Monday, November 22, 2010

A New Pair of Blades

One of the major reasons for the decline in hockey programs is the cost of equipment. Many parents find the expense cannot fit into the family budget.

Although the cost of $12.50 may have been exorbitant for some in 1942, I picture many sets of these skates being wrapped for Christmas morning. Then,  as time went by, being passed from brother to brother. The "Hand-Me-Downs" generation.

How many times have we heard or read stories of this nature from those who were chartered members of the Original Six era?

The following passage is contained within Stan Obodiac's mini-biography of Red Kelly...

  One day Pete Kelly called to his elder son, "Joe, come
here for a minute!" When the boy came over, his father
said, "I think you'll have to give your old skates to
Leonard. It's about time he started skating."
  Joe was aghast.
  "But dad, they're too big for Leonard, by at least a
couple of sizes." He seemed reluctant to give up his first
pair of skates.
  "We'll see," said his father. Now go and get them
  Joe obeyed his father and got the skates. His father
turned them over to Leonard and told Joe to take his
brother skating.
  "And be careful on that ice on the swamp," the father
  Joe had put a couple of pairs of socks on his
brother's feet so the big skates wouldn't wobble around
too much.
  Leonard eventually made it onto the ice and away he
went, wobbling around like a drunken sailor. For the
first little while he spent more of his time skating along
on his ankles than he did on his shiny steel blades.
  But he never gave up. Up and down the ice he went,
around and around in his over-sized skates. Only occa-
sionally would he come over to the cedar log fire the boys
had built at the edge of the swamp to keep themselves

Indeed, many of us can relate!

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