The shaft

Willy started playing hockey about ten years ago. He’d played a little bit as a child, but basically started from scratch. His first team was a beer league team in the Bell Sensplex league. Made up of a group of friends from work, and when they started out, they were pretty awful. It’s not that they were bad players, they just didn’t gel together as a team for a while. I’ll never forget one of their early games, where the opponent’s goalie was a late cancellation. They were forced to play the game without a goalie, and the final score was 15-1. For the goalie-less team. With that one goal, they might have left with their dignity intact, but I am pretty sure that that game cemented their place in the lowest tier in the league. To add insult to injury, not only was I in the stands watching, so was Willy’s mum.

The team has gotten better over the years. They have moved up in the league, and have even won their division on occasion… Willy is one of only two original members of the team, which likely has a little bit to do with their more recent success. He has had to miss a fair bit over the last two years, but still plays as much as he can.

We’ve both gotten used to the scheduling of his games. Well, most of his games. Beer leagues often get all the late night ice, so it is not uncommon for at least half of his games to start after 10:00PM. It’s not ideal, but workable. The problem is that the team has clearly ticked off the schedule maker, as they ALWAYS have a game on the holiday. Labour day, Thanksgiving, Hallowe’en, Easter, St. Patrick’s day, Mother’s day… they have played on all of them over the last few years. It’s not so much the date, as the time that the games were scheduled. Mother’s day game at the lils bedtime, Hallowe’en during prime trick’or’treating time, St. Patrick’s day at any time after 10:00AM, the scheduling interferes with the intended activity of the day, every time. As I planned the month of June, I peeked at the hockey schedule, and sure enough, there is a game in the middle of the afternoon on Father’s day, at prime barbequing time. Shafted again.

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