"Until a man is twenty-five, he still thinks, every so often, that under the right circumstances he could be the baddest motherfucker in the world. If I moved to a martial-arts monastery in China and studied real hard for ten years. If my family was wiped out by Colombian drug dealers and I swore myself to revenge. If I got a fatal disease, had one year to live, and devoted it to wiping out street crime. If I just dropped out and devoted my life to being bad."
— Neal Stephenson (Snow Crash)
So, when did you realize that you weren't actually going to play in the NHL?
I think I still believed it MIGHT happen, if all the stars aligned correctly, up until I was about 21 or 22, despite having very limited hockey experience (and all that experience being disorganized roller hockey).
Share your sad stories of broken dreams and deluded fantasies in the comments.