Friday, April 17, 2015

Oh the Good Old Hockey Game

"oh the good old hockey game, is the best game you can name.
And the best game you can name, is the good old hockey game."

It's hockey playoff season, and a most wonderful time of the year. I grew up playing hockey and watching hockey. My dad used to take me to see the Red Wings at the old Olympia in Detroit. I can still remember the red brick barn  shake due to the crowd.

Now I am a huge fan of the sport, not only of the Red Wings, who have made the playoffs 24 straight seasons and are one of the most special sports franchises in the world, but of all the NHL playoffs. I fake my way through NCAA March Madness, for my madness starts in April. A 7 game series of a good hockey match has all the drama of The Game of Thrones, and nearly just as many deaths. Watching Marsek for the Wings play like Hasek was special.  And I'm loving the Sens/Habs series. If (when) the wings are out, then the remaining Canadian team is who I always root for. For the Sens/Habs intra-country battle, I'm rooting for the Sens after their incredible run the last two months.
Darren Helm, perhaps my favorite Red Wing. (also looks a ton like Ed Norton)

This week was also the debut of my first 40 and over hockey game. My leg is too damaged to run, but I found that I could skate. In fact, in comparison, I am a faster skater than runner (I have a 8-0 record at the ages 18 and over race when I take my daughters skating. Well, I actually did lose once, but the person tested positive for steroids).

So, I went out and skated a few times, seemed to go fine, and I signed up for a 40 and over league. I was terrified that a real game would shred my leg damage apart, but my leg seemed to have held up fine. I was so incredibly geeked. I have not had the exhilaration of being drenched in sweat, of gasping for air, of feeling alive with physical exhaustion. I so needed it.

But....

I started the game with an achey back, and my back did get torn apart. It hurt the whole game such that with each minute, I could bend over less. The ride home and the night was full of pain. When I woke up, I had to roll over to the floor, crawl to the dresser, and use that to get myself up. I literally could not get up. The pain was the most excruciating thing I have ever felt. On a scale of 10 out of 10, this one went to 11.

I shuffled to the coffee maker, telling myself that if I ever found out this was permanent, I would kill myself. My wife rescued me, brought me a couple golf clubs to use as canes (they work!) since I could not walk, and later on drove me to my doctor who is well used to my sports injuries. She gave me steroids (oh shit, now I'll test positive) and muscle relaxers.  They are slowly helping, and overall,  I am happy as hell, for my back problems are not chronic and I believe will take care of myself. But my leg, that has not been able to run, can skate again.

I am not going to take to aging gracefully, not lightly, but shall Rage, rage at the dying of the light (Rage = stupidity at times, yes).  I signed up for "Old Man Hockey," I tell my daughters.

 "Are you going to stop playing old man hockey daddy since you broke your back?" my youngest asked.  

hmmmmm.... how to explain it.

"Would you stop playing minecraft if it burnt your fingers to touch the button?"

Her face was terrified. She thought it over.

 "I would still play. You should always do what you love."

Amen.

 

1 comment:

SupermomE12 said...

I love all sports, but i love, love, love, love, LOVE hockey. Wyoming is a hockey black hole (which makes no sense at all considering the huge amount of cold and ice we have here but I digress…) so I love playoffs when we get lots of games on TV. I was born and raised and will always be a Rangers fan… we had season tickets growing up. :) Yay for playoffs!!

Sorry about the back, but awesome that you played and I hope you are able to get back out there. :)

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