Wednesday, November 9, 2011

My First Time Driving A Zamboni

Yesterday I accomplished my one and only New Year's Resolution by driving a Zamboni for the first time in my life. I have joined the sacred Canadian fraternity of Zamboni drivers. It was a very exciting moment, even if my first assignment was only to drive the machine out back and dump the snow. Baby steps. Next week I'll be tasked with driving "the Zam" around the parking lot before getting the chance to take it out onto the ice and do my first "Zam flood" (I've already done simple hose floods). Last season I worked as a plain and simple curling ice maker and made the decision that my future in this business would be best served by branching off into hockey ice. Now I do both. Not exactly the career one would expect after graduating with a Mathematical Economics degree, but it's one that is spiritually rewarding and a lot of fun.

What were my observations from my first Zamboni driving experience? Not every machine is the same, but on ours the gas peddle is very sensitive and the steering wheel is not. It is quite different than driving a car. Barely touch the gas and it takes off, plus you have to really crank the steering wheel to make it turn. Basically you can have a million miles of driving experience and look like a novice the first time you sit on the big blue machine. However practice makes perfect, pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work, and we're gonna take it one day at a time...or some cliche like that...

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