Just Another Day at the "Office"
Hey, did I ever tell you about the time my flight returned to Winnipeg because the plane was smoking and then I sat for 17 hours ... No? OK, next time.
Interesting 24-hours: I finished working the Buffalo/Boston game on Tuesday night, only to walk outside and discover a flat rear tire on my car. We’re not supposed to park overnight at the Garden, but in this case I had no choice. I left a note on the windshield, and another inside the windshield, “Back with a spare Wednesday”. I worked on some writing projects until about 2 am and finally crashed out, setting the alarm for 9:45, later than usual. Upon the wake up beep, instead of hitting the snooze, I hit the off, and woke up an hour later, twenty-five minutes before my train to Wilmington was scheduled to leave North Station. It’s a fifteen minute walk. I dressed quick and I ran it, making it to the train 30-seconds before it started moving. Ten minutes or so later, it was stopped again.
“Can I have your attention please, the train ahead of us has been involved in an accident, it hit someone,” the conductor said.
Hit someone!! The plan was to wait it out, a bad idea since the investigation and such could take hours, or return to Boston. Instead, after a little more than an hour or so, we backed up, changed tracks, and continued on our original route. We passed the “DownEaster” Amtrak which had apparently hit the woman, right near the station and the crossing at West Medford. Eerie. After arriving in Wilmington I faced the usual fifteen minute walk to the Bruins’ practice rink. (Nothing to do with a flat tire or maintenance, I normally don’t keep a car in Boston – life is easier without it – case in point). I stopped at Dunkin Donuts for a #8 combo, a donut, and a large hazelnut. They were out of English Muffins. Groggy, I grabbed my change and my food and started away. Whoops. “I gave you a twenty and you only gave me 4 bucks back instead of 14-something. You owe me a ten,” I told the clerk. I knew I had started the day with three twenties, sixty bucks even, in my pocket. “Oh, OK, she said, handing me a ten.” I walked out into the freezing rain and started to hoof it. Three minutes later, I realized the reason I didn’t have the correct change from three twenties in my pocket wasn’t because the DD clerk had messed up, but because I had purchased a train ticket from the conductor. I walked back and gave the girl the ten dollar bill. “Upon further review …” I said.
I arrived at Ristuccia to find practice had ended. Some of the players had left already, but I was in time to catch the interview scrum with Claude Julien. The idea of a “package” however (a full story, involving clips and sound from players on a particular subject) was gone. Photographer John Martin dropped me off at my apt. on his way to NESN and I decided that home was the best place to spend the rest of the day. Kind of a start-over but not really: I probably never should have left the ‘house’. I’d take care of the tire on Thursay instead, after the crummy weather. Aside from a work-out, I indeed stayed home.
I feel bad for the family/friends of the, as it turns out elderly, woman who was struck by the train. My day didn’t come remotely close to even paling in comparison.
Biscuit North America
NESN allowed me to work in my spare time (ha ha ha ha ha) on a show for the NHL Network. Because of time constraints I only help produce one show a month for the next six months, as long as it doesn’t conflict with my regular gig(s).
The show debuts Friday night at 8 if you want to check it out. It’s kind of like a Rubber Biscuit, only for all of North America. It’s called “Hockey Odyssey” and runs again Sunday at 4 pm I believe. Good variety of tales from Winnipeg, and like I’ve found with the Biscuit for whatever reason, should be popular with the kids.
That’s been a satisfying bonus about the Biscuit by the way, because kids are our future hockey fans. It’s great to have so many on-board, and sharing their thoughts at Bruins’ games. I’ve had a few parents comment about the late debut time, Saturday at 10:30, but it always airs a few more times earlier in the day, later in the week.
Speaking of the Biscuit, special thanks to Terry O’Reilly this week. He’s not really fond of doing interviews much anymore, and his preference nowadays is to unwind, enjoy hockey retirement, and do his thing. He does by the way still play hockey a couple times a week and still joins the B’s Alumni Team at charity games. Otherwise, I get the impression he just wants to chill out away from the limelight, which is of course fine and wonderful. His generosity with his time for us and his openness were greatly appreciated, and whether or not we see or hear from him as much anymore hasn’t changed one thing: He’s a class act and a very cool guy.
Oh and by the way - - don’t miss the show about him – - I guarantee, you will love it. He’s what hockey should be.
All the best,