"Hell may have no fury like a woman scorned but heaven hath no sweetness like a sports fan vindicated." - Samcat

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Wins and Losses...and More Losses

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(An artist's rendition of Peyton Manning)

Now, if he can only get that walking on water thing down...

I'll have you know that last night was the one and presumably only time in my life that I rooted for the Steelers. Well, if we're being technical about it, I was actually rooting for a rogue meteorite to take out the RCA Dome and everyone in it thereby resulting in a dual loss by both the Colts AND the Steelers. But, failing that, a Steeler win would have been slightly easier to stomach than another rendition in the Peyton Manning-sponsored masturbatory exercises emanating from the Midwest and every broadcast booth and magazine cover this side of Mars.

And spare me the "But the media loves Tom Brady" argument too because frankly, I don't care. Also, I've metaphorically locked him in a closet after Sunday's game and he's only allowed to come out once he's written a personal apology to everyone who watched that debacle. Oh, and his offensive line is in there with him. So is the defensive secondary. Or they would be assuming the Patriots, you now, HAD a defensive secondary. Can we get Asante Samuel some hazard pay since he seems to be the only one flying around the field like a dreadlocked heat-seaking missle? Goddamn, this team is embarrasing.

We've got the 2-9 Jets coming into town this Sunday which, under normal circumstances would be good news, but with the team held together by bubble gum and Lincoln Logs, I'm not sure how much of a difference it makes.


And then there's the Bruins. Sergei Samsonov is warning his teammates that if they don't start winning, people will be traded or shipped off wholesale. Brian Leetch, just back from a knee injury, is ripping his teammates for, I guess, sucking. And owner Jeremy Jacobs has publicly criticized the team. So everyone knows that something's wrong. So what, I ask, do they plan to do to fix it?

According to Samsonov, "There are a lot of angry faces around here, and we have to bring that to the game." That's right, Sammy boy, and all too often, they belong to yours truly. I don't like being angry. I'm not pleasant when I'm angry. Don't believe me? I suggest you ask a one Mr. Keith Foulke. He'll let you in on a little secret: Don't piss me off. Now, I'll be there on Thursday, probably drunk and beligerent and if I don't see a little hustle, I WILL come down there and beat you chuckleheads with your own sticks. Don't think I'm afraid of you.


Now, as for the Red Sox, allow me for just one moment to address Manny Ramirez personally.

Dude, again? Seriously, what is your problem? You want to play somewhere where people won't recognize you and your wife when you go to the mall? Okay, listen up, slugger. I'm not sure if you're aware of this but your wife is gorgeous. She'd be getting attention regardless of whether she's married to you or not. In fact, I'd venture a guess that the people gawking at her don't even realize that she's your wife. That's the price you pay for marrying a bombshell, man. Tough. As for you, listen, by all accounts you're a lovely guy who's fun to be around, but you're not, what we'd call, a rocket scientist. However, you were born with the ability to hit a baseball really freakin' far. And because the world is unfair and teachers make nothing while you get paid $20 million a year to hit said baseball, you are able to make quite a nice living with that skill. So you're tired of being recognized when you go to the mall? I have only one thing to say to you: Amazon.com. God. Suck it up or shut up.

And Josh Beckett, I've got my eye on you. Truth be told, I'm still not sure what to think of this. I'd grown kind of fond of having a farm system but I guess we all realized that when we signed Edgah for all eternity, Hanley probably wasn't gonna be hanging around. So, okay, I guess. And if we do, in fact trade David Wells, in essence, the acquisition of Beckett replaces Wells' wins so, it's a wash. Oh, a wash minus 17 years in age. Which is nice.

Of course, Mike Lowell and his inflated contract patrolling third base territory effectively ends the tenure of Bill Mueller in Boston. A loss for which, frankly, I have not yet mentally prepared myself. I say we start a movement to get Buelly the third base coach's job. I know we've already hired DeMarlo Hale to replace Send 'Em In Sveum, but there's no way Buelly would be worse. Plus, he'd raise the aesthetic merits of the game about a billion percent.

Wait, the Red Sox still need a GM, right? That's it, I'm applying...

Monday, November 28, 2005


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(Are we absolutely sure that's not Mike Timlin up there?)

I go away for one week and everything goes to hell.

