Tag Archives: hockey

Inquiring minds

Last night the Los Angeles Kings beat the New Jersey Devils 6 to 1 to win the 2011-12 Stanley Cup. It wasn’t a very good hockey game, really (particularly from the Devils’ viewpoint) and I watched it rather haphazardly.

What I found more interesting was that not even five minutes after the final horn blew and the celebrations began on my TV, there were fire engine sirens right outside my door.

There were two firetrucks, and they appeared to be going to a house a few doors down from mine. I went out to my front balcony to watch, while other neighbours gathered in driveways. There was no smoke (well, except from those neighbours who took this opportunity to have a cigarette or three – practically right under my balcony so that their smelly smoke drifted upward to me!), and no urgency on the part of the firefighters. They milled around for almost an hour, their trucks running the whole time, blocking many people’s access to their garages. But they didn’t appear to actually DO anything related to fire-fighting or to a medical emergency – and it likely wasn’t the latter, as no ambulance ever showed up. Eventually, all we lookie-loos returned to our homes, and I never did find out what had happened.

So of course, my imagination is taking over.

Was somebody that pissed off that the Kings won the game that they set their house on fire?

Or were they that happy that the Kings won the game that they set their house on fire? (Some cultures do celebrate with fire, I bet.)

Did someone’s TV catch on fire because they were flipping channels so rapidly between the hockey game and some reality show like “Cake Boss”?

Did the homeowners wait until the game was over before calling 911? (If they did, that was stupid, because the game was already decided in the first period, when the Kings were ahead 3-0.)

Or did they call earlier, and after ascertaining that it wasn’t a huge, life-threatening emergency, the firefighters said, “Yeah, okay, we’ll drop by after the game”?

I suppose I’ll never know … unless it’s in the local paper tomorrow.

Pre-garden party

It looks like the nicer weather just may have arrived around Vancouver, and so I decided it was time to finally purchase my bedding plants.

Yesterday after work, I stopped in at one of the local garden centres. I picked out a bunch of flowering plants of various colours to fill my various flower boxes and pots. I paid for everything (and every year I am astonished at how much a couple of flats of wee plants cost), and stowed them in the trunk of my car. I slammed the trunk lid and replaced the trolley in the correct spot. I went back to my car and stuck my hand in my pocket for the keys.

The keys that weren’t there.

I stood there, confused. WTF? I ALWAYS put my keys in my left front pocket. ALWAYS.

Well, apparently NOT always.

It slowly dawned on me where the keys were. When I had opened the trunk, for some reason, I had placed my wallet and the keys in one of the cardboard flats, beside the three pink impatiens, the yellow begonia and the dracena spike that I had bought, then I had carefully placed that flat in the trunk with all other stuff. I had taken my wallet off the flat and tucked it in its usual place in my school bag. Then I had closed the trunk. I had not taken my keys off the flat. So, I had just locked my keys in the trunk of my car.

And now I was one of those people who do that sort of thing. One of those idiots.

To make matters worse, even my phone was oh-so-safely locked in the car. I considered climbing in the open sunroof, but that wouldn’t get me the keys in the trunk. Besides, I’d probably set off the alarm, or break something either on the car or on my body.

So I returned to the cashier in the garden centre and asked to use their phone. I called DD, praying that she would actually pick up (she often lets it go straight to voicemail if an unknown number is displayed) and also that she was home. I got lucky. She did pick up and she was at home.

She hopped in her car and brought me my extra set of keys. Actually, she tossed them at me with a sigh, enunciating carefully so that I would understand, “You are an idiot.”

I can’t disagree with her. But at least I’m an idiot with a lovely garden now.

The last time I was sick at Christmas …

So it appears that I will live after all. I am not permanently sick, nor will I be coughing forever. In fact, it looks very much like I will be healthy for Christmas … or healthy-ish. My voice is still raspy, I’m coughing only in the mornings and in the evenings now, and I’m blowing my nose rather infrequently, so I would say that I was most certainly on the mend. I may, of course, be stuck in this state for weeks (and I do know that has happened to some people who have been hit by this “thing” – which, I’m quite sure, is its scientific name). But I’m hoping for the best.

The last time I was sick at Christmastime, I think I was nineteen years old. I was madly in love with my first serious boyfriend, and although he did not have heaps of money (as it later turned out, he spent a great deal of the money he did have on dope – but that’s another story), he had purchased tickets to a Vancouver Canucks hockey game for me for my birthday. They were going to be playing the Montréal Canadiens that night, which had been my favourite NHL team prior to the existence of my hometown Canucks. I was so excited! Hockey tickets were not cheap nor easy to get, even back in the late seventies when the Canucks were an abyssmally poor team, and this was, I thought, obviously a measure of his love for me that he’d somehow gotten these tickets.

He and his roommate had also promised to take me out to a pub for the very first (legal!) time, as it was my nineteenth birthday and so I would be of legal drinking age. They were older, and therefore much more experienced in such things as drinking establishments, so again, I was very much looking forward to this. I still looked like I was about fifteen years old, so I was anticipating flashing my newly-legal ID with great glee.

And then I got sick, a couple of weeks before Christmas. I was right in the middle of exams at university and I remember that I was too ill to even study. I managed to read a bit, but I mostly curled up in my bed, dying, I was sure. My throat was soooooo sore, my entire body ached, and I didn’t think anyone could even produce that much snot in their entire lifetimes. My boyfriend actually had to drive me to the university to write an exam or two, as I was too sick to drive safely. But I wrote every exam, and passed them all – except, ironically, my French exam. (And just to set the record straight, I pretty much aced the final French exam in April that term, and so my average mark in that class ended up being fairly decent.)

I started to feel better after exams were done, but my throat sure didn’t. It got worse and worse, to the point where I couldn’t even swallow my own saliva. It felt like a million tiny knives stabbing my esophagus whenever I tried. I will never forget that feeling – it was terrible! Still, I had a few more days before the hockey game, my birthday (which was going to be the pub night), and then Christmas. I was optimistic that the worst was over, and that I’d be good to go when the time came.

Alas, as it turned out, strep throat is not to be messed with. I missed the hockey game, the pub night, much of my birthday, and much of Christmas that year. I could barely swallow a bite of birthday cake, nor could I enjoy much of Christmas dinner. Drinking, of course, was out of the question, what with the medication and all.

By January, I felt fine again and my life continued on its merry way. It took me a very long time to get over not having been able to go to that Vancouver-Montréal hockey game, though. In fact, it may have taken thirty years, until 2008, when I was in Montréal, and I finally got to see the Canadiens play in the Bell Centre. Their opponents that night were the Philadelphia Flyers, and with Carey Price (a BC kid) in net, the Canadiens won the game.

(But of course, I really rather would have seen them beat the Canucks thirty years earlier!)