December 23 is a special day for many reasons.
This year, it falls just two days before the opening of the World Juniors instead of the typical three (the tournament usually begins on Boxing Day).
And, in the wake of Calgary’s most recent blizzard, maybe some of us could eventually look back at Dec. 23, 2020 as the day we finally realized just how much fun it can be to stay at home and wear a warm mask in public during a deadly pandemic.
Sorry, I think that might have been a grievance slipping out… which leads me to the most important reason to cherish every December 23: the annual celebration of Festivus is upon us! Get the pole out of the crawl space, start planning your feats of strength, and let’s all get together to air some grievances.
Why don’t we start this day of tradition with that last part. The Calgary Flames haven’t won a Stanley Cup in over 30 years, now — surely we have grievances about some of them. Maybe the critique contained herein can motivate the Flames to reach the “Festivus Maximus” once again… or maybe it’s just a satirical column for the holiday season. (As crazy as that sounds).
Here’s a list of some grievances recently aired by or about members of the team.
Johnny Gaudreau — Flames GM Brad Treliving is beginning to get annoyed with his star winger’s penny-pinching ways. Gaudreau texted Treliving four times last week asking for information about the latest deals and flyers.
Andrew Mangiapane — Held out on another Treliving by refusing to negotiate with Boston Pizza about their proposed new “Mangia-penne” dish.
Matthew Tkachuk — Takes home $7 million a year, the highest salary on the team, but hasn’t been seen scoring a goal in months.
Milan Lucic — No fourth-liner should be paid that much money, according to that one Oilers fan you work with who bought a James Neal T-shirt last October.
Connor Mackey — Still can’t figure out why he found Spencer Foo’s business card sitting in his dressing room stall.
Sean Monahan — Continues to frustrate certain onlookers who claim he underachieves at every measurable facet of hockey, with the exception of little-known advanced statistics like “goals” and “points.”
Louis Domingue — Annoys his agent by insisting upon exclusively baking pies and ignoring the obvious marketing potential of “Domingue Meringues.”
Justin Kirkland — Is getting really tired of Geoff Ward asking to see his team membership card.
Chris Tanev — Since signing his four-year, $18 million contract with the Flames, Tanev has expressed annoyance with Google redirecting searches for his own name to a page reading “Did you mean: Troy Brouwer.”
David Rittich — Is frustrated by the Flames not giving him a changing stall this year, with management instead opting to write his name on the wall.
Alex Petrovic — Is starting to get worried that the Flames might do the unprecedented and unthinkable move: protecting Mark Giordano instead of him in the Expansion Draft.
Oliver Kylington — Can’t figure out why Steve Yzerman keeps sending him connection requests on LinkedIn.
Joakim Nordstrom — Has tried countless times to set his new “work” location on Google Maps to the Saddledome, but the app keeps reverting it back to Chinook Centre for some reason.
Jacob Markstrom — Joins Miikka Kiprusoff as the only two goaltenders in team history to own a “no-move clause,” confusing some Flames fans who could have sworn that Mike Smith also had one when he played for the team.