Last night was a surreal episode in my move to America. My son has been scouted by his high school hockey team. Word apparently quickly spread that there was a Canadian kid in town, one who’s played in an intense competitive league for a few years, and before long kids two or three years older than my son were approaching him in the cafeteria at the urging of the coach and pleading with him to play for the team.

The team struggles, apparently, and their only requirement of my son was that he could skate from one end of the rink to the other. When he mentioned he’d been his team’s MVP and top scorer for two years, there was joy and high fives amid the cafeteria pizza pops.

Last night we went to the first team meeting.

And the coach was one of the biggest tools I have ever encountered.

A list:

1. Handlebar moustache. Enough fucking said right there, no?

2. Sporting quite a massive pot belly yet insisting he did 150 situps and pushups a night and he would expect nothing less of his team. Also threatened repeatedly to kick his players’ asses for various offences, including if they showed up late for practice — a bit of ridiculous machismo I always find so tiresome.

3. Giving me the eye and mentioning in front of the entire team and their parents, and with a wink, that I was a single mother, as though he actually thought he MIGHT HAVE A CHANCE WITH ME.

3. Several statements about the actual game of hockey that suggested he really didn’t know much about it — things that perhaps only a Canadian might immediately pick up on. You know, icing and blue line talk that he had all wrong.

4. A declaration that “rap music” was banned in the dressing room and if he heard it, he would take his stick to the boom box and smash it to pieces so don’t try him! He hated rap music!! It was violent!! It was ’70s rock or nothing at all! (At this point I almost erupted because what an ignorant clown. This bothered me even more than the single mother comment because if there’s anything I hate, it’s some guy in his 40s who insists all of today’s music sucks and only his generation’s crap Top 40 shite was any good. And hello, idiot, expand your horizons. Not all hip hop is misogynist and profane and in fact much of it is amazing music with empowering lyrics, you ridiculous moustachioed dickwad.)

My son and I tried to hold it together while this ass clown went on for about 90 minutes, displaying a killer case of verbal diarrhea since he apparently believes he is endlessly fascinating and witty. And he is not. By the end of the meeting, we could not help but glance at one another frequently as if to say: “This guy CANNOT be for real.” At least one parent interrupted him a couple of times and told him to get on with it.

On the ride home we were quiet. And then my son looked at me and said the following: “Once he sees how I play hockey, I am going to play `Die Motherfuckers’ in the dressing room just to watch what he’ll do.”

Oh how we laughed. But he’s a respectful boy so he won’t do it. I hope.

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