by Jess(ica) D of the Dark Rainbows
I still remember the first time I encountered BTSH. Walking my dog around Tompkins, I was instantly intrigued by the large crowd of people at the skate park playing sneaker hockey and drinking beer. It looked rowdy, it looked fast paced, it looked fun. It reminded me of playing floor hockey in gym class- a crowd favorite. I stood nostalgically watching a shootout, seeing the rambunctious cheers from not just those on the team but everyone on the blacktop and knew this was something I wanted to be a part of. I kept walking my dog around the courts every Sunday until I finally managed to ask someone leaving what the league was. Our exchange was brief but helpful:
“What’s this called?”
“Black top street hockey!”
“How can I join?”
“There’s a website, you can email the league and try to be a free agent.”
I sent an email but never heard back. You guys are like the mafia- hard to get in, impossible to leave. A year later a work softball teammate of mine asked if I wanted to join his team because “we could use some girls”. I instantly said yes, not realizing it was the same league that had previously eluded me. And thus, I became Jess D of the Dark Rainbows.