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I hate missing games

October 23, 2010
by JRiddall

Hockey mom and the Devil left on a four+ hour trip to Windsor for a tournament this weekend.  I helped load the van with all of the suitcases, bags, coolers, equipment and various other paraphernalia female hockey players (and their mom’s) need to travel.  Unsurprisingly, it was a fair bit more than the Boy and I needed last weekend.  The ladies had companions for the ride, another player and her mother, so the van was loaded to the hilt with female accessories times two.  Hockey mom, seemingly travelling to a foreign land, was equipped with a stack of Google maps to get her from our driveway to the hotel, from the hotel to the rinks, from the rinks to the hotel and from the hotel to dinner and back again (I will no doubt pay for this wee sentence). And off they went on their weekend of fun and competition. 

The Boy and I were left behind because he had a practice two nights ago and has a game tonight here in town.  So far that’s meant Mucho Burrito and Big Chris BBQfor dinner the past two nights.  We are roving bachelors with unlimited options.  Last night I sat on the couch to watch the Rangers knock the Yankees out of the major league baseball playoffs (Yippee!), while the Boy played Call of Duty on Xbox Live with his hockey buddies.  Yup, we really shook it up.  We painted the town red.

Part of the problem with having two rep hockey players is they are most often going in two different directions. As such, we miss a bunch of games, which can be frustrating.  Last year, the hockey mom had an idea that someone should record and broadcast all games online (like on YouTube or something) so parents and friends who weren’t able to attend for whatever reason, could still see their kids play.  Not sure that anyone would actually pay for that service, but it’s one that I wish was available this weekend.  If I had a little capital and thought the idea might work this would be perfect job for me.  I’ve always said I just need to find a way to get someone to pay me to watch my kids play hockey.  Hell, I’d even watch other kids play hockey.

The Devil’s first game was yesterday at 10:30am so we texted briefly pre-game.  I sent along typical words of encouragement — “Skate hard!” “Have fun!” “Score me a goal!” “Give 110% out there!” “Listen to your coach!” ”Keep your head up!” “Win the battles!” If it were the Boy, I’d add in “Crush somebody!” in a purely positive sense.  So I may overdo it a little.  But I really would rather be there watching and shouting all the same things from the stands or from behind the bench.  Instead, I had to try to focus on my regular job while waiting anxiously for a score to arrive on my cellphone.  Not the optimal way to experience a hockey game. The score did arrive in a text from hockey mom, about 20 mins after when I thought the game should have ended.  This was most likely because most rinks, with their metal and concrete construction, kill mobile reception.  I know this because I’m often challenged with trying to get NHL hockey scores, NFL football scores or work-related emails when the Boy or Devil are playing. What can I say? I multitask even at the arena.

The text I received said “1-0 for the bad guys”.  My heart sunk a little as you want them to win every game. The next text said “They had a good first period, a crappy second period and an ok third period.”  Followed by “She’s a little upset because the goal was scored against her line.”  And my heart sunk a little farther. I fired back with “Ah well..get them in the next one.”

I would have to go through the whole thing again a few hours later around game two, only this time the text read “2-0 for the good guys”. Ahhhh, that’s better. Now the girls have some confidence and momentum to take into the next contest.  The good thing about this tournament is they will go into a quarter-final round regardless of their round robin record. But you do want to go into those quarters with a winning record so you get a lighter opponent in your quest to move on to the next round.

Game three is starting in 10 mins against a very close rival from our league.  Funny how sometimes we will travel great distances to play in tournaments against teams that are based right around the corner from us.  But I digress.  I’ve already texted the Devil a few times this morning with the obligatory words of encouragement.  Her last to me was “Thanks. I’ll text you after the game. Love you. Bye.”  That will have to do, though I’d rather a string of shift-by-shift texts or maybe a live online video stream of the game, complete with play-by-play and colour commentary. I’d even take just an audio feed.  Maybe hockey mom was on to something.

#imahockeydad

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