Monday, April 27, 2009

A Mélange

The weekend was good, although it was but a shadow compared to some folks I know (and you should know ‘em, too… great narrative AND pics of backwater Florida, literally). We ended on a sour note (as evidenced below), but let us not dwell on the negative, especially now that we seem to be on the mend. 

Lots of great hockey this past weekend, but I’ll save the amateur sporting news until (near) the end, out of deference to the great majority of you Gentle Readers who don’t give two hoots in Hell about grown men batting a frozen rubber biscuit up and down a sheet of ice for two hours, while taking the occasional break to beat the snot out of one another. Instead… let’s begin with the weekend’s excitement of another sort.

So… there I was (all USAF war stories begin this way, yanno), headed for the shower just after noon yesterday. The day was quite warm, the sun was out and beating down as only the New Mexico sun can, and the wind was right on the ragged edge of allowing me to put my awning down… which is to say blowing steady around 20 mph, with occasional gusts going into the Awning Red Zone. But we had the awning down, thus tempting fate in order to delay the onset of the air conditioning season. For the savings in it.

I’m standing in the shower lathering up my head when I feel the RV rock rather violently… accompanied by a noticeable and significant downdraft from the bathroom overhead vent. “No big deal,” thinks I, and I continue with the task at hand… and rather leisurely, at that. I get out of the shower, finish up the usual and customary ablutions, throw on a bare minimum of clothes, open up the bathroom door and look out my open entry door to see my awning flapping violently in the breeze… doing a dance even the late James Brown couldn’t possibly duplicate, while oscillating a good ten to 12 inches in the vertical plane. Rapidly. And at a speed sufficient to detach the whole damned thing and send it into the next county. My de-flappers had come undone, the wind had loosened up the awning struts, and we were mere minutes… if not seconds… from the whole she-bang coming undone. And now it’s time for an illustration.

Well. Pictures are worth a thousand words, as it’s said… so video must be priceless. Suffice to say all ended well. We secured the awning and proceeded to prepare for Happy Hour… which was in progress as I shot the lil vid above. We dodged a bullet there… or more like several hundreds of dollars worth of ammunition. Awnings are pricey suckers, they are.


The requisite yet oh-so-brief hockey update… We now have two series going to Game Seven in the East, while in the West we have one series that looks like it might go to seven games, and one I hope goes seven games. I think the Capitals will win their series with the Rangers, after what has to be the slowest start for a supposedly hot team in recent memory. The Devils-Hurricanes series, on the other hand, is anyone’s guess. I watched the ‘Canes beat the Hell out of Marty Brodeur’s team in Raleigh last evening (in between moans and groans) and I honestly can’t conclude which of these two teams deserves the win. Both are good, bordering on great. Whoever draws the winner of this series in the next round has their work cut out for them.

And the West… wow. San Jose survived Saturday night, winning in OT, to bring the series to a manageable 3-2 deficit (from the Sharks’ POV). Game Six is in Anaheim tonight and I think the Ducks will prevail. San Jose has been too uneven, seems to lack motivation (go figure…), and just doesn’t seem up to the task. The Ducks, OTOH, have everything the Sharks lack, except for San Jose’s high-powered offense… which doesn’t deliver (or hasn’t up until period one of Saturday’s game… and the OT goal, of course). The Ducks also have Hiller in goal, a guy who’s been simply remarkable and is the main reason the Ducks were up 3-1 going into Saturday’s game. The man is a veritable wall in goal!

The Blackhawks can close out Calgary this evening, in Calgary. Here we have a possible elimination game and those idjits at Versus will televise the first period and then cut to the San Jose-Anaheim game, and will probably do so well before that game begins. I don’t know who’s in charge of scheduling at Versus, but I have a damned good idea where he’ll be spending the afterlife. And there ain’t no ice water there, either.

So… there’s quite a bit of speculation in Dee-troit as to which team would be the better match up in the second round… Vancouver, or Anaheim? There’s a great good round-up of such talk at M-Live, if you’re into the sort of thing. I said I would keep this update short, so I’ll just excerpt what I think is the money quote from all this speculation:

I know that comment may leave you saying, "Well, what does somebody wittier, like The Chief, have to say?"
So I give you this: in hockey, you don't worry about whose ass you have to kick--you just worry about getting the details of kicking it as thoroughly as possible down pat before kicking repeatedly. Trash-talking is fun, but if you want to make sure that only you have Stanley Cup parties in June, July, and August, you worry about yourself and doing your damndest to break your opponents' bodies, wills, and spirits when that puck drops.
That's what playoff hockey is about--breaking people, and doing it well.

