|LAST TAKE ON TANKARD|
|Sunday, 12 February 2012 19:41|
Apprapos to the theme of the Stratford Tankard this gentleman meet everyone before each draw as you came thhrough the door. On this finals day he greeted you by saying "Welcome to the final curtain call."
And what a final it was - Corner versus Howard...almost a Shakespearean epic - family against family, friend against friend suspenceful until the last stone and only decided by a rock that could have stopped higher in the 4 foot..but alas it gave the reigning monarch a trip to the kingdom of the Brier.
Will a new wind blow through Ontario men's curling? A couple of younger rinks made their mark especially the Mike Anderson squad. To make the grade - esquires should practice more and get a coach. It As You Like it.
Had this tournament gone on longer unto a Twelfth Night they may have made it but even without Richard III Team Howard was hard to beat.
Like at all curling events the runners-up are trotted out after the Tempest to endure the slings and arrows of outragious fortune. They are praised by all, all the while thinking to themselves but for a Measure for Measure they might be on the winner's podium.
Meanwhile for the defending champions it was Much Ado About Nothing or was it? They got quite the scare in the Page 1 game where their game seemed to tank, their rocks seemed to dive and their confidence deserted them. Despite being fan favourites, despite having the 3 guys dressed in Beer Store sports coats (the Three Gentlemen of Corona) Team Howard played its worst game ever in a Page 1 game and needed every rock they had to defeat Team Corner in thhe final.
For other squads it was Love's Labour Lost. Yet they persevere, battling every season in hopes that one day they will make the grade. For that we all salute them and thank them for the entertainment they give us in this annual Winter's Tale.
It may have been in a Midsummer Night's Dream that the Stratford folks decided they wanted to host a Tankard. And a fine job they did! The food in the Patch was THE BEST we have ever had at any Tankard or even Brier. And everything was organized so well. The best to hundreds of volunteers!
After is was over we decided to go to dinner.
Oh man...delicious! Crab stuffed chicken breast and lamb shank with rissoto. Some wine. We didn't need a Julius Ceasar salad or even need a touch of Merry Wives of Windsor salt. We consumed everything.
When we finished the big question... to dessert or not dessert. The answer?
Good bye Stratford. Thanks. Thank goodness we ate more than Hamlets.