For the past decade, Ontario hockey coach Jeremy Rupke has been creating hockey videos on everything from the best power shot drills to how to build a backyard rink.
“I was a coach and I was just looking for content online and I couldn’t really find anything that was a good source on how to play hockey,” he told CTVNews.ca in explaining why he decided to start a website and YouTube channel. The purpose of the videos, he added, is “to educate, entertain and inspire hockey players.”
But in a recent video, the Barrie, Ont., dad decided to make a video to educate himself – on “what the heck” Mason, his four-year-old son, was thinking and doing during his Timbits hockey practices.
He put a mic on him before practice and the resulting six-minute video has shot the youngster into viral Internet stardom, racking up more than a million views since it was posted to his “Coach Jeremy” YouTube channel on Feb. 22. More people have seen it on his HowToHockey.com website.
At one point, Mason declares it’s time for a nap and wishes everyone a Happy Halloween despite it being mid-February. At another, he engages in a sword fight with a friend using their hockey sticks and wonders more than once whether a trip to McDonald’s – or “BaDonald’s,” as he calls it – is in the cards after practice.
“He’s an interesting dude and he says all kinds of funny stuff,” Rupke told CTVNews.ca. “I realized that he actually talks to himself quite a bit on the ice.”
During the video, Mason experiences unbridled happiness when he skates on both feet at a good clip, exclaiming “One, two, one, two, one, two” over and over again as he puts each foot down on the ice, which is what his parents had been telling him to do in order to improve.
“That definitely made it a lot more touching,” Rupke said.
He added that Mason told him he felt “pretty good” about his newfound Internet popularity, before moving on to questions about one of his Transformer toys.
“I certainly hope he continues with hockey,” Rupke said, adding that he and his wife will encourage him if he wants to try out another sport, too.
“We want to make sure he’s being active and making friends and having fun,” he said.
More on this story from CTVNews.ca