There's the guys. On the ice. In hockey gear. Having a practice. Without the coaches. It's captain's practice. The NCAA allows teams to practice their sports before the season begins and before official practices are scheduled to start. I went on Tuesday afternoon for a look see. I had a little adventure of sorts.
I should have known it would be one of those days when I left the house. I stepped out and had honestly underestimated how cool it was outside. So I bopped back into the house and dressed more appropriately. I was initially glad I'd done so, because as I progressed up the road on my bike my hands actually became a little cold. But putting on more clothes was ultimately dumb.
By the time I'd gotten up Spenard to 36th avenue and the straight shot up to the school, the sun had burned the fog off. And here I am in a windbreaking jacket with a sweater underneath on top of a tshirt. By the time I'd reached the top of the hill at 36th just before Lake Otis and the school. I was sweaty. I hadn't intended the bike ride as some sort of workout. But it turned out that way. It was nice out at least. So I took a little break before the practice started at 3 and took a couple of pictures.
One of them is at the bottom of the post. Anyway, went into the Wells Fargo Sports Center and heard the familiar sound of blades on the ice as I walked up the stairs. A commenter today noted that they'd heard the seniors were "looking very strong on the ice." I'd have to concur, the upperclassmen definitely seemed sharper and more effective. I dunno if that is a good thing or bad thing at this point.
Let's face it, there isn't a lot you can tell by watching hockey players run through a set of drills. There was lots of good intensity throughout all the drills. And from up on the rail in the Wells Fargo, it isn't exactly easy for me to read little gold numbers on the backs of green helmets. So only about 50% of the time did I really knew who I was looking at. At least I did notice a couple of things from Brett Cameron that I liked.
No doubt that I would have liked other freshman equally well. But that whole thing with correctly determining who's who is a problem. So all in all it was much ventured and not much gained really. But since I had other scheduled stops on my bike, I minded not that the captain's practice lasted 30 minutes.
Next stop. The doctor's office. Just a little hop from the school ya know. I managed my personal health matters efficiently and returned to my bike thinking about my last and longest leg. Out to Old Seward Highway near 100th. I pulled my cell phone out to check the time as I sat on the nice block wall enjoying some nicotine and pondering my route. I decided against navigating underneath the highway along Campbell Creek in favor of sticking to the roads.
It was still nice out mind you. But taking off the windbreaker isn't an option because the sweater underneath was still damp. So I took off south down Lake Otis and turned west on Dowling. At the highway I jumped onto the never busy frontage road south and pedaled. I finally arrive at my destination (damp again from the whole overdressed thing) and nobody answered the door. So I reach into my pocket for my cell phone to call and um .... it's sitting on the freaking wall outside an office building near Lake Otis and Tudor.
ARGH. Allow me to warn you here against losing your cell phone. When you don't have it, you can't call anyone. Ain't that a bitch? Here's the real bitch ... there are few if any pay phones in this city apparently.
So there I am sitting on Mary's stoop debating the best way to get my cell phone back. Do I ride the 4 or 5 miles back and retrieve it? What if someone snatched it up ... either to help or just because they're an ass? So what to do. Naturally, I took off to find a phone so I could find my phone. I check at Sports Authority. No pay phones. Down to Sam's Club. Nope. Some liquor store. No phone. Then I spot the Border's Books store. Sweet. Hippies will always let you use their phone.
I walked in straight to the pretentious coffee selling area and sure enough the hippy chick there is all about letting me use the phone. She even kindly points out a really convenient one.
Next problem with cell phones. I don't even attempt to remember anyone's phone number anymore. Not even my own. Luckily I kept the card that they wrote my number on the day I got the phone. I pulled it out of my wallet and viola. I dialed 720-7117 and it rings then goes to my voicemail. SHIT.
So the next logical step at that point seemed to be to call Mary. But guess what? I don't know her number. So I call my dad because I remember his number and he tells me that Mary called and was looking for me. I asked him for my daughter's phone number because I know he has it on a piece of paper on the fridge. I then called my daughter and got Mary's phone number.
So then I called Mary. And she'd just dropped off my phone back at my house after someone had snatched up my phone (within about 5 mins of me leaving it there we figured out) and called her from my recent dialed list which apparently showed only her number. Gawd, I need to call some other people once in a while. All ten of my most recent dialed were to the same person? Of course, during that call the one anti-hippy Border's employee approached me to verify that another employee had authorized my use of the phone.
Anyway, I guess all's well that ends well right? I was happy that she ran over, rescued the phone and then dropped it off at my place. So I met her back at her place and cleaned her kitchen. Such a fun day it was. At least there's a hockey picture! That's something productive out of all that mild dysfunction. And Mary's clean dishes. There's that too.
Captain's practices are Tuesday and Thursday beginning at 3pm and Saturday at 10am. Regularly scheduled official practices should begin sometime next week I'd imagine.