Last night the power went out at Pickering’s Art Thompson Arena right as I was about to step on the ice to play my regular Monday summer hockey game in the Generals Men’s Hockey League.
There were crazy thunderstorms in the area and apparently a nearby transformer got hit to cause the power outage.
This left our assembled batch of rec hockey players standing in the virtual dark of the rink with only some sparse emergency lighting and a handful of iPhones firing various flashlight apps to shine our way.
There was a lot less panic than there was “What’s the plan?” So as a service to hockey players everywhere, I’ve drawn up said plan. Keep it handy for when the inevitable power crisis/rolling blackout culture becomes a thing around 2021.
Here’s the code of conduct for what a hockey team should do when the power goes out in the arena:
1. The game is still on.
No, we’re not going to cancel. We’ll cut the game down to two periods if we have to.
2. Do your warmup skate like normal.
3. Except without pucks.
Whoever brought that puck on the ice is an idiot. Get rid of it.
4. It’s been 30 minutes. Do we cancel this or what? No, keep skating around.
5. After exactly 34 minutes of skating around in the mostly-dark, you’re allowed to go back to your dressing room and start drinking beer.
6. Drink said beer. Or, if you came off the ice before everybody else to start drinking early, you get cut off in order to save some for the rest of us, Dave Accadia.
7. Nobody’s allowed to remove any of their gear. The game’s still on and the lights are going to come on right… now.
I just took off my helmet, so… now.
8. When the ref comes into your room, beer in hand, telling you the other team is sitting around all undressed, you’ve achieved gamemanship higher ground. Proceed to insult the other team for being a bunch of weak-ass, pussy, giver-upper, scared-of-the-dark, ball-less sissypants. Hi, Team Blue.
9. … Now.
10. It’s been 52 minutes. Finally someone takes off their jersey and shoulder pads. Hi, Dave Accadia. At this point it’s acceptable to turn from lashing out at your opponents’ apparent softness and gang up on your own teammate for being the first to give up.
11. … Now.
12. Things are looking bleak. New rule: Nobody leaves until all the beer is gone.
13. Beer is gone. It’s been an hour. This game is officially cancelled. You can undress now. Mother Nature has just screwed you out of hockey tonight.
14. Remember to shower when you get home. You still stink… even though you didn’t do anything.