If you've followed and even commented on my posts at Islander Frontier, thanks for your participation, and thanks for clicking along to this new destination (Also, thanks for your thoughts and patience after my dad's passing ... I appreciate it and I'm sure my dad would, too). If you're here because you saw Mirtle moved to SB Nation and you're wondering what all this SB Nation thing is all about, well I think you'll be glad you came.
WHAT'S THIS FOR?!
In short, Lighthouse Hockey is what I originally had in mind when I decided to blog the Islanders before the 2007-08 season. I wanted to write my observations on the team, yes -- but I also wanted a forum that encourages civil, thoughtful interaction among Islanders/hockey fans -- without discouraging the silly humor that makes the Internet such a great waste of time. A place where there is a main post each day, but also where visitors can create their own topics (beyond just commenting on the main post) in the Fanpost section. Think of it as message board user freedom with blog-level content editing or moderation.
I mean, let's face it, we can all agree that the "Rangers SUCK!" -- and we can shout it in a game thread -- but how interesting is that to read in response to a post, unless you've got 10 Clever Ways the Rangers Suck? I'd rather hear your observations on the Islanders' breakout, on their powerplay, on a trade proposal, or on the great -- or awful -- experience you had at the last game. If you have something interesting to say, it doesn't have to be "buried" in a comment thread or under a message board topic.
That's what I want Lighthouse Hockey to be. That's what I hope readers and writers like you will make it: A place where non-anonymous fans have a say beyond "Fire Bettman! n/t." By the way: That's not to take the passion, the emotion, or the silliness out of the experience -- there's a reason those of us who put our disposable income toward the fortunes of a sports team are called "fan(atic)s" -- just to say that sometimes, thinking before writing can be a benefit for everyone.
ALRIGHT, HOW DO I CONTRIBUTE?
If you're new to SB Nation, you might be surprised at how easy it is to get started. All it takes is 30 seconds to create an account -- nothing terribly personal, just enough to give you a user name and provide an e-mail address (which is not shared with anyone). Just a way to give you your own ID and to help prevent the anonymous trolls who soil so much online discourse.
If you already have a hockey blog of your own, interacting with all of the SB Nation hockey sites is a way to add visibility for your own writing and pimp your blog (within reason), too.
WHAT'S THIS ABOUT GAME THREADS?
One of the cool things about SB Nation's template -- in addition to the other fan-as-writer functions -- is the Live Game threads. In the main column of the blog, before each game, the Game Thread will appear as a post, open to the floor of commenters. It's like a chatroom, where everyone can talk about the game, complain about the announcers, mourn the departure of Deb Kaufmann, etc. Due to its live nature, this is where you can get your silliest and most snarky.
ENOUGH OF THIS ... NOW SIGN UP!
So I urge you to sign up now -- and really, this is one of the few times you'll hear me tell you what to do -- and become a member of Lighthouse Hockey. When you create your SB Nation account, you give yourself posting access to all the other SB Nation sites for teams in other leagues and sports that you follow.
As one last request, to get things rolling, after you create an account, I encourage you to create a fanpost (like this one) saying a little something about yourself. Favorite player, favorite memory, if you operate an Islanders blog elsewhere, etc. Something to get the community rolling.
Thanks for your time, thanks for your eyes, and Let's. Go. Islanders!