Top 11 Things I Miss About St. Louis Blues Hockey

Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE

We should be a few months into the 2012-13 NHL season. Yet the lockout persists. I'll admit that I miss it. A bunch of things about it.

11. Development of young players. We all know the Blues didn't add any talent to the roster from outside the organization. Inside, the Blues were set to add Vladimir Tarasenko and give more playing time to other guys like Ian Cole and Jayden Schwartz. We should be watching these guys get better, growing on the ice. I'm sure they're getting better, playing in Peoria and Russia. It's just hard to see it. And prove it.

10. The chill in the rink. There's something about walking through the tunnel, past the curtain and into the arena. And the air conditioning hits you right in the face. On the back of your kneck. You know where you are and why you're there.

9. The call of the scalper. "Who needs tickets? Tickets! Yo, you need tickets, sir?" Not hearing these hard working entrepreneurs out on the street making a mostly honest buck to put food on the table for their families reminds me that there are hundreds of people who make at least part of their income from hockey games.

8. The big blue bear and all his friends. And when I say all his friends, I mean Charles Glenn singing the anthem, Angelllla doing the Lucky Puck Shuffle and Towel Boy waving his rags and teaching the masses to count. Sure I'm not a huge fan of all the personalities with the game experience. But damn, I miss the game experience.

7. The call of the beer man. Yes, I miss paying for $8 beers. Never thought I'd say that.

6. Seeing my kids get excited about something that excites me. Last month my family went to see Disney on Ice. The kids loved it. They lost their shit. Now, I had a good time, but it was mostly watching them and enjoying their enjoyment. I had to play along that the show was awesome. It was not awesome. I get geeked up for hockey games. My kids are the same. Now that's a truly awesome experience.

5. Wearing a hockey jersey. I'm a dork. I own too many of these things. They're in the closet taking up space. They're great for a hockey game. They aren't the most practical thing to run to the grocery store. Plus, who wants to advertise to the world that I'm a fan being held hostage by the fourth most popular professional league in North America. I'm not wearing a jersey in public until this thing ends, minimum.

4. Seeing my hockey friends. Game Time isn't a site, a weird-ass hobby or underground paper waiting to be published again. It's a movement. When you go to games, there are people you see and great and hang out with that are part of the GT crowd. Through this thing, we've met dozens of people. Most of you are cool. Some of you need stronger medication. That's cool. We all have that one thing. But there are a bunch of people I enjoy seeing at games. There are no games. I don't see those people. Sucks.

3. Rush of the game. There's nothing like a breakaway goal. The puck is turned over. A player makes a mad rush. The puck joins him. By about the red line, 19,000 people start to stand and there's a sudden jolt of energy. Anticipation! The skater is in on net, there's a shot...dramatic pause...GOAL! Jubilation. I've never done cocaine. It can't feel as good or have as big a rush. I realize cocaine is a helluva drug. So is hockey.

2. Yelling things. I don't shout a lot of things at games. But when I do, it feels good.

1. A part of me. I'm a hockey guy. I love baseball. I could talk your arm off about football. Hockey is a part of me. It's part of my identity now. It's what my family does for enjoyment. My son is obsessed. He's 3. I'm moderately well known on the Internet (regionally) because of hockey. I've given 1,000s of hours of my life to Game Time and following this team. It feels like a part of me is missing.

Sure, I miss it today. Talk to me in April if this season gets cancelled.

What do you miss? How long will you miss it before something replaces it? Let us know down below.

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