If football is the eternal search for moments to stitch together the collective memory, Angus MacDonald just hit the bullseye.
It contained a lot of ingredients appealing to the mind’s eye. The swirling blizzard. The red ball.
The strike slicing straight into the seam of the net. And the celebration starting before the ball crossed the line, making for the perfect snapshot.
A centre-back larruping one into the top corner is always one of the game’s great and unexpected pleasures. Aberdeen fans have seen those before, and in terms of technical merit this one sits alongside any.
It matters not that the match, to all practical intents and purposes, was a dead rubber in a group already lost.
It matters not that MacDonald, one of the conspicuous heroes of the unlikely qualification for this tournament, has barely figured this season and hadn’t started a game for nearly three months.
This campaign will enter Aberdeen folklore as the one in which Angus MacDonald drilled one into the postage stamp above 30 yards of snow, and he will always have a place here because of it.
Things clearly have not gone as well for MacDonald as he would have wished – and, with some justification, expected – when he extended his initial spell in Scotland, so it is to be hoped that this bolt from the blue allows him to extract some sense of satisfaction from an otherwise undistinguished season. His perseverance deserves it.
MacDonald has successfully fought bigger battles in his life than that for a spot in the Dons’ starting defence, for even Slobodan Rubezic is a less frightening adversary than bowel cancer.
Whether in the starting line-up or not, MacDonald’s mere presence is a source of both inspiration and education, in a world which could always use more of either.