Tag Archives: sports

Playoff Blues Once Again

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Yes, it happened again.  My favorite hockey team, having advanced in the playoffs by beating a team they weren’t supposed to be able to beat, have lost in the next round.  No more nonsense about this being our year.  The St. Louis Blues have the playoff blues again this year.  No Chicago Cubs’ end-of-the-world theatrics for us.

NHL: Nashville Predators at St. Louis Blues

Our resident superstar, Vladimir Tarasenko, failed to bring us the elusive Stanley Cup again this year.  I mean, I have only been rooting for them to win it all since the team was founded in the 1960’s.  We were able to be in three consecutive Stanley Cup finals.  The Great Glenn Hall cemented his standing as a Hall of Fame player by being the first and only goalie of a losing team to win the MVP of the playoffs award in the twilight of his career.  The team was the winningest team in all of hockey for several straight years in the 90’s, and were led by legendary Brett Hull (who only managed to win the Cup after moving to the Dallas Stars) and still no Cup win.  50-plus years without a championship.  I guess we have to wait another 50 to play by Cubs’ rules.

I will be 110 years old when we celebrate that Stanley Cup.

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Filed under feeling sorry for myself, heroes, hockey, humor, St. Louis

Flag Football

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Yesterday was a long trek by car followed by what I thought was going to be a second straight flag football wipe-out all to get to see number two son play in a game.  I spent four years as a band parent lugging kid and equipment to and from band practices, bus-catches, concession stand work, fund-raising, and performances.  Number one son was a gung-ho marcher with dreams of joining a nationally ranked drum and bugle corps.  Wow!  The effort almost killed me.  But number two son reached high school with a different set of goals and skills, and due to educational forces beyond our control, and evilly opposed to us, he didn’t even stay landed in the big Texas 5A School he wanted to be in.  We settled for a charter school that provides a completely different format that Henry can handle.  Number two son is more like me than the first one was.  He’s brainy and thin and athletically capable, but not athletically experienced.  He is gifted in so many ways, but not in ways that are normally considered acceptable in cowboy country and the Greater Dallas Cowboy Area Football Imperative.

Henry is number 3, and like usual, back to the camera.

Henry is number 3, and like usual, back to the camera.

So this year we are taking on football.  I mean, not ferociously Texas high school tackle and kill football, but FLAG FOOTBALL.  The teams wear two yellow or white flags that have to be grabbed and pulled to stop the advance of the ball.  As a parent, I appreciate the sissy version of the meat-grinding, brain-fracking sport that Texas loves more than pornography.  I know it is not considered as manly to play flag football, but having been subject to a hospitalizing head trauma in my own high school football days, I would rather have him play the safer, cleaner version.  And, let’s face it, he weighs a hundred pounds less than some of the high school guys that would be chasing him to bulldog him in regular high school football.   And his school, a small charter school, is just starting it’s flag football program.  That allows Henry to be on the starting team, and play a sport that he wouldn’t stand a ghost of a chance of even making the team otherwise.

So, how did we get to yesterday?  Well, a week ago, the very first game for the Mighty Ospreys was a total disaster.  It started before two of the required seven players even arrived.  So, the first touchdown was scored by the other team when they intercepted the pass from the only girl in the game, playing quarterback for us even though she couldn’t throw the ball at better than a wounded-duck wobble.  We played a good portion of the first half, five players against seven.  And when the other two showed up, the other side was still the only side to score.  And they scored at will.  It ended mercilessly at ungodly-high-score to nothing.

So I was expecting another humiliation yesterday.  This reveals the true advantage of being a total pessimist.  I can only be pleasantly surprised.  The other guys were almost all shorter than our guys.  And our guys, after an extra week of practice, were handling the ball BETTER.  We found a quarterback who could throw the ball on target.  We scored two touchdowns and a two-point conversion to win 14 to 6.  And Henry was almost able to catch a touchdown pass.  It was deflected and he almost caught it anyway!

So, I came home sicker than Marmaduke after rancid pork, but happy.  Of course, the Princess mentioned that she wants to be in marching band when she gets to high school next year.  Oh, my aching sit-down parts!

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Filed under autobiography, humor, sports

Winning Easy

20150628_124803Now that Captain Action finally liberated my X-Box from the evil Dr. Evil who was holding it for ransom and not letting me play EA Sports Baseball ’04, I have been able to play Baseball ’04 again.  (It happened in this blog; Dr. Evil’s Removable Brain)  I have been playing this video game now with a passion, as you can plainly see.  You are probably aware that the St. Louis Cardinals are my very favorite team in any and all sports.  Notice, please that I have just pitched Matt Morris’ 30th victory against no defeats over stinky old steroid-fueled Roger Clemens.  It was also his 9th shut out of the season.  This is the first 30-game-winning season since Denny McLain in Detroit, in the 1968 season.  I only had to replay the entire 2004 season 4 times to get there.  Oh, and Albert Pujols has hit 114 home runs and Scott Rolen hit his 70th and 71st in this game.   You are certainly smart enough to figure out by now that I have left the difficulty level of this game permanently set at the Rookie level.  Hey, I’m old.  I like easy wins.

A close-up of the Flower Wagon's first bloom.

A close-up of the Flower Wagon’s first bloom.

This is true in so many areas of my life.  The flower wagon that I posted about on Friday is another evidence of my dedication to the philosophy of the easy win.  It was a victory over many things… depression, tragedy, Texas gully-washers that keep on coming, the tragedy of an old toy that no longer gets played with… things where my decrepit old self with six incurable diseases needs desperately to win.

Flowers in our yard in general are a victory of sorts.  This is Texas.  A couple of summers back we were in a severe drought with like 99 days in a row of high temperatures of 100-plus.  Flowers in June in Texas are a bit of a miracle.  Good flower pictures recently taken are another miracle.  My cell phone camera takes so much better pictures with all its automatic settings than my digital camera which cost twice as much, that it makes me wonder why I ever bothered with it.

A Yellow Rose of Texas in our yard.

A Yellow Rose of Texas in our yard.

Another yellow perennial that came up due to funky wet weather.

Another yellow perennial that came up due to funky wet weather.

Of course, this is pictures the easy way because I am not trying to adjust the color balance (in spite of partial color-blindness), or the brightness compensation, all by my own little self with my modest-to-insignificant photography skills.  (I am just skilled enough at photography to recognize a great work of art photographed by someone else, not skilled enough to take one myself.)

I am retired now.  I have had a long hard career as a public school teacher, and I am working hard at being a good writer (professional or not) in retirement.  I figure I deserve the odd easy win.  Using my writing skills to tackle toxic ideas like prejudice and politics recently I was able to score some real points with some of my very conservative friends.  I discovered by concentrating on the things they believe which I agree are very good things, I was able to make them consider a more liberal point of view, and not cling to Fox-News-sort-of faux-Fox-facts.  I can even get them to laugh at things like saying “Fox-News-sort-of faux-Fox-facts” because it sounds funny even if you are only reading it silently in your head.  It is an example of arguing towards an Easy Win, and I have become an addict.

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Filed under autobiography, humor, photo paffoonies