In case you care to read along or something, here's the text of this week's Locker Talk commentary (written and performed by yours truly in Mitch's absence) on Access 7:
We said goodbye to an old friend on the weekend.
She was tired, worn out, and had quite simply given us as much as she had to give. There really was nothing left. No, I’m not talking about a beloved family member or pet, although the level of affection might be comparable for some people.
I’m speaking of Mosaic Stadium/Taylor Field, which hosted its final Saskatchewan Roughrider home game this past weekend.
The game itself was a snore fest, which might actually seem appropriate, given the performance of the home team the past couple of seasons. But the farewell ceremonies, held to bid adieu to the old grey gal, were first rate.
Now, I have to admit, I’m not the sort to get sentimental when stadiums and arenas are mothballed. I’m more interested in preserving the memories of the people and the events.
The actual facility? Not that big a deal, at least not for me. But, I’ll give credit where credit is due. Taylor Field was not just another stadium.
Let’s be clear. It was a dump. But it was OUR dump, darn it! And in many ways, it was the perfect symbol for the CFL team that called it home.
It wasn’t fancy. There weren’t a lot of first class amenities. It leaked in spots. It had cracks in the foundation and probably hit its best before date sometime in the 1970s.
But, somehow – with some ingenuity and generous amounts of duct tape – it got the job done. Not unlike the Riders themselves.
Let’s face it. Professional football isn’t supposed to exist, never mind thrive, in a market this size. But somehow, some way, the team found a way to hang on until the latest golden era began about a decade ago.
Now, with record profits and unprecedented on field success – apart from the past couple of years – the time is right to move into a new home which better suits a team that has become a model CFL franchise.
Sure, some people will miss the old stadium and the ghosts that haunt the place.
But I say hang onto those memories, and enjoy the ride as we start making new memories in Mosaic 2.0 next June.