Thursday, July 26, 2007

Sens News and Other Tidbits

It's gonna be a quickie, but here it is, folks!

So we had some hockey news this week in Sens Land - Ray Emery avoided arbitration by agreeing to a last-minute deal, which will earn him $9.5 M over the next 3 years. I was pretty happy with the signing. I think Ray's worth that kind of coin (in comparison to the contracts that have been handed to Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan Miller, and Cam Ward) - plus, we get the security of having him here in Ottawa for 3 more years, rather than the 1- or 2-year deal he would have received through arbitration. Christoph Schubert was also inked to a new contract, something in the $2-Mil range for 3 more seasons, and that's a pretty good deal on a guy who can play both wing and defence. Schubert's versatility proved very valuable to the Sens last season when he pretty much filled holes wherever necessary, but with the departure of Tom Preissing through free agency, he might just get his chance to play full-time at his natural position on the blueline.

Now, the Sens news that disturbed me greatly this week was the report in yesterday's Ottawa Sun that Bryan Murray had Wade Redden traded back on draft day, and the only reason the deal didn't go through was because Wade chose to exercise his no-trade clause. Thank God for that, but Mr. Murray had better hope he never crosses paths with me in the Pontiac anytime soon, or he'll get an earful...and then some! I'm extremely unimpressed and deeply upset that he tried to trade him, especially after Redden repeatedly indicated that he did not want to leave the Senators. The fact that Murray has now gone public with this news also troubles me. Why is he doing it? Trying to piss Wade off so that he'll want to leave? Some kind of sick pressure tactic? I know Redden didn't have the best season in the world, and his play certainly wasn't worthy of his $6.5 M contract. But this is a guy who has been loyal to the Sens his entire career, and could have received more money on the open market last year (see Zdeno Chara), but instead took less to stay with the team he has been with since Day 1. Now where's the friggin' loyalty back, Mr. Murray? HUH??? that I've got that outta my system...It was an awesome episode of CI this week. I was shocked that Brian Melo was in the bottom 2, as he blew me away for the first time with his Hendrix song. Other stand-outs for me were Greg Neufeld doing some Johnny Cash, Tara Oram with Elvis' "Suspicious Minds", and Matt Rapley breaking out with his rendition of "Whipping Post". Khalila Glanville was the one sent home after her performance of "Natural Woman" failed to wow Canada. This was the first week I tried to vote - first for Greg, then Dwight, then Brian - but after 20 minutes of trying and getting only busy signals, I quit. If it's that hard to get votes through, I'm amazed anyone even bothers trying!

BB has been intriguing this week as well, with Evil Dick running a powertrip over everyone in the house, with Kail being his primary target. Last night, Jen won the POV to remove herself from the block *ugh*, and Dick replaced her with Mike, who can possibly be crowned the biggest idiot in BB History. He purposely pissed off Dick just to show his loyalty to Kail, even though Dick told him he was going up. And I wouldn't be surprised in the least if the house decides to go against Dick's wishes and vote Mike out - Kail's a weak player who does way too much back-pedalling and she is terrible at keeping secrets. Mike's usually a little smarter - and I think some of the people in the house will see Mike as the stronger player and choose to oust him. We'll find out tonight!

As for ball last night - we lost, and I hated it, and I didn't like people bossing me again. I did get on base once, but Wayne was thrown out on the same play, and that's not good. Wayne's a wayyyyy better player than I am, so to sacrifice him for myself was not what I was looking for. And I'm already dreading the double-header next week...boooooooooo....

That's a wrap!!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

How I Got to Third Base...

Last night was the first night I think I can honestly say I had fun playing ball!

Don't get me wrong - I love my team, and most nights, there are a lot of laughs and I enjoy hanging out at the ball field. But when it comes to the actually playing part, I generally think I suck, and I don't have a whole lot of self-esteem when it comes to my athletic capabalities (which, as you all may recall, I blame on my dad...because he cut me from the ball team when I was 10...but I won't get into all that again...)

Last weekend, though, I made it to first while playing for another team in the 3-pitch tourney in Quyon, and all of a sudden I realized, "Hey, I can do this!" I was just hoping that I could do so in regular league play so that I could savour the moment with my teammates, who would realize what a big feat I had just accomplished. (The group I was playing with on the weekend didn't seem to understand what a huge deal it was for me to be actually standing on a base...)

