Opinion

Joy Drop: In times like this, it's even more important to find some where you can

CBC Sports Senior Contributor Shireen Ahmed's weekly roundup of the things that struck her from the week that was.

CBC Sports' senior contributor Shireen Ahmed on the week's happier moments

Ohio reporter Myles Harris and his mother, Sandi, gave the world a little joy this week. (Instagram/mylesharris)

I feel like I often begin the entry of this online notebook with "it has been a tough week…" These past few days are no exception.

There are moments when we feel discouraged and saddened by global events. The world feels so heavy right now. While there is devastation in Ukraine, there is deep injustice in Texas. People may feel a sense of sadness or a sense of desperation from wanting to help. Witnessing pain and crises all the time can be exhausting. 

But when there are communities in crisis and fighting attacks and injustices, we also see people stand in solidarity, donate time and money, even from far away. It offers hope, purpose and it deeply connects us.

Being updated and well-informed is key. And also being able to take care of oneself is necessary. Unplugging for a bit, going for a nice walk, sharing a nice meal with loved ones, and even a special cuddle with a furbaby are things that can help. Laughing and smiling are two ways that are inexpensive and help your health. A helpful reminder from the Mayo Clinic is based on evidence that laughter is good. 

As heavy as the heart is at times, here is an offering of some things that brought me laughter, hope and happiness amidst this week of chaos. 

Hi, Baby!

I am a mom of four amazing kids and witnessing them being great at something is a source of pride. 

Imagine my delight seeing Myles Harris, a young sports reporter in Ohio, share a video of himself working on a roadside only to have his mom drive up beside him.

Sandi, Harris's jolly and adoring mom, is unapologetic and greets him with an emphatic "HI, BAAAAAABY!" as his co-worker, DeAngelo Byrd, laughs in appreciation. Harris is bemused and tells mom that he is working. Sandi blows a kiss to her baby and drives off. Lucky for us, Byrd was still rolling the camera.

This incident went viral and it gave the world a moment to remember that no matter how famous you are or grown-up, you're still susceptible to loving embarrassment from your mom. 

NHL celebrations of Black History Month

Some NHL teams have committed to celebrating Black History Month and we love to see it. 

The Toronto Maple Leafs teased what they call "Three Course Conversation," which has Mark Fraser, the team's Equity, Diversity and Inclusion officer, sharing food from Black communities, talking and learning with a few players. I love food and I love anti-oppression education so I doubly love this. 

Across the continent, the Seattle Kraken commissioned local artist RC Johnson to make a Black History Month jersey. It is absolutely gorgeous and features the colours of the Pan-African flag. The jerseys were auctioned for charities around Seattle. 

Hockey writer Melissa Burgess offered an amazing thread of what NHL teams are doing and have done this month. It's a great resource to have and to consult if your local team, or a team you are involved with, is looking for ideas on how to incorporate anti-racism work into your team culture. 

Chocolate joy!

The last thing I will share with you is about chocolate. I went for lunch to Yorkdale Mall in Toronto with my dear friend, Karen. As we pursued through the shopping centre, Karen stopped me and pointed out a chocolate boutique. It was not just any chocolate, but the Kit Kat Chocolatory. I had never heard of this phenomenon before. Probably because it is the only Kit Kat Chocolatory in all of North America. You create your own Kit Kat bar by selecting from different toppings and flavours. They partner with local organizations and amplify very important campaigns. I am not a chocolate lover (french fries are the way to my heart) but I was smitten. 

Here's a peek at my gorgeous box:

I consider this Kit Kat experience a form of self-care. And as Cecelia Tran so aptly put it: "Self-care means giving yourself permission to pause." And if you happen to pause in a chocolate store with a friend, even better. 

Wishing you many pockets of joy this weekend!

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