With the 2018 Stanley Cup Finals potentially ending tonight, it seems like the right time to share our night during the “Midwest Winter” trip when we got to see a team that isn’t there this year but has been each of the last two years. NHL games are sneaky expensive. I expect it from NFL games since they only have 8 home games a year, but NHL teams have 41, so you’d think it would be less pricey. However, they do have less seating, and with the Penguins being the two-time defending Stanley Cup champs with arguably the best player in the league playing for them, I suppose I shouldn’t have been too surprised by the fact that they have a loyal following that drive up the prices. We’d been told at the Steelers game the night before that Penguins games were even better than Steelers games. We were dubious after all the fun we’d had at Heinz, but we remained open to being surprised by PPG Paints Arena!
We've all been asked it at some point. That hypothetical question about what job we'd be doing if money was no object. Mine is easy: I'd be one of those people that sit on the field in foul territory to fetch foul balls during professional games. Getting to watch professional baseball games on the field? Sure. Occasionally getting to show off my hand-eye coordination? Why not. Getting to delight young children and adults alike by handing them foul balls? Heck yes to it all. But, alas, by the time I've amassed my fortune from my real job (which is, admittedly, pretty cool), I won't be young and spry and I think most major league teams don't want to risk having some lady die on the field because she can't react to a foul ball in time. So while I still occasionally daydream about being a ballgirl, I've shifted a bit to thinking more about what I could actually do when I retire and through our travels settled on giving stadium tours, preferably at Fenway. I know this is the holy grail for retired people who want to give stadium tours, and living in Boston upon retirement will require quite the savings account (which is not helped by our love of travelling to cool stadiums) but hey, a girl can dream.
Joel and I both have a hard time saying no. For him, it's the people lover in him- he wants to make the people around him happy. For me, it's the kinetic driver in me- I feel worthless unless something is getting accomplished, and I'm always convinced I can do more. But we both recognize it and have tried to get better about saying no to things, especially when it comes to Sundays. As with many things, Joel is better at this than me, but we make a concerted effort to spend Sundays together with the pups, especially during football season. We'll wake up, take the dogs on a run, clean the house/make breakfast, maybe make a Costco run, and then pick a spot in the house to watch football from the morning game all the way to Sunday Night Football, interrupted only by the occasional nap or to check on the crockpot dinner we have cooking. The early slate of games is great- we have RedZone, so we follow along all the excitement while cheering or yelling depending on how our fantasy teams are doing. Afternoon slows down a bit, but is still entertaining, especially because this is the time when the Raiders often play. But I think I love the night game the most. The focus narrows to two teams playing in one stadium that I'm probably chomping at the bit to get to (or get back to). With the Steelers being consistently good, we've had plenty of opportunities to go to bed Sunday night dreaming of the day we got to twirl the Terrible Towel with the Pittsburgh faithful. Lucky for us, we were finally there! Add in the fact that it was the Sunday Night game and an opportunity for the Steelers to clinch the division, and we knew we were in for a not-terrible time.
Just a couple of sports fans touring the world, one stadium at a time.