So, I’m minding my own business watching a Kings game on TV when Patrick O’Neal announces that the LA Kings are putting on two seminars called “The Business of Hockey.” I’m like, that sounds interesting. After the game, I check out the website and it sounds really interesting. For $80, they were offering two hours with panels of experts to talk about the business of hockey, two tickets to a game in a VIP box and an LA Kings pad folio and pen.
All that for eighty bucks? HELLO. I signed up for both days.
But I was askeered when the big day arrived. I expected the event to be populated with a bunch of fresh, young college kids, mostly guys, armed with resumes and confidence. I was certain I’d be the only attendee over 50 and probably one of very few women.
When I arrived at the Regal Cinemas at LA Live where the seminars were to take place, I saw a ton of guys and a few women in full-on business suits. I felt like a fish, not only out of water, but like ten miles from the fish bowl.
I sat in front, because I’m short and even though the theater had stadium seating, I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to see. The man I sat next to was very serious. He was in law school. He was about thirty years old and very pretentious. He was proud of the fact that he was the only one in class who ever answered the professor’s questions. Yeah. That guy. I bet his classmates love him. Not a big conversationalist.
Anyway, while waiting for it to start, I realized the lock screen picture on my phone was set to display the cover of On the Surface, where Spectacular Bare-Chested Six-Pac Ab Man is drinking his water with his Adam’s apple prominently displayed along with his erect nipples. (See sidebar.) Surreptitiously, I changed it to a picture of my Dustin Brown jersey.
Yeah, I know. I probably should have been proud…like, “That’s right, Mr. Law School. This is the cover of my contemporary hockey romance novel. Smirk all you want.” But I wasn’t. I just wanted to fit in and absorb.
It was a great seminar. The opening video made me want to stand up and cheer. (Of course, I didn’t, posing as the staid, unflappable “business woman.” I think I was the only one who walked in holding a jersey I wanted Luc Robitaille to sign.) I learned a lot and was thrilled when Alex Curry actually asked the panel a couple of the questions I had submitted via the link emailed to the attendees. (Mr. Law School seemed unimpressed when I whispered, “That was my question!” to him.)
Both seminars were great, in fact. I took 9 pages of notes. Luc signed my jersey. I saw the inside of a VIP box. (It was dingier than I expected. Staples Center needs to spruce them up a little.) I learned a bit about agents and that whole side of the business. I learned that social media are playing a huge role in professional hockey right now. I learned that connecting with the fans is almost Job One, because fans buy tickets and drive TV ratings. I found it so interesting and worth every penny, even the $20 bucks I paid for parking.
So, a week or so later, I’m again minding my own business, watching the Kings Live pre-game broadcast and see a segment on the Business of Hockey seminar that I went to! And check it out. I’m in the video! Click here, then click on FS West Feature: The Business of Hockey (Part 1)
About 20 seconds in you’ll see a row of heads in the front, then no head, then a bunch of heads. The no-head chair is me! I’m short, remember?
At minute 1:58, you’ll see a woman with her head down, scribbling madly. That’s me again! My little straw purse is at my feet.
Yeah, that’s my claim to LA Kings fame. I was about eight feet away from Luc Robitaille. We breathed the same popcorn-scented air.
What a thrill. It was all worth those few scary moments at the beginning.
When was the last time you were scared and/or intimidated? How did it work out?