Being Canadian, my life has always involved at least a little bit of hockey. Even growing up in a “girl” household I have vivid memories of the sport: attending my first NHL game and cheering for the fights; driving downtown with my parents and sister to high-five inebriated passerby’s after our team won the Stanley Cup (ah, classy family outings); countless game nights spent at the pub with boyfriends and later, husband, cramming nachos in my mouth and swigging pints. Jamie even works for our local NHL club, so the sport literally puts food on the table in our home.
That being said, sometimes I want to kick hockey in the crotch. And yesterday was just such a time.
As is typical in our neighbourhood, if you were to drive by our home you would notice a hockey net sitting by the side of the garage.
Given that we have two males in the house, with one a hockey fanatic and one a fanatic-in-training, it was felt absolutely necessary by the Fanatic that we purchase the fanatic-in-training his own net to “practice his skills” (yes, similar to the infamous huge putting green in our basement. Apparently our children are an investment Jamie’s hoping to cash in on once they become sporting legends.). As is typical with what you already know about Jamie, he’s a go-big-or-go-home kind of guy. So it was again felt absolutely necessary that we not only purchase a hockey net for our toddler, but the biggest one they sell.
We now have a regulation-sized hockey net. For a two year old.
If you don’t know how large a regulation-sized net is, picture this: I am 5’9. The net comes up to my shoulder.
And I don’t know how wide it is, but I can damn well tell you that its larger than the typical two year old can cover while in goal. Of course, thats making my current scoring record pretty awesome right now, so we’ll leave it as is. What can I say? The kid leaves himself wide open to top-shelf slapshots.
But I digress. As I was saying, the net is huge, but its also bulky and incredibly heavy. Its a royal pain in the ass to drag out, and is the bane of my existence whenever Jamie isn’t home because I can barely lift it, let alone carry it out to our driveway. However, yesterday we were outside playing when Mason ran up to me.
"Mom, I need the net. Can you get it out?”
"Buddy, are you sure you want to play? It’s really heavy for mommy to get”
"Yes, I wanna play! Please mom, please? Please get the net, I neeeeeeeeeeed it!”
I slowly trudged over to the goal, hoping with every step that his toddler-length attention span would suddenly kick in and he’d go on to something else. But the damned kid tracked me from the end of the driveway to where I now stood, and was eagerly standing at my heels when I turned around once more.
“Ok Mace, so you’re sure you want the net? You’re sure you’re going to play with it?”
"Yes mommy. I’ll play with it, I promise!” he replied brightly.
Sighing deeply, I began the process of dragging it out to the curb. Resting the crossbar on my left shoulder, I began my pathetic half-lift half-drag down the span of our driveway. Believe me, there is no graceful way of moving this thing, but I made myself look like even more of a spaz by getting it caught on any and everything along the way. The tree, the drainpipe, even the side of the house became barriers to my successful hockey-net-move, and each time it got stuck I’d wind up wildly throwing myself off-balance, legs splaying in various directions and viciously throwing myself against the red bars.
Throughout all of this, Mason stood by and watched with an encouraging look on his face.
"Whoah, good job mom!” he cheered at one point, after I'd successfully navigated my way around the second of our hockey-net-catching tress.
“You’re doing great, mom! Good work!” he shouted again as I neared the end of the driveway.
What an amazing little boy I have! I thought as I finally reached the curb. How can I NOT want to get him his net, when he’s so encouraging and positive?
Reaching my destination at last, I turned to Mason and called out “Ok buddy! Lets go get our hockey sticks!”.
To which he responded, with a surprised look on his face:
"No mom, not that net! I meant the basketball net!”
And that, my friends, is why I hate hockey.