In honor of the Canadiens’ visit to
“They found the body,” she said. “You know. The rest of it that goes with the head.”
I stood up. “Where?”
She looked at me the way a cop looks at somebody who finds corpseless heads in the street. But she answered. “
“Where the Panthers play?” I asked, and a little icy-fingered jolt ran through me. “On the ice?”
LaGuerta nodded, still watching me. “The hockey team,” she said. “Is that the Panthers?”
“I think that’s what they’re called,” I said. I couldn’t help myself.
She pursed her lips. “They found it stuffed into the goalie’s net.”
“Visitor’s or home?” I asked.
She blinked. “Does it make a difference?”
I shook my head. “Just a joke, Detective.”
“Because I don’t know how to tell the difference. I should get somebody there who knows about hockey,” she said, her eyes finally drifting away from me and across the crowd, searching for somebody carrying a puck. “I’m glad you can make a joke about it,” she added. “What’s a—” she frowned, trying to remember, “— a sam-bolie?”
She shrugged. “Some kind of machine. They use it on the ice?”
“Whatever. The guy who drives it, he takes it out on the ice to get ready for practice this morning. A couple of the players, they like to get there early? And they like the ice fresh, so this guy, the—” she hesitated slightly “—the sam-bolie driver? He comes in early on practice days. And so he drives this thing out onto the ice? And he sees these packages stacked up. Down there in the goalie’s net? So he gets down and he takes a look.” She shrugged again. “Doakes is over there now. He says he can’t get the guy to calm down enough to say any more than that.”
“I know a little about hockey,” I say.
She looked at me again with somewhat heavy eyes. “So much I don’t know about you, Dexter. You play hockey?”
“No, I never played,” I said modestly. “I went to a few games.” She didn’t say anything and I had to bite my lip to keep from blathering on. In truth, Rita had season tickets for the
While I do think most Americans probably know what a Zamboni is, I find this passage oddly expressive of the general national attitude towards hockey. On the television version of Dexter, which is actually slightly better than the book, the same situation takes place, but for some reason the Panthers declined to allow their name to be used, so the team referred to is fictional- the Miami Something-or-Others. You’d think the Panthers would be grateful for whatever televised publicity they can get, even on premium cable, but maybe they didn’t like the idea of being associated with exsanguinated, dismembered hookers.
Anyway, I do hope that Aebischer/Huet doesn’t find anything untoward in his net this evening…