Sunday, December 10, 2006

Garage Leagues

You all know I love to play hockey. For a long time, I took it way too seriously. I would get wound up, and get a bit dirty. I have mellowed out over the last few years and really enjoy playing clean, fast paced games. Don't get me wrong, I love the physical aspect of the game and wish they allowed more than just bumping in these leagues. I do understand why they cannot allow checking, because, some of the guys out there can't skate all that well and would end up getting hurt if they got checked. These leagues are for enjoyment and, as such, they are made safer by not allowing much contact.

That being said, last week I took some liberties with a guy on the other team, because I knew I could get him going. I was trying to get him kicked out. He is a very good player, but has a bad temper and is easy to take off his game. I did manage to draw a double minor(4 minutes for those of you who are not hockey fans) and a 10 minute misconduct out of the guy, after pissing him off in front of my net. There are ways to get people that the ref can't see, and I have mastered a few of the little dirty tricks over the years. However, I wasn't trying to hurt the guy and when he came after me I never swung back, because I had accomplished what I wanted to do by getting him to come after me.

This week, karma got me back, I guess. In the second period, I went to the front of the net and when I got there, I got charged from behind and cross-checked in the back of the neck. It hurt like hell, I hadn't done anyting other than skate to the net while a teammate was taking a shot and I lost my temper and hit the guy in the head with my stick(definitely a big no-no, although I knew he was wearing a face cage before I did it) because I was on the ground and couldn't get up quick enough to go after him. We both got kicked out, as well as another guy from the other team who jumped on me after I hit his teammate in the head.

I used to love getting into those scraps as often as possible. Now, I don't remember why. I can't understand what motivates people to do stupid crap like that, when we all have to get up tomorrow and go to work. I felt pretty bad about swinging at the guys head and went over to his locker room to apologize and ask what the hell he was trying to do by hitting me. He couldn't tell me why he did it. Now my neck is stiff as a board, I have a cut on my neck from getting piled onto, he undoubtably has a headache, and both of us, along with the third guy can't play next week as a result of our game misconduct penalties this week. All because, for some unknown reason, this guy decided I looked like an appealing target.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Still Stumbling. Now, In Three Dimensions

On Friday, I was playing a game of pick-up hockey with a friend of mine and some guys he knows. My friend was trying to take the puck from me as I circled out of one of the corners in my own end. He got all skates with his hatchet like swipe and I fell like a tree and slid feet first, full speed into the boards a few feet away. When I hit the wall, I hurt my right hip a little bit. It feels fine when I am skating, climbing stairs, jogging, and doing everything else but walking. So, I have had a slight limp for the last few days.

Today, I had a horror movie moment at work. Working in a nursing facility, sometimes patients expire. One of my duties is to let the funeral home employees in, and walk them into and out of the facility. It is a big complex. We have a tunnel that runs along the first level and takes you anywhere you need to go.

This morning, I had to escort two such men into the building, through the tunnel and back out again. As I limped through the twists and turns of the tunnel, motioning for the two of them to follow me, saying, "This way." and Turn here.", one of the men said in a slightly worried voice, "He could get us lost if he wanted to." At that moment I thought to myself, what a great scene this would be inserted into a horror flick. I turned, smiled, nodded my head, and limped on torward the elevator and the recently deceased patient.