Monday, March 29, 2010

The Little Things

Flying out tomorrow morning, first to New York and then to Dublin. Wednesday in Dublin, Thursday in a village about a half hour outside of the city and then Friday is up in the air. Its Good Friday which means I won't be able to buy one single pint if you can imagine, which means it likely won't be that good a Friday after all.

Will figure some sort of mischief to get into though I'm sure.

Then back on a plane Saturday to get back in time for Easter.

A whirlwind of a trip. What do they say, going to be going out on the lash? Should be fun.

Wednesday will be the day I take a wander down into Dublin city and I'm really looking forward to it. I've seen the south side of the Liffey inside and out so other than nipping over there for some Indian and a pint or two at a couple of my favourite pubs, maybe a short walk around St. Stephen's Green, I think I'll take a look at the other side of the river this time around. Maybe take a walk up to Glasnevin. See what I can find.

I've seen a lot of Dublin, big and small, and while I enjoy the cathedrals and the museums and the famous old pubs (and Dublin has the most wonderful pubs) I also like the more obscure spots, the alleyways and streets away from the bustle, the less famous Ha'Penny Inn and walking along the Liffey just at that moment when the clouds part and the sun hits the brightly coloured building across the river. Looking forward to finding more hidden gems on this little trip.


Another Oilers' season lurches to an end, groaning as the life seeps out of it. Its tough to cheer for a franchise that has not had an important game in four years and the way management works it may be a while longer yet. As I said a number of months ago, the last time the Oilers were in the playoffs my son was barely eight months old by the end of it. Now he's in school. I was in my thirties, my daughter was two (she is now in grade one and is a voracious reader) and we only had two kids. We didn't have these amazing flying cars and there were only nine provinces in Canada.

Crazy shit.

And when your team sucks bag like the Oilers do you can bet there's little to hang your hat on. Dustin Penner was a pleasure to watch early on and Tom Gilbert is always a joy. Hemsky and Lubo made it fun until they went away. Other than that it was a whole lot of shit basically, so awful that trying to think of joy in this past season is almost impossible but I'll try just because that's the type of guy I am, always look on the bright side, cross to the sunny side of the street etc etc blah blah blah.

Devan Dubnyk's first win was a lot of fun, especially after the club did its best to snatch the victory away at the last possible moment. The fact that he then won his second over the Sharks a couple of days later was nice too. Don't know if he will amount to anything although I would place my bets on him over ADD but it was a nice moment.

Theo Peckham's enthusiastic rambunctiousness.

Mike Comrie's weird return, his engagement 'party' and dropping the mitts the odd time.

Ryan Whitney's promising debut which has made the loss of Lubo a little less painful at this point.

Stortini's willingness to do whatever it takes every time he hits the ice.

Dean Arsene finally making the show, even if just for a cup of coffee.

Alex Plante not looking out of place.

Um, yeah that's about it. Glad I don't spend money on tickets because that's a mighty short and mighty poor list but anyways hooray for those guys!


Darren said...

The last time the Oiler's played a meaningful game I had no kids and not yet married. Now? Married and 2 kids that are off the walls until bedtime at 2 and 3.
Atleast I am not missing these precious years glued to the TV!

Scott Reynolds said...

Let's not forget that beauty game against the Blue Jackets where the Oilers stormed back in the third. That was way back when everyone was hopeful and the prophets of doom were being poo-pooed so we probably didn't savour it enough when it happened but it sure was grand.

Black Dog said...

There have been a few fun games here and there for sure Scott. Was that the game where Penner and Hemsky tore it up? They had a couple of those.

Pete. said...

Um, yeah that's about it. Glad I don't spend money on tickets because that's a mighty short and mighty poor list but anyways hooray for those guys!

Ah, that made me laugh. Jesus what a grim and depressing season. Above, you guys nostalgically discuss the very few non-suicide-inducing games: "Remember that game, back in the fall, with that nice goal? I think they lost, but that was a beautiful pass! A nice pass, anyway. Completely adequate! Good times..."

