Thursday, October 08, 2015

Can I live tweet a hockey game on my blog instead of Twitter?

Kings season opening against Sharks, Oct 7, 2015
I'm watching the first day of the NHL regular season on TV. They are still showing the game before my game, so I am impatiently waiting to see my Los Angeles Kings play at home against the San Jose Sharks. It's been a fast and fancy/finesse-y game, which has been fun to watch even though I don't like either team.

Last minute and a half! Penalties...and a fight! Pierre McGuire just called it nasty! Penalties called, timeout accompanied by Metallica. They're playing the exciting music because the home team has a power play and is down by one. And they score, but it was waved off. Calling Toronto. Playing "Highway to Hell." Repeated replays while we wait.

Game before the Kings. Another loss by the home team. Oct 7, 2015

And the ruling- call stands, the play was complete. It was already whistled dead. More dramatic music. One minute to go. It's cleared. Two more shots on net. This is the Henrik Lundqvist show. It's cleared again, and it's over. We're on to L.A. Wait, it looked like the camera person on the ice fell down.

We lost a couple players over the off-season. Oct 7, 2015

14:58 left in the 1st period. I missed a Kings goal and a fight! Nooooooooo! Is that the Zombie Kyle Clifford? So glad he got to be in the first fight of the regular season. Ah, it's my friend Pickles (Marc-Edouard Vlasic). I'm glad I learned to type because I can write and watch at the same time. It's my friend Tommy Wingels! He wears my number, 57. There aren't a lot of 57's in the league, so I treasure each one. I swear all my "friends" are not on the Sharks. So weird to see Martin Jones playing for the Sharks. He used to be on the Kings. Oooooo, noooo, Joe Thornton scored. That was one of those goals you saw happening as soon as he touched it.

Too much Joe, Oct 7, 2015
Dustin Brown just showed off the moves! Nice shot. Just saw Christian Ehrhoff in #10. Ugh. Not because he is Christian Ehrhoff, because that's Mike Richards number and I miss him. I like Christian Ehrhoff and we need him. Eeee, we just had a great scoring chance. And a penalty is called. Commercial break. We have a power play. Martin Jones looks like he's having fun. Issue with the clock. Marian Gaborik! Red Hot Chilly Peppers! And Gaborik got a penalty. 4-on-4. Damn, Brent Burns! Trim your beard! You don't get to pretend its the post-season just because both teams missed the playoffs last season. We pressure their goalie, now they are pressuring ours. We're tired and can't get off the ice. Wow, its getting rough in the corner. Replay of mid-ice check on Logan Couture by Dustin Brown. He looks outraged.

Ehrhoff goes to the sin bin, Oct 7, 2015
We have a penalty kill, and, we got scored on. It's 2-1. Almost four minutes to go in the first period. They are gushing about how great Dustin Brown looked coming into training camp. He's 30! He had to change up his conditioning because he's an old man now! The 70's line is still together (#77 Jeff Carter, #70 Tanner Pearson, #73 Tyler Toffoli). This game has a lot more checking and elbows than the last game! Jonathan Quick covers. And we got another penalty. Christian Ehrhoff. Period is over. I don't think I can keep writing so much. This is going to get really long if I do. I usually talk to the TV a lot, but now I'm chattering via the written word. Maybe I should go back to talking to the TV. I don't yell, I just moan a lot and calmly make suggestions. Also, I say "ooo, ooo, ooo" when it looks like something exciting is happening, which is how I got the nickname Monkey. Maybe it's good I'm not watching this in public.

The Canucks game is going better. Oct 7, 2015
So the new NBC hockey music is interesting. Is it new? I think it's new. I have a feeling that music is going to get old pretty quick. They like to pick some intense, hard-hitting music that is only not irritating the first couple of times you hear it. This is terrible that the Vancouver Canucks v. Calgary Flames game is at the same time as this game. It looks fun! They totally hate each other. I'm making tea during the intermission. That doesn't sound very hockey-appropriate. At least it's a hot beverage.

Oh, they just showed the Staples Center and I miss it there so much.

So, the second period did not go well for us. At least I had relaxing tea. Sharks are doing a good job of protecting Jones. He hasn't even faced that many shots, but when he does, he's making the saves.

Bad 2nd period! Bad! Oct 7, 2015

Did he just refer to the Sharks as Anaheim or did I imagine that? Normally, the friends that I am staying with would not be getting this game, but they are doing a freebie of NHL Center Ice until almost the end of October. To get you hooked. Also, I am doing the Richard Hugo House's 30/30 Writing Challenge this month. I'm writing at least 30 minutes a day for 30 days. Also, it's a fundraiser for Hugo House, and I have my own fundraising page! (If you click on the link it will open on a new window.) Ouch, San Jose just scored again, to make it 5-1. Maybe I'm slightly glad I'm not in Staples Center right now. The crowd is very, very quiet. Carter is getting frustrated.

Jeff Schultz, Oct 7, 2015
Ugh, large fight. The Sharks' Barclay Goodrow got hit into the ice by Matt Greene, and then Andy Andreoff beat the crap out of him. That was painful to watch (although his name is awesomely funny, and he's 6 foot 2 inches. I guess when another over 6 foot guy is whaling on you, you don't look tall.) We looked like bullies. Not a big fan of fighting to "get your team back in the game." It never seems to work for one thing. Not that the Sharks didn't have anything to do with the fight. I guess everybody loves to see the Kings and the Sharks beating on each other. It is an entertainingly physical game, but if they're going to have to work this hard in every game, they're going to get awfully worn out awfully fast.

