As the author of the wildly popular* Trip to the Quiet Room, a story about loss, time travel, the life of a hockey player, a little bit of magic, and Worcester, Massachusetts, I’m really happy to see that Worcester is getting a minor league hockey team back. I’m even happier to see that the owner is investing so much in the hockey culture in and around the downtown area in Worcester.
“I’m kind of smitten with Worcester. It’s an unpolished gem,” he said. “It’s affordable, it’s smack in the middle of commerce. It’s got a lot of potential.”
I remember going to see Worcester Ice Cats in their inaugural season in 1994 with some of the gang at the seafood restaurant I worked at. The AHL was such a different beast than the NHL… that bit sloppier, scrappier, and perfectly suited to a town like Worcester. It made such an impression that even nearly twenty years later, when I started to write what would become Trip to the Quiet Room I thought that the stories of those guys, particularly when their professional hockey life was done, would make for a great character. And the line, the theme I had rattling around my head while I was writing was from fellow Worcester-ite (and Vassar-ite) Liz Bishop‘s opening lines of “In the Waiting Room“:
In Worcester, Massachusetts,
I went with Aunt Consuelo
to keep her dentist’s appointment
and sat and waited for her
in the dentist’s waiting room.
It was winter. It got dark
So it’s very nice to see hockey on its way back into Worcester to fill those dark winter nights and encouraging to see such a commitment to one of my favorite cities, that rough gem.
* Warning: May not actually be popular. Contains sucralose, which has been shown to give rats and dogs a real headache when taken in quantity. Do not spray on crops.