Week 2 of 52 – The Ottawa Hockey Team!

14 Jan

So my buddy Steve invites me to go see the Sens play the Flyers on Sunday afternoon. After I accepted he informed me that he won the tickets and we will be sitting in a one hundred-level box. Sweet: booze, beer, babes, butlers, Bryzgalov.

I, of course, am cheering for Philadelphia. I arrived at the stadium and, upon seeing the many Flyers fans and their orange jerseys, realize that my Dutch Olympic hoodie will safely remove any doubt surrounding which team I support.

No doubt.

It’s been a while since I’ve been to the Palladium – I mean Corel Centre – I mean Scotiabank Place – to see a hockey game. My how things have changed. The first thing I notice is that they’ve removed all the Nortel advertisements. I wonder what they did with all the old signs. If there’s anyone out there who wants to start a company you could call it No-tel and with a little detective work and some blue paint you could save millions in promotion-related expenses.

Some kid is singing the anthems. His rendition of the Star-spangled Banner is copied directly from Bleeding Gums Murphy – or so it feels like. For some reason they post all the lyrics for both anthems on the giant screen. I never realized O Canada had so many exclamation points and that the French parts were written before the Quiet Revolution.

So the Sens score the first goal and they blow that Goddamn train horn of terror. My involuntary reaction is limited to a flashback to when I was eight and, thank God, nothing else.

During the first intermission I join the masses in the concourse to try and secure me a slice of Pizza Pizza pizza. The patrons’ inability to form something even remotely resembling a line is causing me an unusual amount of anxiety. I retreat to the box to wait for the second period to start – I’ll venture back out when the game is on.

We only have fifteen minutes people...

The first intermission is my favorite intermission – they usually invite two teams of five-year-olds to play a game against each other. The kids can barely skate let alone hold a hockey stick. I’m enjoying the spectacle for the wrong reasons.

The Flyers’ number seventeen is African-Canadian. I wonder if hockey every had a colour barrier like baseball did. For many years Russians were not allowed to play in the NHL but I think that was more a problem with the management of the USSR than any specific policy of the National Hockey League.

The Flyers just scored again. I like it when the Sens are playing some of the older teams – they get lots of fans at the games. I have to agree with soccer on this one – the game would be much more interesting if all these Flyers supporters were jammed into a single walled-off section of the Scotiabank Place and then taunted and booed until my throat hurt.

We’re about to start the third period. The running total for food and drink is approaching the face value of the ticket. Three beers (seventy-two ounces total), one Coke Zero, a slice of pizza, and a cheese burger with fries = $54.25 CAD.


Spartacat is in our section for a photo op. I try and get him to join us in our box for a beer. I read once that cats are allergic to alcohol. The whole game Steve and I have been debating what the specific reaction is. He says they vomit everywhere. I maintain that they vomit everywhere all the time regardless if they’ve had anything to drink or not.

And there's only one way to find out.

The game is tied at four goals apiece. Each team is playing like the outcome actually means something. It’s really exciting. Ottawa scores with 1:11 left on the clock. They finish with an empty-net goal to shore up the victory. No Sens No!

We make our way to the parking lot to fight our way through traffic. They built the stadium twenty kilometres outside of the city centre. Does anyone have any idea what they were on when they decided on the location? I’m all for decriminalization but whatever these guys were smoking should be classified a dangerous substance (excessive use can result in stupidity).

One Response to “Week 2 of 52 – The Ottawa Hockey Team!”

  1. Jesse January 14, 2012 at 10:53 #

    Good call on noticing the pre-Quiet Revolution French lyrics. Also, there was a colour barrier in the NHL. http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=513590

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