Guest blogger: A F L Y


I know, most of you have not heard from me for a while, but I took a much needed vacation for four months from the grind of the job before starting up law school this week.  I sincerely hope to continue to be a frequent contributor to my favorite (and the greatest) hockey blog this season, but in case my fears about the rigors of law school come true, Carp has graciously granted me an opportunity to share a little story with the Bonehead community I so adore before the storm starts.  This isn’t my history of being a Rangers fan, though it has a little bit of that.  It’s simply a little tale about how I came into possession of some awesome Rangers memorabilia.

My love for the Rangers began in 1992, when at the age of six, my father, as legend has it, decided to scalp tickets and take me to my first game.  My dad quickly located a scalper and told him he’d take the cheapest tickets he had.  After some haggling, the scalper told us to stay put, he’d be right back after he spoke with this “boss.” So my dad starts to walk away and I stand put telling him, “No! He told us to stay right here.”

So there we remained, in that exact spot upon my insistence, while my father tried to lecture me on the business of scalping tickets.  After about twenty minutes the scalper came back as he made the rounds and sold us some cheap seats in the 400s.  I can’t tell you who they played or who won, but I was hooked. Two years later my dad and I would be jumping on the bed of a hotel room in Hilton Head, SC, during a family vacation, while my mom and sister slept and Howie Rose yelled, “Matteau! Matteau! Matteau!” A moment like that you never forget.

Flash forward to the 1998-1999 season.  My Pee-Wee hockey team, the New Rochelle Lightning make it to the Hudson Valley Class A Championship game, to be played in…Madison Square Garden.  To say I was ecstatic over the idea of stepping onto the same ice as the Rangers is an understatement.  This was the biggest deal of my 11 year old life and I needed to pull out all the stops to make it as memorable as possible.  To make myself look official I needed to dress the part and sadly my worn out Vic skates simply would not do on a night like this.  I took my savings, went to ANL Sports in White Plains and bought myself a brand new pair of Nike skates.  And not just any pair, but the white ones, just likeWayne Gretzky. Not only would I be playing on Garden ice, but I’d be wearing Gretzky’s skates.

There was one little problem though – we didn’t have any practices before the game and anyone who’s put on new skates before, knows you need at least three or four good skating sessions to get them game-ready.  I was convinced that if I slept in them every night they’d be broken in enough.  While that was a terrible idea and did not work at all, it didn’t matter to me; I was wearing my new Nike skates at the Garden.

On the day of the big game we got to MSG around 3.  Our game would be played at 4, before the Rangers played the Hurricanes that night.  Once we were in the lockeroom I pulled out my new skates.  Immediately my dad pulled them away from me and told me to wear the other skates, but I refused.  Then my coach came over to try and convince me to wear my old skates.  While we we’re arguing, entire the Rangers team walks into our lockeroom for a little meet and greet.  We were all in awe at the chance to meet so many of our favorite players all at once.  I got up, shook a ton of hands, and upon sitting back down, still in a daze, reached into my equipment bag to start getting ready.  One problem – my Nike skates were missing.

I tore apart the room looking for them.  I asked the coach where my dad went and if he had them, but he insisted he didn’t have them and they must be somewhere in the lockeroom.  I went through everyone’s bags but to no avail.  I was devastated.  Not only would I be wearing my beat up old skates, but I lost my Gretzky skates.

Then, as I dejectedly laced up my Vics, my dad walked back into the lockeroom, holding my skates by the laces.  “I could wear them!” I though to myself.  But then I saw what he had done to them.  After the Rangers walked out, he followed them, and with a black sharpie had Gretzky, Leetch, Richter, Beukeboom, and Savard sign the pair.

I didn’t think twice about wearing the Vics after that and the following day my dad took me to get another pair of Nike’s.  We won the game and on top of winning the championship, we also got to play an intrasquad game between the 1st and 2nd periods.  It was an amazing experience and one that I will never forget…I’ve got the Nike skates to remind me.


Hi boys and girls, it’s Carp … vacation’s almost over … but another one coming soon.

Thirty-six days until Opening Night.

36: Glenn Anderson. 36: Matthew Barnaby. 36: Rumun Ndur.

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

    early morning bronze.

    Morning ILB and all.

    Great story A fly!

    Off to work, later assens!!!

  2. Great story afly

    has all the ingredients of a lifetime memory for you. And wonderfully told. Send me your biz card when you get out of law school…I may need a good attorney if I’m still here.

  3. What a great story, AFLY! And well written too. If I remember correctly, there is a picture of you with your dad on FB. Good luck to you in law school.

    Good morning, boneheads!

  4. ilb

    Just wondered if you’ve had a chance to see that film yet….know time is tight. One sure brings all of this activity with salaries into perspective.

  5. Doodie Machetto on

    98-99 signature from Jeff Beukeboom? Must have happened in the first 45 games of the season.

  6. No, Fran, I haven’t yet. I’m ashamed even typing it, but I guess I haven’t gotten a chance.

  7. Afly,
    Very nice and sweet story. Smoothly written too – I went to the end without stops(which is kind of big compliment, coming from me. Lol). Do not worry a bit about “difficulty” of the Law School – it is deliberately and highly exaggerated by alumnus for purpose of self-importance for some of them. Most important – try not to be bored by studied stuff and you will be OK. Best of Luck for you in School and for our beloved Rangers.

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

    early lunch and saw that cheechoo is going to stars camp on a try out….why the hell not!

