Had a pretty good game against Red Army on Sunday afternoon. I came a little closer to climbing out of the +/- hole and earned a point at the same time by getting an assist in the first period. It came when we were deep in the offensive zone and I got tied up by a not-super-strong opponent on the boards. I was trying to dig the puck out from between her feet while trying to figure out how to get a shot off when I heard Wilson call my name from the point. I got my stick on the puck and passed up to him, he fired shot that rebounded off an opponent, and Inga shot the loose puck into the net. It was neat how the whole thing happened so quickly.
The other team seemed to have a couple ringers; the most noticeable was the guy who could stop on a dime and deke and who couldn't be muscled off the puck by even our strongest guys (though Hoche did manage to tangle him up and take him down as only Hoche can). This chap scored two goals, one unassisted and both while covered by at least one person. Now generally, if your skills are going to make you stick out like a sore thumb, it pays to be humble. This guy apparently didn't get the memo, however, as he had a habit of overcelebrating his goals and making snarky comments about how he was "letting the scoreboard do the talking," (which was not technically true, if you think about it). ANYWAY, he was apparently young, so maybe someone will fill him in, or encourage him to build some character by playing at a level more suited to his abilities rather than reveling in his big-fish-in-a-little-frozen-pond status.
Now back to me, me, me. :) I managed to skate fairly hard despite having developed a migraine about an hour before the game; it was moderate, as migraines go, rather than oh-my-god-I'm-dying bad, and I think the cool air rushing at my face as I skated around helped with the nausea. I probably could have been more effective covering my point while we were on D, but other than that I didn't notice any huge drop in my performance level.
I'm not sure whether feeling like I had one of those thick purple rubber bands that hold bunches of asparagus together wrapped around my head helped keep me from blowing any gaskets, but I did manage to stay calm and play pleasantly this week. I was determined to play as well as possible and win, lose, or tie as gracefully as possible, and except for one snide comment ("go for the PUCK, loser!") to the guy who kept whacking my stick at the point, I accomplished that goal. Ringers aside, I thought we played a great game, and when I come off the ice feeling proud of how I played, I couldn't care less about the score. For those of you who do, it was 4-3 them.
Last night Al's brother was in town, so we took him out to a neat restaurant in Burlingame. While waiting at the bar for a table, a guy leaned over from an adjacent stool and said, "hi! you're Lori and Al, aren't you?" I smiled and acknowledged that we were while desperately searching my brain for some fragment of memory, some clue to where I might have met this person. "I've read your website!" he continued. "I saw you play at Logitech on Monday. I've just started playing, myself."
We were a bit fascinated and unnerved at the same time by our celebrity. Al felt like he'd been dragged into the spotlight by my penchant for blogging; after all, he's never even commented on a post, much less written one himself (at least not in this diary). Al's brother, meanwhile, thought it was pretty neat. As for me, I was glad to have encouraged another fledgling hockey player, but was embarrassed that the fellow had seen Monday's game, which certainly wasn't one of my best. (I can only hope that he was there long enough to see me get a decent shot on goal, but not so long that he saw me skate around ineffectually while making snarky remarks to #44 and his cohorts).
I think I would have been more prepared to be recognized if it had happened at an ice rink or in a hockey store or even at a tournament rather than a restaurant; it's all about context. In any case, welcome to the game, Henry. Hope to see you on the ice sometime.