Yesterday evening (Saturday 2nd February), I attended my second ever Belfast Giants match. I’ll admit, I was looking forward to it, but I figured that at around the half way mark, I would get terribly bored and start re-playing an episode of Black Books in my head.

I do that, sometimes.

Clickity click for more information.

Clickity click for more information.

Anyway. The Giants were playing the Hull Stingrays, and I can’t tell you anything much more technical than that. I am hopeless at sports, and I don’t understand the rules to a single one; ice hockey is no exception, but boy oh boy, is that shit entertaining. I have never wanted to see blood more in my life – I egged on fights, I screamed at Canadians and I booed the opposition. For one glorious moment, I was nearly normal. I was a sports fan.

There was no blood on the ice (pity), but these men are vicious. They even needed three referees! Heavens.

While I thoroughly enjoyed the whole evening (even the parts I didn’t really understand), I have a few small, teeny observations. Which are meant to be funny and cute -I mean no ill will to the Giants at all, they seem perfectly delightful. I feel I have to say that…the fans seem devoted and passionate, and I don’t want to be pucked to death in the street.

First of all – why is the announcer American/Canadian? We are in Belfast! I want to hear someone with the broadest possible accent attempting to keep people entertained between periods! This foreigner cannot possibly be qualified to promote Tayto crisps and Fona-Cab!?

Speaking of foreigners…are any of the Belfast Giants actually from Northern Ireland? They’re all Canadian or American! Oh…wait…dammit. I actually just checked, and there are a number of local boys on the team. That’s what I get for pretending to know about sports. On the plus side, this makes me even more impressed with the team as a whole. Big up to my homies; Andrew Dickson (Ballymoney), Graeme Walton (Belfast) and Gareth Roberts (Belfast).

Side-note: I promise never to use the phrase ‘big up my homies’ ever again. I tried something new. It failed.

My third well-meaning observation is the large signs everywhere that say:

KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE PUCK.

This is great advice, but with one fatal flaw. The Belfast Giants have cheerleaders.

'G-Crew'

How do they expect us to watch the puck when there are young women shaking their pompoms at the edge of our peripheral vision? I am a straight woman and I found it a challenge. They’re hypnotizing. Hypno-toad. With boobs.

All-in-all, a bloody great night out, and surprisingly inexpensive. The ice hockey season runs from September to May (one of the many new things I learnt last night), and if you’ve never been before, I highly recommend that you go, and fully embrace the atmosphere.

Oh, by the way. We won!

S.

p.s. If you love me, let me know. FACEBOOK. TWITTER.

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