How do we get on with
things like they once were? For
me, it is easy as 3 letters. N-H-L
and N-Y-R. Hockey. New York
Rangers Hockey. I need it
more than I ever needed it before. I
thought I was starving for it back on August 3rd, when it was
105 degrees out, the Yankees were going to yet another post season and the
Rangers were toying with riding the Big Train.
But now, after the atrocities we have seen take place in our red,
white, and blue back yard, I am fixing for it like a strung out addict.
talking, and reading about hockey are what my child hood was made up off.
An era forever frozen in time that I need to get lost in a bit
right now. It is the
sanctuary that my child hood provided that I now long for.
I need that tucked away blanket of security that I hid once under.
We all have one, some just take it out more often than others.
It is the woven fabric of innocence and naivety I lived under while
I arranged my Topps hockey cards in alphabetically.
You see, back then my only real worry was if the scratch-off puck
was going to wear off and reveal the players name if I handled them too
much. Now that would have been tragic.
That would have been the end of the world. These days, I have to worry if the building I am in is going
to be assaulted. Ahhhh, to be
that age again.
As time goes on, we lose
touch with the things that made us feel young, excuse me, sheltered.
I continue to hold 3 things that provide that safe haven.
One of them is hockey.
Hockey hits me in the gut
and takes me back to an era of tomfoolery, shenanigans, and carefree
living. Thank you, Hockey.
I will forever be indebted to you for those provisions. I will always associate your annual arrival with the ghosts
of yesteryear. It is a sort
of home coming; a reincarnation of the past.
And when the boys in blue finally hit the MSG ice after a long dank
Summer of being choked to death with 162 baseball games, well, it touches
a nerve ending that can reach down into the belly of any beast and tickle
I have struggled to get
through this off-season. I have poorly filled the void left by the Rangers
early departure with old video tapes, message boards, and full seasons of
Sega NHL Hockey.
But now there is no need
for a substitute. My boys are
back and you could not have showed up at a better time, or looked any
better. Truly a site for the sorest of eyes. Bring me back, boys. Bring me back to when it all seemed to
fit just right. For 3 hours a
night, take me away from this place and remind me just what being 9 years
old was like again.
I will be at MSG on
Sunday October 7th. I
will enter the building, unfamiliarly
cautious and awkwardly anxious.
My heart will be heavy as I realize that I am but a few blocks away
from where life seems dead. With a trembling hand, I will pass my token of admission to
the elderly ticket collector. After
it has been torn he will hand it back to me and say, “Enjoy the Game.”
But what I will hear is,
right. Welcome back to
hockey. In other words,
welcome back to life.
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