At 27, Jason Jaffray’s got his priorities figured out and his life, despite the travel, is settled into a pretty good pattern now. Between hockey, his wife, and daughter, who’s about to turn two, his time is pretty much occupied so getting out to the movie theatres is an unlikely situation.
“Now that I have a little girl, I barely get to theatres. The last movie I saw in theatres was probably No Country For Old Men.
“That was long ago... that was last season. I haven’t seen a movie in theatres since last year. It’s tough to get away for a little date night with the wife when I have a little one now.”
For the record, the movie was released in November 2007 but Jaffray caught it in April while on the road during the Manitoba Moose playoff run.
The movie won four academy awards, including best picture out and nominated for eight in total during last year’s annual event in Los Angeles.
To make up for all the nights out the Jaffrays no longer do, they substitute for the home theatre instead, while still keeping a watchful eye on Kennedy.
“We have a lot of stay in movie nights, while the little one’s asleep so just the other night we watched Forgetting Sarah Marshall.”
Jaffray claims to listen to music of all varieties but on this particular day that we caught him, the last song he listened to on his iPod was...
“I like a lot of Jack Johnson, it was Sitting, Waiting, Wishing. I like morning songs where you can just kind of sit back and relax.”
Don’t be quick to judge because it was in the morning at the time. He doesn’t have one favourite genre and in fact, the range of music on his playlists may surprise you.
“I like country music... rap music... and if you look at my iPod, don’t hit shuffle with all the guys around because you could get some different types of music that guys would be laughing at.”
But being a country music fan should make sense since Jaffray’s from Olds, Alberta – home of the largest agricultural colleges in the country but he’s definitely not tied down to just that.
“I have anything from Tim McGraw, Rascal Flatts, to all of the above and it’s funny because before games, I like to play some hardcore, heavier music like Rage Against the Machine or Theory of a Deadman.”
He discovers new music just like the rest of us, on the radio or through movies, but he’s got an upper hand on everybody with family ties that give him access to all the newest music that a privilege he’s had growing up.
This also means that tradition is key, despite the new technological developments.
“My mom owns a music store – a CD and book store – in Olds, Alberta so I’m definitely a CD buyer. I can’t say I’m a downloader or my mom will have my neck. She’s owned the store for over 10 years now and with all the downloads and iPods, she’s still doing well in a small town.”
As an avid music lover, it comes as no surprise that he’s digging deeper into that world with a biography of Kurt Cobain – arguably one of the most influential musicians in rock music and epitome of grunge.
“It’s kind of disturbing. The first half of the book with him growing up it didn’t really catch me right away because I had never seen that aspect of anyone’s life with the drugs and alcohol abuse but once he got focused and wanted to be a musician, it’s really caught me now and I can’t put it down.”
But like his music, he’s not tied down to any one type of book either.
“I like learning about big name guys and not only just hockey players, although I’ve read the Bobby Orr and Mark Messier but I’m also into people like Kurt Cobain and musicians also. I find a lot of that interesting – about how people grew up and how they became who they are.”
Long road trips and bus rides gave him a reason to pick up a new hobby to pass the time, changing his old habits to something more beneficial.
“I never used to be a big reader until maybe 2-3 years ago as a way to kill some time on the road instead of just listening to my iPod or watching movies. I thought I would educate myself some more and I mean biographies aren’t going to educate you too much but I’d like to learn about people in the world.”
If there’s one thing Jaffray takes very seriously, it’s hockey and he doesn’t fool around when it comes to numbers. He admits that he’s not a huge internet person but he’ll take advantage of new media for research.
“I’m a guy who really likes my stats. I’m always looking at NHL or AHL stats, checking out other teams and the team we’re playing the next day, transactions like who’s going up and down. If you ask me stats about certain guy I’ll probably know it.”
After six years between the AHL and ECHL, he’s familiar with players there but with just his second season of NHL experience, there’s still some work to do but NHL.com's the place he turns to.
“It’s a little different for me now, coming up to the NHL, I’m learning about a new group of guys but over the last two seasons I’ve done a lot of research on who and what team I’m playing.”
With two goals and two assists in 14 games so far with the Canucks this season, he’s already more than half of his totals last year where he had six points in 19 games. Looks like he’s well on his way to being familiar with the league.