Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Small Things

At about 10 years old something happened that made me really angry.  I had the nickname of short fuse, and little things could make me yell and scream, but this time it was no little thing.  I don't remember what it was that made me angry, but I remember the end of the day well.  My Mom sat by my bed, running her hand through my hair, and smiled.  I think at first the smile made me more angry, but that didn't last long; Mom had a disarming smile which had a way of melting away my anger.  Mom then explained to me how silly and wasteful my anger was.  She explained how anger causes us to use many more muscles in our faces, and it takes much more energy to use those muscles.  A smile is much more natural and takes so much less energy that it just doesn't make sense to do anything but smile whenever possible.  I've never asked a teacher, googled, or tried to verify this explanation because it makes too much sense to be wrong.  Since that day I have kept this in mind and tried at all costs to smile as much as possible, it just makes sense not to waste energy being angry.

Two years ago today my Mom died.  This was not the most tragic thing to happen that day, and between now and then there have been many more devastating things that have happened that have impacted many others more severely than the loss of one persons mother.  But this was closer to me than those other tragic events, it was more real.  I saw her take her last breath, and slowly let it out, and not take another.  I saw the pain leave, the fight end, and I cried.

Today I've remembered many things that happened with my Mom which I did not really think were that important at the time, but now I understand that these things, these moments, were significant events in my life.  For two years I have not had any new moments with my Mom, no conversations, hugs, laughs or smiles.  But I do have those moments that helped shape me and that live on in me every day.

I miss you Mom, and I appreciate now more than ever all the things you did for me.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Jerry Meals gets it Right

Come on, are you seriously telling me that you can see better than Meals does when he is right there?  Catcher makes a swipe and MISSES his leg.  This has been blown out of proportion, and the media owe Meals a major apology.

Take a look:

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Google+ (Plus) iPhone app is here!

Everyone who is anyone has an iPhone, and is on Google+.  But to this point we were stuck using a somewhat useful mobile page for Google+'ing on the go.  All the while Android owners have been rubbing their Google+ application and all it's fancy functionality in our face.  Well NO MORE!

Go to iTunes > App Store > Categories > Social Networking and it is the #1 Free App.  Yes, that's right, #1
(or go here)
Once you are there, add me to a circle and tell me about the things you love, and hate (gasp!), in Google+

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Oiler Optimism

Everything is roses right now in Oil Country.  The trades and signings all smell great, everyone is saying the right things, and the kids looked great in development camp.  Talk radio is full of optimism and calls to add that piece that will make this team a contender.  While this is all really nice, it is going to come crashing down when the season starts.

Don't get me wrong, I'd love the Oil to make a run this year, have Hall and Hemsky in the top 10 for scoring, RNH have a shot at Rookie of the Year and have Doobie force Renney to sit the Drunk Russian Goalie.  But lets be honest here, at this point our team isn't all that different from last year, and although some may be trying not to remember, with that team we finished dead last for the second year in a row.


It was because of injuries that last season happened.  And really the last 3 or 4 seasons all were plagued by injury.  Yes, this is somewhat true, but all teams have injuries.  Pittsburgh was the best example of how good teams overcome injury, and quite frankly we don't have the depth to compare.  OKC cupboards are better than the farm club from past years, but until they are competing for top spot down there we can't say we have NHL'ers ready to help when the injury bug bites.

Well aren't you just all Mr Negative!

Sorry, but realistically here is where we are at.  We have one legit top D man in Whitney, two established scorers in Smyth and Hemsky on forward and one goalie with experience in Khabbi.  The rest of the line up is filled with "if" and "hopefully", which doesn't inspire much confidence.  One or more of the sophomores are going to be terrible this year.  One or more of the acquisitions is not going to pan out.  And there are going to be more injuries.

You may be surprised if you've made it this far to hear that I am really looking forward to the coming season.  I am hoping the ifs and hopefullys all work out, the injuries don't come and the rookies kill it.  I am going to cheer with the wins, explain away the losses and figure out all the moves tambellini should be making to get this team to the cup.  But I go into it all with the blinders off and realistic expectations that this team will be picking in the top 5 again at next years draft.

Starting Lineup:




Adding existing YouTube videos to Google+

One of the best things so far about Google+ is the integration with other Google apps.  For those of you who already have videos on YouTube sharing them is very easy.

From the Home screen click on the Add video button in the Share box:

Select YouTube:

Then select Your YouTube videos:

Now on the right you see all your previously uploaded YouTube content, ready to add!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Ready or not, here he comes

There is a lot of talk these days about the latest #1 overall pick in the NHL Draft, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (RNH).  Most notably the talk is about whether he can make the Edmonton Oilers this year, or does he head back to Red Deer.  There is no need for this talk to continue, he simply has to stay.

Bold statement? Just plain stupid?  Let me explain.  The fact is there is nothing to gain by sending him back to the WHL, and everything to lose.  Sending RNH back to his WHL team in Red Deer he can only meet expectations, or fail to meet them.  Expectations are so high for him that there is no way to exceed them, and anything but a spectacular season would be deemed a failure.  How would he handle something failure and the pressure that comes with it?  We all know the pressure cooker of a market that Edmonton is, and how fickle the fans can be.  Imagine he goes to Red Deer and other players outshine him, he is not the top scorer, and Red Deer doesn't do well?  The local talk shows would be a constant stream of callers declaring the pick a mistake, RNH a failure and calling for a trade, the firing of Tamblowe, and Stu "The Magnificent Bastard" McGregor's record would be forever tarnished.  And even if his play isn't poor and his season not considered a failure based on performance, when was the last time the first overall pick didn't make the team?  How would he take it being the first to have that happen in so long?  A failure of a season in the eyes of fans and the media is the most likely outcome if he is sent back, and could ruin him as a player in the long term.

On the other hand if he stays the expectations are minimal.  He is young, he hasn't matured enough yet, and is not expected to light it up.  Look at Tyler Seguin, he didn't play impact minutes, or even every game.  But I would suggest almost no one called his season a failure, and even had Boston not won the cup he would have been confident coming in to next season with very little fan or media pressure to drastically improve over the year before.  In the same way RNH can come into Edmonton, especially with the center depth they added today, and can play soft minutes, sit games, and play with little to no pressure.  There is no down side to him staying this year and playing; ready or not he is here to stay.

I know many will still talk about this as if there is a question of whether he should stay, but I believe the decision is obvious, so lets move on to more important topics, like what is going to happen with Hemsky...

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

This is the end

Well, a little late to the game, but I was so upset by the Conference finals that I tried to avoid NHL hockey all together until next season, or at least free agency and the draft.  But, it has been impossible to ignore this final, full of controversy, big saves, big goals and big gaffes.

Quick run down:

  • Burrows should have been suspended.  Ya, finger was in the mouth, but a bite is a bite, one game was necessary.
  • Lapierre, and then Lucic and Recchi's finger waves are just plain funny.  Fun to watch, raises intensity, I don't get why everyone is so upset.
  • Rome on Horton, late.  Borderline hit if the puck was still on his stick, maybe a minor for something, but if the puck was on his stick he would have seen him and avoided it.  4 games is more than I expected from the league, but I am happy that they gave that much.  I was hoping for the series + the first 10 of next season.

Bruins in 7 - please don't let the Canucks win