Say hey to Mr. Snider

LONDON – The dim sum was taking a few minutes, so the cashier at the O2 Arena concession stand had time to squint at my credential.

“You are journalist?” she asked, her accident a blend of Eastern European and East London.

I explained that I was from the Philadelphia Inquirer, in the U.S. She looked at me with a perfectly blank expression. This has happened before.

You think Philadelphia is a big city – and it is – but folks in other countries know New York and Los Angeles and that’s about it.

“It’s near New York,” I said. “Philadelphia. That’s where I’m from.”

Her face lit up.

“Philadelphia Flyers!” she exclaimed. “Yes, yes, I know Philadelphia.”

Turns out she’s had a longstanding crush on Martin Brodeur, the Hall of Fame-bound goaltender from the New Jersey Devils. That crush led her to play NHL video games, and that led to an awareness of Mr. Snider’s hockey team.

Small world. The dim sum wasn’t bad.