Monday, July 16, 2018

Taylor Higgins Visits Section 36!


Section 36 Bruins has its first visitor! Taylor Higgins is a former Bruins Ice Girl, a former pageant queen, and she just published her first book! I’m thrilled that she took the time out of her schedule to
discuss those topics with us, and I’m sure you’ll love everything she had to say!

So, let’s see what happens when Taylor Higgins visits Section 36!

You were a Bruins Ice Girl during the 2014-15 season. What made you decide to try out for that team?
I've been skating as long as I've been walking. Figure skating has always been a major part of my life, as well as the game of hockey. I thought, "What better way to combine my passion for being on ice with the pride I have for my city and its people?" Auditioning to become a Boston Bruins Ice Girl was the easiest, most logical decision I've ever made. I was selected as a member of the team during my very first audition with the organization and my time as an Ice Girl has left me with nothing but unforgettable memories.

Do you have a favorite memory from that season?
It's impossible to narrow it down to one, specific memory. Visiting the Hope Lodge in Boston, a free lodging community that offers its patients (who do not reside in the area) accessibility to the treatment they need without the worry of food and shelter, was incredible. The facility and its residents have stayed with me after all these years. Then of course, there was nothing better than walking around TD Garden in uniform when suddenly, the Bruins goal horn sounds, Kernkraft 400 is playing so the loud the building is practically shaking, and the fans are erupting with excitement.  

You spent a year as Miss Teen Massachusetts United States. What did you enjoy about holding that title?
Miss MA Teen US was the first pageant I'd ever competed in. Once
crowned, I did not waste a second of the honor bestowed upon me. Myself, along with my Miss (Hi Julianna!), went to work immediately, assuring ourselves that our reign would live on even after we crowned our successors. We worked tirelessly to become a staple in our community, introducing the US organization to brand new events, charities, and opportunities in the process. After paving the way, both the USA and America organizations have since began the same involvement in identical occasions. Of course I enjoyed many rewarding appearances, but the people we met and the changes we made as a team is one of my favorite things about that title. 

You recently published your first book. What can you tell me about Between the Stitching?
Between The Stitching, my first publication, is a game changer of a story. Join me in black and white as I lead you through professional baseball, broken people, severe love, and the raw consequences of great loss. This book is currently available for purchase on Amazon. 


Why did you decide to write it?
Originally as a healing outlet for myself. Writing is something I find to be valuable and therapeutic, but in this case specifically, I wrote this book to implement change into our world. Love should be valued in ways that it's not. Being heartbroken makes you vulnerable in the most beautiful way possible. Broken hearts are simply individuals who gave the right kind of love to the wrong person. Between The Stitching has a message for everybody, so grab yourself a copy and find out which part of you needs strengthening in this dark, yet hysterical nonfiction. 

Who should most read your book?
Anyone who has ever suffered loss of any kind will benefit from this story, I guarantee it. If you're a baseball fan on top of it, even better! I promise you it will be unlike any book you've ever read before. I recommend this to mature audiences only. 

What has the writing process meant to you personally?
Writing is a journey. It is a way to allow other people into your world to experience your dealings first hand as if they were witnesses to everything you've endured. It is my way of inspiring, teaching, changing, and creating. I've connected with wonderful people near and far, and I offer comfort to those in need. Writing is the greatest gift of all. 

What does the future hold for you?
I intend to keep writing! The response I've received in the past few days since the book was published has been overwhelming. Not only are people enjoying my work, they are feeling from my work as well. They say you've done your job as an author if you can make your readers feel. My readers have laughed out loud and cried out loud - they've felt anger and they've felt love. I touch on so many different emotions in Between The Stitching, and I make sure each reader is onboard for the emotional rollercoaster. Because of the impactful response, I will absolutely continue my writing. 

——

I love the sound of that!

I want to give huge thanks to Taylor for doing this interview. I also want to thank her for providing the pictures to accompany the interview. They certainly make the interview a lot more fun to read.

Of course, I encourage you to grab your own copy of Taylor’s book, Between the Stitching. When you do, be sure to let me (and Taylor) how much you liked it! As she said, you can find it on Amazon, so go buy your copy now!

