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Friday, May 21, 2004

An Atypical Hockey Celebration

Well, that's enough serious blogging for the week.

Last night I caught a few minutes of the Tampa Bay-Philadelphia hockey game, and the Flyers scored a tying goal with about two minutes left. The arena went crazy, and what music did the loudspeakers blast? The chicken dance. That seemed like an odd choice to me; I much prefer the old Buffalo Sabres response to a home goal, when there would be a sustained blast of a high-volume dissonant chord on the organ. That was a way to mark the occasion. Philly won in OT and there's a game seven tomorrow to determine who will play America's Team, the Calgary Flames, for the Stanley Cup. It's long since time that I link the Calgary Herald.

Blogging of newspapers named "Herald," Boston's own ran with a rather non-neutral cover headline this morning: "We're road kill: Mayor tells us to stay away while Dems play". Nice to see the impartial coverage they're giving the event. I wonder if they'll be welcoming the delegates to town in July with a big "Screw You!" cover package?

Another Boston Herald item: I noticed this week that this page is now linked at the blog of Cosmo Macero, the Herald business columnist. I would say I'm a fan of his work, but the truth is that I don't read it since Herald columns are annoyingly hidden behind a subscriber firewall online. Despite that, Macero posted his column at the blog last week, writing that he was doing so "at considerable personal risk." I wonder if the Herald higher-ups knew he was doing this and got mad at him? Probably not since the column is still posted a week later. The Herald's web folks don't seem all that savvy either.

(Irony alert: Dan Kennedy should talk! Media Log has just added Blogger's comments, which are not nearly as nice as the other comment systems available, especially for someone blogging at a legit publication's web site, rather than just a lowly Blogspotter like yours truly. There's no RSS feed for Media Log either.)

Your Bush-bashing humor for the week: Paul Slansky's quiz on "The Twelfth Hundred Days" at the New Yorker. My favorite item from it:

2. What did Karl Rove say he wished had been done differently?

(a) He wished that Condoleezza Rice had fired Dick Clarke on January 21, 2001.

(b) He wished that Paul Wolfowitz had known exactly how many U.S. troops had died in Iraq, instead of underestimating the number by more than two hundred.

(c) He wished that the "Mission Accomplished" banner had not been raised on that aircraft carrier.

(d) He wished that Fabian Basabe, the Ecuadoran socialite wanted in California on three warrants for speeding, driving under the influence, and trespassing, had not been pictured on the front page of the Daily News "dirty dancing" with the President's daughter Barbara.

I continue to insist that I think Barbara Bush (the daughter, not the grandma, you sickos) is better looking than Jenna, even though Ricky Vandal seems to disagree.

Your juvenile humor of the week: Sean McCarthy posted the link to the silly pictures of the Asian kid with fat cheeks that's been making the rounds. I laughed, but then again, I laugh at anything.

Basketball update: OK, did the hockey earlier, and we've got the NBA conference finals starting up tonight with Lakers-Wolves and tomorrow with Pacers-Pistons. The Detroit-New Jersey series was about as dull a seven-game series between good teams as I can recall seeing in recent years. Many of the games were blowouts (you knew it was over last night when Ben Wallace was knocking down jumpers), and even the 3OT game ended with the likes of Brian Scalabrine and Darvin Ham on the floor. The Pacers-Pistons series will probably be awful too, unless you're the rarity who enjoys games in the 60s.

Meanwhile, everyone is picking LA out west, as am I. One of the refrains I'm sick of is people mentioning how Sam Cassell won two championships and Latrell Sprewell got to the Finals before too, so Minnesota now has the necessary experience. Cassell, even though he had a 31-point game in the '95 Finals (or something like that), split time with Kenny Smith, who was the starter, and he was hardly the focus of the Rockets championship teams. He didn't average double figures for Houston either year. Spree made the Finals in the bizarro lockout-shortened '99 season, when the East had a power vacuum with the second retirement of Jordan, and the Knicks, riding the improbable momentum of the Ewing Theory, somehow earned the right to be smoked by San Antonio in June. They were the #8 seed entering the playoffs, hardly a juggernaut. Plus, a guy who strangled his coach and screamed obscenities to fans at MSG earlier this season hardly counts as a composed leader. You may as well also mention the fact that Mark Madsen won two rings with the Lakers if you're going to dig that deep to make the case that the Wolves have good playoff experience.

And finally, on baseball: Toronto is in town to face the Red Sox this weekend, the fourth series between the teams already this season. I'm really sick of seeing the same teams over and over as Red Sox opponents. Thanks a lot, unbalanced schedule!