#9 – The Cult(ure) of Hockey, Part 1: Minivans and the Hockey Squires

Cakers love minivans.

The somewhat-new minivan is, of course, the official signal that you have given up on ever experiencing joy again in your life. Along the road it goes, an unsightly clump of a vehicle festooned with stupid bumper stickers telling us how many kids the family has had. The children are inevitably growing up as cakers; the worst kind of caker child is the hockey squire and the attendant hockey mom, who is probably named something like Carol.

Hockey moms and their children reinforce a belief that the kid will make it to the National Hockey League, an association of largely-American teams who play a fairly obtuse, expensive sport that is largely unplayable in most of the world. This is the ultimate goal of the hockey mom, and it justifies all sorts of nonsense. Because Canada is constantly bombarded with the idea that everyone should love hockey  the hockey squire and his mom develop a superiority complex. Timmy can’t be bothered with school or a life that doesn’t involve sitting in the backseat of a fucking chariot of defeat hoping that Mom doesn’t scream at the referee again and praying to God that Bruno isn’t going to slam your delicate body into next week – he needs to practice his stickhandling, which is obviously more important than reading skills! Why, sports of course!

This strange activity and its attendant fights, screaming matches, and general stupidity gets repeated multiple days a week, with thousands of dollars spent on fuel, equipment, and Tim Horton’s Brown Sludge Water™ in the name of maybe getting to play in an even more brutal league someday. An investment of hours and hours of back-seat boredom and decking and near-to-child abuse, and for what? What could make this struggle worth it? Why, because one day Timmy is gonna be a star, baby! Never mind that hockey is supposed to be a game – when you go full-minivan it becomes a lifestyle.

And what a shit lifestyle it is. Hours on the road lugging stinking equipment to shitty roadside Best Westerns. Worthless entitled brats being abject shitheads because their lives are a blur of parking lots and skating trials. The sheer nastiness of the lifestyle warps some hockey moms into apologists for their shitty kids and their shitty behavior. Get in trouble during a tournament in another forgettable suburban hole while destroying a Best Western on the side of the highway? No problem – Timmy’s a Hockey Squire, a young and rambunctious rapscallion with a heart of gold and grit near to bursting from his ass. Can’t blame him! Few shouting matches are less fun than the screaming defenses hockey moms give of their worthless children being bothersome shit-ants in roadside motels. I guess being considerate isn’t Canadian enough to make it into the hockey squire’s addled skull.

Hockey moms also come with joyless conversations about the drudgery that is her life. Do I care that Timmy scored two goals? Do you talk about anything else? Of course she doesn’t, because all is hockey and the cult of hockey doesn’t have time for human decency in between the parking lot and the Tim Horton’s.

 

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