As I watch the Tigers celebrate a third straight American League Central Division championship, I can't help but feel this doesn't seem like the first one, but that I hope it never feels commonplace.
In a way, going to work every day knowing I write about sports for a living feels like a victory - that is, when I remember to approach it with that frame of mind.
I've found that very little can be gained from choosing not to go into the gym or rink or field with enough of a sense of wonder, a willingness to be amazed, or at least amused.
A big part of that is trying to keep as open a mind as possible, and be willing to learn new things. So, since I've been at the DMG for five years as of Sunday, here's a compilation of things I have learned as the Sports Editor for the last 12 months:
1. If you write something mean about the University of North Dakota on the Internet, it will get read by North Dakotans, and many of them will write something mean back to you.
2. However, if you write something reasonable back to them, you may find that quite a few of them are willing to be reasonable back to you.
3. There were good reasons other than money why college hockey looks a lot different today than it did when I wrote this column last year. But the biggest reason is still money.
4. After staying up way too late that night and ending up not even close, I should not try to calculate the MHSAA football playoff points ahead of time.
5. After Michael Bleach and I spent a total of 1 1/2 man-hours attempting to figure out the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference men's basketball tiebreakers, seeing them put into play and that we did the math right, I realized that was both a point of pride and a colossal waste of time.
6. I learned, that though I still doubt God meddles in the outcomes of sporting events, God might be more apparent in some than others, often times varying inversely with the level of organization present.
7. I learned that even teams that didn't exist when I was in high school and that can't be bothered to end in an 's' like a respectable organization can develop a fanbase fervent enough to be mentioned in people's wedding vows.
8. I learned how much I (and my pages) missed early May sporting events.
9. I learned I'd want Jamie Dompier in my corner if there's a Copper Country zombie apocalypse.
10.. Enjoy the chance to run big headlines. Like today.
So, that's just a portion of what I've absorbed by trying to keep my eyes, ears and mind open. Thanks for sharing it with me.
Brandon Veale can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/redveale.