devils-lights-out-584

The lack of lights and empty ice surface during the Devils-Lightning clash in early January symbolizes the lack of ridiculousness in the sporting world in 2010...aside from the fact that the game started on a Friday and ended on a Sunday due to the power outage. ((Al Bello/Getty Images))

The scene is an office in a darkened corner of the CBCSports.ca wing in Toronto. Senior writer Brandon Hicks shambles in and is holding what appears an ice pack to his bandaged head, thanks to an eggnog-related Christmas Nativity mishap the night before. It makes him look like a Mummy-in-training or a fan of Olivia Newton-John's fashion style in the 1980's.

He is groggy (more than usual). He sits down and slowly begins to type words on his computer because although he can't remember where he lives at the moment, he's pretty sure he has to contribute to a year-ender due in 45 minutes.

After pondering his situation for a while, this is what he writes…

"No ridiculousness of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010."

Smiling at his sense of accomplishment, Brandon sends the sentence off in an email to his editor and tries to swat the hockey pucks that have suddenly started circling his head.

The phone rings.

Brandon: "Hello? ... Yeah that's what I wrote for you. Pretty great right? …wait what? What's a Tiger Wood? And how do you 'sext' someone…oh. Oh! Wow. CGI and everything? Ok, yes hold on."

Brandon sits back down and rewrites his sentence.

"Unless you were in Windimere, Fla., Augusta, Ga., or several thousand diners and bars across America and elsewhere, nothing ridiculous of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010."

He sends the updated sentence back to his boss and is now wondering where the hallucinatory duck waddling across his desk came from.

The phone rings again.

"Quack?? I mean…quack? Wait...ten-minute power plays?? A three-day hockey game? Time travel!? Sigh...hang on!"

Brandon rewrites his sentence for a second time and emails it to his editor...

"Unless you were in Windimere, Fla., Augusta, Ga., several thousand diners and bars across America and elsewhere, the Eastern American seaboard, that place with the Governator, or Toronto, absolutely nothing ridiculous of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010. Seriously."

Brandon leans back, sensing that either his work is done or that he may have a mild-to-heavy concussion. To punctuate the point, he can’t recall if he spells his name with a "B" or a "7."

That’s when the phone rings again.

"Hello it’s 7randon. Yes? ...what?? I thought they were on a four-game winning streak!? Ok...but what the hell does Nazem Kadri have to do with waffle—oh. 4ang on."

For a third time, Brandon rewrites the sentence. For fun he tries typing with his thumbs. It takes 20 minutes.

"Unless you were in Windimere, Fla., Augusta, Ga., several thousand diners and bars across America and elsewhere, the Eastern American seaboard, that place with the Governator, or THE CENTRE OF THE UNIVERSE, absolutely positively nothing ridiculous of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010. We mean it."

Brandon is happy, partly because he thinks he’s nailed it this time and partly because he also assumes his desk has turned into an awesome boat. How else can he explain the ground wobbling like that?

But then the phone rings again.

"Ahoy-hoy matey! ...wait did I give you permission to come aboard? ... Oh? ... Why the heck would anyone wear a basketball jersey to a baseball game?? Who!? But I thought LeBron did play for Cleveland? That’s what The Decision was?? I thought it was another crappy game show and watched The Ghost Whisperer reruns instead! Alright hang on..."

Brandon begins typing yet again...

"Unless you were in Windimere, Fla., Augusta, Ga., several thousand diners and bars across America and elsewhere, the Eastern American seaboard, that place with the Governator, THE CENTRE OF THE UNIVERSE, the Akron area, or took your talents to South Beach, absolutely positively without a doubt nothing ridiculous of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010. And don’t you forget it."

He feels he is finally done, and to celebrate the accomplishment Brandon decides to see how many spins he can do in his chair without having his feet touch the floor. He gets up to 3,245 before the phone rings again and he realizes that he wasn’t spinning at all.

"Hello? Can you please speak up? I'm in a spinny chair. … Ok? …. Are we talking about the World Cup or a 10-metre springboard competition? The first one? Right. Wait, I can't hear you over the sound of that swarm of bees. The ball did what!?"

Brandon hangs up the phone and starts dictating his sentence to his computer. Five minutes in (he talks slow), Brandon remembers that he isn't in Star Trek and his computer doesn't listen to him. So he starts typing, yet again… 

"Unless you were in Windimere, Fla., Augusta, Ga., several thousand diners and bars across America and elsewhere, the Eastern American seaboard, that place with the Governator, THE CENTRE OF THE UNIVERSE, the Akron area, South Beach, the country that South Beach inhabits, the giant land mass just south of there, continental Europe, the island just north of continental Europe, Asia, South Asia, Southwest Asia (also known as Africa), and that prison nation where island just north of continental Europe sent its convicts, absolutely positively irreversibly without a doubt nothing ridiculous of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010. Please don't make us come over there."

He sends the sentence off and tries to run away before the phone rings again. Unfortunately for Brandon, in his addled state he runs in a complete circle and arrives at the very moment that the phone rings. Again.

"Oh God, what now? … Uh-huh?  …Ok. I get the seventeen cauldrons, hockey [hockey], and Zamboni lore. I even get (shudder) doubles luge.

"But why the heck did they hold an Olympic competition during Spring Break?"

Brandon hangs up the phone, takes a deep breath, and looks at his Charlie Conway poster for inspiration. He then smiles, stretches his fingers, and types...

"If you were in Antarctica or the island nation of Tokelau, nothing ridiculous of note happened at all in the sporting world during 2010."

With that, Brandon sends the final email away and sits triumphantly at his desk, wracking his brain to try and remember whether or not it is in fact his birthday today. Fellow co-workers take Brandon back to the hospital after he tries to take a bite out of the CBC logo on the wall, mistaking it for a giant, delicious red pineapple.