There are at least ten different definitions for the word. Subway has one definition. Physicists will have another. My definition equates to something entirely different, yet I’m sure some of you have the same one as me.
Melt is what makes ice so amazing, and what keeps blades doing their job. Sure, the metaphorical value of ice skating is there, but anyone who personally knows the feeling of gliding understands the emotional value is much more important. It truly is another world out there, and in that world the realities of life seem to mean less.
Here’s the thing about hockey that makes it so unique: it’s one of the only sports that cannot just be played anywhere. The ice surface is one of those rare things that makes the sport so obstinate, and yet so lovable. Sometimes I feel just the ice itself is what seperates hockey from the other “big” sports: it is hard for the ordinary sports fan to get interested, but those that are become fully involved in it.
My point is this: while everyone lounges in the summer heat, I miss the cool feel of the ice. I miss the freedom of that first stride on the rink, and the danger the surface brings. I miss the feel of a crisp pass along the blue line, and the satisfaction of hitting someone in stride. Most of all, I miss the cold feeling in my lungs, that deep chill while my entire body emits excess heat. On ice there is no sweat that comes without work, no heat created without effort.
It’s a feeling that cannot be replicated, and one that I miss dearly once the summer comes. Hours of tennis cannot give me the satisfaction a hard skate can bring. The same can be said for a run around the bases, and an 8 yard out. Even the grind of street hockey cannot recreate the distinct smell of hockey. The dirty smell of warm, wet gloves has been replaced by asphault dust and humidity, and only leaves me wanting winter once again.
The good news is that hockey is always in season here, and there are some important going ons in the NHL and abroad. We promise to cover those offseason moves in depth and very soon; but I felt the need to tell you that hockey is truly missed in these parts. If you are still reading this, you may very well feel the same.