Two moments from the rugby weekend stand in time to remind us of game's true fabric.
It is fitting, too, that as the All Blacks touch down in the United States capital for a money-spinning test this weekend, much more humble settings reveal where rugby's heartbeat will forever reside.
The first instance arrived a far cry from Joe Biden's dapper digs in Washington DC, with Whakarua Park in Ruatoria playing host to Ngāti Porou East Coast's breakthrough triumph as they snapped a run of 2,940 days - 55 games - since their last Heartland Championship win.
At the end of the match, won 50-26 over Buller on Saturday afternoon, Ma'a Nonu, the 39-years-young dual World-Cup winning All Blacks centurion and one of the greatest second-fives of all time, resembled a majestic Polynesian/Māori King while sitting atop a horse and waving to supporters.
Nonu's East Coast debut took on something of a taniwha myth and legends narrative amid suggestions he inspired and/or led them to victory, given he played 20 minutes off the bench, coming on with the locals 31 points clear.
Yet the attention his presence brought to the fixture is worth celebrating. Where else in the world could you expect to witness such a revered rugby figure casually roaming on horseback in full playing kit, boots and all?
The background to Nonu agreeing to play on the basis that fellow former All Black turned East Coast coach Hosea Gear suited up typifies the storylines only genuine grassroots footy can deliver.
Long may this year's trend of high-profile All Blacks turning out for Heartland provinces continue.
While the snap of "King Nonu" has been thrust forward for sporting photo of the year, another poignant moment came in Christchurch following Hawke's Bay's first victory against Canterbury in Christchurch for 53 years.
Aside from Hawke's Bay's memorable season – they hold the Ranfurly Shield with one challenge remaining this year and sit top of the Premiership after five wins from six games – their haka tribute after the 45-26 victory for departing captain Ash Dixon turned the spotlight on his immense contribution to New Zealand rugby.
Injury robbed Dixon of the chance to play one final game for his beloved Magpies before joining the NEC Green Rockets in Japan, where he will earn a well-deserved payday to conclude his career, but Hawke's Bay were not about to let him slip off into the sunset without proper acknowledgment.
Dixon was visibly emotional throughout the haka, a reflection of what his 13 years of service to the province meant to him. Few survive that long in the game, let alone shine with such distinction.
One of the most consistent performing hookers in New Zealand over the past two years, Dixon got better with age. He emerged from countless rucks; countless rolling maul tries with a knowing grin. He led Hawke's Bay, the Highlanders, New Zealand Māori with passion and pride; Aaron Smith among those to hail Dixon's leadership influence.
Dixon never left the field without his cauliflower ears shedding some blood. He was, in many respects, the spiritual leader of every team he came to represent.
The image of Dixon presenting the sons of the late Anthony Foley with a jersey prior to NZ Māori's loss to Munster in Limerick in 2016 will live long in the memory.
Yet that gesture is one in a compilation of feats.
Having surpassed eight-test hooker Liam Coltman at the Highlanders, and held his own against other rivals, Dixon had serious claims for All Blacks inclusion but in recent years, in the prime of his career, age ultimately counted against him.
Reaching the All Blacks would have recognised a loyal legend. Missing that stage should not, however, in any way detract from his iconic presence.
In Māoridom, rangatira depicts the tribe's esteemed chief. That's exactly how Dixon will be remembered by those he served.
In the professional age it is easy to get swept up in the top of the rugby tree where the All Blacks garner much of the attention.
This past weekend, Nonu and Dixon underlined the importance of the grassroots by offering timely reminders that not all superheroes wear black capes.