Another Return

April 10, 2011

Any of you still reading are probably sick of my “more off than on” blogging.

Hockey season is nearing its end and has been quite busy lately. My Kings have made the playoffs, but are with out 2 of our top offensive players. Especially depending up on our matchup, it may be a short stint in the post-season.

Anyway, with up to 4 games a week and my “new” job, the thought of blogging made my eyes cross. (Now THAT may have made for some interesting posts!) So to catch you up:

New job is going very well. First two months were insanely rough and I thought I was going to be fired! Somehow, it all clicked and now I feel relatively secure.

Hockey has ruled my life since October. Here’s hoping that will continue through June – that would mean (a very unlikely) trip to the Stanley Cup Finals.

One of my goals was to work on my health. I’ve made some small improvements in my dietary habits, but most notably I cancelled our gym membership. Before you wonder if I’m off my rocker, know that I bought a fancy schmancy new treadmill! It’s the Nordic Track x7i Incline trainer. You know, the one where you can have Jillian Michaels of Biggest Loser fame “coach” you? Mostly, we got it because it has a -6% decline and 40% incline. I haven’t managed to get beyond 20% and that totally kicked my ass.

I’ve committed to a friend to do a 5k on July 4th assuming I’m in town. It’s at a beach town near LA so it shouldn’t be scorchingly hot. And I hear it’s relatively flat, so that will be good on my knees. I want to be able to run it, but right now I’m only running for 30 seconds – 2 minutes for every 5-7 minutes I walk.

Our backyard is a DISASTER. The front is looking better. I planted Calla Lily’s last weekend. They’ve been pretty hardy and don’t require maintenance. Now if only I can keep the neighborhood cats from using the planter box as a cat box… and of course that attracts neighborhood dogs looking for “snacks”… ewww!

The hubby is off tyring to sell one of his project cars he never did any work on. So that means I’m anxiously waiting by the phone for either a SOS call, or a “come pick me up” call. Here’s hoping it’s the latter!

That friend is expecting – due in mid-August. More drama there, but I’ll have to chronicle that later.

And with that disjointed update, I’m signing off. No promises on when I’ll be back. My intention with this blog has always been to simply have fun with it and use it as an outlet. 🙂


This ‘n’ that

May 5, 2010

In case you were wondering, no, I’m not off house hunting in gated communities, which means, no, we did not win the lottery. I’ve been as sidetracked as ever. I have several posts started, but I’m waiting on something for all of ’em.

Hubby’s truck had to go back to the mechanic… again. So that left him without a vehicle for lunch. I went to pick him up, and we decided to celebrate Cinco de Mayo at one of our favorite little Mexican places. Shrimp tacos…. yuuuuum! Not exactly light on the calories, but hey, it’s a celebration! On the way back I saw the cutest little family. Wonder if they escaped? (He works in an animal friendly environment.)

I’m also planning a trip to see my mom & grandmother for mother’s day. It’s about an 8 hour drive and since I’m still out of work, I thought it would be really nice for them. (Ok, and for me too.) My grandmother (92) is advancing in her struggles with Alzheimer’s, and my grandfather has issues of his own including paranoia and confusion. I think much of that is due to the high number of pain pills he has to take – nearly all of his joints are worn out. Since he’s in his 90’s, either living with severe pain, or living in the haze of pain pills are his only choices. I really enjoyed hanging out with my mom & step-dad at Christmas, so this will be fun, I’m sure. Plus maybe this time I can see a couple people I’ve been missing on my last trips.

Finally, I have volunteered to work the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. I’m so excited that we (Los Angeles) are hosting the draft! I’ve often thought about volunteering for various Kings events, but I haven’t wanted to miss the event. The NHL is looking for volunteers two days prior to the start of the draft, so why not? I’m sure there’s all kinds of things that have to happen, that just about anyone can help with. Any maybe, just maybe, they’ll need my help in an area of my expertise – how much fun would that be!!??!! So wish me luck in being accepted as a volunteer because I really want to do it!


