February 25, 2022

Joy Drop: Celebrating Black History Month, Lunar New Year, World Hijab Day and Mi’kmaw New Year amid Olympics | CBC Sports

你好 (Nǐ hǎo)! This year, Black History Month coincides with the Lunar New Year, World Hijab Day and Mi’kmaw New Year (which I did not know) … lots to celebrate!

There are so many wondrous things happening that it was tough to try to pinpoint just a few.

Women’s hockey team simply being great

I will start with women’s hockey. My column this week was a reflection on how Canadian women’s hockey is stellar. Needless to say, they proved my point by beating Switzerland 12-1 in their first game of these 2022 Winter Olympics. Yes, TWELVE to one. Please watch this video in Inuktitut (incredible in itself) of Sarah Fillier scoring her second goal.

The fluidity and on-ice chemistry of this team were riveting — even at 11 p.m. (ET) at night! And this is just the beginning, my friends.

This is ‘drip’

One of the things that really strikes me in winter sports is the drip. For those who don’t know, drip is defined by Urban Dictionary as “when something or someone is really cool, or has so much swag to it.” Please witness the drippiest of the drip:

Those goalie pads from China are absolutely stunning. I would absolutely wear them to a dinner party. 

Great rivalry in African soccer

As the Canadian men’s soccer team bullets their first men’s World Cup berth since 1986, I would like to turn attention to the upcoming AFCON final between Senegal and Egypt. This final will be played on Feb. 6. What is special about this match?

Well, two of the world’s most beloved players, Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah, teammates with Liverpool FC, will be representing their respective countries. You know I love rivalries, so this one will be incredible.  

Black History all year round

Because it is Black History Month (BHM), there are a lot of amazing stories being shared about Black people in Canada and all over the world. I want to be clear that I think it is important to amplify the words and work of Black people all year round — not just in February. I mean, they are still Black and important in August.

But as a friend told me, “BHM is about learning and sharing histories and truths that the mainstream media did not offer to wider society.” In that spirit, I am sharing a story from CBC’s Being Black In Canada by freelance reporter Chidera Ukairo.

Canada’s Phil Edwards, second from left, competes in an athletics event at the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics. Edwards who was born in British Guyana but competed for Canada, won bronze medals in the 800m,1,500m and 4x400m relay in L.A.. (The Canadian Press/COA)

Raymond “Rapid Ray” Gray Lewis, from Hamilton, Ont., was the first Black Canadian-born athlete to win an Olympic medal. He ran the 4×400-metre relay race at the 1932 Olympics in Los Angeles, winning bronze. But this isn’t just about Rapid Ray, also a recipient of the Order of Canada. It is about how 22-year-old Aaron Perry is taking Lewis’ story and putting it in a children’s activity book published by the Afro-Canadian Caribbean Association (ACCA) called Deeply Rooted – A Hamilton Black History Book

I love this because it not only connects kids to their local histories, it serves a purpose of teaching in the most simple and beautiful of ways. Lewis died in 2003 but his legacy lives on. 

Wishing you a wonderful weekend! And to warm you up, here’s a collab from Fireboy DML with Ed Sheeran. 


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