Saturday, March 18, 2017

Breaking a bully's nose was a defining moment in my life

I was always a shy kid.  I let people push me around.  Didn't really fight back as I was always consumed with fear of life and people.  Vince was his name, he had spiked hair, glasses and big arms for a guy in grade 9.  The school I was at had a policy that you got suspended 5 days for fighting and anyone who watched a fight got suspended for a day.  The principle wouldn't break up a fight, instead he would video tape the people at the fight.  Needless to say in our school there was not many fisticuffs.

I don't know what snapped inside me that I decided to challenge Vince to a fight behind the hockey rink.  As soon as I did the kids who enjoyed a good fight became cheerleaders walking us to the area away from the school.  Vince cam at me smiling, went to push me and that is when I fed his face a left, a left, a left, he bent over and then I kicked Vince in the face.  Fight was over, Vince was down for the count and I was told by the crowd of more experienced fighters to take off.

Even though I called Vince later that night to make sure he was ok breaking that kids nose was one of the defining moments of my life.  I finally took a step outside of my shell of shyness and stood up for myself.  It was no ok that Vince bullied me and by breaking Vince's nose I was saying with a fist it stops now.

The interesting thing is 20 years later in our pink shirt anti-bullying world is I would of been told what I did was wrong.  I should of told an adult who would... I don't even know what an adult could do expect morph me into a bigger target as being a rat just encouraged more bullying.  Sometimes being a human is having to take matters into your own hands and stand up for yourself.  It wasn't an adult saying it was not ok to bully me.  I said with force it was not ok to bully me.

No I am not saying force is the answer.  I don't have answers.  It just is interesting how what was the right choice for me 20 years ago likely isn't the right choice for young people today.  When I grew up you punched the bully in the nose.  Respect was earned and then everyone went on with their lives.  Today... I don't know how respect is earned by telling an adult.

The Master Iceman

Friday, March 3, 2017

I miss you Phil Allen, you were a heck of a coach, an even better man.

It is always shocking to hear someone you knew passed away.  I hadn't thought about Phil Allen for years until the other day on twitter I noticed they had a Phil Allen Memorial award.  I didn't know how much Phil had affected my life till I read that.  For those that don't know Phil he was a heck of a basketball coach, father and promoter of sports in Alberta working on SAIT, Grant MacEwan, and Lakeland College.  His passion was unmatched and dedication to building quality basketball programs which with along with winners produced good men.

Frankly Phil was a hardass as a coach.  The type you want to play for but better be ready to play for.  On and off the court he took every aspect of running a good basketball program serious.  His players actually were expected to do homework, attend classes and act like university students.  You might of started out as an immature young man playing for Phil but you came away a young adult when you left his program.

The thing I liked about Phil the most was even the times when his passion for the sport got the best of him and it had negative consequences Phil never let it stop him.  He learned from his mistakes and used them to become a better man.  In life nobody or nothing is perfect.  Good people slip and fall.  The difference with Phil is he picked him self up with vengeance.  It made Phil a lot more relatable to me knowing he had gone through some tough times in his basketball journey and used those to push himself to be better.  For a young man, like I was when I knew Phil that was a worthy example how in life you have to keep on fight and battling. Mistakes will happen but you can't let those mistakes define you.

To sum up what kind of man Phil was... I was coaching a summers league to which Phil was the head of.  He actually lead the charge to get coaches like myself paid a little.  Not a lot but a little.  Any time I had a question, even if it meant calling Phil a half dozen times in an evening he was always patient, positive and supportive.

Phil you were a good man.  I will miss you.  I admired you a lot and the lessons you taught me in the brief time I knew you I took with me along my journey in life.

Master Iceman

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Update on erniebcools the ATB BoostR crowdsourced shaved ice cart.

I am in the process of getting the final paperwork done on a 7x14 foot trailer.  Going the trailer route instead of traditional concession cart as I would need a trailer to haul the cart around.  I wish this process had been faster but like anything else in this world paperwork takes time.  I am having to lease to buy a trailer as buying one outright means having the money upfront.

As for the shaved ice machine and supplies I honestly want to cry when I think about it.  I have two creditcards empty, ready to spend 5000.00 on a shaved ice machine and supplies but so far trying to find a shaved ice company who wants my money has been painful.  I should of known from my past dealings with American companies that it would be difficult for them to find Canada on a map let alone actually sell stuff to a Canadian.  Awhile back I went to Kansas, was checking into a hotel and the lady asked me if Canada was in the District of Columbia.  I said yes because in her mind the only thing surrounding the US was mexico and then the earth ended.  I have inquired multiple places, asked for a quote and am still waiting.  Going to try again.  It shouldn't be rocket science but apparently selling something you sell to someone with money to buy what you are selling is difficult for Americans.

My problem is likely that I expect people to email in a timely fashion which 3 weeks is not.