Book Reviews

Memoir of a Hockey Nobody

Book review at Knup Sports




Hockey was his life and the author of this book, Jerry “Teabag” Hack states in the Foreword that it has likely been 40 years since he wrote a paragraph. That may be true but now he can add the worlds ACCOMPLISHED AUTHOR to his resume. I know he wrote this book about his life and hockey but this book is so much more than that. It is about relationships and success and death. There is even a mention of molestation that happened and will make you cringe a bit. It is all about the things that people deal with everyday and need to get a better understanding to how they work. Jerry uses his life and hockey to teach us some of those lessons.

Early in his childhood he developed a friendship with Randy that has transcended time. He explains that Randy had health issues that he, as a kid, never knew how severe they really were. When death came to his friend, Jerry has to deal with it in the present and is still processing the loss of his friend as an adult. It is a reminder for us to remember those we lost but their memory never goes away.

Jerry really couldn’t skate. That is a problem in hockey. Growing up in Canada it was generally conceded that every kid could skate. Jerry loved hockey and his memory goes back to the days of the Canadiens in the Stanley Cup. It was about seventh grade that he decided to make it happen. He wanted to be a hockey goalie and began to take skating lessons and improve on his skills. The equipment was sparse but the interest was keen from himself and those that he surrounded himself with.

The story about how he got the nickname “Teabag” is hilarious and a great chuckle t read. I won’t spoil the party of this one.

From there he takes us on a journey. It is a trip through the youth hockey circuit and all of the people he came into contact with. Not all of them good people but many were and caused a lasting impression. It was plenty of mediocre hockey but life was good whether they won or lost. The only part of the book for me that I waded through (I am from Central Illinois) was the lengthy diatribe of hockey levels, cities, team names that only a true hockey player and parent from Canada would understand. But I made it.

The readability of this book is outstanding. To me, it was like the author and I were sitting around having a drink and he was talking directly to me in a storytelling setting. It came across as personal and in fantastic detail.This book would be loved by virtually every hockey fan and every person that went through the levels of youth hockey in Canada. Also, this book gives us a touch of sociology and how to just plain deal with people and setbacks in life.

EVERY sports fans bookshelf should have this book.

MY TAKE: The best part to me is Jerry may have thought he was a hockey nobody but that is not true. The lives he touched were made better by knowing and interacting with Jerry Hack. Lastly, his family has a lasting blueprint into one of their ancestors past. That is awesome. Several generations down the line will be able to say, ” remember what “Teabag” had to say in his book about that.”


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