Friday, April 22, 2011


I don't generally have an addictive personality. (My mother might disagree but she's a teetotaler and my mother, so grain of salt.)

How I went from 5 months ago having only the most tangental understanding of hockey, being able to name maybe 5 of the best players ever, to spending most of my (unemployed) afternoons watching the playoffs? Yeah. I don't really understand it either.

I can tell you the genesis of it. It started with Chuck and his love of the Caps which led directly to making it a point of watching 24/7 Caps/Pens. It happened when I was studying for the bar and was looking for any excuse to not study, to get sucked down the wormhole of something more exciting than torts/wills and trusts/business law. It has a little something to do with a slightly highly delusional attachment to a certain Caps player. But I'm not sure that actually explains it.

Funny enough, while I had this window open, Andy and I discussed this very topic where he said, "You have an addictive personality?" And while I'm fairly certain that's not the case, it was concluded that I have a binge-y personality, something that we are unaware of being in the DSM-IV (yes, these are the conversations I engage in). The things I do love, I love HARD. (Which, while we're going down the rabbit hole of self-analyzation might be why I don't allow myself to do the so in love thing? If I ever truly let go on that front it'd be biiiggg? Does that make sense or follow a line of logic? Or I'm just naturally frigid and standoffish. Maybe.)

Because this hockey thing? I can't get enough. I don't just want to watch it, I want to get inside it (stop it, you know what I mean). I want to know how it works. Why it works. The rules, the players, the history. Why plays go a certain way, why you decide on certain personnel. If a goal gets scored because of a defensive breakdown or because of great offense. My brain is seeking this stuff out, eager to soak it up. I can't remember being this way about anything since...LSU football as a freshman? But honestly? I can't remember the last time I threw myself so thoroughly into anything ever. I am usually a fairly laid back, watch things unfold, observer type. I make mental notes, I write about it on the internet later. To so wholesale want to know everything about something is pretty unlike me.

For example: I have 8 tabs open right now. Six of them are me looking up various hockey information. I follow blogs, I glean information on my own where I can. I have someone who I have asked an infinite number of hockey related questions to and they have patiently answered all of them. And I'm not just talking "What's a five hole?" I'm talking, "Are the 'Yotes really relocating? What does that mean to the NHL? The fans in Phoenix? The players?" I ask about the health of the NHLPA and what impact it has. If given the opportunity I would ask more about hockey contracts, recruiting, etc. (3 sports law classes between undergrad and law school and because I was in the deep South or far West, not a peep about hockey.)

And I feel a little zealous. The annoying convert who then wants to foist their ideals on you. LOVE WHAT I LOVE, DAMMIT!

I had my cousin, whose new boyfriend is a Sharks fan, watch episode 1 of 24/7 when I visited her last weekend. "OMG! They're all so cute! Like ALL of them! Why didn't anyone ever tell me all the hockey players were so cute?!" I do not advocate for this type of fandom, I think you should love the sport, but it can serve as a good jumping off point, to get people (women) initially interested, which isn't all bad.

I then made my mom watch a the bit today where Mike Green drives along on his orange vespa, as she's a gear head who loves Vespas and I thought she would find it adorable. I just wanted to show her that. She continued watching. She counted the stitches on Hendricks' eye before I even said anything (my mom is not at all adverse to the grosser side of life). She listened to Ovi say ridiculous Ovi things. I think she was entertained. And as she's the biggest one of the "I don't understand why you suddenly love this!" camp, I'll take that as a moral victory. Earlier this week, when the Caps played that 2OT game and I was sick with a sore throat, I kept screaming at the TV prompting her to say, "You screaming at the TV isn't gonna help your voice." However, she then went out to dinner with my brother and while she waited for him to arrive, she ended up watching the game and I sent six text messages explaining who she was supposed to be rooting for. That point is when the Caps turned the corner. Yay Mom! (I know how the preceding paragraph sounds and will remind you that despite that, I am not actually 15. (Realizing I am TWICE that is...guhhh. There's been a lot of "HEY! You're OLD!" this week, which sucks, but that's an entirely separate issue.))

I think I have eclipsed the bestie's knowledge. While he plays the game and loves the game, he's happy with whatever knowledge he already has and it was hysterical to think that I was explaining to him the relationship between Arnott and Semin. I was even explaining Semin's nickname of Sasha Minor. And mind you, this was HIS team, his love, before I showed up and annoyingly crashed the party. The learning curve has been steep on this one and I've enjoyed the climb.

So yeah. This is a really poor explanation of why I fell in love with yet another sport.

In the meantime, since I still can't really explain it, I'll just keep watching.


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