In preparation for episode 100 of Up The Pucks, I went back and listened to the first episode to see if there was a major difference in the show's quality. I wanted to hear how different it was as compared to what it is almost two years later.
As I listened, I heard myself recounting why this podcast/blog/website came into existance. It all started from an observation I made when I went to shows. While this has lessened somewhat in recent years, it seemed that sports was a topic largely ignored in the punk community, with one notable exception, hockey.
Regardless of what type of show it was, there always seemed to be one person who had either a hockey hat or shirt on. On some occasions, I even saw a few hockey tattoos.
It was this weird exception that, as a lifelong hockey fan, had always piqued my interest.
However I always noticed it, but left it as that. An observation and nothing more, until I went to college.
Without boring you, I went to a small private college in Central Indiana that was centered in a dying community. Your options for fun in this town were to either go out and eat at one of the breakfast-centric diners or drive the 45 minutes to Indianapolis.
That, coupled with a university filled with people that I generally didn't like and only one other person really into punk rock on campus, I had a lot of free time to think. One topic my mind tended to focus on was this odd connection between these two niches. I thought about all the different encounters I had with punk and hockey together over the years and after doing a couple google searches, I was glad to find out I was not the only person that noticed this connection. It's always reassuring to know you aren't imagining something/are insane.
So a blog was started where I started doing a semi-frequent series about punk and hockey. Then I decided I liked combining the two things I love more than writing about anything else. From there, the concept of doing a podcast. Then I met Brandon and well, Up The Pucks was born.
It was while I was going back and listening to the first episode that I heard myself utter a phrase I had forgotten about. I talked about "Flying a flag" at shows. Essentially, I was wearing a hockey shirt for the purpose of knowing it has tendancies of drawing out other hockey fans. Honestly, if I'm at a show and someone is wearing hockey clothing, I'm probably going to go talk to them for a few minutes.
Those conversations were spawned from a simple action, but through them I've met some awesome people.
Flying a flag can work both ways. Wear your favorite band hoodie to a game. Wear a hockey shirt to a show. It's a small thing that start conversations and allow you to meet rad people. I mean, who doesn't want more friends they can go with to shows and hockey games?
In year three of this site, let's grow our community. Take a friend you go with to shows to a hockey game and visa versa. If paying for tickets is too expensive, pull a Free Beer Movement and take them to a bar to watch a game with you under the premise they'll get a free beer out of it.
Go to shows and fly a flag. Go to games and fly a flag. You may be pleasantly surprised how awesome our community truly is.
Or you can be like me and find a way to fly both simutaneously.