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Loose Change: Much ado over loose change?

"Because I've put myself in being in the wrong position at the wrong time, I've caused a lot of pain for my family, my hometown of Buffalo, the city of Chicago, the Chicago Blackhawks and, obviously, the great fans we have here in Chicago. And for that part, I sincerely apologize."

That was the apologetic voice of Chicago Blackhawk left winger Patrick Kane responding to the alleged incident in Buffalo during which he and cousin James roughed up 62-year old cab driver Jan Radecki after a dispute over 20 cents (sidenote: Radecki actually had a quarter but figured it would create an even bigger fuss if he needed to ask them for change back for change).

So what can we take from this whole affair?

Well first off – and I’ve been pushing for this for a long time now (you remember my monumental addresses to the U.S. Congress on this vital issue?) – every taxi cab in North America should be retrofitted with those give-a-penny-take-a-penny trays. If Mr. Radecki had had access to such a great resource he could have saved himself a little damage and the Kanes would have avoided needlessly wasting the alleged punches on a 62-year-old cabbie.

We can also conclude that Patrick Kane, despite his rosier on-ice persona, is not one to back away from a physical confrontation, at least when it has to do with standing up to ornery, decrepit old men. Chris Chelios, you’ve been warned.

What’s interesting – and perplexing – is decoding Kane’s public apology, partially because it was so very public. You’d think simply owning up to the incident, asking your parents to stop with that incessant and irritating I didn’t bring you up that way stare, and apologizing to the cabbie would be enough, but not with ol’ Patrick Kane. Evidently this incident completely embarrassed every member of his family, a complete hockey team and all of their fans plus two entire cities (Oprah, apparently, was OK with the news)! Talk about narcissism.

Nowhere in the apology is there mention of any cab driver, although I suppose in some instances striking something three times your age in self-defense is justified (like fighting a tortoise, for example).

Most intriguing, though, is examining the last line of the apology, specifically the “And for that part, I sincerely apologize” bit. What “part” exactly is Pattie most sorry for?

The fact the entire NHL now knows he will fight, at least when it involves disputes over pocket change (Phoenix beware)?

The fact he’ll never approach another citizen again without them transitioning into some sort of defensive anti-Kane attack manoeuvre?

Or the fact he comes from Buffalo?

Seriously, Pat, apology accepted.

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The preceding was purely fictional and meant for entertainment purposes only. By entertainment, we mean we hope you laughed while reading it, framing it, or burning it. Any similarities between this and actual events is strictly coincidental and frankly, dumb luck. Remember to remind your lawyer about the made-up part, OK?

Charlie Teljeur, creator of THN's hockeysockpuppettheatre cartoon, brings you Loose Change every second Tuesday. Subscribe to The Hockey News today to have Charlie's cartoon delivered to you in each issue.

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