a game. Most of the NHLers grew up watching HNIC, and the towels seem to represent a dream realized.
You can’t buy that towel at Bed Bath and Beyond.
How badly do you want a HNIC towel now? I really really really want one of those towels. Due to the fact that I’m old, out of shape, a woman, and severely unathletic, I have very little chance of becoming a professional hockey player. It seems highly unlikely that I will ever be the recipient of the coveted HNIC towel….but that didn’t stop me from imagining having it draped around my shoulders at my moment of triumph.
For some reason this story got me thinking about how my entire life, I’ve harbored little dreams that are so far removed from reality that they might as well involve me sprouting wings and flying. I spent much of my childhood preparing for my eventual career as a Minnesota Twin. My preparation did not involve playing or practicing baseball (Oh, hell no), but rather sitting around imagining playing baseball. My dream of becoming a baseball player back then was really no less ridiculous than the moment I took to covet the HNIC towel today.
Reading about the HNIC towel, I was delighted to be reminded that these childhood dreams are universal. This dream is a big part of why we watch sports, and it’s why the towels have value amongst very wealthy men. It’s nice that our little childhood dreams still have value, and it’s even better that sometimes that value is represented by something as simple as one small white towel.