I, like many Canadians, was all ready to go.
The jersey was cleaned, the list of snacks needed was written, a cold beverage or two was in the fridge, and the only thing missing was a game to watch.
But then, the news that all hockey fans were dreading, finally came from upon the mountain.
Sorry all dedicated fans, but we are locking the players out, and who knows when this one is going to end.
This is the third time since 1994 that the National Hockey League and the NHL Players Association have had this happen. I am sure many fans remember the last time, when a whole season was lost. It was a long miserable winter which we were forced to endure.
It is hard for fans to watch the owners of the NHL and NHL players fight over rights and, of course, how the pie, which fans supply, is split between them.
Of course this is just the tip of the financial issues when a lockout or strike happens.
When the Vancouver Canucks made it to the Stanley Cup finals, restaurants, pubs, and bars in Vancouver reaped the benefits, which went into the millions of dollars, because fans were out in full force to watch the games.
People who enjoy sports spend money, whether they are at the games, or in a pub.
I myself enjoy popping out to a pub to watch a game or two a month, during the hockey season.
However, if the hockey isn’t there, then the energy to get out of my chair at home is diminished greatly.
Bars, pubs and those people who work in the industry across Canada, and in Golden, feel the sting when fans feel betrayed.
Another area which gets a beating during this time are the stores that make a chunk of their living selling NHL jerseys, t-shirts, mugs, and other memorabilia.
It is tough to justify going out and buying a new jersey or t-shirt when there is no light seen at the end of the tunnel.
I once worked at an NHL arena and know how many staff it takes to keep the show going.
I was paid for the number of hours I worked.
If there was no work, I did not make any money. That math is pretty simple for people who work in those sports temples.
The list will go on for all of the hard workers and hockey lovers who are having their winters altered by not having the chance to watch some the greatest players in the world play.
Granted, if you are in Oklahoma City, I hope you go to watch the Barons because the Edmonton Oilers sent back a great group of young players to watch.
Lucky are the people in Oklahoma City.
But since it is highly unlikely anyone in Golden will get the chance to pop down south, we should be happy we have our own local team to cheer on.
The Golden Rockets are back starting another run towards the playoffs.
The young men who take to the ice are not getting paid millions to come out and play.
They do not have advertising dealing for sticks, skates, or anything else.
Many of them have part-time jobs or go to school in between working out and practices on and off the ice.
They are happy to be here and having the chance to play a game that they love.
In the end, we are lucky to have them in town because at least for now we know their season won’t stop because of a debate over proft sharing.