Two Minute’s Hate: Lasciate ogne civiltà, voi ch’intrate
It is widely accepted that every school in Hockey East brings something to the table. Whether that’s academic excellence, a storied athletic history or a hockey program that has shown success at various levels, Hockey East is a bursting cornucopia of tradition and glory unlike any other in Division 1 hockey. We, of course, dismiss this theory along with other ridiculous concepts, like clean coal and phrenology.
While it holds true that most of the distinguished affiliates of Hockey East have something on which to hang their hats, there exists a modern day Sodom festering in the hills of Hampshire County. With all due respect to the regal Lord Jeffs, and for the sake of not respecting a single iota about the Minutemen, we’re going to refer to them simply as Amherst.
Amherst is kind of like the child in the neighborhood that your parents made you play with, despite your repeated claims that he smelled like a dumpster, was terrible at all sports, and had a penchant for setting things on fire.
Amherst is kind of like that person in the office that shows up to the company Christmas Party an hour late, gets fall-down drunk in record time and uses colorful four-lettered expletives to describe how “wicked sweet” the rosemary chicken tastes.
Amherst is kind of like the relative that keeps showing up to family gatherings despite the fact that no one actually invited them, says a lot of uncomfortable things about tense interpersonal relationships, and insists that he is the “cool uncle” despite the fact that all the kids are very obviously avoiding him.
Actually, Amherst is exactly like those things.
This insalubrious institution, this sickening school, joined Hockey East in 1994 and has been the definition of mediocrity ever since that day, perhaps among the darkest in American history. Amherst has made the Hockey East final exactly once since joining the league, and only during the year in which it was awarded home ice because Lowell had to forfeit games due to an ineligible player — an incident we’re sure was conjured up by the powers that be in the UMass system out of the petty jealousy that everyone who ever went to Amherst holds in their rotten hearts, deep and festering.
You see, since Amherst had done worse than Lowell practically every year since they joined the league, and since the UMass trustees decided that maybe supporting one hockey program would be enough, the logical man would deduce that the clock had run out on poor Amherst. But because we’re talking about the UMass trustees, and their unctuous infatuation with the system’s western outpost (a blight on the landscape if there ever was one), logic obviously never entered into it. Instead our beloved River Hawks were forced to fight tooth and nail to keep the program, not once but twice, while the knuckle-dragging nobodies out in Amherst continued to disappoint both on the ice and, we can only assume, their family names. However, Lowell survived, albeit forced to forever wear an horrific slur on its jerseys forever; a vomitous Scarlet Five Letters not easily forgotten.
If anything, any logical observer would have said that it was Amherst, and not Lowell, which deserved the axe. Which was the Johnny-Come-Lately in Hockey East or indeed, hockey period? Which had spent more time in the cellar than Fortunato? Which was spending almost double the money every year for a fraction of the wins? Which was coached by a man who was actually named “Toot” in real life? These are all easily checked off as being Amherst, Amherst, Amherst, and Amherst, respectively, and any reasonable person would have said the more expensive, newer, less successful team coached by a man with a name you couldn’t give a teacup poodle with a straight face would be the one you’d chuck in the incinerator without a second thought to the predictable whining from all six people who actually cared about the program, or even knew of its existence prior to, say, Jon Quick accidentally enrolling there before getting out as soon as humanly possible.
Of course, we can only assume that perhaps the largest determining factor in his decision to get the hell out of Cahoonaville (ugh) at his earliest convenience was not the fact that Amherst is terrible, or his teammates were barely literate, or the attendance at their home games could best be described as resembling a post-apocalyptic scenario in which those forced to sit through the games envied the dead. Instead, the reason that Amherst is the absolute worst place on the face of the earth, past, present and future, is obviously the fans.
Even in the darkest reaches of the foulest Lovecraftian creation, one cannot put into words the black scourge that is an Amherst fan. On average, we’d estimate that The Amherst Fan (the missing link known as homo putidula) is a loathsome, 20-year old, backwards-cap-wearing, drunk. With the speech prowess of a lowland gorilla. And not even the smart one from that terrible book Congo. Never has an abomination of hooded sweatshirts, faded jeans, and Skoal pouches whose ignorance of the game is surpassed only by his mutant drive to flip over the nearest Nissan he can find with his fellow convicts existed in such great numbers in so small a space. Unfortunately, even the most intrepid of sociologists dare not wade into this noxious pit, a 10th circle of which Dante could never have dreamed. Past the upside-down popes, past even Cain, and into a uniquely horrifying hellscape where Family Guy is the best show on earth to a vile mob of society’s lowest foul-mouthed urchins, masquerading as a business major by the day before revealing his true “chicken pahm subs khed!” ways when the moon rises and the Natty Ice flows.
If you can avoid watching a game among these genetic dead ends in the dimly lit, urine-soaked cavern they call the Mullins Center, we’d highly advise it. The fact that such a place is allowed to exist just increases our support of the Obama’s drone program. The building may have been built for basketball, but it would be better suited as an internment camp. And they certainly have the population for it.