Guest blogger: Tim G

71

The moment

Before I get to the meat of my post, first I want to thank Carp for taking a chance on someone who has never posted (my employer’s internet policy is strict) but has been an avid follower since the moment I first found this place awhile back. Over 3 years ago on 7/1/2007 when I was dying to find out who the Rangers would buy on their annual summer spending spree. The moment I found this page I knew I had found someplace special. For that moment and the opportunity to share another, Carp thanks.

Life is full of moments some of them stand out more than others (May and June of ’94 is full of them), some of them of more meaningful than others (Gretzky’s last game, Messier, Leetch, Richter, or Graves’ jersey retirements), most just fade from memory as soon their contracts expire… I mean just as soon as the moment passes.

Even more important than the moments that stand out are the moments that shape our lives. They define who we are. The moment you realized “hey this is what I want to for the rest of my life.” The moment you look across a room, a table, a bar, what have you, and saw your one-day spouse and said, “That is the person I want to spend the rest of my life with.” For those of us who are truly fanatics, those that know the fourth liners as well as first, the moment we knew who our team was can be equally defining.

Many of us will say we were born Rangers fans, and for many of us it goes even deeper to the city Yankees/Mets, Knicks/Nets, Giants/Jets (my apologies I do not follow many other American sports but I know we have a WNBA team an MLS team and I’m sure so much more). But, back to the Rangers for now, everything has a beginning whether watching TV (or listening to the radio for you vintage fans) with your older brother, your dad, your mom, your grandparents, or whomever it was. There is a moment when you stop following to be with them & started following for yourself.

Perhaps like me you are in fact even a convert. Yes folks it’s true I was once, *sigh* a Flyers fan. Now, while you all grab your rocks and pitch forks allow me to quickly explain. My dad & all my uncles (my sports fan idols at my innocent 1 ½ years) were all born in NYC and loved the Rangers & every other NYC team. I was born in Philly while my parents lived there for a few years. I thought you rooted for the team(s) from your birth city (I was too young to know anything about class, honor, and I’d like to add talent but you have beaten Sather, errr, that horse to death).

So until I was about 4 I was a Flyers fan, and then I had my moment. It is one of my first solid memories (vivid, clear, emotional, and defining). I don’t remember the layout of the house, the color of the carpet, just this on ice incident. The date 10/26/87, the place (for me at least) on the floor with my dad, the game was Rangers Flyers. I was so excited we could watch hockey together. It didn’t matter that our teams were against each other (again I was young). They were on the ice together my dad & could share this game together.

Then this happened… (click here).

Dave Brown more or less tried to completely kill Tomas Sandstrom. I couldn’t believe it. I was crushed. Why would one of the players on my team do something like that? The Rangers guys didn’t do that (although it is quite possible they did 10 seconds before. Again I was 4 — short attention span and limited memory).

From here the moment gets a little fuzzier. Perhaps it is the shock of the moment. Perhaps it is the struggle of a wonderful and saving rebirth from a land of Carcillo to a land of lights (on Broadway). Can I get an AMEN for the rebirth of my sports soul!?

A few minutes later on that night in ’87, my dad asked if I was okay, and I asked him if it was okay for me to change teams, to not root for people like that anymore. (Even then I understood what it meant to abandon your team.) Since that day, since that moment I have bled Rangers blue. That’s the moment that hockey, the Rangers, and more importantly being a fan became important to me for me, and not for what I thought it was supposed to be.

So while we toil through the second half of the dog days of summer and the critiques of Sather have played out in everything from a short play to short ASCII (#$#%) curse words and the buzz of rookie progress in training camp still weeks away, take a second and remember the moment you became a fan, remember why in the middle of summer we talk about a game played in the coldest months of the year. Be thankful you are a fan and feel free to share your moment if you’d like.

Thanks again Dad for letting me switch to a Rangers fan!

——————————

Hi, it’s Carp. Thanks, Tim. Great post.

Fourty-three days until Opening Night.

43: Ryan Callahan’s first number with the Rangers.

43: Dennis Eckersley.

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71 Comments

  1. Hey, Tim, we are a nice group of people. We don’t do rocks and pitch forks. We are better known for our shineboxes. But you’re forgiven since you were only 4. Just kidding, of course. Good post. Welcome aboard and post more often, please.

    I had my defining moment too, but perhaps I’ll save it for another Carp’s vacation.

  2. Beautifully written piece…unique in bringing it from the childlike innocence of the scene to the eventual transfer of loyalties, done largely due to the influence of our Dad.

