Last night I was out with my family at a restaurant in Orange. The place was crawling with Angel's fans grabbing a bite before the game--red t-shirts and jerseys peppered the dining room. Then I saw him there; sitting in a booth with his beautiful girlfriend was Ryan Getzlaf -- Center for the Anaheim Ducks, Assistant Captain, future Hockey Hall of Famer.
Now, I know you're thinking, "She promised not to talk about hockey until next season." I did. But this is just too enormous an event and frankly, I need a little hockey fix. I hope you don't mind too much.
Getzlaf is the one pictured here in this post that I wrote about the Ducks after the last game of the season--Why I love hockey.
Now, I'm certainly not a fame or celebrity hound, I refuse to read People Magazine on principle and I would rather watch old reruns of C-SPAN translated entirely in Portuguese than TMZ. In fact, I can't think of one actor I would approach for a photo, one politician, or musician, but Ryan (Flippin') Getzlaf, I couldn't help myself, not just for me, but for my kids, Emily, 8 and Ben, 5.
The thing that came to my mind when I introduced my kids to him was that someday they could tell their kids how they met him. They will have the photo. They will remember how their mom told them they were about to "meet greatness" and didn't know what she meant until later in their lives.
As a parent I find that most things that happen to me are experienced twice, once by me and once through my kids' eyes--like parental double-vision. I see what experiences will mean to them 5 ,10, 20 years from now, not only what they mean to me personally. This one was a keeper, for all of us.
Now a word of advice about "meeting greatness" in person...in the dinning room of a chain restaurant...camera in hand...after a few cocktails--have a whisper of a plan. I'm pretty sure I introduced myself at least three times. I know I shook his girlfriend's hand twice. I rambled on about this blog and how I had written about The Ducks for The Orange County Register, about global warming and the falling dollar--okay not really those last two, but I seriously might as well have. I was a tragic mess.
He and his girlfriend, Paige, were gracious and obviously used to blathering fans armed with cameras, random Ducks facts, and stupid questions. I think I managed to get out a "Good luck this season. You're awesome," but besides that, I barely acknowledged how grateful I am for his character, for being a good role model to my son, for his sacrifice to the game, for demonstrating to all of us what courage and good leadership looks like in an athlete.
So there. I just did it. I'm sure once he catches up on his Mom Blog reading, he will see this. Right?
Other things I've written about The Ducks and you have been so kind to tolerate:
Or see my photography of the Ducks on Flickr.
This was written for my blog at the OC Register. To see the original version please click here.
Comments are closed on this post and many were deleted. Please don't email me before reading entire post. I'm not Ryan Getzlaf's girlfriend. Silly Girls.