Hanley, we hardly knew ye. Josh Beckett, um, well, and, er, Mike, uh, Lowell? M'kay. Still digesting that along with approximately eighteen metric tons of Thanksgiving food.

As for the Bruins and the Patriots? Well, that's what I've named those turkeys up there. Seems appropriate.

More later once I dig myself out from underneath the onslaught of work that's accumulated in my absence.

Friday, November 18, 2005


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(Photo from Yahoo! Sports)

Will someone please tell Dave that it only counts as a goal if the player takes the puck with him? This *gestures upwards* does not count. Neither does a billion penalties, deciding to play only two of the requisite three periods or injuring an opposing player in the
EYE with your SKATE. Because that happened too. It's like freakin' Un chien andalou out there. (Heh, film school WAS good for something).

Pretty much the only worthwhile thing that happened on the ice looked like this.

Because that's old time hockey, eh?

However, perhaps the greatest thing I heard all of last night came from the gentleman seated behind me. Eric Lindros, who now plays for the Maple Leafs, is not what you would call one of my favorite players. Apologies to Mer but I have never, ever liked the guy and the thought of him doing well sets my teeth on edge. Anyway, he's been privy to many concussions throughout his career and the large man behind me thought he should sustain another one.

"Give Lindros anotha' concussion! They gotta get Colton Orr to jus' line 'em up and drill 'im right inta the glass. Just SMACK! Then he'll be all droolin' and doin' colorin' books for tha rest a his life."

Hee. I liked that guy. That guy can be my friend. He wasn't quite as awesome as Trinkets Man, but then, who would be?

Of course, it all would have been better if the Bruins had, you know, won. Sigh.

I am pleased to report, however, that Marianne's full immersion into hockey is now complete. We stopped by the Pro Shop on the way out and she purchased a Bruins hat. "You know," she said, "I think I'm really a fan now. I mean, they just made me so mad with the sucking that I want to break things and I still stop at the Pro Shop and drop money on their merchandise. I think that makes me a true fan."

"I think so too," I said, "Well done."

Oh, also? Just for shits and giggles? I present, Baby Ben: Hell's Angel.

Hee. Hee. Heeeeeee.

*cue uncontrollable laughter*

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Old Time Hockey!

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(They brought their fuckin' TOYS with 'em!)

I got Marianne to watch
Slap Shot last night in preparation for tonight's game pitting the struggling Bruins against the surging Maple Leafs. She laughed her ass off which confirmed my suspicion that it is, actually a hilarious movie and not just funny to longtime hockey fans.

I was also reminded, upon viewing the movie again, how much I love French Canadian goaltender Denis Lemieux played brilliantly by Yvon Barrette. It's likely that part of the reason I love the character so much is that his speech patterns, the cadence of his words, remind me so much of the way my own French Canadian grandmother used to talk. When asked what cross-checking is, Denis replies by demonstrating and saying, "Oh you never do that. Never, never. You stu-
pit if you do that" in the same way that my Memere used to say that something - usually traffic - was "stu-pit." And when Denis is on the phone, demanding to be traded and he yells, "You tell Detroit this is bull-SHIT!" It's exactly the way Memere used to tell my brother and I to stop whining. In fact, Trevor, who's been one of my brother's best friends since they were five, loves to tell the story of when they were both about eight and Memere was taking care of us. Trevor lived about a mile down the road and Kevin was playing at his house. He called Memere who asked him when he'd be home. Kev said, "I think I'm gonna stay here for a little while" to which Memere responded, and Trevor heard her through the phone, "Bull-SHIT you're staying there. Tete de pioche. "

Strange that a vulgar 1977 hockey comedy could make me miss my grandmother, but my family is weird. Heh.

I was also reminded - not that I'd forgotten - just how vulgar hockey players can be. Look, I grew up around my brother and his friends, most of them hockey players. And my family is not what you'd call, "polite." Meaning, we swear at the dinner table. We throw things at the television. My brother and I toss profanity around in front of our parents who don't bat an eyelash and we have a neverending contest determining, as my mother puts it, "Who Can Be The Biggest Asshole?" We're not a delicate bunch. But hockey players, damn.

