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Banshees don’t wear black

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A lot of Sharks fans like the “black armor” unis.  Others hate the “black pajamas.”  I don’t hate them but they do look like pajamas to me.  Pajamas are cute, but I don’t like the color.  It is all wrong for the occasion.  It’s like wearing black to a Mardis Gras party or a picnic.  People do that but it shows they are missing the point.  Teal may not be the most festive color but at least it’s a color with personality.  It’s not blue, it’s not green, it clashes with red in a pleasing way.  It’s much better than black.

Black is “cool,” the color of chic and formal events and drear and government motorcades.  It says “I’m so awesome I don’t need to do anything to make you notice me.”  It is a background color, stealthy and discreet and afraid to choose.  It makes you look more pale and smaller than you are.  I know hockey has a fat phobia but come on, live a little!

Black is like a perfect nose: it doesn’t offend, but it isn’t very memorable either.  If you’re at the center of a spectacle, expected to put on a show, intimidate your opponent, black is all wrong.  I guess no one mentioned that to the 11 NHL teams who rotate or feature a predominantly black jersey among their game looks.  The mere fact that so many use it should count against it.

Black isn’t the only over-used color in the NHL.  There is also a whole lot of red and blue.  Some teams have no choice: Red Wings, Blue Jackets, Blues.  But red and blue can vary, so that the Sabres can each have two blue jerseys that do look distinctly different, one navy, one royal.  And then the Rangers can do the same.  I may be forgetting some multi-blue teams, it’s hard to tell them apart. 

Likewise, Capitals red isn’t the same as Avalanche burgundy.  I wouldn’t pick red or blue as colors for a new NHL team but I admit they are better than black which comes in just one, single, inflexible hue.

Accent colors don’t quite tip the boring scale.  Accent colors, hemmed into a modest surface area, only stick out enough to say: “I just gotta be me!... if that’s okay with you.”  They reveal a yearning for boldness without the nerve to stand up and shout.

Unless I missed someone, the only teams with jerseys in their very own true colors are the Sharks with teal, Flyers orange and Minnesota green. Partial credit to the Bruins and the Predators for being bold enough to share yellow.

Apparently some Flyers fans want their black jerseys back.  Talk about missing the point. 

Orange is the screaming banshee of colors.  It’s the color of bicycles no one will steal, the color you never paint your car because people will notice it everywhere, and have an opinion about it.  It is the kind of color that cannot be timid, it cannot go anywhere quietly.  It says: “Here I am, what you gonna do about it?!?”

The banshee isn’t a lovable figure.  She forewarns of death, bewails the upset of power, she is the Irish battle goddess.  She’s not often pretty, sometimes she is quite horrible to look upon.  She is impossible to ignore, her voice curdles the blood.  She doesn’t put you to sleep and she doesn’t wear black.  Legend has her in white or grey but not black.  Since she was reputed to be seen most at night, black wouldn’t do at all- she wasn’t trying to hide, she wanted to be noticed.  Maybe she did wear teal or orange, or both in a big gaudy floral pattern.  In the woods at night, that could look grey.

You don’t want a banshee around when you’ve got a bad case of the flu, or while you sip your morning coffee on a Sunday morning.  But what makes a hockey arena noteworthy?  It isn’t the soothing sounds of flutes or birds twittering in the trees.  It’s the noise of thousands of fanatics in an uproar. 

I don’t think a banshee takes sides, but she will get your blood going.  That’s what you want at a hockey game.  There’s no room for wallflowers in hockey, and shame on the Kings for shrinking from violet. 

When in doubt, they say, wear black.  Then get out of the way before someone with conviction runs you over.

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Banshee by Bart Willard  Yes, I really found a teal banshee.

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, petshark, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: banshee, black, colors, jersey, rant

Comments

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Banshees are also known for mournful wailing.

I would say that’s a very good metaphor for Sharks and their fans.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 09/06/11 at 12:12 PM ET

Puck's avatar

Teal is perfect for the Sharks. It’s a blend of being both yellow and green.
Also, Boston gets credit as being an original 6 team, and their color is Gold not yellow same as Nashville. So by deference of 73 years, I’ll give the nod to Boston over Nashville of owning the gold.
Another point is that the Kings seemed to have dumped their royal purple instead going with the black and silver. Sharks might want not wear alt black sweaters in their own division against L.A.

Posted by Puck from San Francisco, CA on 09/06/11 at 12:24 PM ET

Avatar

Im a Sharks STH’er and a fan for well over a decade and I’ve never met a home-grown Sharks fan that dislikes the black third jerseys. The ONLY people I’ve heard of or read that are critical if them is national media and people that aren’t home grown Sharks fans.

Ive usually found them to be semi-marginal Sharks fans that were originally from another part of the US and originally a fan of a different NHL team before the Sharks existed. They are usually true Sharks fans but have a split allegiance to another team. Which if I’m incorrect doesnt that describe you Petshark?

I’m not saying your opinion doesn’t count - and I don’t know what it is exactly, but the only people I ever hear complain about the Sharks black third jerseys fit a similar description.

I think it’s such a newer phenomenon that fans of the 70’s and 80’s NHL teams don’t seem to like them.

Posted by Tom on 09/06/11 at 02:02 PM ET

Avatar

Im a Sharks STH’er and a fan for well over a decade and I’ve never met a home-grown Sharks fan that dislikes the black third jerseys. The ONLY people I’ve heard of or read that are critical if them is national media and people that aren’t home grown Sharks fans.

Ive usually found them to be semi-marginal Sharks fans that were originally from another part of the US and originally a fan of a different NHL team before the Sharks existed. They are usually true Sharks fans but have a split allegiance to another team. Which if I’m incorrect doesnt that describe you Petshark?

I’m not saying your opinion doesn’t count - and I don’t know what it is exactly, but the only people I ever hear complain about the Sharks black third jerseys fit a similar description.

I think it’s such a newer phenomenon that fans of the 70’s and 80’s NHL teams don’t seem to like them.

Posted by Tom on 09/06/11 at 02:03 PM ET

petshark's avatar

JJ,
Yes, the banshee is a complex character.  The mourning part bugs me but the most common use I have heard refers to a shrieking, wild creature, more like the picture I found there (it wasn’t very hard to find, high on the google search) than like the other images of the wailing woman.  And I really like the Irish battle goddess part;)

Tom,
I’m not sure what you mean by home grown, but I’m a native Northern Californian so I don’t know how I could be more home grown.  I hope you don’t only mean SJ because that leaves out a big audience.  I actually grew up in SF, so maybe I am sick of black, spent too much time around people who wear it all the time.  Anyway, I don’t like black uniforms on any team, too corporate for me. 

I don’t mind the style of the Sharks 3rd jersey, it is fine to walk around town in, it just doesn’t scream team colors, since it isn’t the team colors.  So it’s great if you are thinking of how to sell people jerseys they will wear, and you have to put it on the players if you want to make it legit, but I would rather have it worn less on the ice.

Posted by petshark from Nor Cal, and on Twitter @petshark47 on 09/06/11 at 08:35 PM ET

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