Sunday morning homily XXII

There are times in life, such as this morning, where one is forced into making a decision. Do we drive over to Tampa and continue adding to the hockey collection. Or do we stay closer to home and get Trot Nixon, Colin's favorite baseball player, to sign his Red Sox jersey.

As you can see, there was no dilemma. Either decision would have left us happy. Somehow, though, watching Colin's eyes light up when he saw Trot, someone he had seen only on TV, showed we made the right call. For the record, Nixon also signed in the sweet spot of a MLB baseball.

The day of decisions will also take us to Tropicana Field this afternoon, rather than the St. Pete Times Forum, where the Lightning hopes to stave off elimination by beating New Jersey. Again, we're happy with our decision.

Rather than spend $60 a ticket for the same seats that were $25 during the Lightning's regular season, we'll be 12 rows behind Nixon at the Trop. Our tickets, which include a hot dog, pop and a snack, are just $15 a seat. And, if Colin's one of the first 7,500 kids through the door, he gets a free Devil Rays hat.

It's not that I've abandoned hockey. Nor am I suffering from burnout, thanks to a long season that started in early September. Nope, my motivation was to have Colin meet one of his Boston baseball heroes, even if that hero now plays for the Cleveland Indians. This temporary diversion, I'd dare say, was well worth the time.

A true keeper

Should the Lightning lose today, it'll also bring an end to my hockey hounding season. Do you know who signed the final puck of the season? None other than New Jersey's Martin Brodeur, providing puck no. 1,275 of the collection.

Even if I'm not exactly thrilled with the quality of the autograph, I certainly won't quibble about the fact that it came from the game's top goalie. Would you?

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