My good buddy Gadget asked me to come and hang with him while he fulfilled his fatherly duty of volunteering at The Mullet’s hockey tournament this weekend. We were going to be timekeeping a couple of games so that they wouldn’t have to pay people to do it.
I guess it’s to help keep costs down, because HOCKEY IS A FUCKING EXPENSIVE SPORT TO PUT YOUR KIDS IN.
Did I mention that the tournament started on Friday.
Yes, Friday. The last day in the school week.
‘That’s okay, Birdman. It’s good to get an early jump on the weekend, so it’s no big deal to start a tournament on the Friday night.’
No it’s not okay. This tournament started on Friday morning. This means that the kids have to leave school and at least one parent has to book out of work that day. Maybe your kid is homeschooled and you are an Amway distributor*, so it’s no big deal for you to whip the little bastard over to the rink for his 10:00 AM game, but most of the parents I know had to leave work for several hours or the whole day because of this.
* – Can you grab me a box of that awesome laundry detergent that you brainwashed fuckers sell? It’s the shit.
Anyhow, I go to the game on Friday night to give moral support to my buddy, when I realised that it was going to take two of us to do this job. Mainly because I had never seen one of these boxes before, and Gadget had just been shown it a bit earlier in the day.
I got the hint that he may have really needed a bit of help when he said “So, you wanna be the stop/go guy?”
“Nah, I’ll just watch. I don’t know anything about this.”
“So you are going to be the stop/go guy?” He had a hopeful look on his face.
“What do I have to do?”
“You hit stop/go when you hear the whistle and then again when the ref drops the puck.”
“That seems easy. Okay, I’ll do it.”
“It’s not easy. If you aren’t paying attention, those hockey mom’s will tear you a new asshole for fucking up their kid’s game.”
I didn’t care, so I just shrugged and said “So? It’s not like they’re going pro or anything. “.
He gave me the “You will die, this day.” look and finished filling out his sheet and screwing up the period times on the scoreboard as we prepared for our maiden voyage.
Oh yeah, the scoreboard.
It’s rumoured to have cost $60000 and it looks like this.
Now the thing that gets me is that this amazing facility was built in 2011 and this is the technology that was chosen to run this wonderful scoreboard.
Now Gadget is a
fart smellersmart feller, so I know he can figure anything out if he’s given the proper amount of time, but when you have whistles blowing for penalties, refs yelling numbers and chopping away at their legs, and doors to open, it’s hard to read the fucking codes that they give you for each action.
It was something like:
Visitor penalty – Press and hold 911, rotate your pelvis 30° to the right, cup your scrotum and then press the symbol for magnesium.
Home goal – Put your left foot in, take your left foot out, put your left foot in, shake it all about, gently slide your thumb across the 1,2,and 3 buttons while you hold the time button down with your opposite ring finger.
These may or may not be true, but it was fun making up new dance moves while learning my new skill.
This brings me to the hockey moms and occasional dad.
We were lucky to do two games that had no players that we knew. I say “lucky” because that way I don’t have to out any of my friends as obnoxious, loud, and assholish parents that can’t just let the coach and their kid do the job that was appointed to them.
Most of the hollering was unintelligible from where we were, so I can just imagine what the kids on the ice could make out. The word I heard the most was “SHOOT!”, and I mentioned to Gadget that I wished the kids would shoot as soon as someone yelled it to them.
I mean the moment they yelled, and in whatever direction is easiest from where their stick is.
How about you let the kid play the game. If he’s that fucking simple that he doesn’t know when he should shoot the goddamn puck, then you shouldn’t have bribed his coach into putting him in rep hockey. Instead, you should have saved your money for some Baileys to juice up your coffee and spent your time catching up with some fellow whores, while you watch your fatherless kids* play outside on a pond or someone’s backyard rink.
* – Hee hee. Sometimes I like to be an asshole. I know that you and your friends aren’t whores, and I happen to know that your kid has a dad, but you have to admit that this wound you up for a second. Didn’t it?
A bunch of friends with a couple of mittens for a net, a few old wooden sticks, and whatever ill-fitting pads they can find, will trump any fancy tournament that I can imagine. It’s when the kids have no pressure except to come in for a hot chocolate before they get frostbite, that makes for one of the greatest games that I’ve had the pleasure to watch.
Sometimes at night I can hear the ice crack, it sounds like thunder and it rips through my back,