I used to really love hockey biographies when I was in elementary school. Any biographies, really, but I went on a mad streak I think, in fourth or fifth grade where I read every single non-fiction hockey book in the school and probably the public library. Books about the 'original' six-team NHL, and every hockey player bio there was. Bobby Hull, Gordie Howe, Rocket Richard. Knew about obscure Canadian towns, helmetless hockey, the absence of the forward pass.
New York Rangers
Toronto Maple Leafs
Chicago Black Hawks
Detroit Red Wings
That was it until the 1960s. And I did NOT google that, suckas!
I actually remember when helmets were optional. Remember hockey hair? Mike Bossy? I remember feeling guilty being a die-hard Islander fan because they were a lousy expansion team. Of course, those were impending DYNASTY years, suckas.
The one actual hockey player in my high school was a buddy of mine, and a die-hard Ranger fan who was five-three and openly ridiculed (actually, mostly for being a Ranger fan if I remember correctly). He got tall and gorgeous shortly after graduation.
I never got an actual Islander replica jersey. Too expensive. I opted for a real-ish Mets jersey, no number (too expensive, and I couldn't decide between 12 - Ron Darling - or 16 - Lee Mazzilli.) It was pinned on my dorm room wall, and I can't find the damn thing now. I never did the girl thing and got a 10K or 14K faceted gold Islanders/Stanley Cup charm at the Tri-County Flea Market. Never.
Hockey pretty much sucks now, though, doesn't it?
Ohhhh CANADA we stand on guard for theeeeeee!