On Saturday night hockey fans in Nashville will be flocking to Bridgestone Arena to see some hockey and hopes are high that old school Predators fans will get a glimpse of a familiar sight on ice: The Vern Fiddler Dance of Denial.
While Fiddler, who was a member of the Predators roster before signing on with Phoenix in 2009, was known for a number of things during his days in Nashville, he is remembered most fondly by some fans* for what came to be known as the "Vern Fiddler Dance of Denial." The dance has been decribed as a pas de deux between Fiddler and whatever official is trying to wave him into the penalty box. Once he is whistled down, Fiddler expresses his existential angst by denying the existence of penalties in his world. The whistles are annoyances, pokes from a pedestrian civilisation that fails to recognise a tender soul who wants to fly. As with any otherworldly creature who tries to break free from the bonds of this sad, sad world, he is soon grounded and skates slowly, dejectedly to the box, still seemingly unaware of the transgression that put him there in the first place.
While video footage of the dance was not available at press time, there was a rare audio feed of Fiddler preparing for a performance. The quality was questionable, so here is a transcript of the event:
Fiddler (skating to the bench): So I gotta go to this pavement hockey thing in Hendersonville and..what's his problem.
Legwand: I think the ref is trying to get your attention, Fids.
Fiddler: Naah. So lemme ask ya, have you been to... Buddy? Do you have a crush on me or something?
Legwand: You sure you're not the one with the penalty?
Fiddler: Naah. He probably wants Toots.
Tootoo: I've been sitting on the bench for the last five minutes.
Fiddler: Maybe it's a delayed penalty, Jordin.
Coach Trotz: Fiddler! For goodness sake GO TO THE PENALTY BOX!
Fiddler: All right. If it will make everyone happy...
*Okay, I might be the only one.
copyright 2011 Jas Faulkner