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A few random thoughts on the eve of training camp 2021

Pittsburgh Penguins v Montreal Canadiens - Game Three Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

This won’t be a normal “sports” post from me, per se, but I just wanted to share a few thoughts with those who are interested to read them as hockey is about to get underway again. I watched a year-in-review video on YouTube yesterday and it got me thinking: “What has changed from January 2, 2020 to January 2, 2021?”

It’s probably a bit of a running joke at this point, but looking back on 2020, March through December just felt like one long, never-ending month. I really don’t know how 2020 felt like the fastest yet slowest year I’ve ever experienced.

Does anyone else think professional sports should be played right now? Have we reached some sort of consensus on whether or not it’s still a good idea to play while we’re still battling a virus, even if it looks like there’s a light at the end of the tunnel?

I remember “The Day The Sports World Stopped” back in March. The NBA shut down and the NHL soon followed suit. Major League Baseball had to try and figure out if they were going to play a season. When the Penguins stopped playing, in the middle of March no less, it felt so strange. I had become so accustomed to a schedule with my writing here at PensBurgh, and all of that was just halted. Had it not been for COVID, I don’t think I would have explored some of the off-the-wall topics I have written about while passing the time and waiting for the Penguins to return. Getting my creative juices flowing has been kind of rewarding for myself over these last several months.

On a personal level, 2020 was a bit of a rollercoaster. I was furloughed from a job that I had only worked at for two weeks before lockdown went into effect. I really thought I was going to finally get my career going after graduating from college. Then I would be permanently laid off in October. That sucked. But I became an uncle for the first time, which is pretty rad.

I think when I look back on 2020, I will remember sweatpants the most, as weird as that may sound. Embrace the sweatpants life and whatever comes with it.

If you’re reading this and care to comment, what were some of the ways you passed the time in 2020? How did you adjust to a life without “properly” watching hockey or sports in general?

Did you learn a new skill? Discover something about yourself? I think for me, 2021 will be more about exploring the person I am, both personally and especially professionally. Not to get super philosophical on everyone, but I think that sense of exploring oneself has been true for a lot of people within the last year.

I am looking forward to the Penguins’ return, though, even if I’m still a little uneasy about the NHL playing right now. Hockey’s return will bring with it a slight sense of normalcy as we begin to look ahead to a post-COVID-19 world.

2020 has gotten me to reflect on everything that has happened up until now. I have been incredibly fortunate to be given this platform to express myself, and I am grateful to those who have given me the opportunity to write and share my thoughts with all of you, be they about hockey or nonsense like this.

As we venture into this new year, I just want to say thank you to anyone who has ever clicked on, read, commented, shared, liked, or retweeted any of my posts here at PensBurgh. I am looking forward to getting back in the saddle for the 2021 season.

Here’s to a better 2021 for us all.

Let’s Go Pens.