Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Nick And Mellissa’s Infinite Playlist

It was hilarious. It was heartbreaking. And now, it appears, it was a hoax.

I was there on Sunday and witnessed a moment at Madison Square Garden that was every bit as compelling as anything we saw on the ice that day.

The main scoreboard showed a live shot of a couple sitting in the stands. Alongside were the words:

Melissa Will You Be My Blueshirt Bride? Love, Nick

It appeared that some brave and crazy Ranger fan had taken his girlfriend to the Ranger game on Valentines Day - and had pre-arranged with the MSG staff to make this very public proposal.

As we watched - the young lady appeared to slowly figure out what was happening. That she was on the big screen. That she was being proposed to - at a hockey game. That the entire arena was now cheering for a happy ending - yelling for her to say yes.

She looked at her boyfriend - sizing him up - taking it all in. And then - rejection!

She stands up - and exits - shaking her head. And the fans begin yelling - booing - and calling out in disbelief. The poor boyfriend has to chase after her - not only losing his girlfriend - but missing the rest of the Ranger game.

I thought that was the end of it – but the next day - and the next - the story seemed to have "legs". They were talking about it on Sports Radio. They were writing about it on the internet. They were discussing it on the Today Show. They were covering it in the Daily News.

And then - we began to hear the entire drama was in fact - a fake. That the proposal was not real and the live-action drama was staged. And this morning we're reading that Madison Square Garden was in - and in fact was behind - the entire thing.

What was the purpose of this? Entertainment? I mean if you're going to stage something like this - why wouldn't you go for the happy ending? Why do this?

And the story keeps growing. People don't like being fooled - and new information keeps coming out.

For me - originally this was a cautionary tale about proposing in a big public place. If you've got a chance of going down in flames - why make it public?

But now – learning that I was tricked – along with 18,000 others – I just feel disappointed. It’s just another example that shows you can't trust anyone or anything. Instead of feeling good – I feel used.

You know, the whole thing was a little bit like Donald Brashear's Ranger career:

-Uncomfortable to watch
-Full of conflict
-Very brief
-A complete failure
-Not what we hoped it would be
-And in the end - utterly pointless

From now on MSG – please - don’t spend time trying to fool – or make fools of - your customers. We have enough fake-ness and insincerity in the real world. We come to hockey games because hockey games are real. The teams are both trying to win – anything can happen – and what we see out there on the ice may not be pretty, but it is always 100% real.

Isn’t it?

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