‘Where are the lights?’

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My mom takes in her first Cougars hockey game

What the Puck?!
Autumn McDowell
Sports Editor

With the University of Regina men’s hockey season coming to a close, I thought that I best take my mom to a game before it was too late.

Judging from her experience, it may be her last.

Now, there are a few things that you have to understand about my mom. Though she is cute and adorable, she knows next to nothing about sports. The process of trying to teach her what icing and offside each meant was an ordeal in itself; in fact, she still gets the two mixed up.

The only thing that my mom could remotely compare the Cougars game to was a brief stint in 2009 when she was on the verge of becoming a Regina Pats fan after I had dragged her to multiple games. She may or may not have demanded at the top of her lungs that Colton Teubert kill his opponent after Teubert dropped the gloves, but that is a story for another day.

Now, as you may or may not know – depending on how many Pats and Cougars hockey games you have been to – the fan experience one receives at each game is vastly different.

From the moment my mom walked into the arena she was less than impressed.

“Where are the lights?” she asked, slightly distressed.

“There aren’t any,” I replied.

Although my mom was disappointed about the lack of lasers and fancy spotlights, she was still looking forward to watching the players fly onto the ice to start the game.

I decided to warn my mom that the players don’t come out of a giant inflatable Cougars head, and that there wouldn’t be any fog to speak of, and that they wouldn’t even dim the lights when the players came on, but I still couldn’t save her from being disappointed.

“Where is the guy saying ‘Maaaattt Strruuuueebyyy’?” asked my mom.

“They don’t have one.” I was getting more and more sheepish with every reply.

After my mom and I decided that she would make a much more entertaining announcer than the one that was working the game that night, she turned her attention to the on-ice action.

As I mentioned before, my mom has been to some Pats games, so naturally she has seen her fair share of losses. Coincidentally, the Cougars also lost 6-2 that night to the visiting Alberta Golden Bears.

However, despite the loss, there were a few bright points in my mom’s first Cougars experience. First of all, she called icing at the right time, something she’s still bragging about. But her favourite moment was when the little kids came on at half-time to play a five-minute game.

Those three, four, and five year olds are quite possibly the reason for half of the fans are in attendance on any given night. There is always one kid that is not as far along as the others, the one whose jersey looks massive and whose helmet is the wrong colour. That kid deserves the MVP.

After the game had come to a close and kids big and small had left the ice, my mom and I walked to our car in the freezing cold and I began thinking about the experience that I had just put her through. I never really thought about it before, but mom is right; the show that fans are forced to deal with at Cougars hockey games is spartan, especially compared to the show that fans experience at any Pats game.

Whether the team wins or loses, fans should get what they pay for. Let’s not forget my mom shoveled out $12 to come to the game. For that price, the Cougars could surely afford some lights, or smoke. And is it too much to ask for a tiny blimp?

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