Over the weekend, Chip and I went to RIT for a hockey game. Amelia’s boyfriend Skates was playing, and it is always a good time. He is a phenomenal athlete and a joy to watch. This particular game was extremely rough for our Tigers, too many fights, unsportsmanlike conduct (players and coaches), and just poor hockey as a result.
I know, you are all thinking, “that is hockey” and that’s true. I dated a hockey player or two in my day and I remember black eyes, loose teeth, and the penalty box. Watching the referees break up fight after fight and foul language resulted in poor control of the game in general. I sat in the stands and posted on Facebook, “I think they should have Italian mothers ref hockey games.” I thought this was fairly self-explanatory yet there seems to be confusion over my intent. Let me clarify.
For those of us that grew up in an Italian household or neighborhood, mothers were feared with nothing more than a wooden spoon, a slipper and a bar of soap. They tolerated no sass what-so-ever and negotiation was not option, especially in my house.
Now take that image an apply it to a hockey referee. This is how it would look:
- Filthy language? No problem. A bar of soap scrapped over your bottom teeth, 2 minutes in the ‘box of shame’ and problem solved.
- Fighting? Italian mothers will ask you to stop once. Just once. None of this break apart, push away, roll on the ice. It is over. No whistle needed. Just a wooden spoon.
- Player is in the penalty box. Slams the door and mouths off. Tolerated? No. You are out. No 2-minute time out. Italian mothers do not use ‘time out.”
- Injured player and none of the four refs see it until the bench shouts to them? Not happening. Italian mothers have eyes in the back of their heads. That player would have been up and on his way to the bench before the whistle could bow.
Do you follow me now? Get where I am going? I love hockey and I find the sport to an amazing show of athleticism, skill, and pure athletic ability. So just be athletes. Our Tigers lost 3-0 and they held that defense with the help of team spirit and a great goalie.
Be true to your selves Tigers and good luck in playoffs. If you need me to step in and ref, I will sharpen up my old skates, grab my favorite wooden spoon and I am ready!