Love is in the air. Or on the ice. Not by design, but something kinda special has emerged as we’ve put this ragtag team together. And we don’t mean the near constant flirping (flirting + chirping) on our twitter feeds. More than once, that chatter has been likened to the bastard offspring of The Hockey News and Grindr.
As many know, Doug and I are a couple – partners a long time – way back to those halcyon days when a young Dwayne Roloson was teaching America, and parts of Canada, how to laugh again. Our Penguins team, Adam and Mike are a couple. So too are Ryan and Peter, our Los Angeles power duo who manage coverage of the Ducks and Bruins respectively.
This week, we’re happy to share the news that our Wings man, Jeff, and his partner Will, were married in New York. [Some have asked why Doug and I haven't gotten married since it's legal in DC. Simple - we won't tie the knot until we have a committment from George McPhee to officiate the ceremony.]
Cupid may now be claiming another of this
Mary merry band of brothers, Bobby in Dallas. Today he shares a story of his first hockey date. He and his boyfriend Jon have been dating for a couple of months, but you know it got serious when they took in a Stars game together.
“For readers who don’t know much about me, I’m a 23-year-old man who loves my Dallas Stars. Two months ago I met a man and we have been happily dating ever since. This is now officially the longest I have ever spent with someone, perhaps due to not being able to stand most of the guys I dated, and the fact that this guy is something special. Last Saturday was my first date night Stars game, and I could not have dreamed it any better.
Until last Saturday I had never done a game as a date. I was feeling kind of nervous, probably because A) I’m in Texas and B) I was about to walk into an arena of bulked up hockey fans full of raging testosterone…with my boyfriend! But at the same time I just didn’t give a damn.”
“I was so excited for him to see his first hockey game. It wasn’t like Jon and I were all over each other with public displays, but during the game we sat closer than straight guys normally would, and several times Jon clearly showed affection, like putting his hand on my thigh. We weren’t hiding anything, but at the time, we weren’t about to make out in front of a bunch of die-hard hockey fans. During the game Jon and I held hands, maybe not blatantly obvious to passers-by, but if you looked hard enough you could definitely tell that Jon and I were a couple.
After our hockey game (he bought the tickets as a surprise), it got me thinking – will there ever be a time when I can go to a Stars game and not be afraid to kiss my boyfriend that I met on one of the scores of free dating sites in between plays or periods? I think this is something every gay hockey fan has thought about at one point or another, and I’m curious to hear from other guys around here if they’ve been in the same position.
I had an amazing time watching hockey with Jon and I can’t wait to go back and do it again and again and again, but wonder if I’ll feel more comfortable and a little less self-conscious the next time. The concern is Jon is my first REAL boyfriend, we live in Dallas, TX, and the typical hockey crowd mayyyyyy not be the most tolerant towards fans like us. I really do hope that one day we’ll be able to take in a game and not feel odd, judged or so rare. There’s no way we’re the only gay guys who go ape for the Stars. No way.
Saturday night was great. These past two months have been great, and Jon is great because he’s not only willing to put up with my hockey obsession but he encourages it as well. Oh yeah, the Stars beat the visiting Blue Jackets 4-2, and the night only got better after the final horn.
This Friday the Stars play the Ducks in Anaheim. This will mark the second game out of 4 road games for my boys, which is a long stretch and something no team looks forward too. Before I get to Friday’s game, a look at Tuesday night’s tilt at Columbus.
The Stars won 3-2 but the highlight of that game, and probably for the whole road trip, was Jamie Benn’s single-handed shot. If you didn’t see it, prepare to see beauty here.
The man is amazing. He blew past and snaked his way around not 1, not 2, but 4 Blue Jackets and managed to get off a beautiful shot.
No wonder Wyshynski said it was “Goal of the year” worthy. If this doesn’t solidify Benn’s spot in the top ranks of NHL players, then I don’t know what will.
The Ducks will be tough on Friday, they almost always are. They’ve been playing really well this season and they are second in the Pacific, ahem – with the Stars in first. The Stars seem to be playing really well, given that nearly a third of the players are new to the team. I give them the edge on the Ducks Friday, but it’s the next game that has me worried. Saturday, we face the Kings, and that could suck.
Hopefully they can pull it off but the Stars have a bad history against the Kings – all too often we don’t play to our ability or just downright choke when we play them. Hopefully my guys, and now Jon’s too, sweep the weekend.”
Please follow Bobby on Twitter @gaystarsfan