I did an audio project in college where I had to edit together a bunch of recorded sounds to create a "sense of place." (I don't know. Hippy, dippy liberal arts college). I chose "the penalty box" as my place. So I stuck a recorder on the bench of my brother's hockey team, planning to edit some of the quotes I picked up with snippets from Slap Shot and some of Led Zeppelin's "Kashmir." Great plan. Except that some of the quotes I got included words I'd never heard before and suggestions of positions I don't think were humanly possible. Did I mention my brother and I both went to a private, Catholic high school? The team was called the Saints, for cryin' out loud.

Anyway, the project came out great and I made a copy for my parents to play at the team parent's meeting. Expecting the parents to be somewhat scandalized, I was, in fact surprised when they sat around laughing their asses off and trying to figure out who's son had uttered which profanity. Hockey parents, they're a different breed.

Which brings me back around to Slap Shot. My brother started really getting into hockey when he was about eight or ten. And my dad, eager to encourage Kev's obsession, thought he should watch Slap Shot, forgetting, apparently, that it boasts nudity, profanity and violence really not suitable for an eight-year-old. Five minutes in, he remembered. But, instead of turning it off, my dad just laughed, tried to answer Kev's questions as best he could, and chalked it up to another day in the life of a hockey parent.

All of this is to say, I guess, that hockey fans are a different breed. And if you want to understand them, Slap Shot is worth a rental.

What did the old man trade for these assholes, a used puck bag?"

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

The Ring's the Thing

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(So shiny!)

Whatever, dude.

I'm sure if you asked David Ortiz which he'd rather have - the American League MVP award or a World Series ring - he'd throw his arm around you, pat you on the back in that teddy bear way, and say, "Baby, it don't mean a thing if you ain't got that ring."

So blah, blah, blah, A-Rod, blah, blah, blah, defense, blah, blah, blah, don't-wanna-give-it-to-a-DH-fishcakes. At the end of the day, even A-Rod admits it:

"I would certainly trade his [Ortiz's] World Series championship for this MVP trophy."

Well you can't. So neener!

I've got issues with MVP voting *cough* Pedro in '99 *cough* but that's because I tend to believe a Most Valuable Player should mean "Player who is, you know MOST VALUABLE to his team, thereby giving his team the best chance to win." Not, "Best Player." I'm just sayin', without A-Rod, the Yankees maybe lose about 10-15 more games than they did. And they save a boatload on Maybelline's Plum Passion lipstick. But without Ortiz, the Sox are a .500 ball club, easy. I know the argument for defense, but isn't that what Gold Gloves are for?

Maybe it's a semantics argument. And it doesn't matter at this point, anyway. Like I said, Tizzle's still got what A-Rod wants. And that's gotta feel kinda good.

So for now, Red Sox fans will be content with the knowledge that Ortiz is a larger than life folk hero in this town. And Yankees fans have a third baseman who looks like this.


Monday, November 14, 2005

Welcome, New Guy!

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(photo from Boston.com)

Okay, I don't know who the hell this "Heath Evans" fellow is but lemme tell you that in the few hours I watched him sub for an injured Corey Dillon in yesterday's matchup against Miami, I've grown inordinately fond of the dude. Finding holes here, diving for first downs there. That, my friends, is what we like to see from our running backs. No one, so far as I could tell, pulled up as if they'd been shot *cough* Patrick Pass *cough*. And no one dropped the ball at an inopportune moment. So thank you, Miami Dolphins, for releasing a one Mr. Heath Evans. We will gladly take him and love him for our very own.

Mr. Brady had a few too many interceptions, "a few too many" meaning, of course, "any at all" and somehow, the New England defense let a dude named "Gus" pass for 360 yards. Also, I would like to propose that the announcers stop referring to the Patriots secondary as "depleted" or "patchwork" as those terms would lead one to believe that that is not the normal state of being. That is, saying something is "depleted" or "patchwork" would lead one to believe that there are, in fact times when the secondary is at "full strength" or "whole." Neither of which, as we well know by now, has been the case for the past three seasons. So how about this, until everyone who starts the season on the Pats' secondary suits up and plays a full game in their rightful places without any injuries, we can just say "Patriots' secondary" and we'll all understand that to mean that it's held together with airplane glue and popsicle sticks? Okay? Okay, deal.

