About Me

It’s good to be older.

My dad brought home a television in the late 1950s and I witnessed the Canadiens win at least two of their five in a row from 1955 to 1960 from our living room in Orillia. I saw the Rocket and Doug Harvey and Jacques Plante and the rest play live in Toronto at Maple Leaf Gardens, and my dad had Toe Blake take my book into the dressing room to have Harvey sign it.

When I was a young teen in the early 1960s, I went to the old Montreal Forum twice to see games. It was before the renovations of the Forum in 1968, and the pillars were still in place blocking people’s views. After one game, I went down near the Canadiens dressing room and watched the trainers bring out the duffel bags from the old corridor, bags which I knew held the magical equipment of Beliveau, Geoffrion, Backstrom and all the others.

I was nearly 22 and a bartender in Sudbury when the 1972 Canada-Russia Summit Series took place, and I saw every game. I was alone, watching a grainy black and white TV, when Paul Henderson scored in game eight.

I was dating my first wife and together we watched the Canadiens-Red Army game on New Years Eve of 1975, from a high-rise in Ottawa.

I drank beer with Aurele Joliat and drove him home afterwards, gave Glenn Hall a tour of Powell River, saw Bobby Orr play when he was 16 years old in an exhibition game in Bracebridge, met the Rocket, and have had great luck in being in the right place at the right time, many times.

I saw dozens of Original Six games in Toronto, including the Habs on many occasions, and marveled at Gordie Howe, Bobby Hull, Tim Horton, Bobby Orr and rest, in their prime, from seats at Maple Leaf Gardens.

As a teen, I hitchhiked all over Canada and down to Los Angeles, saw the Beatles live in Toronto in 1966, and overall have lived a wild and crazy life. And I wouldn’t change most of it. I’ve also been to Russia six times and have met several of the Soviet players from the ’72 Series, and I was lucky enough to be taken for a ride with the Snowbirds during a media day on Vancouver Island a few years back when I was a newspaper columnist.

I’m proud to have done the things I did, and am now retired after a lifetime of jobs that included driving semis, working in factories, and at BC Ferries.  But my proudest moment came when I worked in Montreal a few years back for Classic Auctions, the biggest and best historical hockey auction house in the world.

Here’s hoping you enjoy my site and visit often.

If for any reason you’d like to email me, my address is dpkane@outlook.com

59 thoughts on “About Me”

  1. I just got a post from sister, Janis, about the Bob Hope picture on the Orillia facebook page. Never seen it before. Bob is walking out onto the park dock to board the Capri, the 52 foot long boat owned by the Phelps family for a cruise from Orillia to Barrie after officially opening the new CFOR building on West Street a bit earlier. Gord Smith, owner of CFOR, hired Bob to come for the opening and enticed him with the promise of a nice boat cruise where he could have some down time.The reason I know this is that’s me and Mary Lynn Lemmon walking with him on the right side while Mary Lynn’s older sister Barbara Jean is on Bob’s left and a bit behind in the white shoes. I’m 9 years old and I’m wearing a cast on my right arm after breaking my elbow in a fall. I’m not 100% sure but I think the police officer is Chief MacIntyre. The teenage girl beside Bob on the left is his daughter and behind her is Dolores Hope. Don’t recognize anyone else. My cast was autographed by Mr. Hope in the reception area of CFOR just after the ribbon was cut and I have a picture of that from the Packet that is getting mighty yellow so I should get it in to the Facebook page before it disintegrates. I’ve got a couple of Orillia stories we should swap sometime soon. One involves Jiggs. AND I have a recording of Rudy Pilous, Black Hawks coach, telling some semi-dirty jokes (by today’s standards) at one of the Orillia Sportsmen’s dinners from the 60’s. One of the CFOR guys gave it to my Dad to listen to and he never gave it back. I memorized most of the jokes and still tell a couple of them to this day. You’re about the only guy I can think of who might be interested in stuff like this. Any chance you could scan and email me the Hope picture? I’d be forever grateful. Keep in touch, eh!

  2. Hi Brad. That’s some cool stuff you’re mentioning here. Hope you’re doing great. Yes, I’ll get you a copy one way or the other. Really great hearing from you. And I’d sure like to hear those jokes.

  3. Hi,

    Great website! I just received a puck like yours that has the flag of USSR and Canada. The puck says made in Canada and I am unsure if it was bought at the game, used in the game or back in Canada as a souvenir. The person I got it from is deceased but has had it in his possession since 72. Any information would be great.

    Thank you,
    Todd Melton

  4. Hi Todd. Pucks like that were used during the four games in Canada, and also sold as souvenirs at the time. Is yours on a stand? If you knew that it was used during one of the games it would be worth several grand. The souvenir pucks I think go for about $100. There’s not much else I can say. It’s just too bad the person you got it from is deceased. But regardless, it’s a neat piece, even as a souvenir.
    Update to my reply. Todd, I was confused because you hadn’t sent a picture and I just assumed it was a different puck. The Hockey Canada pucks used in the four games were ones with a white logo and red maple leaf. The one you have, with the flags, was strictly a souvenir issue.

  5. Hi Dennis. I came across your website/blog quite by accident. I recently found an old churchkey from Dow, which I remember very well as a kid (Wouldn’t a Dow go good now?) and did a bit of research to find out what had happened to the brand. And as one thing leads to another when one intends to sit at a computer screen for only a few minutes, I wound up at your site. And what a great site it is. Although I’m about 2 years younger than you, I’ve done a lot of the same/similar things that you talk about. Hitching to LA, seeing the Beatles, nights in a US jail, and of course hockey. The Leafs used to practice at an arena very close to my school so sometimes we’d skip school and just walk in to watch them. After one practice, Johnny Bower skated over to us at the side boards and handed me his stick, which was actually Jacques Plante’s stick. After talking to him for a few minutes, I waited outside of the dressing rooms for the rest of the players to come out and got Dave Keon, Norm Ullman, Guy Trottier, Jim Harrison, Brian Spencer (who’s GTO was parked in the lot with Oklahoma plates on it!), and a ton of other players. Thankfully it was a goal stick so it had a lot of space on the paddle for autographs. I’d never sell it but once had it appraised at about $500. Anyway, cool site! I had a woman that worked for me for almost 30 years that came from Orillia. She actually dated Gordie Lightfoot once or twice. Her maiden name was O’BrIan (O’Brien?) if I remember correctly, and her family had a farm in the area.

  6. Hi Joel. Thanks for this and sorry for not replying sooner, I don’t see my site every day now, at least during the summer. That’s fantastic that you and I share so many experiences and I love to hear this. I think we’re really lucky to come from the era we did. It’s also very cool about the Plante stick. I think it would sell for much more than $500 now. Really appreciate you writing. I’ll be back hockey-wise soon.

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