Scott Darling was born in December of 1988 in Lemont, IL. He played goalie for the University of Maine, before being drafted in 2007 by the Phoenix Coyotes. He made his NHL debut this season with his hometown Chicago Blackhawks.
I had the pleasure of talking to Darling after a recent Rockford IceHogs game. That interview can be found at On the Beat with Scott Darling.
I was already working by the time Darling was born. Many years earlier, I had a childhood dream of being a sports writer. I guess I felt my Oscar Madison dream was too much of a longshot. I found myself in the circulation department of Lerner Newspapers.
Sometime around 2000, one of the editors (Laurie) allowed me to write a guest column. I enjoyed it and it was fairly well-received. She allowed me to write a few more columns. Then when I moved onto Global Traveler, the Editor Lisa asked me to write an article and I eventually found myself as a regular blogger for GT.
Uing GT as a launching pad, I started to seek out press credentials. I interviewed former baseball player Rick Monday and a few others on a west coast trip. I followed that with interviewing lesser-known celebrities at various comic cons.
Fast forward a few years and I have interviewed over 500 celebrities. It is still a kick, especially when I get to interview actors or athletes from my youth. How do I put into words the feeling of interviewing Peter Tork of the Monkees? How do I express the emotion of interviewing Roddy Piper? Or Jenilee Harrison? Or Gorman Thomas?
That's why I really liked what Darling had to say. He grew up as a fan of the Blackhawks. He liked Ed Belfour, Chris Chelios and the rest of those teams. How did he describe the feeling of putting on the Blackhawks sweater for the first time and playing his first game? He pretty much did what I do. He expressed real emotion and a lack of adequate words to encompass it all.
Some would say as a writer, I should be able to explain the feelings. Would I sound unprofessional if I said I was giddy? Truthfully, I don't care how that sounds. As long as I get to keep doing what I am doing, I'l fine with it.
Scott Darling, I could not have said it any better!
Scott Darling and me in Rockford, IL-February 2015.