Tag Archives: LA Kings

Sandbox List Adventures 31: Never Give Up on Your Kings

3 Jan

I don’t know how it happened but it did.

I dropped the ball on this one.

We’ve been checking things off our list the last couple of months but for some reason I forgot to share … probably weak from all those sleepless nights hopped up on 5-Hour Energy and the will of Jack Bauer pushing me to finish a writing project.

That sort of writing marathon tends to slow you down a bit and you forget to share some cool adventures in the process. I realized we’ve had couple of Sandbox List Adventures since our epic hike to the Batcave and I have yet to post them. But I thought I’d mention this epic experience as it became both a lesson and an adventure rolled up into one, for both my kids.

And the best part?

The lesson and adventure came through sports.

As you all know I’m a Kings fan, always have been since the days of Wayne Gretsky and Luc Robitaille, and I’ve always shared the love for this game with my kids as we cheer them on from the comfort of our couch.

However, even though television is an amazing technological advancement the in-person experience tends to be better, at least with sports. You got the crowd, the vibe, the excitement of seeing players, the game, the organ lady, the team merchandise, the mascot, and the high-fiving with complete strangers when the moment is so spectacular that you bond.

That is sports.

It’s a great thing to experience in person at least once in your life.

And seeing how we had family here from out of town it all seemed to come together.

My kids were going to chant Go Kings Go!

And cheer with intensity and excitement after seeing their first goal.

It would be great. And it was … until it happened.

In the second period.

It seems that The Kings began to trail, and I could see the worry on the face of my kids, my son more so. I could see the doubt and then the sadness begin to creep in. Toward the end of the third period they were trailing  3-6. People started getting up out of their seats and leaving.

“I think The Kings are going to lose,” he said.

“Oh you never know. You gotta wait until the end. Always wait until the end.” I said.

As the two-minute mark hit it happened.


It was 4-6.

The clock kept ticking … and then again.


It was 5-6.

The crowd was going crazy, everyone was screaming and jumping. And you can only imagine what I was looking like.

Hope was in the air, and my son was breathing it in.

Then with less than 30 second left …


The place exploded.

I looked over to my son.

“Never give up, never give up.”

He high-fived me and we cheered with the rest of the fans as we headed into overtime.

In the end The Kings lost 6-7, and the cheers deflated, but that wild comeback was amazing and it was something I hope my son and daughter never forget. He witnessed a Clear Eyes, Full Hearts moment in those last two minutes and it was definitely a Sandbox List Adventure I’d like both of them to remember.




Bucket List Adventure Failure … I Didn’t Count On It … Not Today

16 Jun

Dear Kings,

Everybody is checking stuff off their list. They saw the Jack Nicholson-Morgan Freeman movie about cancer and it was on. Everybody wrote down their dreams, life goals, and wildest adventures and made plans to make it happen.

They have their woo-hoo! moments throughout the year and share them on Facebook, Twitter and the rest of the social media monster.

Everyone appears to be a successful adventurer. Apparently there are no failures when you’re on a Bucket List Quest.

Well … I’ve broken the mold. I’m the first Bucket List Adventurer Failure of the universe.

It’s a hard being the first one.

Failure … I don’t handle it too well.

It sucks. But I’m here to tell you … you can still survive a Bucket List downfall with the help of little Ben & Jerry’s … well maybe a lot.

I know you know. You couldn’t have gotten to where you are without failure. That’s probably what made you so resilient.

But if you want to know, I finally managed to peel myself off my laminate floor, squash my frustration, and get on with my day. There’s really nothing else you can do other than try again … you know if the opportunity ever presented itself again. And I guess that’s why I’m writing.

There are some items on your Bucket List that you can’t do alone. You have to rely on someone or a group of someones in order for you to take your leap.

In my case?

It’s you.

You made the opportunity happen. You made it happen for a lot of sports fans.

It’s every sports fan’s dream. The championship parade. You need your team to win in order for the parade to happen. You need them to survive the first round of playoffs, the injuries, the adversity, the sudden-death overtimes. You need them to win it all so that you and the rest of your city can celebrate them with the parade.


This is where I wanted to be ...

This is where I wanted to be …


So it happened for me. You held up your end of the bargain.

Not once, but twice.

However, the first time I had given birth to my second child a few months prior, so I couldn’t very well take a newborn with me. I was sad, but knew it was unrealistic. I thought if it ever happens again. I’ll make it. I’ll be there with the players, the coaches, the fans, the music, the speeches, the confetti, the atmosphere. I’ll be there to relive the season on that Jumbotron. I’ll high-five my son when we see Doughty, Carter, Brown, Williams, and Quick. I’ll take pictures. We’ll all smile and I’ll check one off the list.



I didn’t count on my kids waking up on the wrong side of the bed.

