The GrovesLine

just a place where i hang my thoughts out to dry


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Life is Wonderful, Life is Strange, Life is Hard

Back in the familiar surroundings and relative comforts of my own home, it’s hard to imagine that the week I just had actually happened and that it wasn’t a dream or some crazy trip to an alternate universe. It’s remarkable how quickly we can become reacquainted with our own normal lives after otherworldly and eye-opening experiences.

Regardless of where I am sitting now however, I am not entirely the same person I was a week ago, as we all are not, having lived through another seven days and evolved, to a greater or lesser extent, into someone just a little bit older and wiser, for one reason or another. Continue reading


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From Schedule B to Schedule Me

Recently I learned that I’ve been unceremoniously removed from Schedule B. I didn’t even know what Schedule B was, or that it existed for that matter, until I found out I was no longer on it. At a recent meeting of the powers that be at Speed Skating Canada, where such things are decided, my name was briefly highlighted then swiftly deleted without so much as a sigh, or so I’m told. Continue reading


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Shaken Heads & Heads in the Sand

I’m really not a big fan of professional hockey. Short of catching the odd period of Leafs hockey, because I’m partnered with a lifelong (i.e. diehard and delusional) Leafs fan, I tend only to pay intermittent attention to the bits of news that trickle through the sports media.

I do, however, love watching Olympic hockey. I confess too that my heart was aflutter even last weekend as the juniors made a valiant, albeit unsuccessful, comeback seem possible during the third period of the semi-final game against Russia. That was exciting.

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A Concussionary Tale

It is a coincidence, really, that my one-year concussionniversary happens to be on the same day that The Sydney Crosby is slated to make his much anticipated and ballyhooed return to action in the NHL. It’s serendipitous enough though, that I have had to re-write some sections of this blog post to account for what can only be considered the highly dramatic events surrounding Sid the Kid’s celebrated departure from the Pittsburgh Penguins injured list. Continue reading


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Immersion, cubed

It would be safe to say that I never truly excelled at short track speed skating. I used to think I was awesome of course, but if I toss those rose coloured glasses overboard and look back instead with clear, nostalgia-free vision, there is really no doubt about my complete lack of short track talent – it was definitely not my forte. I still did it of course, for many years in fact, while I patiently counted down the days until I could move west and find my true home on the long track.

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The Last Race

Over the years I’ve written, and spoken, ad infinitum (ad nauseum?) about the moment I first discovered my Olympic dreams. You know – the torch, the ’88 Olympics, Gaetan Boucher, speed skating – that whole bit. If it is possible to pinpoint the one little moment my heart started beating for skating, then I guess it would have to be when we stopped at that Petro-Canada to fill up on gas and I saw the poster advertising the 1988 Olympic Torch Relay. Similarly, I can pinpoint the one little moment my heart stopped beating for skating too.

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Into the Peace of the Done

I remember clearly the first real speed skating race I ever won. It was at the North American age class championships in Lake Placid, New York circa 1991. It was a long track 800m mass-start race and I won it, surprisingly, beating a group of girls who, until that point, beat me handily nearly every time we stepped onto the ice to race. Continue reading