Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Real Life Adventures

**So I had a pair of tickets to the Saturday afternoon game against Anaheim, up in the 300 level. I was supposed to go with Mrs. Matt, but one of our kids got sick, and I ended up going on my own.

I had heard on the radio the previous couple of days that it was the "Jersey Off Our Back" game (after Vancouver's experience last year, no one wants to do it on the last game of the season any more). The club draws 20 or so seats, and the ticket holder gets to go down on the ice after the end of the game and receive a jersey directly from a particular player.

So I'm sitting there during the first TV timeout of the game -- thinking to myself that, at intermission, I should go out and come back in with the spare ticket so I have two chances -- and the first 5 seat numbers go up on the Jumbotron. One of them Section 315, Row 17, Seat 15. Everybody in my vicinity bumbles around with their ticket stubs, then turns and looks at me. Yepper, I won, with the ticket I first came in with. So I go down to the prize desk, sign my waiver, and get instructed to come back at the halfway mark of the 3rd. At that time I'll find out which player I'm getting a jersey from, and we'll get set to go.

Show up halfway through the 3rd, and there's a stack of envelopes on the desk. You pick one out, and inside is a placard with "your" player's number. I do so, and pull out the #44. My first thought: "???" ...then the nice prize lady says "Oh, Rhett Warrener!" Oh, yeah! I forgot (and felt a twinge of guilt). He was waived at least twice, but was then injured before he was assigned a la Eriksson.

So the whole group misses the last 6-8 minutes of the 3rd, standing down in the bowels of the 'Dome. Game ends, and we go out onto the ice in a long line; then the players come out in a line facing us, and one after the other skate to the person holding their number. They take off their jersey, sign it, and give it to the fan. Maybe a brief bit of chit-chat.

They get through most of the team (lower numbers) and then the guy on the mic introduces me and over walks Warrener in his dress clothes and shoes, with the jersey over top. I say to him, "Don't take this the wrong way, but I was kind of hoping to get your bowling shirt instead." He looks at me like I'm from outer space. Actually, I'm kidding: he gave a good laugh. Signed the jersey for me, the number placard for my sons, and took off to get his feet warmed up. It was a nice moment.

So now, in addition to my good old 2004-style jersey with nothing on the back, I have a new one with WARRENER 44 on the back. Nicely authentic, has the tie-down inside the back and everything. And last night, I put it on after the Flames went down 1-0 -- looks like I might have a new good luck charm.

**Thought I might as well go on record with this: I think the perfect place for Sean Avery to land (through re-entry waivers) would be the Flames. I became convinced of this listening to Rob Kerr and Perry Berezan on the radio yesterday afternoon. Berezan was so adamant that Avery was a cancer with whom it was impossible to win, I started to wonder who he was trying to convince. Kerr mostly did the nod & grunt thing, but did muse that he thought "he hoped it would be a couple years before Avery got another chance". A couple years? For a crude & staged joke? Good grief.

All it would take is for Phaneuf, Iginla, & Regehr to give the OK. Maybe I have Dion pegged wrong, but I have him as a guy who either accepted Avery's apology, or basically doesn't care, certainly relative to being a successful hockey player. Think about it:
So there you have it. $1.9M/yr times 3 years for a guy who can do what Avery can do is a great deal, provided that he can stick to being merely a minor-league asshole, rather than a major-league one. Just saying.

**I don't know what the deal is with Iginla at the moment, but he is not right. In the first period last night, he couldn't retain possession of the puck to save his life, against anybody. I hope he's distracted, or hell, even injured, because that beats the hell out of the alternative explanation.

**Good news for Kevin Lowe: he now has something big for his excuse box when the Oilers miss the playoffs for the 3rd straight season, 4th in 5, 5th in 7, etc. Oh, and some more "hope for the future" as a bonus.

**Between A-Rod, Michael Phelps, Barry Bonds, and Miguel Tejada, I've been thinking a lot lately about an old piece by Jim Henley. Word:
It’s the “realistic” so-called libertarians who show up in one or other forum to chide the movement for marginalizing itself by pursuing the “fringe issue” of drug prohibition. But realistically, drug prohibition is the whole political ballgame. It drives the aggrandizement of police power and the paring of civil liberties. It establishes precedents that generalize to other law enforcement issues. It exemplifies and undergirds the principles of the Loco Parentis state. It is everything any libertarianism worthy of the name must not only oppose, but make central.

I wonder if it's possible that, instead of borrowing it from our grandkids, some of the money for the Stimulis could come from the billions of dollars presently and futilely devoted to preventing people from getting high. Or muscle-y. Or (yes, even) lying about it. Then at least we could be assured of one positive development emerging from this whole mess.


I got my Warrener 44 jersey shortly before the 2004 playoffs in honour of a Sask boy made good. I ran into him at the Sheraton Eau Claire shortly before game 6 vs San Jose. He told me he was shocked to see someone actually wearing his name and number, and he was more than pleased to sign it. A total class act. You could have done a lot worse, Matt.

i'm sure you're well versed in my adoration for the #44. so congrats on that, man...

Word on Jarome. He's gone from being victimized by bounces to being a true liability. Keenan sees it and that's why Langkow is back up with him (not that it's helped).

Hell, Lombardi has stronger underlying numbers at ES than Jarome does right now.

Hey, hey, hey! That's some fine work. Clean livin' is rewarded once again.

Or perhaps it was just a farewell (good riddance?) gift from the citizens of southern Alberta . . .

Common, no pic of you in the shirt?

What are the odds that you win that ...

The market has spoken: fans don't care whether Rodriguez or anybody else took steroids. They're buying tickets in record numbers.

The media employs fake outrage over steroids to fill the space or airtime between ads.

Law-makers exploit the Sideshow on Drugs to make it look like they're doing something - anything - to justify their bloated remuneration.

Fans just want to be entertained.

It's not that I don't appreciate Avery's hockey skills, and it's not that I don't think his comments about sloppy seconds were funny (they were hilarious actually) but where's the motivation for Sutter? It's ultra high risk with only a moderate reward.

I just don't see it happening. Besides, the Rangers are already ordering equipment on Avery's behalf.

Maybe I have Dion pegged wrong, but I have him as a guy who either accepted Avery's apology, or basically doesn't care, certainly relative to being a successful hockey player.

He didn't get the joke.

good stuff Matt

I don't want Avery on the horses with gay moustaches - remember those old horsey Flames jerseyes - because he would help your club.

That and he's the worst person who's ever played in the NHL.

the horses with gay moustaches - remember those old horsey Flames jerseyes

I always thought that was Lanny McDonald!

Sean Avery said a bad word. Glenn Anderson was a deadbeat dad. Craig MacTavish killed somebody while driving drunk.

I think "worst person who's ever played in the NHL" is up for grabs without even leaving my lifetime. And I love Glenn Anderson. :P

Huh. I was getting a little tired of Dennis going on about Avery because I figured that there couldn't possibly be one person to whom his position was new.

Live and learn I guess.

Well, it's not like I've ever commented on an Oilers blog before.

(More seriously, in long threads like Lowetides I tend to skim past the blah-blah-blah-Avery-blah-blah-Toronto-blah. :P)

Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?