Friday, November 14, 2008
Aging is a total trip. My folks are now in their mid seventies but you wouldn't know it, other then they are a little slower to get around and their short term memories are a little faulty.
Dad - Jenn, can I get you a beer?
Jenn - No thanks, Jack, I'm, um, seven months pregnant here, I'll pass on the beer thanks.
Dad - Oh right, ok.
Five minutes later ...
Dad - Jenn, can I get you a beer?
Jenn - Still pregnant here Jack.
Talking to Mom one day and she said that the strangest thing is that in her head she is still thirty years old. She's just trapped in this old body.
As you get older they say time seems to speed up but I don't find that at all. Our youngest is four months now. It seems like she has been with us forever. I got married just over seven years ago and since then we've moved back to Canada, bought a house, had three kids, had three different vehicles, been to Europe (for business and for pleasure) four times, lost grandparents, an uncle and an aunt and watched different friends get married, have kids, fall seriously ill, buy homes, travel the world and split up.
There's a whole lot going on. Life's like that.
They say that things seem to speed up when you have kids and of course it may seem to - after all in the space of months they learn how to read and how to swim, their vocabularies expand, they get toilet trained, go out for Halloween and have birthday parties, go back to school, begin to eat solid food and notice the dog for the first time ... a constant stream of milestones, regardless of the age. For an adult years and years may pass before they graduate with a degree or get married or buy a home. When you have a child big events happen weekly and it can seem like life rushes by.
I don't find that but a lot of people say so.
But I am getting older. We all are. The poor big fellow is eleven now. He has a grey face and he's a little heavier then he should be and he's having some issues with his hips. Getting up from the floor takes a little work and when he lays down he pretty well collapses to the floor with a thud that reverberates through our house. Some nights he will pace about for hours, just like my dad does. And like most old men he doesn't give a shit. If the kids leave leftovers on their plate and we leave the room he will rear up and finish them off, right off the table. Yelling at him doesn't frighten him - the Reaper is coming. He's got bigger things to worry about.
Thing is, times have changed. Most of my friends are in reasonably good shape. We eat better then we did a generation ago. All of us who smoked have quit. (Damn I miss having a cigarette with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine!) The drinkers among us still get out for our pints but there are few nights spent out until the wee morning. Hard to do that when the kids are up by 7am. We work out or run or play enough sports to stay fairly fit. My wife ran a half marathon after the boy was born and we have a friend who ran her first marathon this spring at the age of forty five. Sure there are a few who have put on weight or who are going grey or who are balding. I have a few sprouts of grey in my (still pretty thick) hair and my present beard is two tone - red and grey.
(I thought I was growing something exotic like a Balbo but it turns out the damn thing is just a goatee. I thought it was the mustache that made it a goatee but apparently that's just a "goatee with mustache". Damnit. Maybe a "modern Lincoln" is the ticket.)
Anyways there are many mornings where I drag myself out of bed, hobbling like an old man (especially after playing hockey), feeling the effect of three (!) pints I drank (not too bad thank God - I have a friend who gets unearthly hangovers everytime he drinks), look at the grey bearded man in the mirror and say "How the Hell did this happen?"
Which I am sure is what MacT was thinking as he watched the Leafs pump three power play goals by JDD last night. When it comes to special teams the Oilers PP is far from it.
05/06 - ranked 14th 88PPGF/5SHA
06/07 - ranked 27th 53PPGF/4SHA
07/08 - ranked 21st 57PPGF/10SHA
08/09 - ranked 15th 12PPGF/2SHA
I've said it before and will say it again - it was the Oilers PP that cost them the Cup in 2006. In the four games they lost they had one PP goal, courtesy of Hemsky's brilliant solo effort in G1. The rest of the time they stood around and passed it back to the point for the one timer, including on numerous 5 on 3s.
This year they are close to averaging a PPG a game but anyone who looks at the talent on this club knows that things should be better then that. Watch the Habs. Watch the Leafs for fucks' sakes. The players (gasp) move around. Puck movement is fluid. Its not all about setting up for the one timer from the point repeatedly. Its ridiculous and its going to hurt this team until they figure it out. My guess is its not going to get figured out and if this team makes the playoffs its going to cost them a series. Its blatantly stupid.
Anyways at least the PP is business as usual. What must make MacT's mouth gape extra wide is the sudden and complete collapse of what, for years, has been a terrific PK.
05/06 - ranked 8th 76PPGA/15SHF
06/07 - ranked 6th 59PPGA/6SHF
07/08 - ranked 5th 56PPGA/7SHF
08/09 - ranked 26th 18PPGA/2SHF
Note that this team's performance on the PK remained solid despite losing Pronger, Jason Smith, Spacek, Hejda, Peca, Ryan Smyth and Dvorak as well as guys like Horcoff, Moreau and Pisani to illness and injury for length periods of time. Didn't matter who they threw out there. It worked.
Or was it all Stoll, Marty Reasoner and Matt Greene? ;)
Now, unlike the PP, MacT has an excellent history of putting together a good PK. And they have been doing some development here, running out guys like Gagner and Penner, so that has cost them.
But a couple of weeks ago Moreau and MacT made a point of saying that things were getting better and it was just a question of some ducksnorts dropping in for hits.
Well right now the other team is hitting linedrives off the wall. Five bell chances everywhere.
They had better figure this mess out.
Posted by Black Dog at 10:12 AM