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Fan Fest: Hits and Misses July 17, 2010

Posted by CapitalSpirit in Uncategorized.

So, Fan Fest was today out at Kettler Capitals Iceplex, and I opted to set my alarm on a Saturday and fight the single-tracking on the Red Line to get out there early. Herewith, the good, the iffy, and the not-so-nice.

MISS: 9 AM Equipment Sale slot. I’m not sure if the team didn’t have a whole lot on hand to begin with, or if the folks in the 8 AM slot just had ridiculously deep wallets, but the pickings were awfully slim when I finally got onto the sales floor. There was one table that was supposed to have outerwear–jackets, hoodies, and so on–and all that was visible was a whole lot of XL’s and larger. A jacket is one thing, a tent quite another–guess I’ll just get soaked when the new gear comes out this fall, assuming there’s anything I like. And if Mother Hubbard’s cupboard was that bare on just the second wave of season ticket holders, I don’t want to know how bad the 11 AM arrivals had it, never mind the general public by the time the floor opened at noon.

HIT: The gear I DID manage to score: a very nice polo shirt for much, much less than those normally go for, and a pair of gloves that were sufficiently sturdy, flashy, and–most importantly–on sale.

BULLSEYE!: Brooks Laich. I got a Caps ballcap signed by him, and he was extremely effusive with the kind words. So much so, in fact, that I actually protested a bit–an admittedly bad defense mechanism–and probably came off sounding like an ungrateful ass. (If he ever sees this: my sincerest apologies for that, sir.) I heard later on that even though he’d been given an hour for the signing, he actually stayed for something like an hour and a half. I literally can’t comment on that: it speaks for itself more effectively than anything I’m capable of writing. This, Caps fans, is one of the genuine good guys–but you already knew that.

HIT: The crowd. It was three deep standing on the glass–a jaw-dropping sight for a developmental scrimmage.

MISS: Bringing my cloak along. Even two months and change later, it was still too soon. The last time I wore it was Game 7 against Montreal, and that realization was never far from my mind. There may be some who saw me at Fan Fest that thought I wasn’t quite all there today, and for all I know, they may have a point. I should have stuck with a sweatshirt, and left it at that: I likely wouldn’t have been quite so introspective.

HIT: Fisticuffs. In a SCRIMMAGE. ‘Nuff said? (One comment, though: Some of these guys may have taken “fighting for a roster spot” a tad too literally.)

MISS: An earlier-than-advertised drawing. One local radio station, which I shall not name, was holding a drawing for an HD Radio receiver, and said the drawing would be at 2 PM, must be present to win. So imagine my incredulity when I went back out to the booth at 1:47…and saw the crew breaking down their equipment, having already held the drawing. I didn’t stay that late just for kicks, and I doubt I’m the only person who missed the drawing because it was held earlier than advertised. Not cool. At all.

HIT: People- (and mascot-) watching.

HIT: Getting back into the small-s spirit of this great game which I love.

Well, we’re more than halfway to the preseason at this point, and so it will soon be time to look forward to the next chapter on the next page. The sooner, the better: I’ve been dwelling on this last page for far too long at this point. Maybe at some point, I’ll be able to say, in this space, why this offseason has been so unusually hard for me…but that will require the perspective given only by the passage of time. For now, it was a fun day; the polo shirt is wicked cool; and now that I’ve got Caps gloves, my hands won’t freeze when winter gets harsh on game night. On balance, even though it wasn’t a perfect day, it was still a welcome respite from a too-cruel, too-long summer.



1. june - July 18, 2010

Glad you had a good day.

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