Hockey Night in Canada, abridged version

By Sean Nyilassy

With the World Cup of Hockey–an alias for “Canadian drunkfest”–now over, the next time our beloved stars like Lemieux, LeCavalier or Iginla play is a mystery fit for Nancy Drew–I mean Sherlock Holmes, ’cause he’s more manly. How will we Canadians occupy our time this winter without the NHL to entertain us? Will the approaching months condemn us to develop a lack of identity?

With such “gorgeous” summers we have an opportunity to disperse and revel in a variety of activities, but when the bitter cold forces us to recede indoors we know who we are:

Drunken hockey fans.

I don’t even want to point out what Calgary’s unexpected success brought in for local businesses and bars. Who knows how stellar the Flames will perform this year? I suppose I just mentioned it anyway, but even back near the end of the Flames’ lengthy bad streak I still recall heading out to Moose’s with a whole gaggle of friends to slam some beers while hollering support to my home team–the Leafs. Yeah that’s right, I said it, “Go Leafs Go”. Getting back to my point, what justification will I have this winter to meet up with buddies, get loaded and shout at televisions, just to come to the following morn with the shakes as bad as Ben Lough and do it all again?

The regular season is somewhat tame, but during playoffs every Canadian city, town and butt-hump-nowhere pack into the bars to cheer on their choice team, watch a team they hate be buried or my favourite, witness a friends favourite team lose then rub it in. This is how scores of us spend our winters, so what now? Should the restaurants and bars lock their doors?

Let’s see, what else could Canadians grow to be passionate about and dominate the world stage in? Perhaps curling matches could occur a shade later to enter the accepted drinking realm beyond 7 p.m.–well for the masses anyway. We could don our curling idol’s jersey and cheers our pals as they steer the rock down the ice at a snails pace. Imagine the roars that would engulf the bar as the rocks collided producing that reverberating “crack” noise.

On second thoughts let me be more realistic. We still have the WHL right? Let’s write Don and Ron to see if they could pressure CBC into airing WHL Hockey Night in Canada. Hell, it would give them something to do anyway. Don is going to need to get some footage for Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em 68.4 somewhere. At least that way we’d still have hockey.

Although I can’t foresee the superstars competing in the dub, they appear to be keen on playing pro boner in the worlds. I know what I said. Nevertheless, let’s host one every winter but have a best of seven tournament to draw it out a tad. World-class playoffs every winter, all right! That would undoubtedly present Canadians with a reason to survive winters.

Hey, what about dog sledding, I’m sure they’ve got various crazy rivalries going on with that. With enough provoking there could be dog sled commander fights. They are called dog sled commanders right? Okay, since Canada’s only opponents would be the Russians and Quebec, this is getting silly. I want world domination.

I know, sports aren’t our solution. Canada could be renowned for our total supremacy in reality TV shows. We’ll send a couple of our hockey greats to each innovatively preposterous show the states cranks out. Before we know it we’ll be beer in hand, cussing at the other contestants and rejoicing when Wayne Gretzky takes first place on Trading Spouses 2. Eureka! Now that’s down to earth.


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