As I mentioned before, N broke his stick in the penultimate game of the year, which is actually a fitting end to a crazy and tumultuous season, the reason being that we now have to start with a clean slate. This is symbolic to me on a number of levels which I won't go into. The stick was fairly new but I in fact thought it was time to upgrade him into an adult stick. He's been using older kid sticks (intermediate) and they've worked fine, but he's growing and in his last game he borrowed an adult stick from a teammate and liked it. They tend to be longer (though not as long as the one in this pic) and stiffer, both of which compliment his style of playing. They also come in a range of stiffnesses (is that a word?) and you can find a good balance in there.
Naturally my OCD kicked in and I went on a search. One could argue that it was a waste to drop that sort of cash this late in the season. After all, he played his last game, so what's the point? Well, there are a few points, one of which is that the season is not completely over. Sure, games are done, but there always seems to something happening on the ice. Furthermore, I like shopping for gear for the kids, especially when I can find a good deal on things they need. This of course includes surfboards and wetsuits, but that's a story for another time.
I went online and found some decent deals on sticks that are last year's models. I even got the thumbs up from mom to pursue this, so say no more. I ordered one and it came in a week, and he is stoked with it. The story gets more interesting, however, because we happen to be friends with someone who is an equipment manager for a major sports program in this area. What a cool job. He has procured sticks for other people we know for great prices, so I contacted him at the same time that I was shopping around for sticks. He was very cool about it, I think he feels a little sorry for me regarding how things transpired this season (our kids orbit similar circles), but that could easily be me reading too much into things. Either way, he pulled it off and scored a couple of killer sticks at an amazing price.
Now N already had a new stick because I had set things in motion at the same time and by the time my friend contacted me, I had already bought a stick. However, I felt like I couldn't pass up this opportunity because he had gone to all the trouble to locate the sticks, even took into account my requests about length, flex and curvature of the blade - those of you who buy hockey sticks will understand this. It was also a great deal; the sticks were last year's models purchased for players in his program who were no longer there, so they were excess stock. Since it's a top notch program, the sticks are top notch quality - we are talking prices in excess of $250 brand new. I would never drop that kind of cash on a hockey stick, but I would love to get one for a fraction of that price (we are talking about 1/5 the cost), which is how it worked. Finally, getting the sticks catered to my OCD about getting gear for the kids, especially when it involves a good deal. Besides, as we've witnessed, N needs two sticks.
There was one issue with the new sticks that was not ideal, but we were able to attend to it to make them exactly what we were looking for. Don't you just love when that happens? I won't get into it now but the guys at Stateline gave me some advice on how to fix things and it worked out beautifully, but more on this later.
For now, we are all set with sticks, and I can look forward to my next obsession, which will probably involve wetsuits, but you never know.
Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Liz for the pic.