Hockey Is Part Of The Canadian Fabric

I play hockey. Grew up in a small town...learned how to skate in its ditches. Used to play hockey in the basement with my brother, making nets out of blankets as a young kid. Later the game moved outside, street hockey was what we did for fun. A couple of winters, we made a skating rink in the back yard, which would keep us occupied throughout the cold winters, bringing over the boys and girls, sometimes the old timers too, to the back yard rink, with snow banks for boards (that five minute delay digging for lost pucks). If not ours, we could hop the fence and go the neighbours. Because we lived close to the schools, the kids would often come over for lunch or after school for games. My dad would collect all the broken sticks to use for the garden. Never played organized hockey, wasn't good enough, but I still played the game with passion.

When I moved to the city and got messed up in criminal activity, hockey was the one thing I would still share with my brother when I saw him.

When I moved to Halifax, I had the opportunity in a company province wide ball hockey tourney, a real blast, a little too much liquor though.
When I moved back to Winnipeg, the first paycheque I got, I used to buy goalie equipment with my friends. This led to the creation of our floor hockey team, a mish mash of drunks, misfits, and criminals who once week played for the glory of being a good hockey team, which we eventually became. Even if I had some serious head injuries, which would cause me to have seizures for awhile, the comaradery and the competiveness were great souvenirs from playing the game I love.

Nowadays I just play co- Ed ball hockey, a great way to meet fit and attractive ladies in a setting that isn't precipitated by drunkenness.

I still lace up the skates to play for fun, with the kids or the old-timers, those games which need intermissions for snow shoveling. Hockey is a great game, embodying winter sport. I will never forget playing at the Forks for hours on end with such immense pride after Canada took home the gold in Vancouver. Nor will I soon forget playing hockey on the landmark Portage and Main Avenues the day that Winnipeg got their Jets back, and a certain measure of civic pride. Professional athletes may have lost the value of the game in their greed, but when the snow falls, and the ice begins to form, it will always be hockey season in Canada.
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1 Response Sep 15, 2012

this story dredged up a lot of nostalgia...grew up in a hockey family, myself. fabulous writing!