Thanks again for visiting, Taylor, and good luck with your book!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Go Ahead. Whine about the Officials

Go ahead. Because last night's game is exactly the kind of game people who tell you not to whine about the officials expect.

You know the ones. The official somehow screws your team in the last minute. Maybe they call a completely outrageous penalty against your team in overtime of a playoff game. Maybe the other team then, of course, wins the game on the resulting power play.


What a hose job!


Not so, those people will tell you. The officials didn't lose the game. You did.


First of all, you should have scored more goals in regulation. Remember that one shot in the first period where the goalie made that amazing save on you? If you had just scored that one, the game wouldn't have been tied at the end of regulation. You would have won the game before the horrible penalty. 


Or, you could have just killed off the penalty in overtime. Just put on your big boy pants and kill the penalty. Then, win it on your own once you're back to regular strength. 


Basically, you can't blame the officials because it's just up to you to make every single play all game and never screw up even once for even a little bit. Ever. 


And, the Bruins pretty much did that last night. They had a goal controversially taken away from them in overtime. They had a cheapo penalty called against them in overtime. They had a penalty shot not awarded to them when everyone outside of Toronto knew they deserved one. But, they persevered. They ignored the momentum swing of taking away the goal. They ignored the terrible non-call for covering the puck in the crease. They killed off the incredibly weak penalty. 


Then they just won the game by making the shot when they needed to.


Wonderful. They deserved the win 100%. But, I just have one small question about the way they persevered. The way the didn't let it bother them. The way they overcame all the odds.


Why did they have to do that?


Ottawa didn't have to do that. Why only the Bruins? Ottawa didn't have to do that in game two either, when they were handed an overtime win. So, if you want to point out that the Bruins just need to play a perfect game, and then they'll win...that if they just overcome every single hose job they'll still come out on top, you can do that. You can say that's why they can't whine about officials. 


I'll just ask why can't they whine about being made to do that? Why is it only them that has to play the perfect game? Why are they the only team that has to execute every little thing to perfection every single time? Why aren't they handed a playoff game on a silver platter? Why can't they complain that it's not fair? 


Why aren't you complaining that it's not fair? Because, isn't that what you thought you were watching? A fair sporting event? A competition between two teams playing with an agreed-upon set of rules? Why don't you complain when that doesn't happen? Why don't you want everything balanced?


Why is it OK if only the Bruins are put at a disadvantage? Why is it OK if the Bruins have to work harder to get their win? Why is that just the way it goes? Why can't you blame the officials when that happens? Why can't you expect them to do their jobs as well as you expect the Bruins to do theirs? 


Why not?

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Does Claude Julien Need to Go?

When I was a kid, I remember seeing a book in the bookstore. The title was “Is Elivs Alive?”. I went over to check it out. I was really hoping that the author had the ability to publish a book like that where you opened it to see one sentence. “No, you dumbass.” Followed by 200 blank pages.

That’s what I want to do with this post.

“No, you dumbass.”

Now, in this case, the “dumbass” might be a bit harsh. Thinking Julien needs to go doesn’t reflect on you the way some other “opinions” might. But, it’s certainly not one I agree with.

But, you see it during almost every game. “The team is flat!” “Julien doesn’t have them ready to play!”

I don’t really understand it.

For the sake of argument, let’s pretend it’s the coach’s job to get his players “ready to play.” Let’s pretend that professional athletes paid millions of dollars aren’t supposed to get themselves ready. Let’s pretend it’s all up to Claude to get the team to get off to a fast start.

How, exactly, is he supposed to do that?

Is it with the fiery locker room speech? “Win one for the Gipper” and all that? Doesn’t that a little stale after, say, 20 times? And even if it doesn’t, when is that speech given? In the locker room before warm-ups? When they then have all kinds of time to themselves without a coach to fire them up? On the bench just before the game? Even then, would that work? If the coach gets them all pumped up into a lather and sends them out onto the ice, they don’t drop the puck right away. Right? The players circle around in their positions for a bit. Wait for everyone to get ready. Then, wait some more. So, it’s on the player to keep whatever energy he had after he left the bench, and carry it through face-off. The coach doesn’t do that. 