    Kids who can look back at their Dad’s with love and awe are among the lucky people on earth. What with the pressures of making a living for their broods, many Dads simply do not devote the time and attention to their young male children, other than an occasional drop in to a little league game or basketball game. Of course there are Dad’s who try to relive their youth thru their kids, and this is often a downer, for the kid eventually becomes ashamed of his Dad, or like in the case of poor Jimmy Piersall, always trying to live up to dad’s unrealistic ambitions.

    We should all be so fortunate to have had as close a relationship with their Dad’s as you have had.

  3. I remember when I first became a fan. My Uncle Michael had a book on his table called, “The Icemen Cometh”. It was a book about the NYR and had some cool pics in it. My uncle played hockey and he was my hero. There never was any other team for me.

  4. I’ve seen that clip a bunch of times but never the Philly feed. What an a-hole that one guy is. Saying sandstrom slashed hextall, saying Brown should make sure that sandstrom stays down and then all the carcillo about acting school??? WTB…so from the comments on that vid it seems like the guy apologized during the next game, but why not apologize during the replay of the incident or when they are helping him off the ice? Lame, just like the majority of Philly fans.

    Nicely written post and I like the inclusion of the link to bring the “moment” to life. But do people really remember things from 4 years old? I mean I have some vague memories of watching my older brother go to the bus stop for school etc, but it seems hard to picture a four year old having this type of life changing moment. I have a 6 year old son who cares less about anything on tv that isn’t a cartoon. Oh well, good post anyway and eff the flyers!!! This does remind me of my story as well and I will write it in next comment.

  5. Ok, I will try to make this make sense in as brief a comment as possible…

    I am the middle son out of three boys. My older brother for either his bday or Christmas got a table top fusball game where it was the oilers vs the islanders. It was early to mid 80’s when these two teams were dominating the NHL. So my older brother was, and still is, an oiler fan meaning that when we played the game withhim we, my younger brother and I, would have to be the isles. So maybe a year or so after playing this game, I finally saw a hockey game on tv and it was a rangers game. But because I was young and had no real idea about the NHL, I stupidly thought I was watching the team from our game. They both had blue and white team colors and had NY in the name. From that moment on I was a ranger fan. I don’t think it dawned on me until years later that I was that close to becoming a life long isle fan, but god works in mysterious ways and saved me from that lowely existince haha. So hopefully this made sense and isn’t littered with mispelled or missing words as I don’t have time to edit. But that is my moment.

    And about two years after my first game, I finally got my younger brother to put down his GI Joe toys and watch a game with me and he has been a life long ranger fan as well. My older brother is still an oiler fan but has adopted the rangers as his second team or his eastern conference team. Having half the oiler team on our 94 team didn’t hurt either :)

    enjoy this beautiful day!!! And thanks to the guest blogger for jarring the old memory banks.

  6. My parents and I arrived in NJ in 1957 I remember things from about age 3-4. I remember watching Yogi Berra batting that guy could hit any pitch hi or low. Getting up early 5am to watch crusader rabbit and numerous other dramatic memorable events from those years. I first remember watching the Rangers when we moved into our 2nd home in 1961 and watching them on channel 9 and hearing of the GAG line Gilbert, Ratelle & Hadfield boy they made me a hockey fan.

  7. Nice post Tim G! It’s always interesting hearing, or should I say READING about how people became Rangers fans. Seems like your common sense gene kicked in at 4!!!

    20 DAYS UNTIL TRAINING CAMP!!

    *FRAN* waiting for you to request facebook bonehead status!! Unless you’ve already requested and Sally accepted!

  8. Linda just reminded me. Are there any fb boneheads here who know how to access the bonehead page on an iPhone? I am on that page but I’m never on my desk top and don’t know how to find it on my iPhone. I try looking at my profile etc but it just seems to not be found. Any help would be appreciated.

  9. Tim G who? :)

    i kid i kid! good post!

    going to the beach for the first time this year! woooohoooo!

    43 – Martin Biron

  10. Linda

    To tell the truth, my incompetence in the cyber world is rearing it’s ugly head again. I can’t seem to comprehend the
    details for accessing this, and quite frankly, I wouldn’t want my personal info going out all over – just among us chickens here.

    You’ve heard of the mummy/ Well you’re communicating with the dummy.

  11. Morning all. Actually thought to check up on the boneheads on a Sat (I wonder what would make me do that) LOL.

    Joekuh, Linda, Fran thank you for the nice comments.

