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Director of Publications & New Media
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Thank You, Oak Grove

Friday, 03.23.2012 / 10:45 AM PT
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Ducks Off the Ice by Adam Brady

Once a year I go and speak to kids at Oak Grove Elementary School in Aliso Viejo, whose principal Mrs. O'Connell-Bogle is a longtime Brady family friend. More than 250 fourth- and fifth-graders gather in the auditorium to listen to me talk about my job and the Ducks in general.

It's always a fun (and ego-boosting) time, especially the question-and-answer session in which the kids get extra motivated because I sprinkle in trivia questions and reward correct answers with foam Ducks pucks. (That tends to cause a near riot, but it's worth it.) They ask questions like, "Who's your favorite player?" or "Where do you sit during the games?" or "What other sports do you like?" One of the kids asked if I was related to Tom Brady, and it took me a couple seconds to decide whether or not to lie and say I was.

I always bring my Ducks Stanley Cup Champions ring when I speak, partly to show it off to the kids and partly because one of the fourth-grade teachers, Mr. Elliott, is a die-hard Kings fan. I make sure to point out to the kids that the Ducks have won a Cup and the Kings never have, and Mr. Elliott inevitably gets his revenge (see below).

I spoke there a few weeks ago, and just yesterday the thank-you notes from all of the kids came pouring in. I read through all of them, which were very nice, and I wish I could answer all of the questions in them. The notes from Mr. Elliott's class all were decorated with a drawing of me wearing Kings gear. Inside, each of the notes contained lines like, "Did you know that the Kings logo is attractive?" or "Did you know the Kings are higher up in the standings than the Ducks?" or "Did you know ducks are far down the food chain?" or all of the above. (Some even apologized on the back, admitting that their teacher made them do it.) Here are some of the better drawings of me in Kings gear:

Some other highlights from the thank-you notes (followed by my comments in italics):

- Dear Adam Bradie...
  Close enough.

- I've got a song for you: Brady, Brady you are awesome, Brady, Brady you are awesome, you have the ability to be on stage, Brady, Brady you are aaawesome
   Think I could get a CD of that?

- I don't really like writing, but whenever we do it in class, I sometimes get carried away.
   You and me both, kid.

- My teacher handed out Ducks reading logs and if you read 120 minutes (like me), at the end of the month you can win two tickets to a Ducks game, a Ducks hat, bookmark, foam puck and pen! It really got me inspired to read very big novels.
  Whatever works.

- Did you know that ducks are unhealthy?
  Not sure how to answer that.

- When you were a kid, I bet when you liked to write about things and draw, and you can type and post pictures now! Time really flies by.
   You're telling me.

- That ring was shiny, but those are fake diamonds.
  Thanks for that

- Thank you for coming to our school. That's like once in a lifetime.
   Not so sure about that.   

- Who is the guy under the Ducks mascot costume?
   Costume? What do you mean?

- This paragraph is going to have a lot of questions, so get ready! Who is your favorite player on the Ducks? Do you have fun when you write? I think I saw you at a Ducks game before. Do you go to different schools to talk about what you do? Do you hate the Kings? What is your favorite sport to play?
   Head is still spinning.

- Sincerely,
   Kelsi P. Donaldson
   P.S. I'm a girl
   Got that.

- You're the best Ducks blogger in the world.
   Well, top 10 at least.

- I hope you write a lot of good stuff on your blog.
   Keep hope alive.

- Adam, you are a  cool guy. I wish you were the coach of the Ducks.
   I agree with half of that.




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