A year ago I was thinking about things I wanted to do in my hometown before I move across country. I also pledged, in writing, that I would never again do a couple of activities very popular in my area. Well, I did one. Actually, I did this thing I said I would never do … twice.
It’s sort of like marrying your ex-husband, or truly believing that the next time you sip Madeira, it’s going to taste great!
So let’s discuss my relationship with hockey, and specifically the St. Louis Blues. My first introduction to the sport was through a closed bedroom door. My older brother would grab a bag of pretzels, lock himself in his room, turn up the radio, and scream, yell and throw things while listening to the Blues’ hockey games. Yes, hockey on radio, I am that old. It’s probably a good thing the games weren’t televised frequently, as this was before the helmet rule, and I remember the players did look a bit … rustic.
My first actual game was with said brother and my high school boyfriend. Boyfriend spent the whole game in the bathroom dealing with digestive issues. After the game, he accidentally stepping in front of a car leaving the parking lot, and brother, sick boyfriend and I got accosted, screamed at, cussed out and almost punched. It wasn’t until the driver got out of his car and saw the size of both brother and boyfriend, that he backed down. Good thing, as at the time boyfriend could probably only have achieved, at most, a defense vomit.
Second game was with soon-to-be husband. We went with friends. His friends. One proceeded to jump up at every goal or almost goal and spill his beer on the man in front of him. Frequently. Fists would have flown, but Hubs has a way, so a free beer or two was presented and feelings were assuaged. One other friend, meek and mild, decided this was the night to finally let his crazy out. We had to carry him home. Fun times.
The first hockey game to void my above printed promise was last season. I was guilted into it by Son 2, as he knows I will do anything for love. “Please, Mom? It will be fun!” It wasn’t. Truth be told, it wasn’t awful, just expensively boring. He wouldn’t even let me sneak my Kindle into the game.
So, of course, I had to go one more time. This past Saturday, as a birthday present to Hubs from our sons, our family attended the Blue’s hockey game against some team from Minnesota that is not the North Stars, which is what I remember from listening to my brother listen back in the 1970’s. Minnesota Wild? What kind of a name is that? Shouldn’t it at least be Wilds, plural? Like the Blues? This did give me something to ponder while in attendance of said game.
Much excitement was had in the first period as there was an extended fight! Oh, yay! I did wonder why, unlike other sports, the refs seem to ignore and let the fight play out. Son 2 assured me afterward that it wasn’t a “real” fight because there was no blood.
I did enjoy watching the Zamboni clean the ice between periods. I am not sure what that says about me, except I know a touch of Italian, and if it ends with an “i,” it’s plural. Are you listening, Panera Bread and your panini references?
As the game went on, the Blues were winning. A bubbly, Nordic-looking Minnesota fan was sitting behind us. She is a season ticket holder for the Wild (Wilds?) and had traveled with girlfriends down to St. Louis to see the game. As an aside, eavesdropping is also a good way to entertain yourself at sporting events that don’t interest you.
Anyway, the Wild(s) finally scored, and she was excited. She jumped up and proceeded to spill her still very full beer all down my back. In her defense, she was very apologetic. It was actually a quite refreshing jolt out of my grammatical reveries. In my experience, this is not at all an unexpected turn of events at a hockey game. It would be like complaining it was too wet while swimming. And I could not be upset by an unintentional spill from a friendly seatmate. Plus, she was viking size, and I was a bit intimidated, so, no worries! Bonus: I was wearing Hub’s jersey, not my own clothes, because that is my sense of humor when doing things I don’t want to do; I go all in.
So the game finally ended. The Blues won, I think. I won’t be going to another game. I promise …