    To those of you who have shared your moments thank you as well.

    onecupin70yearsand counting: No harm keeping a close eye ;). Keep the other on Joke he sounds like a potential Isles fan. LOL

    Ilb2001: Couldn’t agree more (for the most part) Been reading for years.

    Joke: Oddly I have more memories from 4,5, & 6 then I do from college but thats for another time lol.

  12. Tim,

    lol…I think college killed my memory as well and zero chance of me being an isle fan.

    But I’ve looked around on the net and it looks like the game was called Gretzky table hockey and there are a lot of variations. Haven’t been able to find the one we had but will keep an eye out.

    Fran,

    I didn’t join the bonehead page for awhile for the same privacy concern. But your personal page stays private. No bonehead can see anything just because you join the group. By joining the group you get access to the group info but not the other way around. So if you are on facebook then feel at ease about joining bonehead group.

  13. no way Fran, dummy is NOT a word I’d use in any kind of sentence pertaining to you!!!!!!

    ILB has NO personal info on his, he just made it because I taped him to a chair and threatened him with a shinebox if he didn’t join! You can join the group and follow the crazy hijinx and meet up plannings, but your page will stay private unless you accept friend requests from us lunatics, or request us. It’s all good.

    JOKE, i access it from my iTouch. I hit live feed and a thingie pops up that lets me hit the boneheads page. I know that’s not much help, but that’s how i access it on lunch hour.

    We’re off to look at a motorcycle and then hit Red Robin (YUUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMM)!! Catch you guys later!!

  14. Fran, it’s true, you can join FB without revealing any of your personal info.

    Wicky- I like “The Truck” even better.

  15. wicky (Our D is SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    i just like the guy period. he talks about leadership already and plays with something most of the d men we have lack, physicality and heart!!

  16. Leethhalloffame on

    Tim – good thing you saw the light, especially since the filthy fliers goalie frequently sees a lot of red ones. They’ve always dressed the biggest bunch of thugs to ever lace on skates and they (and Potvin) s**k.

  17. Braunschweiger on

    Joke, are you talking about Wayne Gretzky Overtime Hockey? It had the Kings and Canadiens on the box if I remember but when I opened it the Rangers were the other team.

    My 1st memories were the late 80’s-90’s when I was 12-13 yrs old going to games and sections would clear to fight when they would play the Devils and Isles, the good ole days of MSG. And I went to a game when Guy Lafleur was on the team and everytime he touched the puck the fans would chant GUYY.
    Kelly Kisio and Mike Gartner (my 1st jersey) were my 1st favorite Rangers and I remember the time Kisio got cut so bad the ice was stained red like he was shot.

  18. Izzy Mandlebaum on

    My bad… We were talking 43 and he WAS the 43rd President. Who’s this G. Washington poster? In his day the first GW was the worst president ever…

    I’m sooo sorry Wicky!

    But Bush was sorrier as the president. ;)

  19. Braunschweiger,

    1st…love the name. 2nd…not sure if it had the overtime in the name or not but it was the oilers vs the isles, so it wouldn’t be what you have I guess. I can’t remember honestly if it had 3d plastic players or 2d metal ones.

    Linda,

    thanks for the suggestion but I have tried all the different feeds with no luck. It’s almost like my phone doesn’t recognize me as being a member of that group or page. Even under my profile pages and groups it doesn’t show up. I just tried to use the search option with no luck. I need to get on desk top and see if it’s on my profile there. Life’s mysteries I guess.

    And I will refrain from addressing the g. Washington post even though it kills me to not point out the obvious. {bites toungue and grimaces}

  20. Braunschweiger on

    Thanks, Sounds like an older version, mine was from the early 90’s when he was on the Kings.

  21. wicky (Our D is SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    Izzy
    no need to apologize to me personally. I just know the taboos here as far as subject matter and religion (I made that mistake once) and politics are it.

    nonetheless, apology unnecessary, but accepted!

  22. Tim I remember that day as well. I have a cartoon from the Hockey news that says WHAMBO and has a drawing of Dave Brown…

  23. Good afternoon all! Tim G., amen!! awesome post! You need to come here more often when you’re not at work. Sorry for the late comment, but that’s what you get when you post on a gorgeous summer Saturday.