Sedin power! Oct 7, 2015
Awww, the guys in the box look sad. There are three in our box, and two in theirs. Carter has another good chance after the penalties are over, but it looks grim regardless. I do have a soft spot for the Sharks because they are my favorite color, teal, and I like Vlasic and Wingels. But they have too many Joes, especially in this game. The Joes are killing us. I'm not feeling very fond of them right now. At least the Canucks dominated the Flames. Maybe I should have switched to that game.

Another goal. Oct 7, 2015

Ow, Couture just knocked Quick over, landed in the goal, and got punched in the face by Quick. Now San Jose has two guys in the penalty box. 5 on 3! Can we score? We haven't scored since the beginning of the game, which I missed. I need to see a goal!

Rough night for Jonathan Quick, Oct 7, 2015
Well, instead of a goal we got a melee in front of the Sharks bench. Couture is going to need some ice after this game. Damn, they just said Joel Ward (of the Sharks) is coming off two consecutive seasons of playing all 82 games. Damn! He's even over the hill (34). They called him durable. I guess! That's amazing. And the game is over.

Well, hope springs eternal. Bring on the next game! We're playing the Arizona Coyotes this Friday at home. The Canucks are playing the Flames again this Saturday, and then the Anaheim Ducks on Monday and the Kings on Tuesday! Looking forward to the next week in hockey!

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Of course my beaver is angry

The Angry Beaver in Seattle, WA on September 29, 2015
Last night I went to Seattle's only hockey bar, The Angry Beaver. It happened to be the night of the "Save The Angry Beaver" gathering (the off-season was not kind to them), and a Los Angeles Kings vs. Anaheim Ducks preseason game at the Staples Center in L.A. Also, the L.A. Dodgers won the National League West, so it was an eventful night. I'm not going to lie- this was the first time I've watched a Kings game since I moved, and especially because the game was at the Staples Center where I've been to at least a hundred Kings games, it made me miss L.A. a lot. If for nothing else, it is so damn cold in Seattle. The second I got here, it was, hello, I know you've been in a place with no seasons for eight years, but it's autumn not summer anymore! It really doesn't get freezing cold that often in Seattle, but the damp chilliness here is a typical weather feature. I'm wearing a hoodie plus gloves or a hat almost every waking hour, except for the brief but much appreciated mid-afternoon sun most days because it is still September. I did miss my hoodies and wearing actual clothes, and the heat in L.A. was driving me bonkers. This is certainly closer to hockey weather than L.A. I'm not constantly worrying about my tattoos getting too much sun, and then grudgingly smearing "healthy" (not full of dangerous chemicals with a shockingly bad Environmental Working Group rating) sunscreen all over, leaving a sunscreen film everywhere I go and grease stains on my skimpy L.A. clothes.

The bar was pretty great. It was dive-y, but not too much so (like you're afraid someone will be beaten up by a biker or some coked-up weirdo will attempt to express his interest in you using physical assault) and there was Canadian-appropriate food, that was both good and plentiful (if a tad slow to come out.) Of course I got poutine, with curry gravy which was completely awesome. I did get a stomachache, but that was probably the four glasses of Coca-Cola I drank while watching the entire game with laser focus. A friend met me there, and lasted a little bit into the second period before she had to go home. Even though she is not a hockey fan, she listened politely as I tried to explain the rules, how to watch without trying to follow the puck which is tempting but nearly impossible and you miss a lot of the good stuff, and various factoids about the Kings players. I am very nerdy in my own ways, primarily about accounting and hockey. It's always nice when people don't get bored and visibly annoyed when you talk about your passions. Yes, people have come up to me at parties and asked, "What do you do?" and when I tell them I'm an accountant, just turn around and walk away. For real.

When I lived in Seattle before, I never found my hockey people. Most people I knew didn't even like sports, so I was the lone hockey obsessive. One of the coolest things that happened last night is that the owner of the bar came over to talk to me within five minutes of me sitting down. He was so enthusiastic that I was a hockey fan, and there. Just being in a bar full of hockey fans warmed my heart. Everyone was friendly and lots of people smiled at me. I didn't get a single scowl, except when one of the only people I know in Seattle who plays hockey showed up. He's an acquaintance who is from L.A., who I unfriended a couple months ago when he posted an article about an NHL player who has been accused of rape (not going to say his name, but you probably know who I'm talking about), did the, "I'm reserving judgement until the facts come out" thing, followed by what people usually mean when they say something like that- "I'm trying to sound reasonable and fair just before I shit on every rape victim who reads this by speculating, speculating without any factual evidence, that the woman deserved it, deserved to be raped, for drinking and going somewhere with a man." Because that's a completely reasonable expectation, that a woman can never be alone with a man that she doesn't know really, really well, like a family member. No, not even a family member and certainly not an internationally known father-figure. I can only conclude that men who say these things want every woman to regard him as a potential rapist and refuse to spend time alone with him or have a drink around him, because according to his moral compass, if he drugs your drink, you get drunk, or you go home with him with some naive idea that you'd talk, get to know each other, maybe kiss or make-out instead of him holding you down and forcing himself in you, he regards it as your responsibility. Message received. So yeah, he saw me, said hello and then scowled at me.

I kind of took that as a positive, as I knew I would run into him at some point because it is a small hockey community and why not the first time I ventured in? I was just happy to be there, watching the Kings game, talking hockey with various people I just met, basking in the good hockey feelings I'd been missing. The Kings ended up losing in overtime, and a handful of people cheered at the bar. The owner had warned me ahead of time that Kings fans hang out there but there is good-natured ribbing directed at them in particular. Can't say I'm surprised. Lots of people hate L.A., but I totally don't care. I still love the Kings. I even feel some love for the Dodgers, even though I'm not much of a baseball fan. I did go to a Dodgers game right before I left L.A. It was Kings night. I got a t-shirt, and talked to various people we just met because we changed seats about eight times and made new friends every time. The world feels like a much friendlier place when you find your people.