September 2021


Whatchamacallit 9: Prince Albert Raiders Sweater

Prince Albert Raiders

This sweater is hung on the back of my front door – it does so to block people from easily looking through my mail slot – which is still in my door even though mailboxes are now located near the front door.

When I went to Saskatchewan back in 2018 – making it my ninth out of ten Canadian provinces – I faced a choice between visiting the obvious Regina (which rhymes with another word) or the not so well-known Prince Albert National Park.

Clearly, I went with the latter.

On my way north to the national park, I stopped in the actual city of Prince Albert, looking for anything that said “Prince Albert” – there was nothing. The city misses out on exploiting the double and triple meanings of the city name: I could find no gift shops selling Prince Albert t-shirts.

While I ended up finding one t-shirt that said Prince Albert National Park, I still wanted something from the city, so I ended up buying this Prince Albert Raiders hockey sweater, which does feature an interlocked PA. I guess that counts for something.

Whenever I see the sweater – basically whenever I go from the living room to my bedroom, kitchen, or bathroom; the bedroom to the kitchen or bathroom; the kitchen to the bathroom; or any other occasion when I look down the hallway – I am reminded of this vacation.

The vacation to Prince Albert National Park was exceptionally well timed: I hit the park on weekdays after Canadian schools had restarted for the fall, thus the park was essentially empty and the fall colours were really amazing.

I think about the hiking, I think about the prairie land, and I remember getting to hear Billy-Ray Belcourt speak at the Saskatoon Word on the Street.

All of that from a hockey sweater representing the Prince Albert Raiders, a team I’ve never actually seen in person.

During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

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