    Joke, i know! I almost choked when I heard “acting school.” what a jackwagon! also almost choked when I heard one of my least favorite names from that era. Hextall. blech! Kinda like Hartnell :)

  24. Joke, that is odd. You’d think if you can get on FB, you can search for boneheads. Makes no sense. Sounds like a query for the Apple orchard

  25. I was supposed to place this post after Fran’s Friday, but got a “pink slip” (laid off my job), which distract me somehow…I apologize in advance for such a long story, poor style and possible mistakes – my English leaves much to be desired –not my first.
    Fran ,as I told you many times here, I found your long life interesting, fascinating and purposeful, but not everyone could describe it and express oneself in the way you do, with a such undoubted literature talent- that amazes me the most, not to mention your clear and phenomenal memory. Your posts somehow generated in me some not too happy thoughts and triggered me to give my contribution on “lucky” part of one life. Since we are on hockey blog, where we all like and live by statistics, I’ll try to use it in a more philosophical matter… applying it to some of my relatives lived and died in the same era.
    I was born right after WWII, in Russia far north, in GULAG (in so called Labor-Correctional Camp – same as a concentration death camp only without crematorium – 16 hours hard labor without nutrition and cold was a tools of choice for killing, as well as occasional shot in head by guards outside Zone for weak and totally useless, or for suspects of any kind of freedom or resistance thoughts. My father, who was arrested in December night of 1937 (The year of a Great Terror in USSR), became a victim of latest. But before it, after doing his time of 7 years he was allowed to stay out of barracks (still in Zone) but in a little bit more lenient conditions and got permission for my Mom to come and stay in Zone. So, that I call my Luck and here I am ( was just 1.5 years old when Dad was killed) – product of two convicts, “enemies of the people”. This fat stamp on my file will predetermine all my future life. But it is a different story. Now, back to statistics.
    Both, my mom and dad where originally from Latvia, (which was on a crossroads of all European wars and was periodically occupied by Germans and soviets) and had traditionally big families: mom had another 6 siblings, father – 8. All together I potentially (key word here) should have 14 aunts and uncles, right? Wrong! I was lucky to know just 2 of them. 12 others were “proportionally” killed: who was left in Latvia – by Nazis (one of them-aunt Lea was burned alive with her 2 daughters with another 800 in Riga’s Temple on Dzirnavu St. , other 2 with their families- in Fort 9 in Kaunas , some was shot and lies in mass graves of Bikernieku forest and some was just disappeared, unknown). Those, who emigrated before war in Soviet Union, were either killed in action during WW2 – 3 uncles: one was lieutenant in command of field artillery of 45mm canons, fresh from specialized artillery school, and fall in battle somewhere near Smolensk in the very beginning of war, another was radio operator-gunner on “Petlyakov-2” dive bomber and was shoot down in skies of Poland, last one was missed in action, or was gunned down under sentence of Stalin’s “Troyka” tribunal in 1937/38 or dissolve in the GULAG bowels within wide geography (all country at this time was one big GULAG)where traced in Vorkuta, Kolyma, Solikamsk and of course my damned little “motherland” – birthplace – KargopolLag, Arkhangelsk region.
    Again , my apologies to all you, boneheads for probably boring, long, non- hockey post. It is just always lives with me and bothers sometimes, so blame Fran (my hat off), – he triggered it.

  26. Izzy

    I beg your pardon…the first George Washington, was not a bad guy at all. I knew the guy ( he was a great Ranger fan in his day). I have a special rapport with him ( carry a handful of his pics in my pocket all the time.) Ask anyone.

  27. Charlie, it’s like a tradition. I thought it was hilarious when Orr caught me up in one, but I have a wide ranging sense of humor.

    Joke, that is absolutely INSANE!!

    Laurel, Clinton’s getting a motorcycle. He put his car on craigslist at 11:30 this morning and has already gotten 15 calls/texts.

  28. 4ever… so sorry to hear about the pink slip! Hopefully you’ll find something really quick! Gonna read the rest of your post now.

  29. 4ever… interesting (if that’s the right word for it) life story. Those were tough days, for sure. Thanks for sharing your story and sorry about the job.

  30. CCCP
    At least, you’ll may be feel better my complex attitude to abbreviation in your nickname and where I got my skating skills from.

  31. MUAH 3CP, i will be looking at your pics either tonight or tomorrow. I’m looking forward to seeing them. I think I’ll have to have a Tony/CCCP contest to see who my wedding photographer will be!

    and that seems so silly to say after reading 4evers post. I have to say, I am even more amazed by you guys and the stories you tell about your lives and your families. This lil community of ours definitely has wide ranging characters and even more wide ranging life stories, and it is an honor to be able to read these stories of such a personal nature. It’s a blessing that you’re all here, and feel such camaraderie (sp??) with the rest of us to open your lives up to us in such detail, with such tragedies and triumphs. As different as we all are, we’re bonded by our love for hockey and more specifically the New York Rangers, and i truly am honored to ‘know’ all you boneheads!

