I’ve been thinking about something a lot lately. A little reflecting, I suppose.
Instead of working in different blue collar jobs all my life, from factories to bars to driving semi’s, and every other lousy job in between, why didn’t I, when I had the chance, try to get as close to my passion as possible?
Why didn’t I at least try? Oh, not as a hockey player, of course. As a Forum maintenance man.
I remember being at a game at the Forum when I was about twenty, and just a block away was a small apartment building. And I’ve thought about this apartment building, because it would’ve been the key.
I should have saved enough for a year’s rent, went to Montreal as a teenager, and rented an apartment in this building. Then every day, early in the morning, for months, I would’ve walked the short block to the Forum and applied for a job.
Originally I’d be turned down on a daily basis, but then I would’ve swung into step two. And that would be helping Forum workers carry things from trucks and going to get their coffee. I would’ve done this for free, of course, but it would be all part of the master plan.
The workers would soon enough get to know me because I would’ve shown up a the same time every day, and was more than willing to help them. Slowly they’d learn my story about how much I wanted to work at the Forum, and slowly, their boss would learn this too.
Then one day, the Forum needed a new labourer because someone had quit, and because the boss and all the workers liked me and knew I was a good worker, I was hired. Probably part-time to start.
I would’ve worked myself into a permanent position, and stayed there for more than thirty years. I would’ve cleaned up hats on the ice after hat tricks were scored. I would’ve fixed the glass, painted lines, laid the red carpet for dignitaries, been working the night of the first 1972 Canada-Russia tilt, scraped blood from the ice after John Ferguson had pummelled someone, and became friendly with all the players. I would’ve been at every game and every Stanley Cup in Montreal at the old Forum for more than three decades, helped work out some kinks at the Bell Centre after moving over, and then retired.
It probably would’ve been a dream job for me.
But I didn’t do any of this. Damn.