I didn’t count on running out of Multi-Grain Cheerios and having my daughter flip out.

I didn’t count on them preferring to watch another episode of Disney Jr..

I didn’t count on tiny tot tummy trouble because she didn’t have her regular breakfast.

I didn’t count on having to clean up tiny tot tummy trouble disaster in the bathroom so early in the morning.

I didn’t count on the Mega-disaster of the missing LEGO Microfighter.

I didn’t count on loading up the kids, snacks and stroller into the truck only to have it turn on with the gas tank on E … I mean E to the Extreme. Like when the light goes on and you don’t know if you’re gonna make it to the corner.

I didn’t count on going to the gas station and not finding my wallet. I didn’t count on looking all over the house in a manic state trying to find my beat-up old wallet. I didn’t count on not finding it.

I didn’t count on searching for that “emergency” $40 dollars you keep in the house for emergencies such as these and not finding that money either.

As a mother of two and a member of this-is-not-your-life-right-now-you’re-just-in-the-George-Costanza-phase-of-life club I normally count on disaster happening. Usually everyday. But not today. Not that early. Not when a Bucket List item was on the verge of happening. I hadn’t counted on it and that was my mistake.

But I guess there was a bright side. Two hours later I got a call from the local supermarket … apparently I had left my wallet at the register. I walked to the store picked up some Ben & Jerry’s and made it back in time to see the parade on television.

Again. On television.

Listen … I don’t mean to put any more pressure on you guys, I mean you just won The Stanley Cup, but if you could pull off a repeat … I’d really appreciate it.



Your Favorite Guatemalan Fan



Sports, Family, and Heart Attacks

13 Jun

Chest pains.



Rapid and irregular heartbeats.

Shortness of breath.

Tingling in the right arm.

High blood pressure.




Dude. I exercise on a daily basis. I take a Vitamin B Complex and that CoQ10 from the Costco. It’s supposed to be good for your heart. But in truth I don’t know if it was working. I didn’t think I was gonna make it tonight. I’ve never needed an EKG or CPR before. I was really freaking out.

And then it happened …


Holy Crap!

Holy Crap!




Go Kings Go!

Go Kings Go!


Instantly … the blood rushed back into my veins and pumped life back into my heart. I took deep breaths and felt the muscles in my face relax. The tension melted away and the pounding in my chest subsided. But in truth there was nothing I could do about the ten new gray hairs that sprouted during this episode.

Those would stay with me.

I earned those. As a sports fan they’re my badge of honor. As a L.A. Kings’ fan I acquired my first series of gray during the first round of playoffs and by the end of this double overtime winning streak, I must have aged at least 15 years. I should have gotten used to all that stress by now … the world of sports does that to you. I should have known better.

However, The Quest for the Stanley Cup is a whole new level of danger. And nothing can prepare you for it, although they try. The PSA announcement before the game warned me that watching the Kings could be hazardous to my health … and if I ate red meat, drank excessively, or smoked the risk would be three times greater. I don’t smoke and I don’t drink excessively, but I’m a Tyrannosaurus Rex kind of carnivore. So I knew I’d be in trouble.

But it was something I was willing to risk.





My Dad would want me to … he was a big fan. Loved those Wayne Gretzky and Luc Robitaille days. And it was fitting that I’d be watching the L.A. Kings beat the New York Rangers to win the Stanley Cup wearing my Dad’s hockey cap. Father’s Day is coming up and I’ve been feeling his presence all week long. Thinking of things we’d be doing together and of the cake I’d be baking in his honor.  Yeah … I was thinking and I was grateful for his Kings’ hat. I had a piece of him with me still. And we were  high-fiving each other, screaming, and nearly passing out from all that intense excitement. He was a great couch sidekick and I was definitely missing him this evening.

Yeah … sports and family. They both give you heart attacks but you love them for it.



Losing and Cleaning Up

9 Jun

L.A. Kings vs. New Jersey Devils Championship Hockey Game

The mark of great sportsmen is not how good they are at their best, but how good they are at their worst — Martina Navratilova.


I must be a terrible sportsmen because I hate it when my team loses.

It burns me out.

There’s no more popcorn eating. No more dipping your nachos in cheese. No more woo-hooing. No more pumping your fist in the air. No more high-fiving. No more clapping. No more drinking. There’s just no more.

There’s just disappointment … disappointment and a mess of dishes to clean up, nacho cheese on the counter, and too many jalapenos.

If my team had won today, they would have been a Stanley Cup celebration and cleaning up would not be a problem. The kitchen could have been drowning in nacho cheese and it wouldn’t have mattered. But losing tends to put things in perspective. So the dishes sucked.

But my team has got two more opportunities to win the big trophy, however I’m hoping that they’ll just need one to close out the series. Otherwise it will just be more disappointment and nacho cheese clean up.