hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA


February 20, 2014

Free offer: Two Bruins tickets up for grabs


All of a sudden, the free tickets were adding up to a bundle. But what the heck! It goes with the prize. “Merry Christmas,” I smiled back.

Some of my friends were envious. What a year for our Stanley Cup finalists! They’re riding the crest in what could be the best team thus far in the NHL. And the Winnipeg Jets were coming to town for an afternoon game.

I was looking forward to it. So was my wife. Of all the Boston teams, she goes overboard with the Bruins. When they lose, so does she —her voice!

And then, fate took its toll. The funeral of a dear friend pre-empted our plans. How could we justifiably shun the memorial service for a hockey game, especially when the family invited me to give a short eulogy at the mercy meal?

After deliberating my predicament, there was no alternative but to unload the tickets. But to whom? My son would have grabbed them and taken his son. But the other children would have taken a fit for being left out.

My son-in-law was a college goalie and an avid fan. He would have jumped at the chance, except for other plans that day. Much as he tried, he failed to find a taker.

And then it hit me. Why not try some of the coaches my boys had in high school? They would surely jump at the tickets.

The search was on. First, one high school coach, then another. Zilch! From there, we tried some of the coaches in the youth hockey ranks.

“I really appreciate what you did for the boys,” I said. “Just to show my appreciation, I have two Bruins tickets for you.”

“Twenty years later?”

I may as well have carried a sign around town. “Free give-away. Two Bruins tickets.”

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