Thursday, January 01, 2009
My wife and I always wanted kids but we were also very careful about it. Planned it out and its a good thing because if this was one hundred years ago we'd either have twenty kids or we'd be having no sex.
We're that fertile. Decided to start trying in January 2003 and we figure she was pregnant after the first or second go. When it came to the second goround early in 2005 we're quite certain that I hit it out of the park in my first at bat. So we're damn lucky. We know a few people who struggled to have kids and you don't know if you're in that boat or not when you first start at it. When I found out we were pregnant the first time I burst into tears of joy and relief.
So we weren't sure if we wanted three. The jump from one to two is gigantic. Suddenly you don't have enough hands and things can be tough and we were lucky (there's that word again) to have two healthy kids so we knew that things could be worse. They can always be worse. So we were both ambivalent about having another.
But the trap is that it gets easier. The kids get toilet trained and they can dress themselves and next thing you know they're playing together in another room all of the time and you can get them to bed easily and all of a sudden you have time for coffee and a paper on Saturday mornings and you get your social life back because they're easy pickings for a sitter and even if you go out and have a few too many (it can happen or so I've heard) then there's no getting up in the night with them and in the morning you feed them and then send them to the basement with the dog and a blowtorch and go have a little laydown on the couch.
So you get lulled into a false sense of security and then all of a sudden she's all for the third and you're wavering and then you're pretty well ready in your mind.
And one night you come home from hockey against your biggest rivals, a two - one win and you assisted on both goals and not those give it to Hemsky and let him skate through the team type assists either, no sir, one is a turnaround out of the corner, fire it through a maze right to your man standing at the edge of the crease, so surprised he barely even taps it in and then the other is a slap pass that catches the other team off guard and again a tap in.
So you come home feeling pretty high and you had a couple of pints at the communist bar and there's your wife and she's had a couple of glasses of wine so even though its late October (26th) its warm out and you sit on the back deck and have a few more drinks and smoke a few cigarettes and the conversation is languid and life is good and then you tell her, sure lets have a third. And then its off to bed and next thing you know you're saying why the hell why not lets give it a go tonight and the next morning you laugh about it and yeah we'll try in the spring, there's no way but of course you both know it and sure enough a week later she's a bit off and that's it, the baby she is a coming.
She's almost six months old now and the third one is hell on the sex life but we're starting to climb back on that horse now, thank fuck for that, but when I get back to Toronto I have to make the call to you know who because three is entirely enough. So I'm calling the vasectomist.
My boss told me to come over with a bottle of whiskey and he'd take care of it himself with a brick but I figure I had better get it done right, seeing as I have the Supersonic Sperm of Steel. I'm not too worried about it although a conversation with a friend a while back gave me pause.
Its not too bad, he said, except when they give you the needle. When they fire the freezing in there it feels like someone is squeezing your balls.
Hmm, said I. I love it when I get my balls squeezed. That's not so bad at all.
Squeezed in a vise, he says.
Oh, I said, as the blood drained from my face.
Its typical Oilers these days, up and down, back and forth. The usual shit. Groundhog Day as LT called it. Three wins in a row and they were heading on up and then two losses and suddenly two men down and the problems that have plagued this team all year, most of all the PK and plain old inconsistent play, have reared their ugly heads again.
Cole and Gagner have begun to produce and the back end continues to generate offence (four defencemen likely to have forty or more points) and just when it looks like they're turning the corner Hemsky goes down and they lose to the sad sack Sens, unprepared or unwilling to play hard that night.
And so another poor year, maybe the third consecutive out of the playoffs and all of the money wasted and one wonders how long before the fans start getting snarly. MacTavish has a long list of goofy decisions going back to day one of this season and while the PK's struggles have a lot to do with personnel there's also some poor coaching going on there as well.
If they don't make the playoffs he is a goner and even if they do and things go badly, which they likely will, he may be a goner as well.
I think that move would be a reasonable one but it makes me laugh that the architect of this club, short of vets again, third year in a row with a poor job coming out of the summer, is escaping censure once again, and indeed will likely never get the gate for what he has done, or not done, since 2006.
Traktor had a long list of questionable decisions by MacT in the Blue Snow post at LT's and the thing is that you can explain one or another but put them together and its a pattern and that is a problem.
Its the same with Lowe. You can explain away letting Glencross go or letting Hejda go or losing Thoresen or getting Lupul as the centrepiece of the Pronger deal or gambling on young kids on the back end and so on and so on and so on. Taken singly well damn it there weren't a lot of guys saying that signing Glencross for three years at 1.2 per was a good idea back in August.
But now Glencross is playing tough minutes in Calgary and scoring his share and all of a sudden you think and realize that the GM is paid to evaluate players and here's another mistake and when you take all of these mistakes and add them up - Glencross, Hejda, Lupul, Pitkanen, Cole, O'Marra, maybe Nilsson, maybe Penner and so on and so on - then all of a sudden you might start thinking that Daryl Sutter takes a lot of flak but he picked up Glencross and Bourque as well and suddenly the Flames bottom six, so awful last year, looks pretty good, certainly better then the Oilers, who flushed Torres and Stoll and Reasoner and Glencross from last year's group. And once again I wouldn't argue with those moves singly but where is the hard ass left winger and the centre to take draws and play the PK?
No GM is perfect. As Tyler Dellow described it a while back, to paraphrase him, essentially a GM makes a series of bets, one after the other. Not every bet is going to work out. The Oilers weren't the ony club to pass on Parise.
But when the number of losing bets begins to outnumber the winners then you have a problem.
That problem is a club that just can't get any damn traction. That looks to flit with the eighth spot again.
And then you end up with fans who are looking for bricks to hurl at their TVs and whiskey to kill their pain.
Posted by Black Dog at 9:05 PM