Wednesday, February 3, 2010

He shoots ... he scores ...

There are a few obvious statements that could be made about the folks here at The Brothers McC. One of them would be that we love music. And I don’t mean we “like” music – I mean we really “love” music. We have done some really amazing things (OK ... I say amazing ... others would say "silly") over the years because of music, in the pursuit of music and for the love of music. Note to all the younger readers out there: Back in the day we used to sleep out on street corners, in front of the storefronts that sold tickets – just to make sure we got the “good seats.”

There’s another “given” in out little community. And that is ‘Sports.’ We really love sports as well. Trust me on this … we wear our hearts on our sleeves and we have lived and died with certain games throughout the years.

But, the amazing thing is, (at least to me), is that out of the three of us, I am the only one who was bitten by the ice hockey bug. Not that it’s a bad thing … everybody loves what they love. And for whatever reasons, it’s ice hockey for me. Seriously, the Oldest Brother McC will not even confirm that ice hockey is an actual sport – but at least he appreciates how much I love it. The youngest of the Brother’s McC will, on certain dates, put up with my love of hockey. One year, on my birthday – I found myself in LA (with the Mrs), and the youngest Brother McC (and his amazingly easy going wife) passed on an Olds 97 concert to escort the Mrs & I up to the Shark Tank to see the Anaheim Ducks take on The St. Louis Blues.

First, let me tell you – it was a great game. With the home team bringing back the win – the fans – they were rabid – and the entire experience was why I love hockey. But the most amazing point of the night happened – as I explained the finer points of the game to our hosts – the Sharks were on the Power Play – and – apparently to my sister-n-law, taking too long to pull the trigger – so she stood up and scream; “Shoot the f*cking puck!!!!!”

It was at that moment that I knew my brother had chosen well in the “bride” department.

Anyway … tonight I took to the ice in a league we call “Old Man Hockey.” Most of the guys who play are in their 40’s – and, to a man – each and every one of them is a nice guy. I am not kidding – it is a true pleasure to lace ‘em up with these guys.

Tonight was a great game. It was one of those games that contained everything I love about the sport; great passing, fast paced action, good scoring, great goaltending (I’m speaking of the opposing goalie – as for me … well … more on that later). Like I said, it was everything I love about the sport. And tonight – for reasons that are beyond my capabilities to explain to you – I had the number of the other teams top scorer. On three … count ‘em - three … on three solid breakaways … I stoned him!!! And each time he had a comical comment to say to me before he skated back up the ice.

It was one of those nights – great hockey up and down the ice. But, I am sad to report to our fine readers, that – in overtime – when the final score was tallied – the last shot ended up in my goal. And the funny thing is ... it really didn't bother me. It had been a great game - and I had played as good as I can (closing in on 49 ... the legs aint what they used to be!). And, even though we ended up on the short end of the stick tonight - it was truly a case of; I was just happy to be playing in that game!

But that is not why I write this tale (re: winning or losing). The reason I sit here typing is because of what happened next. The first thing that happened to me after the game, took place in the locker room, as I was pulling off my pads. The opposing scorer walked over to me to hand me a beer and say, “Great game.”

Sportsmanship. Friendship. Great hockey. A Cold beer.

Life could be a lot worse.