Sunday, March 10, 2013

They, Well I, Called Him 'Lightning Boy'

 For years I've used an old school Sherwood as my hockey stick of choice. They run about 12 bucks, which I like because I'm a cheap bastard, and they're durable. I usually go through about one a year. I don't think I've ever taken a slapshot in the heat of battle and my wrist shot wouldn't break a pane of glass and on top of it all I don't have the best offensive instincts. Signature breakaway move is to try and stuff it through the crest.

 Once I bought a composite stick. It was a beaut, light as a feather. Cost me a hundred bucks and I had it about a month and then I was battling along the boards and buddy fell on it and it snapped in two like nothing.

 So it was back to the Sherwoods. Last summer I bought another in the long line. There was nothing special about it or so I thought. Just another heavy hunk of wood, a lot of heft, the type that you can lay on an opponent to let him know you're there and he'd know it.

 I'd just come off of a summer season where I went without a goal, the first season of my career where I was shut out. I had a good season and it was only about a dozen games so I wasn't too concerned. I got my chances and didn't get the bounces, sometimes that's the way it goes.

 Nevertheless I was pleased when I scored a couple early this year to get going. I wasn't playing any different than I did in the summer, they just started going in. And then, strangely, they kept going in.

 I ended up in the top twenty five in the league in scoring and fifteenth (!) in goals and in our first playoff game I potted another, giving me eleven in a couple of dozen games and, well, its a good feeling. I've always been a guy who does the little things to contribute to wins. Its pretty cool to be a guy who does the big things too.

 As the season wound down though I began to be concerned about Lighting Boy. There was a chip out of the toe and when I bounced it there was that twang that told me that things were coming to an end. A few games ago as I sat on the bench I had pain in the palm of my hand and finger and checking, discovered that I had slivers.

 And so last night I was sprung on a breakaway in the first game of our second round series. I didn't panic, I took a look, I chose to shoot, picked a corner but the goalie beat me. And then some time later, set up in the slot for a one timer, a play I scored on last week, instead this time I didn't get all of it and the goalie made an easy stop. And I knew something was wrong.

 It was then that I noted a slight keening, a shiver and slowly, sadly, Lighting Boy began to expire and so, minutes later, as I fought along the boards in our zone and chipped the puck out, I suddenly felt that something was wrong and looking down, there was Lightning Boy, a mangled corpse, the blade hanging off of the shaft at the wrong angle.

 Lightning Boy fell to the ice as I raced to the bench to borrow (because I only ever have one stick) a composite and at the next whistle we watched sadly from the bench as the ref threw his mangled remnants over the glass and into the corner of the rink.

 My linemate turned to me, saw the sadness in my eyes and remarked:

'Its ok, he's just a sack of meat now, he has gone to a better place'

 A part of me thought I could rebuild him and I pictured myself retrieving his broken body, wrapping it gently and then, a twelve pack of beer and pack of Camels at the ready, the montage scene, She's A Beauty by The Tubes providing the soundtrack as I, with blowtorch and hammer and tape and all of the technology available to man, brought Lightning Boy back to life, to score again, hopefully in the final, to bring glory to Capsule.

 We would film it and call it 'The Unnatural'

 Raise a toast to Lightning Boy ladies and gentlemen, wherever you are. The best twelve dollars I ever spent, even better than that time I bought a pitcher of beer at the Rex back on that sunny summer afternoon back in '87. Although that was pretty close because you know, patio beer.

Where have you gone Lightning Boyio, my stone hands turn their lonely eyes to you, whoo ooh ooh. What's that you say the guy who set me up last night, next time you have to bury those. Whoo ooo ooo Whoo ooo ooo.

 Can anyone spot me twelve bucks? Have to run to Canadian Tire. Thanks bye.


Anonymous said...

"There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in." - Leonard Cohen

We can only hope that better days are ahead for you and Lightning Boy. Godspeed Pat


Joe said...

I always loved the Sherwoods with the Coffee blade. They're getting harder and harder to find, at least down here. I have a nice stash of the PMP5030's in my basement, but they're starting to get tattered. :-/

rubbertrout said...

I was always a big fan of the 5030 back in the day. Although I don't remember ever being able to buy one for 12 bucks. They were 20-25 back when I was in Uni in the late 90's.

I might need to hit up the old Pneu Canadien if I can score one for twelve.

Black Dog said...

rubbertrout - yeah honestly they probably weren't even those, I don't really pay attention and it was the first google image I found ;)

Joe - goldmine!!! ;)