Friday, August 17, 2012

Real Man’s Hockey

Now that hockey season is completely over (boo-hoo), I can take a break and focus on the rest of my life, sort of. It’s interesting to think back on my inaugural season and what I learned. One thing for sure, it was a lot of fun, and I’m sort of excited about the coming winter.

I played in a more advanced league (Slapsticks) after C-league, and it was an interesting experience, to say the least. One of my teammates from C-league told me about it, and it afforded the chance to play at Thompson Arena, where Dartmouth plays, which was kind of cool. The guys who play Slapsticks span the range of skills, but for the most part, are more skilled and competitive than what you get in C-league. It’s an open stick concept, where guys just get together and play. I am, without question, at the bottom of the food chain. I don’t think I’m the worst player out there, but I’m close.

What really makes it different is that it’s not a team, per se, so there is not as much camaraderie. When you score a goal, there’s no congratulations or celebration, you just put the puck back in play and start over. When you play on a team, it’s much more interesting, and you feel invested in the game. Plus, C-league players are more my speed, and they can relate to my station in life. With the Slapsticks, the guys are not only better skaters/players, but they’re not above letting you know your screwed up or scolding you for your mistakes. I know, it happens to me all the time.

For all it’s worth, I get a lot of constructive criticism, and that helps my game, but I do feel pressure to up my game and avoid stupid mistakes. With C-league, they’re much more forgiving, mainly because they’re out there making the same mistakes. Besides, there’s value in life to being in over your head. It’s not always warm, fuzzy, and comfortable, but you definitely grow from the experience, and that’s what life’s all about, right?

To once again paraphrase Boy Dylan, if you’re not busy being born, you’re simply busy dying.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to bbska for the pic.

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