LHH Editor's Note: This FanPost probably reflects the sentiments of a lot of fans who cannot vote Aug. 1. If you're one of them, you can try to help via the Rock the Referendum contest.
I'd like to start this article off by disclosing the fact that I have never voted for any election in my life, and no it is not because I simply don't care; it's because I have recently turned the corner into adulthood and attained the necessary age of 18 years to be able to. How I wish that I had the essential residency requirement to mark this election down as my inaugural one.
You see, for me, and probably as with many of you LHHers, I see the Coliseum as a home, and the Islanders as a true love. There is no other sports team I follow with such passion, such zeal, and such wholeheartedness. Seriously, ask anyone I know. I am the ONE person you will see walking around my college campus (which is in NY btw) in my Tavares jersey or my Grabner shirt or god forbid even my DiPietro shirt after a tough heartbreaker, or even a blowout. The amount of times my Isles apparel worn under my goalie gear was blamed for a loss in a game is way more than I would like.
My first Islanders game, I was at the tender age of 2, adorable as could be, enjoying the tradition of attending sports games with your family. We even got put up on the video board. Then something happened. They scored. I could not tell you who scored the goal, or even if we were winning, losing, or had just tied the game, however I do know that the goal horn that plays at the Coliseum scared me half to death and sent me into a hysterical fit apparently. To this day though, I no longer go into an upset hysterical frenzy, I go into a joyous frenzy...WE JUST SCORED. The sweet sound of that horn with whatever the goal song happens to be that year, combined with the entire crowd jumping up to their feet, slapping high-fives to each other, and screaming has stuck with me ever since that first time. It's one of the best feelings I have as an Isles fan.
Let's face it, the Isles have not been anything to write home about for pretty much my entire life. Being born after the dynasty years I have yet to see real success. But honestly, it's not about being a fan just to see them win. It's about sticking with it, for better or for worse, and loving the team. Thinking each year, that this could be the one where we FINALLY win a playoff series. I have stuck by my Isles for the better part of 2 decades now, and I cannot imagine them leaving. Growing up watching my favorite players, from Ziggy Palffy to Tommy Salo to Kenny Jonsson, to Jason Blake, to Montoya, to Grabner and Moulson and Tavares, the Islanders and pretty much whatever team they put on the ice, I am there through thick and thin.
Fast forward from my first hockey experience. I am now at the tender age of 6 with my brother being 2. Guess where our first concert ever took place...Think ya got it? It was KISS, as the Coliseum. Imagine the impact THAT would have on two little kids. My point here is to not come off sounding like I'm the only die hard fan among us, and for the team's sake I seriously hope I'm not, but I am attempting to share with you guys and girls just exactly what this place and team means for me. I'm only one person tho and I'd love to hear about what everything means to you guys. There are some of you who witnessed the World Champion New York Islanders, and possibly some who even was there when it happened. I've been to the Coliseum when it's sold out, and I've been there when it's empty. I know how hard that place can rock and I know how much these fans love their team. We WILL NOT go out without a fight. Go out and vote to keep these memories alive for generations to come with a new building, because I think it's pretty obvious to a lot of us that the Isles team we have coming up now is something special. They go to battle for each other and are so talented that it is unbelievable to think that they are not a championship team in the making. Let's keep this team where it belongs, on Long Island and in our hearts, and let's keep the new Coliseum rocking for the next 30 years with Isles games and concerts galore.
All the best, and Vote Yes for me, since I cannot,