Right off the bat, you have to know (if you don't already), I am a very outspoken person. So, I have no problem talking to our Caps players like they are any regular guy I would meet. Keep this in mind as you read the following run down of our evening at the STH Party at Six Flags America tonight. And I would like to thank @YoCalleJo for taking me with her as well.
YoCalleJo and I were on a mission tonight. She wanted to get her Chimera used hockey stick signed and ask him why the tape seemed to be almost half way down the stick, and why there was scotch tape on it as well. (This was one heck of a used stick, by the way. Brutal) So we got to the line for his table well in advance of the start of signing. Once we got up to Chimmers and asked the question, he responded "it was for grip". We replied "That far down the stick, really?" Maybe he thought we didn't know what grip tape was for? Seriously, either that or he just wasn't going to divulge the whole story? Oh well, at least the mission was accomplished and we also got to meet new Caps player Joel Ward too.
Next, we had to decide who we wanted to see next. Quite a few of the lines for autographs were very very long. One long line in particular was for Marcus Johansson and Michal Neuvirth, which was a bummer as I wanted Neuvy to sign a photograph I had taken of him.
This would have been sweet to have signed. Oh well, maybe another time.
Since Mojo and Neuvy were obviously not going to happen, we decided our next mission was to get John Erskine to sign a photo I had taken of him at the Caps/Thrashers game last November. The one where he had that great fight with Eric Boulton? Yeah, epic. It was well past the beginning of the time for signing, but the line was at a stand still. Oops, Mathieu Perreault was late to the table and we were all waiting for him to show up. At this point in the narrative, I'd like to remind you about my being outspoken. Yup, once I spoke to Ersk and got his signature, I couldn't resist giving Perry a little ribbing. Pretty sure my exact opening words to him were: "Dude, you were late. We were waiting on you". Thankfully, Perry realized it was said in jest and had a good laugh. At least our second mission was accomplished:
(The actual photo looks much better then this, this one was taken with my cell phone.)
Next up was Tomas Vokoun and Jeff Schultz. (New player #2 added to the tally). The lady in front of me was showing Schultzy a picture of him on her cell phone, explaining it was from when he donated blood at a blood drive. He said to her that the donation went pretty quick. My turn, and of course, I had to be outspoken again. "What do you mean that it was pretty quick, Jeff?" To which he replied "My blood goes fast". Total wtf moment but worth a good laugh.
Around the corner was the coaches table. I thought we had seen Bruce there with Bob Woods and Dean Evason, but I guess at some point, Bruce took a little break. Quite a few people left the line when they didn't see him there, but we decided to stick with the plan. Just before our turn arrived, Bruce returned, so when I got to him to sign my autograph covered Caps hat, I said to him "Looks like we have the right table". Now, I gotta say, Bruce can be pretty darn funny, so he quickly agreed and said; "Yes, you have the right table" and then looking at the hat, said; "Where do you want me to sign?". Now, not intending anything (I promise), I said "Anywhere you want". Bruce quickly looked at the Caps logo on the front of my shirt, then up to my eyes. Yeah, he did what you think he did. Outspoken me says "Hey now, that's not gonna happen, get your mind out of the gutter!" and gave Bruce the 2 fingers from my eyes to his 'I'm watching you' gesture. Bruce, Bob and Dean all laughed and kept joking about how we had the "right table". Yeah guys, thanks for the signatures. I think I'll try that gesture again the next time I catch their eye when I go to shoot pics at practice at Kettler. We'll see who blushes first. Guaranteed it won't be me!
Last up for us was Jay Beagle and Roman Hamrlik. (New player #3 added to the total tally). Really have to say how sweet Beags is. After congratulating him on making the roster, he couldn't wait to tell us about his family coming down and how great it was gonna be, with the biggest grin on his face. Exactly what you'd expect a former AHL player who's finally made the roster say, right? So genuine and cute. On the other hand, Hamrlik was too busy to converse, so I guess he's gonna be an all-business kind of guy? Not that it matters so much, I had lots of fun talking and joking with everyone else, Roman gets a pass.
So, now that you know just how outspoken I can be, anybody want to take me to another Caps event? You know, Hockey and Heels or Casino night will be coming up. I'll guarantee you; you'll have lots of laughs!
Author's Note: Yes, I was sober, in case you wondered.