That said, small memo to the Patriots (and y'all thought I stopped addressing teams directly with the Red Sox):

Dear New England Patriots Players:





And now, don't think I wasn't going to address the Bruins. Hey, hockey players? I know someone who would not have let the Islanders score twice in the final three minutes of the game on Friday night. His name is my brother. Or, you know, me. And I feel confident in saying that despite the fact that my one and only foray into hockey (I figure skated for fourteen years), was a complete and total disaster. But FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS GOOD AND HOLY CAN WE NOT ALLOW THE OPPONENT TO SCORE GOALS WITH LESS THAN FIVE MINUTES REMAINING IN REGULATION? This happened last week against the Flyers too. And then on Friday against the Islanders. What the hell? The Bruins do know that the third period is actually the full twenty minutes, right? Kee-rist. Bunch of amateurs.

*scoffs in disgust*

That said, I'm excited to attend the game against the Maple Leafs on Thursday. Marianne continues her full immersion into hockey and I come up with reasons to dislike the Leafs like the fact that "Leafs" is not the plural of "Leaf" and the grammar nazi in me bristles at the misstep. But mostly, I just cheer for blood.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Putting out an APB

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(photo from Boston.com)

I feel your pain, Tommy. I feel your pain.

The APB is for two things: One, the Patriots defense. I do not know where it's gone. It's tempting to say it went with Romeo Crennel to Cleveland but really, I think it's sitting on the sidelines nursing it's injured foot/ankle/knee/whatever. Because? YOU CANNOT DEFEND AGAINST THE COLTS WITH CARDBOARD CUTOUTS OF YOUR PLAYERS!

The second missing item is my Tom Brady hat. I lost it. Or rather, I hung it on the back of my chair at Sunset on Sunday and when I went back last night to pick it up, it wasn't there. I called and everything. I'm upset about this. Very upset. I didn't realize exactly how often I wore that hat until I did a google search for "Tom Brady hat" last night in an attempt to find a new one and I got a bunch of pages from this blog. I love that hat. I want it back. Or, at the very least, I want to find a replacement.



This is not the same Patriots team as last year. Or the year before that. Or two years before that. We all know that. And if we didn't know it before last night, we surely know it now. It's disappointing, sure. But here's the thing. Here's why I take issue with people (*cough* Steelers fans *cough*) who say that the Patriots are the Yankess of the NFL. Not a single person I know who I'd qualify as an honest to goodness Pats fan thought last night was gonna be easy. Not a single person thought we were gonna roll over the Colts just because we'd done it before. And, more importantly, not a single person thought we'd win because we "deserved" it or because we were "entitled." No way, no how. We have to fight for our games and our wins and we know that. We don't "deserve" anything.

Now, if you'll allow me a moment to mention a few of the things we decided last night. "We" being the collective SG denizens. If you'll indulge me, the game in clips and phrases:

"Peyton Manning's dad probably made him take flute lessons." - Amy

"Peyton prances. He's a big, fat fucking prancer. Probably due to all that ballroom dancing." - Me



"... and EVERYONE IN THE ENTIRE WORLD tackles corey dillon." - Beth

"'So much penetration' will never not make me laugh. I am 12." - Amy

"GodDAMMIT! I hate when football reduces me to unoriginal profanity." - Me

"I am reading a historical novel wherein people are being chopped with poleaxes and shot with muskets, AND IT"S STILL MORE FUN THAN THIS GAME." - Emma

"Marvin Harrison is on my fantasy team but do you see me cheering for him? No, no you don't. If you were here, you would hear my cursing his family and hoping he gets beset by painful bedsores." - Me

"As much as I despise football, that last TD to Brown was damn sexy. And damn is Brady underrated. He's so fast with the throw. Oh no, I'm Brady-gay!" - Bouge

"Things I could have lived without seeing: The personality-less wonder doing an Elvis impersonation. He also has no shoulders. How are we being beaten by a guy with no shoulders?" - Amy

Everyone gets one. And now that Peyton finally won his own personal Super Bowl, perhaps we can hear about someone else for a change? Oh, who am I kidding? The national media will be all over this shit for weeks to come. PEYTON MANNING IS A GENIUS AND WONDERFUL AND CAN WALK ON WATER AND HEALS CHILDREN WITH A SMILE.


All I know is that the Bruins take on the Flyers tonight at 7. Mer and I will watch and wish pain and humiliation upon the other's team. But it all comes from a place of love, kids.

Now, if only I could get my damn hat back...

Monday, November 07, 2005

Holla for Hannu!

