>A Brady Hjelle Christmas
Brady Hjelle: I think there must be something wrong with me, Jacky. Christmas is coming but I’m not happy, I don’t feel the way I’m supposed to feel. I just don’t understand Christmas, I guess. I like getting presents, and sending cards and decorating trees and all that, but I’m still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.
Jacky: Brady Hjelle, you’re the only person I know who can take a wonderful season like Christmas and turn it into a problem. Maybe RWD is right: of all the Brady Hjelles in the world, you’re the Brady Hjelliest.
Brady Hjelle: Drew, you’re the only person I know who can raise a cloud of dust in a snowstorm.
RWD: May I help you?
BRADY HJELLE: I am in sad shape.
RWD: Wait a minute, before you begin, I must ask that you pay in advance. Five cents, please. Boy what a sound! How I love hearing that old money clank! That beautiful sound of cold hard cash! That beautiful, beautiful sound: nickels, nickels, nickels! That beautiful sound of clinking nickels! All right now, what seems to be your trouble?
BRADY HJELLE: I feel depressed. I know I should be happy, but I’m not.
RWD: Well, as they say on TV, the mere fact that you realize you need help indicates that you are not too far gone. I think we better pinpoint your fears. If we can find out what you’re afraid of, we can label it. Are you afraid of referees? If you are, then you have officialphobia.
BRADY HJELLE: I don’t think that’s quite it.
RWD: How about pucks? If you are afraid of pucks, you have rubberdiskophobia.
BRADY HJELLE: Well, sort of, but I’m not sure.
RWD: Are you afraid of odd man rushes? If you are, then you have twoononeophobia. Maybe you have Mankatomavsophobia. This is fear of getting run over by opponents. Or, quintigoalophobia, which is the fear of opponents going five-hole. Or maybe you have Lordstanleysgameophobia. Do you think you have Lordstanleysgameophobia?
BRADY HJELLE: What’s Lordstanleysgameophobia?
RWD: The fear of hockey!
BRADY HJELLE: THAT’S IT! Actually, RWD, my trouble is Christmas. I just don’t understand it. I feel sort of let down.
RWD: You need involvement. You need to be involved in some real Christmas project. How would you like to be the coach of our Christmas game?
BRADY HJELLE: Me? You want me to be the coach of the Christmas game?
RWD: Sure Brady Hjelle! We need a coach. You need involvement. We’ve got referees, entertainment, bananas, everyone you need. We even have a Christmas queen.
BRADY HJELLE: I don’t know anything about coaching a Christmas game.
RWD: Don’t worry; I’ll be there to help you. I’ll meet you at the auditorium. Incidentally, I know how you feel about all this Christmas business, getting depressed and all that. It happens to me every year. I never get what I really want, I always get a lot of stupid toys or clothes or a bicycle or something like that.
BRADY HJELLE: What is it you want?
RWD: A national championship.
RWD: All right, quiet everybody. Our coach will be here any minute and we’ll start practice.
Wade Bergman: Coach? What coach?
RWD: Brady Hjelle.
Drew Olson: Oh no, no, we’re doomed.
Wade Bergman: This will be the worst Christmas game ever.
RWD: Here he comes! Attention everyone. Here’s our director.
BRADY HJELLE: Well, it’s real good seeing you all here. As you know we are going to play in the Christmas game. Due to the shortage of time, we’ll get right down to work. One of the first things to ensure a good performance is strict attention to the coach. I’ll keep my directions simple. If I point to the right, it means the right wing carries the puck. If I make a slashing motion across my throat, it means I think the ref has made a bad call. If I make a revolving motion with my hand, it means skate faster. If I spread my hands apart, it means make a long pass. It’s the spirit of the player that counts, the attention that they show their coach. Am I right? I said am I right?
BRADY HJELLE: Stop the music! All right now, we’re going to do this game, and we’re going to do it right. RWD, get those jerseys and playbooks and pass them out. Now the equipment girl will be handing out your gear.
RWD: You’re a forward.
MCON: Do forwards have naturally curly hair?
RWD: Drew Akins, you’re the goalie.
Akins: In spite of my outward appearance, I will try to keep the crease clean.
RWD: Schmitty, you’re Derek Shepherd.
Kyle Schmidt: Every Christmas it’s the same. I always end up being Derek Shepherd.
RWD: Jacky! You have to get rid of that stupid blanket! And here, memorize these plays.
Jacky: I can’t memorize these plays. This is ridiculous.
RWD: Memorize them and be ready to play when I tell you to.
Jacky: I can’t memorize this so quickly. Why should I be put through such agony? Give me one good reason why I should memorize this.
RWD (showing her fist): I’ll give you 5 good reasons. 18.104.22.168.5.
Jacky: Those are good reasons. Christmas is not only getting too commercial, it’s getting too dangerous.
RWD: And get rid of that stupid blanket. What’s a center gonna look like with a stupid blanket like that?
Jacky: Well, this is one center that’s gonna keep his trusty blanket with him. You wouldn’t hit an innocent center, would you?
RWD: Okay, Mr. Coach, the cast is set. Take over.
BRADY HJELLE: All right, let’s have quiet, places everybody. Seidel, set the mood for the first period.
BRADY HJELLE: Cut cut! No no no! Look, let’s rehearse the power play. Mikey–
MCON: I can’t go on the ice, there’s too much dust. It’s taking the curl out of my naturally curly hair.
