”Season’s Tweetings: Alex Burrows vs Santa’, an original holiday tale

In what’s become something of an annual Christmas tradition, like watching Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York at the same time (by watching either one of them), we’ve put together a little poem that combines our love of hockey with our fondness of the holidays. Hope you enjoy it.

For past poems, check out Daniel’s Worst Christmas (2011) and Gary Bettman, Commissioner of Christmas (2012), or non-canon CFL tale, An Ode to Marty the Horse).


At Santa’s workshop, early fall, Kris Kringle looks to see
His lengthy list of children mean and nice.
And not because he’s thorough, but because he’s OCD,
He checks it once, and then he checks it twice.

But this night, he finds focus hard to come by. There’s a bird,
That settled in the chimney yesterday.
It won’t stop tweeting — not online, the kind that can be heard –
And Santa cannot make it go away.

“I wish that I spoke fluent bird,” he mumbles to himself.
He looks down at his list. His forehead furrows.
“But I just don’t know how to chirp,” he says. “I just speak elf.”
And then he sees a name: it’s ALEX BURROWS.

It’s right there on his naughty list. The reason? “Chirps too much,”
And bites, pulls hair and spears.” Real naughty stuff.
“Though if he gets this bird to leave,” says Santa, “or some such,
‘Chirps too much’ could become ‘chirps just enough’.”

So Santa goes to Yaletown, where the third Sedin is livin’,
To tell the winger he can strike a deal.
“Convince this bird to beat it, and your deeds will be forgiven,”
I’ll file you under NICE,” he says. “For real.”

Now, Burrows doesn’t want to get a stocking filled with coal –
His barbecue is powered by propane.
He takes the deal, and rides with Santa back up to The Pole,
And perches by the noisy bird’s domain.

“Chirp chirp,” he says into the chimney, “chirp, chirp, chirp, squawk, tweet.”
(I can’t interpret. It’s just what was heard.)
In moments, his attempt to reason with the thing’s complete.
It works. “Say goodbye,” Burr says, “To da bird.”

“You’ve saved the Christmas season!” Santa shouts, “With this maneuver,”
He gives his feet a happy little stamp.
With that, he flies the super sleigh with Burrows to Vancouver
And says, “good luck, good boy, with training camp.”

But early in October, in his workshop, Santa hears
the same bird, tapping at his chamber door.
Shortly after, in Vancouver, Santa reappears
To ask again. Quoth Burrows, “Nevermore.”

“The season has begun,” he says, “It started yesterday.
They need me here to play with Hank and Danny.”
But Santa’s desperate. At his wit’s end. “Alex cannot play,”
He thinks to himself, “If he’s injured, can he?”

The next day, the Canucks announce that Burrows hurt his foot
From blocking someone’s shot, but I suspect
That Santa had something to do with it, so he could put
To use Burr’s silver-tongued bird dialect.

Three weeks later, just as Burr is finally cleared to practice,
The bird comes back, so Santa does the same.
“No flippin’ way,” says Burrows, just as prickly as a cactus,
“Go buy Rosetta Stone Bird. I’ve a game.”

But Santa’s gone full heel by now. “You’ll find that answer tragic,”
He warns. “I’ll do far worse than simple coal.”
And thus, he curses Burrows with the darkest Christmas magic,
So suddenly, Burr just can’t buy a goal.

Through sixteen games, and fifty shots on goal, not one goes in,
Each evening, Santa taunts him: “Ho ho ho.”
One night in Raleigh, Burrows realizes he can’t win.
“All right!” He shouts. “All right! I give! I’ll go!”

“Dis is the last time,” Burrows says, “That I’ll be comin’ round.”
“I’ve too much else to do to be recruited.”
“Next time you’re in your shop and dat infernal bird is found,
“Just go get David Booth to come and shoot it.”

The lesson, if there is one, is that Santa is insane.
He’s capable of more than bringing cheer.
And hopefully this poem has, in some way, served to explain
Why Burr is sure to score more goals next year.

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  1. TubaNat
    December 21, 2013


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  2. Jacob
    December 21, 2013

    If there’s one area that the new advanced stats are still failing to adequately cover, it’s Christmas magic curses. Looks like you guys are finally redressing this but we need a confusing name for it. Perhaps PDHoHoHo? I’ll show myself out.

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    Rating: +12 (from 14 votes)
  3. Noodle
    December 21, 2013

    I love you guys. Happy Holidays/Merry Christmas everyone! May we all gorge on Nanaimo bars, turkey, or whatever other traditional things your family eats this time of year.

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    Rating: +5 (from 5 votes)
  4. 772ally
    December 21, 2013

    Great poem.
    I’ve enjoyed reading your work all year – been a fan since the blospot days. Have a Merry Christmas and Happy 2014!

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    Rating: +8 (from 8 votes)
  5. Brian
    December 22, 2013

    Well done! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and all the PITB crowd!

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    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
  6. cathylu
    December 22, 2013

    Happy Holidays to everyone north and south of the border, and overseas as well!

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    Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)