Yup. Ducks or Canucks… makes no difference. Bring it ON!


Today’s Pic: A rather nice piece of engineering, although one that’s very minor in the great grand scheme of things. There’s not a trace of fluid left in this bottle… none. And there shouldn’t be, for what the Plaid-People charge for this stuff. Yeah, I’m easily amused. Easily impressed, too. But you knew that, Gentle Reader.


  1. Thanks for the link to Barco Sin Vela II! I really liked his style of writing and the photos are great too! Glad your home didn't fly away! I had visions of having to find Oz to search for you!
    We've been watching the Bruins and the Red Sox up here... and yep, a bit of the Nascar too. Have you ever tried Cape Cod Beer?

  2. I enjoyed the Barco sin Vela II photos and story. In fact, I got a little sidetracked. Oh yeah, I was at Buck's place. Glad to know you are up and about feeling better. Glad to know your awning is up and in good shape too.

  3. Let's go, Devils! I can't believe the 'Canes are hanging around this long!

  4. I well know the awning and the high desert winds - glad you saved it! IF we ever get out of winter, ours will get rolled down AND de-flappered!

  5. Hmmmmm. Seems a Devils fan has joined the party, Buck. What with me rooting for the B's, Michelle rooting for the Pens, you rooting for the Wings, and Chris for the Devils, maybe we can get some sort of round-robin bet going (IF the others advance, like the B's and Wings have.)

  6. Thanks for the linky, Buck!

    I know how you feel on that ever present wind. 'Bout sick up and fed. I'm glad you are feeling better and your awning is still in Portales.

    What's the Burberry bottle for?

    Men use skin bracer and Old Spice. If you gotta be old school, then use "Bay Rum".

    Or real rum.

    Have a great Tuesday!

  7. Wow, Buck -- that awning could have been someplace in West Texas by now. This wind out here can wreak havoc with items that are not nailed down and can uproot things that are. Good save!

    Barco Sin Vela II has a great site. I enjoyed reading it a lot ... and he posts wonderful pictures. I'm like Lou, I got sidetracked and had to remember how I got there. LOL

  8. Buck, all that time I was in the Navy I was told Air Force war stories started with "Once upon a time..." What's up with this start!!!

    Navy stories always started with "This is no S-*-..." and of course you ignored everything after that!!!

    Any how, did you catch the seething rebuke of the Flyers season? It was pretty good if I say so myself. It was on Yahoo sports. Good games on tonight even though I won't care who wins.

    BT: Jimmy T sends.

  9. Alison, Lou, and Sharon: Darryl IS good, isn't he? What a life!

    Darryl sez: "Men use skin bracer and Old Spice."

    Men who **fought in WWII** use those products. Modern men have more options. Or perhaps more imagination. ;-)

    Chris: You can bet I'll be glued to the teevee this evening for Game Seven... but I'm not sure WHICH game I'll be seeing. According to, both games will be on Versus, and both games begin within a half-hour of each other. How's *that* work?

    Jim: Do you mean bet... as in REAL money? Or something else, like "stupid blog tricks?"

    Cynthia (and others who mentioned the awning): Yeah, it really WAS a near-run thing. You should have seen me scrambling to "get decent" before I went outside to save it. OTOH... mebbe not. ;-)

    Jimmy: I still have a LOT of hockey reading to do yet. I haven't seen the piece you mentioned, but it couldn't be worse than the stuff I've read about the Sharks, written by Sharks *fans*. I use the term "fans" loosely, of course. Woo-ie, they're BRUTAL.

  10. Here is a new start for you old USAF guys, "You may talk of gin and beer when you're quartered safe in here..." "But when it comes to slaughter, you'll do your work on water and lick the bloomin' boots of 'em that's got it..."

  11. Thanks for the suggestion, Lou... but I think I'll stick with "So there i was," if only for the brevity what's in it. ;-)


Just be polite... that's all I ask.