By Nick Fonda
Picturing the Game, an illustrated story of hockey is a book I’ve been aware of and anticipating for a couple of years.
Its author, Don Weekes, lives in Montreal but he spends a lot of time in the Townships, and has been doing so since the late 1970s. When he married his wife, Caroline, it was in Knowlton with the reception held at Owl’s Head. In the summers, you might bump into him kayaking on Brome Lake or cycling around it, while in the winters you might meet him at Sutton or Orford, likely on a run marked with a double black diamond.
Beyond the Townships, statistically-minded hockey buffs know Don Weekes as the author of 34 books including Hockey Hall of Fame Book of Trivia and Hockey’s Top 100: The Game’s Greatest Goals.
“I learned to skate when I was four or five,” Don says, “and I started playing hockey about the same time. At the beginning, these were pick-up games, but I did play three years of organized hockey until the age of 15. After that, I took up downhill skiing. But I still play a couple of games of pick-up hockey every winter.”
At 17, Don contemplated becoming an architect and he studied Civil Technology at Dawson College, which led to four summers spent with survey crews in the Yukon. However, when he started his studies at Concordia University it was in Psychology. His real interest though was in student radio, and, with the others in the station, his work was publicly recognized by the University.
With an award in hand, he landed a summer job at CJAD Radio.
“It was baptism by fire,” he says. “I was put to work on a show called Sounds Like Montreal. It was a mid-day show that ran from 9 a.m. till 2 p.m. It was an open-line show, and we always had seven or eight guests. I had to hustle.”