Last week I heard from an old work colleague on Facebook. We haven’t worked together for nearly a decade, but have kept in touch over social media. R is a reader and occasional commenter on the blog, a talented writer, a dad to two beautiful girls, and a “hockey person.”
In these parts, “hockey person” is synonymous with all-around terrific human. People like Ryan’s former peewee hockey coach, my friend at the Sharks and the team PR director, Ryan’s current street hockey coach, and so many more.
R fits the bill. After my recent post about Ryan’s visit with the Sharks, he sent me a message saying he had something for Ryan. R had once written a big package on NHL mascots and many had sent him mementos. He asked for our address.
A few days later, a package showed up addressed to Ryan. He tore it open to find a hand puppet of S.J. Sharkie, the team mascot. Even better was a personal note from R, written from one hockey fan to another.
R told Ryan that, as the biggest Sharks fan he knew, he wanted Ryan to have Sharkie.
Ryan loved it. Veronica texted me a picture at the top of this post right away.
Sharkie has taken up residence in Ryan’s bed, alongside his cousin, the Sharks Pillow Pet. He’s become a key good-luck charm on the nights of big games. I suspect we’ll see a lot of him during San Jose’s upcoming first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Kings.
We told Ryan he needed to send a thank you note to R. Of course he did it in his own unique style.
Thank you for my stuffed Sharkie. I love him. Now, let’s beat the living crap out of the Kings.
Hey, at least he didn’t curse.