In a social media universe, vacation doesn’t exist. It is merely time spent out of the office, somewhere in this great country of ours, constantly checking a cell phone/laptop with OCD tendencies.

And while sites like HootSuite exist to help the cause, I’m not the biggest fan. You see, hockey news breaks, literally and figuratively. You always need to be prepared to take that call, to break the story, to engage Hockeytown’s finest.

So while I was at dinner on Thursday night, showing an old colleague of mine from the dearly departed Comcast Network how he needed to be up on the latest and greatest in social media, I noticed something stranger than an East Coast earthquake.

Our Facebook page was growing.

And growing.

And growing.

Not that the page doesn’t grow on a daily basis, because as we all know, we really do have the best fan base in professional sports, but it was the rate of growth that was odd. Every few minutes, the Official Detroit Red Wings Facebook page seemed to have a thousand new fans, it was something we didn’t even see during the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The natural inclination is to be skeptical.

So as we hunker down for Hurricane Irene on the East Coast, enjoying the last precious few moments of vacation, I’m entertaining myself by watching Hockeytown digitally grow … and grow … and grow. On Wednesday, we were just over 600,000, on Friday night, we’re at just under 1.1 million.

In other words, its normal to second guess, to have an inkling of doubt, like Nick Papageorgio was in Vegas Vacation the first time he won something with a fake ID. At the very least, if push comes to shove and the other shoe drops, it was a wild ride, totally unscripted unlike some of the reality TV shows I have watched this week. (cough, Bachelor Pad, cough)

Other clubs have shown similar growth, including Pittsburgh and Chicago, two teams with incredibly passionate fan bases. I have also had the pleasure of connecting with colleagues on Tampa Bay and Vancouver on, where else, Twitter, asking if they were seeing similar patterns. And ditto with our friends from the Tigers.

The Red Wings page hit 1,000,000 ‘Likes’ just after 4:30 this afternoon. A while back, the U.S. Olympic Team was able to grab a screen shot of the lucky number, but, as I explained, we were growing by the second.

Here’s the best I could do…

Either way, I do know one thing. The Detroit Red Wings have the best fans in the National Hockey League. There isn’t a number that properly sums up the passion you have for our club.

And for that, we thank you!

Follow Jake Duhaime on Twitter at @jakeduhaime.