We here at OFB, and most of you reading this, are long-time Capitals fans. We’ve been through the tough times; great seasons followed by dashed hopes; Juneau jubilation and Cup-finals disappointment; the Jagr-signing euphoria and the Jagr-reality letdown; the dreaded (but necessary) fire sale that saw so many Capitals veterans hit the highway.
It’s been a while since we first fell head over heels for hockey, and for the Washington Capitals in particular . . . but there are new folks discovering the Capitals all the time, experiencing that new-relationship thrill with their new dance partner.
Mrs. OrderedChaos’ coworker Megan has never been to a Capitals game. Her brother is a hockey fan living in Upstate New York, but her family overall is pretty new to the sport. With her mother visiting this week, Megan decided that taking her mom (and herself) to a Caps game was a perfect activity for a visiting family member — so tonight the Capitals aren’t just hosting the Boston Bruins, but also a few brand-new fans.
Megan immediately asked my wife about hockey etiquette, and what to expect at the Verizon Center. To Mrs. OC’s credit, here are the basic rules she immediately laid out for her friend without hesitation:
- Wait for a whistle/stoppage in play to return to, or leave, your seats.
- Wear red.
- Stand up and high-five your neighbors whenever the Caps score.
- Lean back–if you lean forward (particularly in the upper deck), those behind you can’t see.
So clearly my wife, who’d never been a hockey aficionado before met, has embraced the sport pretty emphatically. She even loaned Megan and her mom Caps jerseys for the night, so they could be appropriately clad for the festivities.
What’s the first thing Megan did upon receiving the Caps sweaters last week? Took photos of herself wearing the jerseys to taunt her brother, a Philadelphia Flyers’ fan.
It’s pretty darned cool to see a new hockey fan so excitedly embrace her hometown team — and combining that enthusiasm with taunting a Flyers fan, well, that’s just heartwarming.
So if you happen to see Megan in the stands, welcome her with a high-five or a LET’S GO CAPS.
And if you have any advice you’d want give a new Capitals fan beyond the list above — arena etiquette, team traditions, anything you think a newly-minted fan should know — feel free to add them as comments!