Or, does everyone mean “tactically ready” to play? Does Julies not give them the plays they need to succeed? But, most of the complaining I see is about the start of games. Does he forget how to draw plays for the first two minutes, but then remember halfway through the period?

Or, maybe it’s not Claude’s fault?

For some of this, I blame the Patriots and their “Do Your Job” mentality. They have managed to convince Boston fans that all it takes to win if for everyone to do what they need to do. That sounds all fine and dandy, as long as you can do what you’re supposed to do. Sure, the play may say I block the linebacker to spring the running back for a big gain. But, if the linebacker outweighs me by 100 pounds, me “doing my job” just isn’t going to happen. I’m not lazy. I’m not unprepared. The coach got me ready to play. Things are just hard to do sometimes.

So, isn’t it possible that the Bruins are ready to play? They have all the necessary plays. They know what to do, and they have the energy level to do it. But, scoring goals is hard. That it’s harder to make plays when someone else is trying to stop you. That sometimes you just fail at things. Sometimes your best player doesn’t score a goal in every game. Sometimes a guy falls down. Sometime you don’t win the game.


No matter how “ready” you are.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Searching for Bobby Orr, by Stephen Brunt

Bobby Orr may very well be the greatest player to ever lace up hockey skates. He dominated the game like nobody before him ever had. But, he played in a time that was a bit too early for his greatness to develop the mass appeal it deserved. This book looks to explain his greatness, starting with him as a young child. It follows him through his juniors career, and on to Boston. It goes into the struggles and his career is plagued by injuries, cutting his career far too short. It deals with his struggles as his career comes to an end. It dives into his relationship with his agent, and life after hockey. What made Bobby Orr the legend he became?


I admit, I had no idea how little I knew about Bobby Orr before I read this book. I'm too young to remember his career. I new he was the best Bruins player ever. I know about the winning goal. That's about it. So, for me, this book was an incredible eye opening into a player I should have known everything about. He wasn't just the greatest ruins player. That was cutting him short. I had no idea just how much the injuries interrupted his career...not just shorten it. I didn't know the role of his agent, although I should have, So, for me, this book was fantastic. A new story or piece of information on every page. I finished reading the book, and instantly needed to search the internet looking for clips of Orr in action. Unfortunately, those are still few and far between. It made my imagine Orr playing today. Not only with the contant promotion of his skills, but surgeons who know more about what they're doing. How much longer could he have played? This book kept me reading, wanting to find out even more. I had a hard time putting it down, and can't wait to pick it up again.

Rating: 4 pucks

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Dropping the Puck

Welcome to the first post of my Bruins blog! I know what you're thinking. Aren't you a Red Sox fan? And, you'd be right. But, just because I'm a Sox fan first and foremost, am I supposed to ignore the other sports in town? Certainly not. Might I sometimes have things to say about those sports? Of course I might. Isn't it a great idea to have a place for other Bruins fans to see what I have to say about their favorite team without Red Sox stuff getting in the way? Isn't it just as great to not force Red Sox fans to read my thoughts on the Bruins? Again, yes...and yes! So, I created this little corner of the internet to do just that. How often will I post? Oh, I don't know. Less often than I do on Section 36. But, hopefully enough to keep you interested. It's definitely a work in progress. We'll see how many great features from Section 36 I bring over here. I could certainly see "pictures" being a lot of fun in black and gold. I'm excited about having a place to talk about some of the great Bruins books I've read. Who knows...maybe I can even get a "visitor" or two to stop by. This should be fun. Stay tuned.

Until then, check out some posts I wrote on Section 36 that talk about the Bruins as well. Enjoy!

In "How Spoiled am I?" I blame the Bruins for my need to have a Jersey to wear during important games for all four sports teams.

In "Congratulations Patriots!" I discuss how great it is that all the teams can celebrate championships together on equal footing.

In "What if there was a Boston Sports Reward Program" I wonder...well, you know.

In "Which Images Make Your Grid Of Champions" I wonder which is the most iconic image from each of the last nine Boston Sports championships.

The plan is  for me to be adding lots more great content just like that, but right here on this blog. This is where it will be all Bruins, all the time.


I hope you'll be back!

More to Read from Other Sections