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old time hockey, eh?

03.02.2002

feeling kinda how a girl feels

headed up north recently for the Annual Hockey Game with some friends. this is more or less the same gang that heads up for baseball in the summer. the hockey game is generally UMass and BC, altho somehow this year we ended up with UMass and UMaine. all good; to me, it doesn't matter so much the schools as the game itself. i like watching college hockey for the same reason i like minor league baseball - the game seems more about the game and less about showboating and million dollar contracts.

as per the usual, we met up at Cobblestones for some beer and food - god, such creatures of habit. we've been doing this, what, 5 or 6 years? and every year, we start at Cobblestones. makes sense, really, as it's a short walk to the arena from there.

by the time we'd all been fed and watered and caught up on the latest, i managed to unwind from work a bit. glass of wine or two, artichoke hearts in Bearnaise, good company and old time hockey on a Friday night. what more could a girl want?

Zambonis.

yes, that's right, Zambonis. few things make me happier than Zambonis. for me, it's one of the simple pleasures, right up there with going thru the car wash. we got to the arena just at the end of first period. and as we were settling into our approximate seats, the Zambonis came out. two! *giggles* you could tell they weren't really professionals, as their loop de loops didn't quite line up. i started to worry that they would leave a small patch unattended, sort of like the splotch on my living room floor that didn't get poly'd because my landlord got distracted. but never fear; they managed it all alright.

why Zambonis, you may ask? i can't really explain it. it's meditative to watch, and there's a certain pleasure in a clean new sheet of ice. that doesn't quite justify the fact that i watch every swish and turn of the Zamboni with intense satisfaction. and when i realized that they'd come out again between the second and third periods? like a kid in a candy store. everyone else wandered off to find coffee or chat, and i sat quite happily by myself, watching the Zambonis.

after the game, some of us wandered over to a new place that's opened up in a renovated mill. interesting space with a little bit of everything; dining room and pub downstairs, art gallery, performance space, jazz bar, and rock room upstairs. of course, after a bunch of beer and coffee, all we really wanted to find was the restroom, which quest led to one of my more spectacularly graceless moments.

i headed to the back of the pub first; no luck. Q suggested i check upstairs (which in retrospect was stupid, as they had to have a handicap accessible bathroom on the ground floor, but at the time seemed like a good idea), and he planted his generous self at the bottom of the stairs to wait. i trotted up, chatted with the staff guy at the top of the stairs, got the scoop on the band for the night, and headed back downstairs.

in my defense, i'll say that the stairs were not well lit (hey, it's a pub). all the stairs were painted light brown, except for the last one, which was black (the hell?). i got to the door frame at the bottom, and turned left. much to my surprise, i went sailing across the floor and landed hard, smashing up my knee (oh, goody, another bruise).

turns out, the door frame for some inexpicable reason was on the next to last step. this flies in the face of everything we're used to. door frames signal the end of a flight of stairs, the edge of a room, a transition from one state to another - *not* the middle of a flight of stairs. except, apparently, in this case.

and of course, this was all in full view of the bouncer, who had already gotten nervous when we came in. something about a large group of people made him jumpy. all i could think was, 'great, stone cold sober, and i'm gonna get thrown out for being a klutz.' wouldn't that have been a kicker? as it was, i just got a generous helping of grief from my friends. hung out for a while, talked about nearly anything (including how to blow things up on the highway) and had a good time. all in all, not a bad way to start the weekend.

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