Ah well, it's almost over, then we get the excitement of the draft. I have high hopes for next season. I don't think the team will be any good; in fact, I'm thinking they'll be a tragic abomination again, but I feel they may be a more entertaining abomination, and at this point that would be enough.

Pete. said...

And also: enjoy Dublin!

Baroque said...

Wait just a darn minute - flying cars? Do you have personal robot maids in Canada, too?

That's it - I'm moving north. :D

macaotim said...

Just back from a Guinness at the local watering hole. The Zamboni was broken again at the only rink in town and, so, we opted to have a beer instead. No hockey on any continent for this Oilers fan.

I don't think next year will be as big a shit-show as this one. Perhaps more young talent. Hopefully more desire too. Over at LT's blog there were some good ideas on how to purge the crappy players and replace with less crappy ones. Some of those scenarios seem ok to me. With a little luck and a breakout year here or there, could be fun.

Have a nice trip and a pint or two.

Scott Reynolds said...

Yeah, that was the game where Hemsky and Penner just put the boots to the Jackets. Down 4-1 and then a huge comeback on home ice with Penner (I believe) getting a standing ovation. The Oilers were 6-2-1 with two of those losses coming in games against Calgary where they were unlucky to lose. Problem was, they didn't have the numbers to support all of those wins either. But we were on top of the world!

doritogrande said...

Cogliano's had a nice run to end the season. I'll always enjoy watching him come flying down the wing (where he damn well belongs at this point in his career) and catch the goalie off guard with a quick wrister. He just hasn't done that enough this year. He really does have somewhat of a deceptive wrister coming down the RW if you look for it.

Downright Fierce said...

Alex Plante not looking out of place.

Loved seeing Plante bob his head on the bench to the rink music. Says it all... Can't wait to see the big man in camp.

Re: Dublin. Only been there for a few days during a 3-month tear across Europe. Spent most of it in Temple Bar, I'll admit, but we took an adventure or two. Highlights include an underground stand-up comedy show (literally, in a basement) and being cussed out for not recognizing a James Joyce statue. Ah, good times.

Anyway, have a ripper of a vacay Mr. McLean.

Vic Ferrari said...

Enjoy Dublin, Pat. I`m envious.

I think I liked Oiler-fan-Pat better back in the summer though, back when you thought that the Oilers might lose games, but they would be 7-6 games not 2-1 games! Back when you thought Traktor and Hunter just might be right about the impact of the coaching change. Quinn would let the gifted stallions run wild! Freed from the shackles of foolish coaches (who had clearly never even played a video game!) they would trample the opponents.

I miss that Pat. I`m not taking the piss, either. Well, maybe a bit ;) I really do miss that Pat, though.

hunter1909 said...


Just because popcicle up his ass ex-con MacT could squeeze a few extra points out of his slugs need only apply "system" doesn't make him a good coach...funny how this bright coach hasn't managed to get hired by anyone else since his deserved sacking.

Quinn's done the miracle on ice as far as I'm concerned - 30th place!! Hilarious how fans expect their team to finish up like the current Flames, losing with dignity, when all they need to do is blow and collect free star players - but then again I've never placed being a sports fan in my own pantheon of morality either.

Developing a single scorer might have helped your argument, but since MacT was only good for grinder ho hum hockey I suppose that's the end of this discussion :P

PS: geez, I thought you weren't even interested in me, but now that i see my name is being mentioned across various blogs as an example of stupidity(probably correct there lol), I'm actually kind of honoured. The only problem is you're probably a lot smarter than me, which makes for pain and suffering for my part of the equation.

PPS: I've been guzzling Guinness since forever, but those days are gone - organic wheat beer is the future, baby!

Black Dog said...

Thanks for the wishes folks, it was a fine time indeed.

Baroque - yep flying cars, you bet ;)

Vic - as the guy who introduced this place as a good blog to visit after an Oilers' loss for positivity you know I can't help myself, its my nature ;)

Getting worn down though, have to say.

Hope springs eternal though.