Big Day Essay, Research Paper
My alarm rang extra loud that day. The combination of the excessively high decibel level and the constant repetition was enough to make me jump right out of bed and turn the damn thing off. I was not going to snooze today. Nope, not today, today was a big day. A few hours later I would be traveling to Yale to compete in the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference Ice Hockey Championship game.
Immediately after awakening I gave the shades on my windows a tug and sent them coiling back up the window. It was a beautiful day. The suns rays glistened down on everything below as if to melt the snow and end winter forever. The sound of birds chirping and the wind blowing through the trees was a sure sign that everything was in its right place. “John!,” called my mother, “Breakfast!.” The sweet scent of Belgian waffles permeating through the house soon reached my room, and I was so ready for it.
“How do you feel?” asked my father. I stretched my arms, yawned and replied, ?confident.? I really didn?t feel like saying much more unless it was about the game. The previous year we knocked this team out of the playoffs early in a dramatic, come-from-behind, underdog victory. As I sat at the kitchen table indulging in breakfast I thought about how badly our opponents wanted their revenge. I imagined myself being in the position of sucess and failure after the game. The thought of losing made me feel empty and alone inside, as if someone had removed my stomach. The shivers ran down my spine and I shook them off like a wet dog drying itself. Victory, on the other hand, would be something that I would always be able to look back on, smile, and relive the memories of . Like a poor man on Jeopardy, I wanted to win so badly. I had to prepare.
The meal was filling, it was the boost of energy I needed to start my day. I scraped the remaining pieces of waffle and bacon into the garbage, rinsed my dirty dishes, placed them in the dishwasher, and headed to the silent confines of my room. My bed was unmade and waiting for me to crawl back in. Instead I sat upright, pulled my comforter over my legs and began to simulate to game over in my mind. I had to know ahead of time what I was going to do all possible situations. I thought to myself, what move do I make when my defender tries to play the body? Look for a linemate cutting across the ice or call for a drop pass. How will I maintain postion in front of the goal for a possible rebound? Bend my knees, stay low, keep my stick on the ice, and one skate behind my adversary?s.
With every thud of the clock I felt more set back.
?Welcome ladies and gentelman to tonights Connecticut State Championship game between the Greenwich Cardinals and the Jesuits of Fairfeld Preperatory School!? The speakers were loud and the crowd roared in intensity. The game had yet to begin and both parties of crowds were having cheering wars. The building was inflated with energy and so was I. I was ready to risk becoming a quadraplegic in order to blast that rubber biscuit through the back of the net. I was focused.
The official threw the puck at the blue dot in the center of the ice. Smack! I carved my skate sharply into the ice sending a sputter of white flakes across the ice. The battle was on. For thrity minutes of regulation play, spanning a duration of two hours, both teams were at war. Each players desire to abolish the rival team could be seen through their efforts of playing at whirling speeds optimizing their performances to their extremes. The sounds of plastic cracking against each other and pucks ringing off of the goal posts made the arena an intensifying place to be.
Throughout the entire matchup our team poured theirs hearts and souls into acheiving a championship. With thrity seconds left on the clock our coached, in desperation for a tieing score, hollored for our goalie to come to bench. ?Dig deep!,? he yelled to us trying to spark some inner desires. We had our chance to win the game with a close rebound, but we failed. ?Hanger!,? screamed my coach. Our team, so consentrated on offense, had allowed a man to remain idely waiting for an up-ice pass to send him on a break away. As soon as his teammate whisked the shiny black puck over and above our heads to the tape of his stick, my whole stomach fell. I skated as quick as I could, digging the inside and outside edges of my blades through the ice. It was the most frustrating feeling, working so hard towards something unevitable. The opponent gracefully skated directly towards the crease and nonchalantly slid the puck to the back of the net. It was over. It was finally over.
The loss was a heartbreaker. On the bus ride home I sat with my head pressing against the seat in front of me. The hour long bus ride home started off in silence. I was a senior, I would never play high school hockey again. My teammates were upset. We had a golden oppurtunity right in the palm of our hands and we let it slip away. Gentle whispers began to spread throughout the bus. We began to reminice about all the good times we had shared that season as teammates and close friends. Players heads were lifted and rejuvinated in the optimism that they were apart of something great.
It was a long and agonizing day and I was tired. As soon as I got home I headed straight for room. I sat on my bed upright and thought about what a great bond our team had that season. I looked over my clock to check the time. It was midnight already. I yawned and thought to myself. I wasn?t going to set the alarm clock tonight.