My mom, who’s been down in Florida for the past couple of weeks at the front end of an annual six-months of snowbirding, told me last week to keep an eye out for a parcel coming in the mail. I was naturally curious and pleased to find the special parcel key in my post box this evening. I grabbed the relatively light, pliable package from its secure lodging with plans to conduct an immediate investigation upon entering the front door of my house. As I tore open the plastic courier envelope, I saw blue fabric and caught a quick flash of a familiar grey/silver jet fighter superimposed on a red maple leaf on the front of an official NHL jersey. I unfolded my early birthday present with the glee of a 12 year old kid – my enthusiasm heightened by the knowledge that new Winnipeg Jets jerseys are not yet even available in this province. I frantically donned the new threads, which I plan to wear to work tomorrow, to capture a quick pic for posterity.
However, the premature, pre-birthday spoiling of a humble 40-something Jets fan did not end there. Upon viewing my beaming mug wrapped in this new found glory, my better half could not contain a secret she was trying to bottle up for the next few weeks. A second, equally exciting, early birthday present was delivered into my unsuspecting mitts in the form of two tickets to see my beloved Jets play (and presumably beat, if not pummel) the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre on January 5th. For those who aren’t familiar, Leafs tickets are something of a rare commodity round these parts and so I’m extremely grateful for the thought and effort that went into securing these two particular passes. Not being a Leaf fan, I haven’t been to a game in several years, but this is certainly an opportunity like no other.
And so, I am incredibly fortunate to have family and friends who recognize my love of the game and are helping me celebrate the reemergence of this bit of my youth.
The Devil was one of the first to pick up some Jets memorabilia for me in the form of a classic car flag she purchased on her trip to Manitoba with her grandparents in the Summer; a memento which unfortunately found its way onto the highway one afternoon when her brother unwittingly opened the rear window that was holding it in place. It took us a long while to reveal its absence, along with the circumstances surrounding its abrupt disappearance. It looked pretty good for the week or so it flew proudly above my vehicle. Another may replace it at some point during the season at which point the car windows will be locked shut.
My aunt back in Manitoba, who procured the spectacular jersey modeled above, also sent along a limited edition commemorative crest, which I have already earmarked for framing along with my Leafs tickets following their use in the New Year.
I’ve even a close buddy who reported last week that he saw a cool Jets hat that he decided I should have, so he bought it and will be bringing it to me when next we get together.
Finally, the Boy is paying homage to Dad’s team with a fine new Jets cap of his own that he purchased and wears to school, the rink and elsewhere on a daily basis.
All that’s really left to say is a heartfelt thank you to everyone who’s thought of me and one of my passions over the last several weeks. That and, of course, GO JETS GO!