  9. #36 – Richard Lionel Martin

    Starred with the famous “French Connection” line in Buffulo of the 1970’s. His wickedly powerful, rapid slapshot became legendary in the times he played pro hockey. Like his teammates, Gilbert Perreault and Rene Robert, he was a slick skater and loved to play fast crisscrossing style frequently compared to the European team work. Martin’s career ended when he was only 30 because of the knee injury. He remains one of the highest ranking scorers per game in the NHL history.

  10. Hey Joke. Not to flog a dead horse, but like I said need to make some consolidations with the bills. Who you use right now TWC, Dish, Direct TV?

    Thanks, for all the help BTW

  11. Tim G.

    Would you be interested in going half and half for NHL Gamecenter and/or

    If so, would you please email Carp for my email address?


  12. Nice post A FLY!!! What a great story!!

    I am debating whether to spend $150 on the NHL GameCenter thingie this season, or just upgrade hockeystreams to HD for $99. I wish there was an option as to what feed you get, because as much as we complain about Joe and Al and Pidto and whoever else, I’d get the Rangers announcers.

    Sergio Momesso wore number 36 when he was with the Habs. hehehe

  13. Good afternoon all! AFLY, that was an awesome story. Never get rid of those skates!!!! Boy, between the Rangers and law school you’re gonna have a year full of torts!!!

  14. Tim g,

    no worries. I have time Warner cable with HD box. So I get versus and MSG HD with that. Then I pay something like $4 a month for HD sports package which gives me MLB and NHL networks and someother channels I never watch. Then I get the center ice and if you order early you save maybe $20-$40. And about 1/2 way through season they offer really reduced price. I never mentioned another bonus, not only do you get multiple games a day for reg season but you also get all playoff games. I think finals get blacked out for network tv but I assume you have NBC or whoever airs that. I think with Dish network and others you either lose or pay more for versus, not sure.

    Again…don’t worry about questions. All I can say is the money is worth it to me because I HATE the feeling of waiting to see if rangers will actually be on or not. I can’t tell you how many times I came close to breaking the nearest object when I’m waiting for rangers game and MSG flips to sabres pre-game. At least with center ice I know I can watch it in standard def if not on MSG HD.

  15. paul g in sunrise on


    Law school ain’t bad. Having been, passed and practicing, I can tell you – just keep your mind on business. Do the reading without short cuts. don’t trust just one study outline unless the professor gives it to you. Try to get all your work done before 7pm. Make lots of friends…smart ones.

    I never missed a game on Center Ice, was out drinking every weekend, had lots of appointments with Dr. T. (Carp you know who I mean), made law review, and graduated cum laude.

    There is a single purpose of law school for you or anyone else…pass the bar exam.

    Nice story and good luck.

    When does prospect camp/games start?

  16. Gil Perreault

    One of my favorite opponents of the Rangers. One of the classiest stick handlers and play makers who ever played.

    Retired way too early for my liking, and I have always felt that the constant poundng he took led to his decision as to when to call it quits. Maybe I’m wrong, but it was just a feeling I had. And this is no slap at his courage either, because he stood in there against some real dolts who couldn’t carry his stick.

  17. Mike Bossy
    One of my favorite opponents of the Rangers. Classy guy great goal scorer and playmaker. He also retired too early. Unfortunately players like them take a pounding because there was no other way to stop them. I think the league has a hard time protecting them.

  18. The Puck Drops Here on

    Linda, if you are out there. I went for hockeystreams HD and I was very disappointed. There was a terrible lag in action….and sudden jerky movements. I often “downgraded” to regular… can’t think of what it’s called. If I sign up again for this season, I’m not paying extra for HD.

  19. hey all!

    Great, great story AFLY. What a momento you have in those skates.

    Back home now and boy is it chilly outside tonight. It’s a good thing!

  20. possibly the most moving thing I have ever seen…

    Please find and watch this Oscar winning documentary called

    “The Cove”

    It is about the trade and slaughter of dolphins in Taijii, Japan.

    If you have netflix account, this film is available for instant viewing.

    There is also a new documentary series on Animal Planet every Friday at 10PM i believe. You can also catch it right now on “Planet Green” channel if you have one. It started at 10PM

  21. USA vs Canada 1996 World Cup on NHLN, Richter in goal for USA!!! also, Leetch, Mess, Graves, Gretz, Shanny and a million other all stars playing. boo Lindros scores for canada!!! game 3…1-1 heading into the third period

  22. Joke I can’t count the number of small objects no longer allowed near the couch. :) I am actually trying to ditch TWC, just feed up with them. Im sure the grass isn’t greener but Im thinking a new shade of brown. Plus Dish + Center Ice is cheaper than TWC w/o so Im trying at least find the best option available. Id even sacrifice some HD for it. Yr right about DISH BTW, versus is only in the top tear.

  23. Couple of you folks mentioned a comedian named Robert Schimmel. I must confess that I never recalled hearing the name before. Was he a nite club stand up guy or in films…what was his style?

    Some of the really fine comedians really never got the credit for their craft.

    I recall a young guy named Richard Neri, who talked a lot about his Italian heritage, ( much along the same lines as Pat Caputo). I heard some really great and funny lines from young Neri, and then ..nothing. I wondered why, and discovered later that he had passed away. Sad loss there.

    And who can not recall Jonathan Winters, and his great performances.

    I recall one one liner he pulled on Johnny Carson one night, when out of the blue he said “have you ever been undressing and had a dog walk into the room?….”They really stare.”

  24. btw..he is quite a story writer and artist…also sn ex Marine
    with service in the south pacific. A far cry from the wimps that infest Hollywood nowadays.

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

    Morning ILB and all!!

    getting close to some Jck Tatum numbers!!

    off to work, later assens!

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