Wednesday, December 21

Of hockey games and human mortality

So it's Christmastime and I'm back at the p's house in SC. It doesn't really feel like it though, because my mom is in Taiwan visiting my ailing grandmother. When my mom first told me on the phone last week, crying, "Grandma is dying," I didn't know how to react. I felt sad for her to lose someone she was so close to, but beyond that I didn't really feel that much - I never really knew her very well. This kind of situation always makes me feel awkward, then guilty, then really sad. The whole idea of aging and death makes me sad. While packing for my trip back home, I found a packet of pictures my mother had included in my duffle bag before I had left. The pictures were of family, and most of them not-so-recent. I cried - something I haven't done in quite a while.

Anyway so that's what would be, in a fiction workshop, called the backstory. It has nothing to do with what happened, but everything to do with what's going on. What did happen last night was my dad and I went to a minor-league hockey game. Three goals (and fights) later, we left with the simple satisfaction that is received from talking sports with your dad, cheering for the home team, and seeing them victorious.

The game pitted The Greenville Grrrowl against the Toledo Storm. Now, I don't know much about hockey or the general tastes and attributes of their fans - my knowledge doesn't extend much further than knowing they're usually Canadian and/or live in climates that get snow - still I don't think I'd be going out on a limb to say management probably made a mistake when they added the second and third r's to the word "Growl". But all things considered, it was a good game and a pretty decent pasttime. And it because of a buy one, get one free promotion, two very decent seats were only $10, total.

But even during our mostly pleasant time together (which, admittedly, can be a rarity between my father and I), there was again that moment of human mortality. My dad, as he was walking across the street (a busy one, I might add), tripped over the median and fell down, bloodying his palms and knees. It was something that wasn't supposed to happen to fathers - moments of visible and complete helplessness. He cursed and talked about how there didn't used to be a median there. I helped him to his feet.

A picture of the rink would go here, but, alas, I don't have any, so I've got to scour the internet. I need to start carrying my camera around again.

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