I got Slow Ernie’s advice for hockey viewing too late: “Just bodycheck the 10-year-old kid in the next row and then start a fight with his 8-year-old brother. The crowd will love you for it.”
But it was much fun nonetheless.
This is Mo at the start of the game.
I asked her, “So growing up in Seattle did you ever think you’d wind up in Corpus Christi, Texas, at a hockey game?” This was her look.
Brother the Younger, who discovered hockey in Temple, Texas, has urged us forever to give it a try, saying that watching it live is totally different. I never believed him. OK, I was wrong. But I still prefer Apple computers. So there.
Mo was an enthusiastic IceRays fan till they scored their first goal. A cascade of dead rays landed on the ice. “Those are fake, right?” she asked hopefully, even as the workers came out to remove the slime. From that point she switched to the Wichita Falls team. They are the Wildcats, and apparently even the most hardcore fans will not throw a dead cat on the ice.
They had dance contests, a blimp dropping coupons (Mo snagged a free taquito), a kiss cam, human ice bowling and a game where you throw a puck from the stands and try to land it on a bullseye. And then they played hockey during the breaks.
Mo put the moves on the team mascot. The kid in front of us asked him, “Why are you so sweaty?” Mo, a veteran of the Rudolph costume, felt a special kinship.
And the game? Perfect three-act play. The players are really young and enthusiastic in that way athletes are before reality sets in. Our guys go up 3-0. Then the bad guys score three quick goals. Game goes into overtime. Our guys win in OT, 4-3. This means we get four free tacos with the Jack in the Box four goal giveaway.
Free hockey, we got coupons for a taquito and four tacos, and Mo got to feel up the mascot. A pretty great evening indeed.
As we walk out, Mo asks how much tickets would be if we bought them ourselves. A hockey fan is born. I just hope she doesn’t start buying those slimy things to throw on the ice …