The gals over at Interchangeable Parts are doing a tremendous series of reasons why they love hockey. I've only picked up on their site recently, forget where I saw it first, but you really must run over and read their reasons. Rather than submit my own to them, as it's rather brief and, well, I need content here, I thought I'd write it here.
Reason why I love hockey: national anthems. Where else are the national anthems of the teams involved both played? Granted, that's only one or both of the Canadian and US national anthems, the players generally seem to be waiting only for it to end so they can get to the game already, and some fans ruin it with jingoism and general idiocy, but still.
One late spring evening in 2006, I was watching the playoffs, and Paul Lorieau did that thing with his microphone, and we heard 17,000 people singing O Canada as one. My wife, doing dishes in the next room, came in to watch, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I get a little misty-eyed just thinking about it now, over a year later.
And that is a reason why I love hockey.