Round One: Game Four

April 21, 2010

Pre-Game: I am pissed. Beyond pissed. Randy Jones, whom I’d love to like, is back in the line-up for tonight. In game one, he made an error directly leading to a goal by the Canucks. He made many other mis-steps as well. As a result, Murph sat him down for two games. Word is he’s back in the lineup tonight. Okay, maybe he’s a veteran player, and has “big game experience” but he’s played like shit for us pretty much the whole time he’s been here. Yeah, he’s posted a few points, but really, I don’t think he’s worth chancing it. Harrold played OK. Drewiskie would be bound to play OK even though he’s young too. Seems that Justin Williams, our high profile & top line veteran will remain out. I’d put him back in before Jones for sure. I’m wondering whatever happened to “don’t upset the apple cart”. We won handily on Monday. Why not keep the lines the same?

In the end, it’s not for me to decide. I will just enjoy the game and have faith in our team and their staff. Afterall, they got us this far, didn’t they?

Update:

In the haze following “the morning after”…
What a disappointing loss. Don’t get me wrong; all losses are disappointing. Especially playoff losses. This however is not a heartbreaking loss. The team played well – yes, even you, Randy Jones. Thank you for not sucking! Let’s keep working on that, shall we? There’s really no one player to point a finger at, though if you listen to many of the fans, they’d still like to blame Mr. Jones. Or Jon Quick. WTF? Quick? He was really good. Maybe he didn’t stand on his head, but still, really good. Seems that the few minutes we played without that zap of energy really burned us. So tomorrow qualifies as a “must-win” game. And yes, it’s in Vancouver. C’mon boys – you WANT this, so GO GET IT!


Round One: Games 1-3

April 20, 2010

I've always wanted a Kings Rally Towel

So we’ve made it to Game 3 in Round 1 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. So far, both games have been in Vancouver and we are coming home with the series tied. Game 1 was during the week, so we did not participate in a watch party. Just watched the game at home. Unfortunately, Randy Jones AND Justin Williams (two supposed playoff veterans) coughed up the puck more than once. This led to their benching for the second and third games.

We joined fellow Kings fans Saturday at the ESPN Zone at LA Live to watch the second game. It’s such fun to be together with friends and fans to celebrate a PLAYOFF WIN! Both games so far have gone to OT. And of course, the Canucks’ coach is trying to stir up controversy about the power play that resulted in our win in game 2. Regardless of the type of penalty (either too many man on the ice – ummm yes, seven is two too many, or interference – ummm, yeah, someone playing the puck from the “bench” is not ok either) it was still a deserved penalty. Since Playoff hockey OT is 5 on 5, it was like a normal power play. Well, normal for the playoffs which is kind of like fast forward. It was a greasy goal, but a goal is a goal!!

I have to say, I feel for the Sharks fans out there. Except my step-brother. But all the others – I feel your pain! Their third game ended with their own defenseman, Dan Boyle, winging the puck into their own net. Their coach was quoted in the post-game as saying “We needed to find a way to beat their goaltender. Instead we found a way to beat ours.” He should have said a NEW way. Rob Blake gave Colorado the winning goal off his skate with just a few seconds left in the game. Anyway, we’ve had our fair share of those kinds of goals, and I feel your pain.

Words just can't describe the joy in the building!

So Game Three was at home. The media reports that we (the crowd) were way more intense that the crowd at Laker playoff games! Since there’s a bunch more of them, and basketball is a major draw for LA, I am impressed! Apparently, they sold 100 “standing room” tickets because our sellout number was 18,218! Those extra bodies and all the excitement made it so warm! I normally wear jeans, heavy boots, long sleeve shirt, sweatshirt & jersey. Sometimes, I have to add gloves. Today I was in sneakers and after about 10 minutes, I had to take my sweatshirt off. (Our section seems to be under a vent, and there’s more space around the people, so it’s actually colder than most seats.)

I’m sure there are a ton of blogs and news reports about the specifics of the game, but I will say that I was a bit disappointed to see the Canucks score first. I was proud of our boys for staying full of energy and not letting the (temporary) injuries get to them. Clune went off with a shoulder/elbow injury (and came back), Smyth was knocked silly – so much that the refs had to help him from the goal line to the bench (and came back) and Doughty was hit hard – maybe a Charlie horse in the thigh and went to the dressing room (but came back).

As a side note, it sounds like Dallas isn’t resigning Marty Turco – our favorite goaltender to taunt. I’m thinking Luongo will be a good replacement in case Turco doesn’t land on the West Coast. Luongo has a 6.86 GAA for the last 105 minutes played in our house. Wonder if he’ll start on Wednesday? 

Can’t wait to get back in to Staples Center and wave my rally towel for my team. GO KINGS – YOU CAN DO THIS!!!!