  32. Linda
    You, yourself are such a wonderful character, not to mention your amazing writer’s skills(I always try to learn from you),ability to express your thought precisely in compact form and of course unique sense of humor and humane touch in every subject. You’re right -it is an honor to be here.

  33. I was hoping youse would get Spider Lockhart. Good job.

    CCCP, I definitely avoid talking about politics and especially politicians — because on both sides, 99 percent give the rest a bad name — but as for George Washington … well, it’s inarguable that at the time he was our worst president ever. Also inarguable that at the time he was our best president ever.

  34. Tim – You certainly can get one AMEN!!!!

    “Perhaps it is the struggle of a wonderful and saving rebirth from a land of Carcillo to a land of lights (on Broadway). Can I get an AMEN for the rebirth of my sports soul!?”

    What a terrific line and an even better post. Great job!

  35. 4ever – Thanks for sharing your story – there is nothing boring about a post like that. Good luck on the job front and hang in there, everyone is pulling for you.

  36. 4ever, you are way too kind! i try to bring some laughter here (and, in *rare moments* of maturity, try to be a voice of reason when things get out of control lol), if i succeed or not is up to youse guys to determine.

    The varied backgrounds, personalities, and life experiences of our posters here, and their willingness to share, is what makes this place different from other Rangers blogs. Carpy and Laurel do a great job, and just about everyone who posts adds so much flavor to the blog.

    Looking forward to reading all you guys during the season AGAIN!!!

  37. Tim: I still have a vivid memory of that game. I was 23 in 1987 and had season tickets for several years at that time. My seats were in section 408, front row of the blue seats right behind the visitor’s penalty box. That hit took place just to my left but basically right in front of me. I remember yelling so much that I almost fell over the railing and into the green seats. In person, that was one of the most vicious cheap shots I ever witnessed.

  38. I appreciate the AMENS. As for Nascar & Politics and all of that I in about 15 to 20 words could probably anger and make everyone laugh at the same time. For that reason I will join Joke.

    *Bites lip, tongue, and other parts of face*

  39. Carp

    what in holy hell? i wasn’t talking about politics! it was the guy who thinks he’s better than us, Izzy! :)

  40. Tim G, wonderful post. Got me thinking about how I became a fan when no one else in my family even likes hockey. Funny how things work out, sometimes. Hope to see you post more, you have quite a way with words.

    4ever, I’m sorry to hear about your ‘pink slip’. Having gone through it myself before (and currently going through it, in a way), I understand how difficult that is. Keep your chin up and good luck with the job search. Also, thanks for sharing your story.

    43- R.A. Dickey

  41. Thank you, guys. Believe it or not – it means a world to me.And I’m not too sentimental, just sucker for good people and expressed feelings and support.

  42. Tim G

    What you can’t do is get down on yourself. I’ve been thru mucho recessions, and done a lot of things that I never imagined I would do ( got so desperate one period that I actually took a job for a summer as a Good Humor Man)…and talk about a blow to your ego…but it was money coming in and I was married then and with a baby coming. and I remember one afternoon coming home and actually broke down. My wife just said , Hey I believe in you, you’ll get something. Came an ad for a driver in the paper and I jumped at it…it was an out of State Milk Company looking for a route driver in the lower Ct area, and it worked out great. I went door to door delivering milk, then got the wholesale route, and started really making good money. Looked like it was going good, and along came Hurricane Carol and Naugatuck valley.Wiped out every customer I had. Overnight I was out of a job cause they pulled out of the State. That’s when I decided
    to re up and beginning of my US Force gambit. Saved us.

    And even greater things opened up after I got discharged, so keep a positive outlook and never give up, and as the
    old saying goes “never let them see you sweat.”

  43. CraigCustance: Got an e-mail from Marc Staal’s agent, shooting down offer sheet speculation. Here’s what he said: http://bit.ly/dntDmY
    1 day ago
    Retweeted by stevezipay

    CCCP reminded me of this tweet I saw earlier…sorry if already discussed.

    Goodnight, boneheads.

  44. Oops… Meant 4:30 am, but you get my point. I hope:)

    great advice by the way. You Can’t go far if your heads down looking at your feet. I just made that up, I think.

  45. I erred in posting that to Tim, when it actually should have been directed to 4ever…………as to when I sleep, , periodically, never more than about 4 hrs at a time…it’s a feature of old age guy….and it runs in the family. My mother was the same way when she grew old.

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