Buffalo is a sports town. No matter how many times our teams may
try and fail, Buffalonians will always be there to rally on their
team. It's in our nature. Joe has been watching hockey with
me since he was first taken home. Many a night we would sit in
front of the TV with me feeding him from a bottle and watching a game.
Joe's first ever hockey game he attended was the Austin Ice Bats.
Of course, at the time he was still inside the womb, so I'm not sure it
counted. Since a puck landed on Julie during that game, I
consider it the first puck he ever caught at a sport event.
Monday night my buddy Mike gave me a couple of tickets for the
game. I couldn't think of anyone I wanted to take to the game
more than my Dad. We had seen many games together over the course
of the season. We watched as this team went from terrible, to
pretty good, back to terrible again and then finally to within 5 points
of a playoff spot. Nobody said it would be easy to be a Buffalo
We took little Joe with us. It was his second game of the season,
and his first evening game. I took a cheap camera with me to grab
was pretty good for a Monday night game against a team that most people
in the free world really had no interest in. I mean, it's
Columbus. Is Columbus even a real city? Do they really need
a hockey team? If they do need one, couldn't they at least find a
team that isn't so painfully bad?
Sports is supposed to be about watching a good nail biting
competition. Every once and a while, however, it's great to watch
a lopsided victory from your hometown team. Columbus possibly
played the worst defense I had ever seen in all my years of watching
hockey....and I'm including the years when I used to play defense.
At one point in the game Columbus was on the powerplay with a man
advantage. Even a man down, Columbus didn't have a chance.
The sabers broke the play out of their zone and wound up with a three
on one play that resulted in a goal. Three on one when you
have a man in the box? For you non-hockey fans, that just
The quality of play didn't matter. What did matter was a
grandfather, father and son all out enjoying a hockey game.
Little Joe had a great time. He loved the crowd, loved the
chanting and shouted "let's go buffalo!" at the top of his lungs.
the end of the first Joe decided he needed a snack. He knew his
Dad would just tell him to wait. Time to hit up Grandpa.
That's what Grandfathers are best at. Spoiling little guys.
Big tub of popcorn and soda in hand, he sat down for the rest of the
Popcorn in hand, he sat down and began to eat it piece by piece,
picking up each kernel delicately in his hand. The boy is
smart. He soon came to the realization that this was an
ineffective delivery mechanism as he stuck his face into the tub and
began to chow down like a pig in a trough.
"That's how your Nanna eats popcorn" said Grandfather.
It was a great night. Joe came home excited and told Julie all
about his adventures. "I saw a red zamboni. I want
it! And Tiger! Grrrowl! Ate popcorn like nanna!"
When my mother found that Joe thinks she eats popcorn like a horse, she
confronted my Father.
"So it was YOU who put the idea in The Lad's head about
Nana!!! You're dead!!!""
My father replied "The Little Skunk! I never thought he would rat