Anticipation

April 15, 2010

What does anticipation mean to you?  Does it bring back memories of being a small child and excitedly waiting for Santa, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy? How about your first trip to Disneyland? Maybe anticipation is negative for you – that feeling of dread when you haven’t prepared properly for an exam? Or knowing you have to face your best friend in Kindergarten after fighting over the last bite of paste the day before?

I have been anticipating this day for eight years. Well, probably more like four years. It’s been eight years since the Kings’ last playoff appearance, but back then I was a casual fan of hockey. It was exciting to see them in the playoffs, but I wasn’t emotionally invested… Unlike NOW!!

Opponent Vancouver Canucks: Roberto Luongo in the net. He’s really one of THE best goaltenders, possibly ever. He won the gold medal for the Canadian Olympic Team this year. Our last meeting resulted in a WHUPPING (8-3). I have no idea what their problem was, but I sincerely hope it continues. The Canucks also employ the evil Sedin twins, who are point generating machines, perhaps robots even. However, we have a great goalie in Jonathan Quick and quite balanced scoring throughout our team. I think that’s harder to defend, because so many of our boys are talented at finding the back of the net. Plus, I think our team is hungrier.

Yesterday marked the first day of playoffs, and the trend was first game wins by the lower seeded teams. Upsets! How exciting is that?!? There has been so much press pointing to the inexperience of the Kings in playoff/high-pressure games. However, we have a handful of guys with rings, and several more vets that have been to the playoffs – deep even. I find it exciting to be the underdog. (In this scenario, I don’t know any different! lol)

So my feelings are of excitement, anxiety, nervousness and most of all HOPE. Simply put, I have faith that our boys will give it their all. And when they’re all focused and clicking as a team… they are unbelievable to watch. I will be happy with them as long as they play the game we all know they can play.

This is a feeling that even my idiot step-brother can’t spoil by acting like an asshole.


Hippies & Hockey

April 12, 2010

Last time I checked, hockey wasn’t high on the “to-do” lists of hippies. Doesn’t quite fall into the peace, love & granola modus operandi. Dont’ get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with hippies & their free love ideals. I love Volkswagens, Pink Floyd & Led Zeppelin too. I just skip the stinky stuff & the drugs.

To me the mark of a hippie is patchouli oil. You may not know it by name, but 90% of the population has encountered it if you have ever been to San Francisco.  Or a head shop. In reading just a little about this stuff, I learned the oil comes from a plant from the mint family grown in the East & West Indies, it is heavily used in many incense scents, and was used several hundred years as a moth repellent. (Gee, really? Probably a people repellant too.) The “aromatic” (I would have used the word odorous, but that’s just me) description includes adjectives like rich, earthy, woody. Is that a nice way to say “migraine-inducing-crap?”

What it all boils down to is that patchouli oil is an extremely strong “fragrance”, seemingly suitable for men or women. I maintain that folks in the 60’s used it to cover the stench of body oder. Perhaps that is a theory that could be applied today.

Why the rant about patchouli? Well, the guy in seat number 2 (we have seats 3 & 4) seems to bathe in the stuff. More often than not, I have a migraine within 5 minutes of him settling in. Doesn’t matter if I’m in seat 3 or 4. Nothing can hide it. Fortunately, Mr. Hippie doesn’t come to every game, though he’s consistently at weekend games. I know there’s 16 games at best (for the Kings, worst for my senses) that I will have to endure the stench. But in the meantime, I’d really like to spray him down with Fabreze, then roll him thoroughly in Arm & Hammer.  If that doesn’t work, then I guess he really should upgrade his seats to the next level.


…Dean Lombardi

April 12, 2010

Thank you AEG for the wisdom of hiring Dean Lombardi in 2006. Thank you Dean Lombardi, for well, everything. But specifically being a hockey genius with rebuilding the Kings, for firing Marc Crawford, and hiring Terry Murray. Dean has definitely shown that his skill was not a fluke in San Jose, since the Kings have finally made the playoffs – seeded sixth in the West. Terry Murray has shown his professionalism and talent through the year as well. The first time we met him, hubby indicated that he preferred Murray (highly) over Crawford and his screaming. Murray said that he treats all the guys like he would his kids, and screaming has never done much good. Terry Murray – you are cool. Even if I did whup on ya at TAK in air hockey.

I have no use for Crawford. That is all.