Tuesday, April 2, 2013

achilles heel

it's happening. it's finally, maybe, hopefully happening.

playoffs.



(i walked all the way to the new target off the danforth last weekend, and it was such a trek i was determined to come back with at least a souvenir of some form. the above t-shirt was my sole purchase, and hey, it made for a good selfie. though i'm not usually that innocent-looking.)

 yes, yes, i know it's not a given just yet, and i know everyone likes to howl "jinx!!" whenever you mention "leafs" and "playoffs" in the same breath, but dudes, whatever. this has been a long time coming and many years of high hopes and crushing disappointment, here. plus, i definitely care more about this squadron of ragtag scrappy kids than i did for the 2003-04 group, the last leafs to make a round of playoffs; i recall being over at a friend's house and eventually watching the leafs flame out, and we changed the channel in disgust.

but! that year was my first real year as a toronto denizen (i moved here in september 2002 for my freshman year of university, then went back to kingston for a summer, then moved back permanently less than two months later); i still have fond memories of being kept awake by honking horns throughout the downtown core, signalling a leafs win in the playoffs. the childhood hockey fan in me started to re-emerge, and the whole thing just became that much more fun, being in the epicentre and all.

and now, this has basically been my default position every night there's a leafs game on tv:



wearing a leafs shirt and cuddled up on the couch with my phil kessel doll. yep, that's it right there. (i am continually both delighted and perplexed by the fact that i look far, far younger than my almost-30 years in that photo. thank you, genetics/good lighting/habitual usage of anti-aging face creams since i was 22.)

also, i think i mentioned this before, but hockey has also become a good touchstone of conversation between my father and i. i love my dad, but it's sometimes hard for us to find points for conversation during our weekly sunday phone calls (especially now that i'm done school and all -- education is a huge topic for my dad), and hockey has filled that void quite well. my father is toronto-born, so leafs talk is common between us -- to the point where he won't even say hello when he calls, just immediately launches into a rant (or a rave) about the leafs' current progress. fortunately, things are looking up right now, which means less reasons for my father to be a crotchety old man about his hockey team. bonding over wins is far better than commiserating over losses.

(still, it's hilarious to note how much lazier hockey has made me. back during the lockout, i had nothing to do on weeknights, so i spent most of my time running errands, cleaning my apartment, or going to the gym. now? it's coming home from work, drinking a glass of vodka and screaming at my television all evening. oh, my life.)

though as i mentioned in a previous blog post, it's sort of sad for me that i have no one to share the joyful possibility of playoffs!!!1 with. sure, i have friends who understand my love for hockey, and they'll indulge me once and a while, but i don't have any hockey buddies these days. (though interestingly enough, i was texting an ex from eight years ago about the leafs on the weekend. it has come to this.) my recent ex no longer speaks to me, which i understand (yet still feel pretty bummed out about), so there goes the man who shared all my hockey in-jokes for the last five years. i'm well aware that me being a hockey fan is a good selling point - and i'm pretty sure that whatever poor sucker i end up with next will be a fellow fan - but in the meantime, it's kinda lonely over here on my island of blue and white. sighhhhhh.

but! enough of that. there is either great rejoicing or the usual despair ahead, and i'm pretty happy to have something to focus my fangirl energies on. anything's better than baseball, after all.

[ music | louis xiv, "air traffic control" ]

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