Christmas in September.
This is how I usually think of the day each year when my season tickets are delivered. Sure, instead of Santa and his little red sleigh, this present is delivered by Randy in his big brown UPS truck. But I still get excited, somewhat like a kid, when I know my Hurricanes "Box-O-Swag" is on the way. Every year, I get a small surge of adrenaline when I see that shiny box sitting on my neighbor's porch (That Randy is kind of a dumbass when it comes to our street numbers). I just can't wait to open it up and savor each of the few measly trinkets our crack marketing staff thought to include with the tickets. [At this point, I know it sounds like I'm bitching. I also know that it's poor etiquette to bitch about free stuff. But I should point out (before the real bitching kicks in) that I DO appreciate the thought and the trinkets in question.]
This year was no different. I got home, parked my truck, walked across the street to retrieve my tickets from the Rodriguez's porch, then went inside to covet my newfound booty. Upon opening the box, the first thing I noticed was a couple of those clear plastic ticket sleeves with neck lanyard. Hot damn. Now I can finally get an order of nachos, a hot dog, and a $9.00 beer back to my seat without having to strike the Capt. Morgan pose, place the nachos on my head and the hotdog on my knee, then use my one free hand to retrieve my ticket from my back pocket (while hopping on one foot trying not to dislodge the nachos and the hotdog or slosh out $4.00 worth of the beer) and display it to the seating Nazi outside my section. That little clear bastard will come in handy! Fight the Power!
The next item was a "Season Ticket Holders" bumper sticker. Wheeeeeeeee! I've always wanted one of those. I REALLY want to make a joke about putting it on the back of the bandwagon, but I won't... I'm too sensitive a guy for that.
Finally, I opened up the tickets to see the ticket artwork. Last years were cool as hell. Staal, Cole, etc. You can't go wrong with nice glossy player pics. So needless to say, I am stoked. I slowly pull back the cover and what to my wondering eyes do appear? Not a player. Nope. Apparently, somebody decided that putting annoying pre-pubescent looking teenyboppers on the tickets would be a good idea. Jumping Jesus on a Pogo Stick! WTF? I was expecting action shots: Cam Ward making that incredible toe save in the closing minutes of game 7 to hold the lead for the cup - Brind'amour benchpressing Wally Tatomir between periods - Scott Walker biting the head off a live chicken - Mike Commodore giving Tripp Tracy a "swirlie" in the charter plane lavatory... You know---HOCKEY pictures. Instead, we get the King and Queen of the Wakefield Middle School Sadie Hawkins dance. SUNAMABICH! What were they thinking?
After seeing the tickets, it looks like I won't be needing that neck mounted ticket display case after all. I think the back pocket will work just fine again this year...