Combining Senators hockey with a contempt of the human condition since 2007.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Farewell To Nova Scotia (But We'll Be Wanting Heater Back, If That's OK)
Having just returned from that sea bound coast (let your hotties dark and beery be), I have but one thing to impart to all of you. Get on a plane. Get on a plane right now and getcher to da coast B'y!
Not only is the city ridiculously beautiful, but by virtue of being Canada's largest commercial port, home to three universities, a couple of colleges, not to mention a huge ass naval base, she comes by her reputation as a party town honestly. A man could quite happily die of a combination of alcohol poisoning and a chronic erection while never making it out of the two square kilometers that make up the entertainment district. And that's on a Tuesday afternoon. Now add the spectacle/traveling circus that is the IIHF World Hockey Championships, and you reach a critical mass of riotous inebriation (the good, head-noogy, "I fushin love youse guyshhhh" version, not the other, "Hey, a cop car! Let's burn it!" kind) the likes of which your humble scribe has never before been fortunate enough to be a part.
Night after night, roving bands of European fans wind their way through the downtown. Huge groups, twenty to thirty strong (or if it's the Latvians, a hundred strong, complete with a brass band and percussion section), go marauding through the bar district, waving flags, singing songs (win or lose) until, following a signal only they can hear, they invade the closest pub, en masse. The songs get louder, the chants grow deafening, sixty pints of beer are consumed and out they march, almost as quickly as they came, to the next establishment, leaving behind bemused locals, an exhausted bar staff and the vague feeling that you should simultaneously light a cigarette and check your special places for chafing. Ten minutes later, another group storms the draft taps, and it starts all over again.
We Canadians have always treated the World Championships as a pleasant diversion played over there, while the real tournament for Lord Stanley raged here at home. Something to watch during Playoff off-days. If we win...awww...that's super. Nice to see the boys without a shot at the Cup get something. How cute. If we don't, who cares? It's not like it's a real tournament, is it?
But over there, is over here now. And may well be again, as early as 2012. I'm telling you. Re-mortgage your house. Sell the kids into indentured servitude. Prostitute your dog. Anything. Whatever it takes, get your ass there and stay for the duration.
Sure, there's always the Vancouver Olympics in 2010, but that's serious business, with no room for such frivolity. But if you're looking for a place where you can shake Mike Keenan's hand (he's a lot shorter...and drunker...than I expected) while simultaneously being touched inappropriately by an intoxicated German wearing a cardboard helmet on his head, the IIHF Men's World Hockey Championships are for you.
Take this advice as you would a gift from a friend. And what do I ask in return? Easy, b'y. Stay where you're to, 'till I comes where you're at.
Unapologetic sports fanatic (blessed with an incredibly patient wife...and my own Man Room). If they keep a score, if there's a winner and a loser, or if the participants stand a better than average chance of bleeding (especially that one), I'll watch it. At least once. Well, except for cricket. I'll NEVER understand cricket.