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It’s All or Almost Nothing for this Washington Capitals Fan

April 16, 2010


No, my post title is not referring to the Stanley Cup. Although, it would be spectacular if the Washington Capitals could bring Lord Stanley’s magnificent CUP to D.C. What my post title means is completely from my singular, personal perspective as a Capitals fan. I was unable to see or listen to the game last night (4/15) at the Verizon Center against the Montreal Canadiens, but a hockey lover at my detail office was more than happy to explain the highlights and overtime Habs win over the CAPS for me this morning. This brings me directly to my point.

I will have to do the right thing for me and for the contract on which I work and take a gigantic step back from my beloved NHL and Washington Capitals fandom. Quite honestly, I have had a great deal of hockey love focused in my direction this season. Much more than I could have ever anticipated in any way shape or form. All of that great fortune is not lost on me. However, just like the Washington Capitals organization of a few years past, I am working on my personal “re-build” and it can’t be rushed or pushed forward unwisely.

I had purposely written-off this hockey season in terms of my never-ending, always watching, continuous, deep interest Capitals fandom. I did this because there was no guarantee I would even be able to watch a single game on TV this season. Odds were that I wouldn’t even have the ability to listen to game on the radio or online. My life is very small and quiet in comparison to what it once was and that is exactly as it should be considering the loses I have suffered and the challenges I have yet to face. Of course, I did find ways to check and almost everyday, but my long-standing immersion into all things hockey each season became a mere shadow of itself and rightfully so. That was the smart thing to do and I’m afraid, it is still the smart thing to do at this point.

I live about 86 miles from the Verizon Center. I live in a barn. Yes, an actual barn that is about the size of a small dorm room. I haven’t slept in a real bed in more than a year. My daily work commute is 3 hours a day total. I wake up around 4:30  a.m. and usually get home from work around 7:00 p.m. or so. I should be in bed (or couch rather) by 8:30 p.m. and I am working on three contracts at once. Each one of them requires my attention and focus. No – I can’t spend money on an online NHL package. No – I can’t just “suck it up” and drive somewhere to watch a game or stay in Baltimore after work to watch games. If I did that, I would be sacrificing my own health and well-being. That’s not smart at all.

Every penny I earn must go straight to some sort of savings, IRA, CD and so on. Every extra minute of my day should be concentrated on doing my jobs and “re-building”. Why – because if I do that now – I will be stable enough to move closer to work, which will also be close to D.C. and sleep in a real bed. That will in turn help me recover from my health issues faster and better. It will mean that by next hockey season I will in a much healthier (both mentally and physically) healthy living circumstance that includes cable or satellite. If I can nose-to-grindstone efficiently enough from now until then, I can also get NHL Centre Ice or some similar package as well.

I have taken some time this week to look at the big picture and it has become very clear that all of my inner-Mianess would love to be all up in the hockey and be a part of the greatness that is Washington Capitals hockey this year. Alas, the inner-Mianess forgot the fact that she is recovering from some extraordinarily serious situations, all piled-up on top of each other. I can assure you all that no one would have wanted to be near me last night as I attempted to get a live stream of the radio broadcast online of the CAPS v. Habs 1st round playoff game at 7:00 p.m. I was looking forward to the listening to the game and had gotten all set-up and settled in to listen to the Capitals. There was no “stream” available at 7:00, at 7:05, at 7:10 and not at 7:15 either. It could have been that the game wasn’t streaming or I could have been having technical difficulties. On the outset, it seemed to me that the former was the case. I then tried to get “The Fan 106.7” on my radio. There are two problems with that. 1) I live in a structure that bounces signals of every kind away and I’m lucky I can even get one bar on my cell phone, let alone a radio signal and 2) I live more than 80 miles from D.C. and a D.C. sports radio station on the F.M. dial most certainly doesn’t have a chance at getting to me. I did try a few things, but it got to the stage where every other word out of my mouth was foul and I’m glad there were no small children anywhere near me. I could have made a sailor blush. It dawned on me that I was driving myself crazy and I was stressing myself out far beyond what my mind and body could actually handle, so I took a deep breath and stopped trying.

For this Capitals fan, I will have to go back to missing games entirely, and simply and briefly checking scores and highlights each morning. I can’t go head-long into blogs, news stories, and make myself go bonkers in attempts to even listen to each game. The contracts on which I work are important and there are people out there who are relying on me to put my best effort into assisting them as per each contract statement of work. I am not at all, or anywhere close to being “out of the woods” in terms of my health and I have to build at least 20 years of savings and financial stability all over again, from scratch. To add to the situation, I recently had a brain tumor removed. Health insurance doesn’t cover that entire enchilada, so I owe many thousands of dollars right now. Those priorities have to come first and no matter how much I love the NHL and the Washington Capitals – my reality is what it is right now. If I tried to maintain my “normal” fandom; I would not only be doing the wrong thing, but I could possible set myself back quite a ways. I’m not starting with a lead, so going backwards is particularly unwise.

This year – I am more than satisfied that the thousands of fans out there Rockin’ the Red can do my share of cheering for the Capitals as they progress through the playoffs. I am about as confident as one fan can be that the team knows what to do and has one goal in mind. I am certain that they will hold themselves accountable and will not give themselves a break. They will, and they will try as they hard as they can. I can’t remember a Capitals season when I have been so sure of those things before – ever. All of you fans giving your time and dedication to the CAPS can handle my small share of fandom this season. The team will push themselves to work it as hard as they can. These things I know, so I can feel pretty good about getting done what I need to get done. I need to survive to “fight” another season, and many more seasons after that if all goes well.

If the CAPS do make it to the finals, I will find a way to see those games. If they don’t make it to the finals – I’ll be there next year, in a much more involved fan status. Either way, they have my most positive thoughts and appreciation. YOU ROCK GUYS!!!!!


  1. billdc permalink
    April 16, 2010 10:19 pm

    Mia, have you tried this link before? You can watch live.

    All the best to you.



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