It’s never been easy being a Knicks fan.
There are many memories, but the lasting ones are always the traumatic ones, those that did the most damage, that scarred the deepest: Charles Smith, Partick’s finger-roll, Starks missing three after three, the Lebron Snub, Amare’s uninsured knees signing for 100 million. In fact it seems empirically justified to say that Allan Houston’s runner against the Heat has been the one aberration among the many near misses. Other than their glory days of the early 70s, the Knicks have been a franchise built on soul crushing defeats and unfathomable gut-wrenching pain.
John Darnielle (of the Mountain Goats) knows pain all too well, and sings about it better than anyone. New York Knicks Fans, meet your troubadour.
Darnielle often sings of the alpha couple, who, to quote from the Popmatters review, “are in love, perhaps, but it’s a love filled with bitterness, anger, sadness and alcohol. It’s a relationship that continues as much out of spite as anything else.” — This is the condition of the Knicks fanbase: dysfunctional, codependent, sado-masochistic, artistic.
Though written for very different contexts, it often seems like his words could strangely be an apt soundtrack to the team, city & fanbase.
Let me illustrate:
And if the Mountain Goats are the mascot band, the spokesmen, No Children has to be the anthem.
I can just imagine a bar full of fans drinking away the memory of another 4th quarter collapse or decimation at the hand of a role player looking like an MVP, while singing these words in a drunken chorus.
But with James Dolan, implementing his own version of the Deus Ex Machina and resetting the narrative by signing Phil Jackson, things will change and maybe even get better…
…but I wouldn’t bet on it just yet.