Fellow Ruggers,

Welcome to the dark days of winter, where most of the country is buried under snow and rugby is just a pipe dream. Don't worry or fret, Punxatawny Phil will/will not see his shadow in a few weeks (whichever is the one that means winter is shorter this year). [If he sees his shadow it's another six weeks of winter. If not, spring is on the way. - Wes] It will still be butt cold until mid-March.

While visiting my parents over the Holidays, I did some Christmas shopping while wearing a stylish rugby jacket. A clerk who was waiting on me asked if I played rugby and within a few questions/comments, we had become good friends. And, of course, I had a new business contact. It was at that point that I came up with the idea for this article: Six Degrees of Rugby Separation! No matter where you go on this great Earth, you're bound to run into a rugby player and in a matter of minutes, you'll be able to find at least one rugby player that you both know personally. Of course, owning a rugby supply business affords me the opportunity to get to know ruggers all over the country, and without question, I can almost always find someone that we both know. [Civil War reenacting is also like this. It's a feature of narrowly-supported, eccentric hobbies. - Wes]

So, the next time someone stops you while you're out for dinner sporting your finest rugby wear, test my theory of Six Degrees of Rugby Separation. I'd be willing to bet it works 9 out of 10 times. Also, whenever you get the chance, you should wear something supporting rugby (tee-shirt, jersey, jacket, etc...). We are walking billboards for this sport - the more you expose it (rugby, not yourself) to the masses, the more newbies we'll acquire!

All of this talk of making new Rugby player friends, and talking about old rugby mates, has created a nice smooth transition to tell you about a tournament that we'll be at on February 3rd and 4th. Click the link below and you'll be transported to a rugby tournament utopia. It may be short notice, but it appears to me that it will be well worth throwing 17 guys/girls/ole boys into a van and shooting down to Panama City Beach, FL. I've hypothesized in the past that rugby tournaments today need a niche to attract players and teams. Even though this tournament is in its infancy, you can call this one the nicheapalooza! Look at the facts on this one: Florida in the Winter, discounted rooms at the Board Walk Beach Resort and free laundry service for all clubs staying at the resort, free massage therapy, hot tubs at the pitches, HOOKER RUGBY Supply and a host of other local vendors will be on hand. Hey, they'll even be giving trophies to the best partying team and individual at the tournament party! I guess the final reason to go to this tournament would be the rugby (of course!). The Panama City Hurricanes are not looking to attract the Country's Top 10 teams. They're looking to attract the teams that want to come down and have a hell of a good time. I hope to see you all there!



Pat Laczkowski
Hooker Rugby Supply