As I near the end of another work week I am battling against both mental and physical exhaustion. While I have a fairly busy schedule every week it seems that the most tiring thing I end up doing is play hockey. Yes, it is a recreational league, and we play for fun, but man the level to which we exert ourselves is pretty extreme. Now, Monday morning is when I am most tired anyway owing to my two early mornings on Sunday and today, but the last few weeks have seen the added element of Sunday night hockey. Luckily, last night's game started at a decent hour and I was sleeping by 1130.
A great elixir for the exhaustion is remembering the outcome of the game. We played a great game last night and have now won 4 of our last 5. Despite the team's success I had played a few very poor games lately and was getting quite annoyed about it. In our previous game, we tried something new and Ian and I played on separate lines for only the second time in the last 2 seasons. It worked out alright with Ian's line producing a goal or two and my new line at least succeeding in reducing the goals scored against us. That game ended with us scoring an empty net goal to tie the game, sending it to a shootout where our top scorer Justin put in the only goal to win it. Last night, Ian and I again played apart, but due to different players turning out we had different lines then the game before. I played centre for only the second time all season between Vern and Riley, a line that had never been put together before. Ian played the wing with Mark and "Killer" a quiet unassuming guy who is absolutely relentless on the ice with his puck pursuit hence his nickname. He is about 6 feet tall and 140 pounds adding irony to his moniker as well. My mom, dad and sister had come up for a visit to show off their new dog and see the kids so family support was overwhelming for the game. Jasmine, Asher, Sheila, Mom, Dad, my sister Paulette, Ian's girlfriend Larissa, her neice, and Jasmine's friend were all in the stands and Ian and I were determined to give them their money's worth (please note there is no way we could ever charge money for our hockey games). Our first shift out resulted in the other team popping in a goal. Great! A few minutes later they got another one and we were down 2-0.
As the second period started we were getting plenty of chances and soon Ian got the puck at the point. He beat one guy, then as he was trying to get a shot off another guy checked his stick, the puck slid to "Killer" and through a screen of a few players in front he slid the puck into the net. Our cheering section errupted Asher doing his little clap and hollering and my sister was the loudest of all with her take on the soccer cheer "GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!!!" followed by an Arsenio Hall style fist pump and "WOOP! WOOP! WOOP!" A few minutes later my line was on and we had some solid pressure going. Our defensemen Hardeep had pinched in from the blueline and was battling in the corner. I called for the puck behind the night, but as he battled he freed himself up and curled off the boards towards the net. He fired a low shot. On its way I knocked the puck down, and this threw the goalie off. He moved off to the side anticipating the initial shot. I was able to slide it underneath him to tie the game!! YEEEESSS!!! I unconciously celebrated by miming a sword thrust with my stick and hollering which got a few laughs from my teammates. The fans again went berzerk, Paulette gave me an extra long "GOAL!" cheer and we were back in the game. As the game went along we were able to outwork the other team. We have played them 3 times previously and they are tough but big guys for the most part. They tire as the game goes along. We were able to outlast them to win 7-5 and it felt great.
As for the rest of my week, well I finished off my book "Time Must Have A Stop" by Aldous Huxley and I was not overwhelmed by it. While satisfying, it just didn't have a great flow to it. I may go back to Huxley again at some point, but I don't have an overwhelming desire to jump back into it right away. For now I am already 100 pages deep in "Sons and Lovers" by D.H. Lawrence who interestingly was a very close friend of Huxley's. This novel is ranked #9 on the Modern Library list and it hasn't disappointed. It has a great easy reading feel to it, while at the same time it is filled with slang and vernacular from the period of the early 20th century which keeps things interesting. At work we went to see "Warm Bodies" on Friday. It was a fun and quirky flick about zombies who become undead through the caring of humans. It was directed by Jonathan Levine who also did 50/50 on 2011 which I absolutely loved. While the subject material was a little less hard hitting in this one I still enjoyed it quite thoroughly. The rest of my week was alright though I felt less energetic then I would have liked. Asher and I missed Strong Start as I was a mess Wednesday morning. My body had been broken down by hockey the night before, but I feel bad that we missed it. We will be back this Wednesday. I also skipped a workout last week which I don't like to do. Here's to a more energetic and productive week!