BRADY HJELLE: Don’t think of it as dust. Think of it as maybe the soil of some great past civilization. Maybe the soil of the ancient Duluth Curling Club arena. It staggers the imagination. He may be carrying the soil that was tread upon by Bill Watson. Or even Huffer Christiansen.
Akins: Sorta makes you wanna treat me with more respect, doesn’t it?
MCON: You’re an absolute mess. Just look at yourself.
Akins: On the contrary, I didn’t think I looked that good.
RWD: What about my part? What about the Christmas queen, hmm? Are you going to let all this beauty go to waste? You do think I’m beautiful, don’t you Brady Hjelle? You didn’t answer me right away. You had to think about it first, didn’t you? If you really had thought I was beautiful, you would have spoken right up. I know when I’ve been insulted! I know when I’ve been insulted!
BRADY HJELLE: Good grief. All right, let’s take it from the top again. Places. Puck drop.
RWD: Brady Hjelle, isn’t it a great game?
BRADY HJELLE: That does it. Now look, if we’re ever to get this game off the ground, we’ve gotta have some cooperation.
RWD: What’s matter, Brady Hjelle? Don’t you think it’s great?
BRADY HJELLE: It’s all wrong.
RWD: Look Brady, let’s face it, we all know that Christmas hockey is a big commercial racket. There’s a big eastern bias, you know.
BRADY HJELLE: Well, this is one game that won’t be commercial.
RWD: Look, Brady Hjelle, what do you want?
BRADY HJELLE: We need a Christmas tree.
RWD: Hey, perhaps a tree. A great big shiny aluminum Christmas tree. That’s it, Brady Hjelle! You get the tree. I’ll handle this crowd.
BRADY HJELLE: Ok. I’ll take Jacky with me. The rest of you practice your line changes.
RWD: Get the biggest aluminum tree you can find. Maybe paint it pink!
Wade Bergman: Yeah, do something right for a change, Brady Hjelle.
BRADY HJELLE: I don’t know Jacky, I just don’t know. Well, I guess we better concentrate on finding a nice Christmas tree.
Jacky: I suggest we try those searchlights, Brady Hjelle.
Jacky: This really brings Christmas close to a person.
BRADY HJELLE: Fantastic.
Jacky: Gee, do they still make wooden Christmas trees?
BRADY HJELLE: This little green one here seems to need a home.
Jacky: I don’t know, Brady Hjelle. Remember what RWD said? This doesn’t seem to fit the modern spirit.
BRADY HJELLE: I don’t care. I’ll decorate it, and it’ll be just right for our game. Besides I think it needs me.
Mike Seidel: This is the music I’ve selected for the Christmas game.
RWD: What kind of hockey music is that?
Mike Seidel: Beethoven hockey music.
RWD: What has Beethoven music got to do with hockey? Everybody talks about how great Beethoven is. Beethoven wasn’t so great.
Mike Seidel: What do you mean, Beethoven wasn’t so great?
RWD: He never got his name on the Stanley Cup, did he? Have you ever seen his name on the Stanley Cup, hmm? How can you say a person is great who’s never had his name on the Stanley Cup?
Mike Seidel: Good grief.
Brady and Jacky come back with the little tree.
BRADY HJELLE: We’re back.
Drew Olson: Boy are you stupid Brady Hjelle!
Wade Bergman: What kind of a tree is that?
RWD: You were supposed to get a good tree! Can’t you even tell a good tree from a poor tree?
Drew Olson: I told you he’d goof it up. He’s not the kind you can depend on for anything.
Wade Bergman: You’re hopeless, Brady Hjelle.
MCON: Completely hopeless.
BRADY HJELLE: Rats.
RWD: You’ve been dumb before Brady Hjelle, but this time you really did it. What a treat.
BRADY HJELLE: I guess you were right, Jacky. I shouldn’t have picked this little tree. Everything I do turns into a disaster. I guess I really don’t know what hockey is all about. Isn’t there anyone who knows what hockey is all about?
Jacky: Sure, Brady Hjelle, I can tell you what hockey is all about. Lights, please. And there were in the same country coaches, keeping watch, abiding over their teams by weekends, and lo the angel of the NCAA came upon them, and the glory of the tournament shone round about them, and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, fear not, for behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is given this day in the city of Detroit a tournament, which is the Frozen Four. And this shall be a sign unto you, you shall find the teams with the best pairwise rankings meeting in the regionals. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of fans praising the hockey gods and saying glory to hockey in the winter and on earth peace and goodwill toward men. That’s what hockey is all about Brady Hjelle.
Jacky’s voice: For behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is given this day in the city of Detroit a tournament, which is the Frozen Four. And this shall be a sign unto you…
BRADY HJELLE: Jacky is right. I won’t let all this commercialism ruin my Christmas. I’ll take this little tree home and decorate it, and I’ll show em it really will work at our game. I’ve killed it. OH! Everything I touch gets ruined.
JACKY: I never thought it was such a bad little tree. It’s not bad at all, really. Maybe it just needs a little love.
RWD: Brady Hjelle is a blockhead, but he did get a nice tree.
Loo loo loo, loo loo-loo loo-loo, loo loo loo loo-loo loo loo.
BRADY HJELLE: What’s going on here?
Everyone: Merry Christmas Brady Hjelle!