The Calgary Flames took on the San Jose Sharks in the season opener last night, and yours truly was there. As I’m sure you can gather, I’m not the biggest hockey buff, but I didn’t let that deter me from covering the game for Vacay.ca. Here’s an insider look at what goes on behind the scenes.
I just kinda assumed I’d be given a random seat that didn’t sell, but there’s actually a press area, high up near the nose bleed section. I was on the writer’s and radio side, while the TV folks were across the arena.
What Not to Wear
Press, I found out, don’t wear team colours or jerseys. Whoops. Some female reporters wore leggings, boots and long sweaters, while the men were in business casual – but in the real sense of the word, not the dockers and button down blue shirts Calgary oil dorks wear.
I can confirm there is unlimited free water, pop and popcorn in the press area. They also hand out nifty sheets at the end of each periods, summarizing what just went on, which comes in handy when you spend the game checking your Twitter feed and texting friends. (Naturally, I would never do that.) Oh, and there’s a media lounge in the basement that’s dark and intimidating, but apparently has free food in it before the game. I wasn’t in the know, so I made due with popcorn and the cucumber I smuggled in
After the game, everyone in the box feeds down to the player’s dressing room. It takes a few minutes for the players to appear, making it a golden opportunity to eavesdrop. It was super fun listening to the comments uttered by these seasoned journalists. Stuff like, “that third period looked more like a Timbits game!” and “We just have to talk to Cammy (Mike Cammalleri). He’s like, so hilarious!”
But I know what you’re really wondering, what do they look like up close and personal? Well, it’s not like a football locker room, so it was pretty disappointing, actually. Flames players wear a long sleeved black shirt made of thin material under their jersey, so there was no golden opportunity to check out their chest and biceps.
Another surprise: the TV people are indeed gorgeous, but they have normal, healthy figures. I expected the women to be all anorexic, and they’re not. They look just like you and I, but with much better hair. And the male reporters? A few of them were as hunky as the beefcakes you see on TSN, but again, they’re just regular folks who happen to have a really cool job.
But there was a game to cover, so besides all these distractions, I tried to focus on that. Check out my coverage on Vacay.ca.
Are you a hockey fan? What do you think I should’ve asked the Flames?