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You know what I think? I think Hannu Toivonen is becoming my Doug Mirabelli. He's the backup goalie for phenom Andrew Raycroft and I've taken quite a liking to the lad. Of course, he's a mere pup at 21-years-old but he's pretty handy with the blocker and the stick and all. I have already made t-shirts for his fan club.

I gave Annette her first taste of professional hockey on Saturday night as the Bruins took on the Pittsburgh Penguins. I think she liked it. Of course, it helped that the B's took the lead 28 seconds into the game. A lead they wouldn't relinquish all night. Also, I may add, Annette is rather brilliant. Some day soon, I'm going to have her write up her proposed revamped marketing plan for the Bruins and I'm going to storm the offices on Causeway Street and demand that they listen to us. We are very wise.

And for those of you who aren't watching hockey, I'm going to keep bugging you until you do. But you really should be watching and I'll tell you why. Patrice Bergeron. That is why. Mr. Bergeron, a mere 20-years-old, is one of the most exciting players in the game right now. On Saturday night, as he skated up ice, I said to Annette, "Watch #37. He's really fast and precise." Bergeron then proceeded to out-maneuver three defenders, pass the puck to himself between the legs of a fourth and flip it top shelf over goalie Sebastian Caron's left shoulder for a fantastic goal. "Wow," Annette said, "That was really impressive."

"Thank you for proving my point," I said in the general direction of the ice.

As for the Penguins, I'm beginning to see why a team with so much raw talent (Mario Lemieux, Mark Recchi, Sidney Crosby, Sergei Gonchar), has won a sum total of three games. They just don't look like they're used to playing together. And probably, they're not. You've got 16-year veteran Lemieux playing on the same line with rookie phenom Crosby and there are going to be some crossed wires. Eventually, I think Pittsburgh will be a dangerous team, for for the time-being, they've got some kinks to work out.

The Bruins, on the other hand, look to maybe, possibly, finally, be coming together. It's to the team's credit that they've been able to do it lately without starter Raycroft (injured hamstring) in net, relying instead on the younger and less experienced Toivonen. But the young'un has held his own. Additionally, the signing (finally) of defenseman Nick Boynton helps tremendously. Particularly with Brian Leetch (knee) possibly out for the season. I'm reluctant to say it's all falling into place but at the very least, the Bruins are fun to watch.

And keep your eye on Bergeron. He's gonna be something.

I heard tell there was a football game happening tonight as well? Frankly, I'm a little too nervous to talk about it. If by "little too nervous" I mean "pushed to the brink of naseau." I'll have postgame breakdown tomorrow. And likely some snarky comments about Peyton Manning.

And finally, a heartfelt "Thank you!" to all of my friends (and family) who helped celebrate my 25th birthday this weekend. You are all fantastic and wonderful people and I am supremely lucky to have you. Seriously, you guys are the greatest.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


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(photo from Boston.com)

Despite what I still feel is the inevitable shitstorm that's going to go down over on Yawkey Way, actual baseball accomplishments by, you know, players, should not be overlooked.

With that in mind, I would like to call your attention to the fact that Jason Varitek won both the Silver Slugger and the Gold Glove this week. Which? Excellent work. Well-played.

*stares at brother, notorious Mirabelli supporter*

*demands at least a 6-pack*

We now return you to your regularly scheduled freak out.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005


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(photo from Boston.com)

Um...shit. Didn't see that one coming.

I haven't been reading the paper lately because I've not wanted to hear about Manny's latest tantrum or David Wells' demands for twelve dozen glazed hams at the post-game spreads. In short, I've been taking a break from the Red Sox. You know, watching some hockey, taking in some football, even, I don't know, reading a book or two. I knew Theo's contract was up but I'd also heard that a deal had been worked out and he was gonna stay in Boston for at least the next three years. Good. Excellent. Status quo. And then...wham! Faster than a Dave Roberts' steal, it's gone.

Fuckity, fuck, fuck.

If only I could be more eloquent.

According to the Red Sox, Theo will stay on for the next few days "to ease the transition." Presumably for the new GM who is, um, if I have this correctly, no one. I'm half tempted to throw my resume into the mix because it seems unlikely that I could fuck this up more than it already has been.

Safe to say the Red Sox appear screwed for the forseeable future.

It's gonna be a long, cold winter in Red Sox Nation.