The following is purely fictional and meant for entertainment purposes only. By entertainment, we mean we hope you laugh while reading this, while framing this, or while burning this. Any similarities between this and actual events is strictly coincidental and frankly, dumb luck. Remember to remind your lawyer about the made-up part, OK?
So The Dance goes like this:
(insert name here)
is struck in the
(a) eye (b) face (c) mouth (d) all of the above
(a) stick (b) puck (c) skate (d) unnamed body part.
Said player (a) loses vision (b) has a deep facial gash (c) gives a dentist an extra week in Tuscany. At this point people swoon, journalists pontificate, heads get scratched and generally the hockey world opens up its 338th debate on the subject of mandatory visors, with all parties summarily agreeing to adjourn until the other side sees it exactly their way.
All concerned parties weigh in with their, well, concerns.
Optometrists are concerned with anything north of the cheekbones while orthodontists are in charge of anything involving gums, calcium, enamel, lips or the tongue. The nose and ears pretty much fend for themselves, which, I guess, is why they're classified as optional appendages.
The medical industry would thus have presented its cautionary, yet shortsighted, recommendations for player protection. I say Â“shortsightedÂ” because one can only imagine the economic impact on the dental industry if hockey players actually took the advice and wore full facial protection. Yale grads would starve. People would be jumping off buildings. I suppose then that this is probably the thinking behind endorsing half-visors since this would clear their collective Hippocratic conscience and protect a majority of players while still leaving wiggle room for the occasional catastrophic and financially-tasty dental injury.
Essentially everyone wins.
Players counter in this issue with their clever, yet sterile, two-pronged attack, which, in fact, branches into two, even smaller, limbs. Basically the players' argument boils down to (a) I can't see when I wear it and (b) it's my option to go blind and/or toothless so, if the end result is Â“I won't be able to seeÂ”, I should at least be comfortable getting there.
All sides provide brilliant, yet innocuous arguments. Ultimately though, it all boils down to one basic unavoidable fact: providing sufficient enough reason to sway the jury of NHL players to voluntarily don the resin. And you want to know how to do that? Do you really want to end this thing once and for all? Well, then you have to know who to put in the witness stand.
This whole infinite debate can be boiled down to one utter inalienable truth; one everlasting and indestructible constant with a hockey player: Chicks Dig Scars. All the dweeby dentists and all the nerdy case studies in the world fail miserably against a woman's swoon. There is a power there beyond statistics and warning labels. It is both a player's Kryptonite and his Lois Lane.
Think I'm dreaming? Just imagine:
Â“Hi, we're the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders and we think guys who lose their teeth are ug-ly.Â”
Â“Supermodels think there's nothing hotter than a man in a visor.Â”
Â“Any man of Angelina Jolie's would always wear protection.Â”
The line forms on the right.
Charlie Teljeur, creator of THN's hockeysockpuppettheatre, brings you Loose Change every Tuesday and Friday only on thehockeynews.com.
Want to talk to Charlie about love, life, or Loose Change? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org