So last night, MVT was taking on the Geriatrics in the early game, and I can honestly say it was my happiest game ever! Ricky did have me batting last, which was a tiny blow to my ego, but I got over it quickly. Also, Woermke didn't shout at me this time for standing still & not trying in the outfield. Instead, he just quietly told me when to move, and where I should be standing - quiet instructions work much better with me, I appreciate that much more and I tend to listen a little better.

Now, here's the really amazing part: When I came up to bat in the second inning, I actually hit the ball pretty good down the third baseline. I have no idea what happened because I had my head down as I chugged along towards first, but I could tell by the excited whooping & cheering of my team on the bench that I was going to be safe. The really amazing part was that Wayne, who was running to second, was also safe!! It was a MIRACLE!!

Thanks to a good string of hits, I made it all the way around to third, and could've made it home if Ricky hadn't popped up for our third out. I can't recall the last time I stood on third base. Or second base for that matter. It's been years. I was glowing. Literally glowing.

OK, so I didn't do anything for the rest of the game, but we did eventually win (despite Mr. JN's homeruns for the game, we're not sharing our special bat with you!) - and I went home a happy kid. I love ball!

On the Canadian Idol front - Tuesday night, the Top 10 performed #1 hits, and stand-outs for me were Jaydee Bixby singing Conway Twitty's "It's Only Make Believe", Greg Neufeld doing the Killers' "All These Things That I Have Done", and Tara Oram performing "You Win My Love" by Shania Twain. All three were safe last night in the elimination show, with the bottom three consisting of Khalila Glanville, Carly Rae Jepsen, and Mila Miller. The judges didn't think Carly should've been there, but based on her Bee Gee's song choice from the night before, I wasn't surprised. Fortunately, Carly survived and will get a chance to make up for it next week. So did Khalila. Mila was sent home, and it wasn't a great shock. I'm surprised she even made the Top 10.

That's a wrap for today's Blog...have a good one, gang! :)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Jen vs. the World

I was able to catch last night's episode of BB8, but my Canadian Idol re-cap will have to wait, as I had to tape it at 11 - but I don't think you guys will mind, seeing how I think I'm the only one who watched CI!

The Big Brother house has been intriguing to me thus far this season...There aren't a whole lot of people that I like. Nick, the former pro football player, instantly caught my eye, but other than him, I could really care less. The big twist this year was that 6 of the players were either former enemies, rivals, or had unfinished business: Dick & Daniele, the father & daughter who hadn't spoken in 2 years; Joe & Dustin, the ex-scorned-gay-lovers; and Carol & Jessica, the former BFFs who had a fight in high school and never made up.

Carol was already sent home Week 1, so there goes one of the big "match-ups" (but easily the least interesting - Jessica's biggest beef with Carol was that she once owed her $5). This week, Jen won HOH - and Jen is probably the person I hate the most in the BB house. She's the one who bawled over the picture they put up on the wall for her, and she's so self-obsessed, it makes me want to puke. Her homemade shirts that she's been strutting around in - "I'm Jenuine" and "Jenius", just to name a few - are pretty pathetic, too. She nominated Dick & Daniele, due to their "negative vibes". Funny enough, usually the big fights in the house seem to stem from something Jen has done, so her nomination speech was rather ironic.

Last night, while preparing for the veto competition, Jen laid into Amber, clearly the most emotionally-unstable person in the house, threatening that if she didn't try to win the veto and let her nominations stand, she would put up someone close to her, like Dustin. Of course, Amber cried. That appears to be all she's really done in the house for the first two weeks. I think she's got an ulterior motive - because when Amber cries, Nick hugs her. And Lord knows if I got to have those big, muscley arms around me everytime I shed a tear, I'd be pinching myself just to make myself cry!

In any case, Amber's melt-down led to probably the biggest fight so far this season, involving pretty much the entire household, most of them ganging up on Jen. The strange part for me was the Zach & Mike seemed to be defending her, and I thought that was odd. In any case, Jen eventually apologized to Amber, but it was definitely one of the most tense competitions I've ever seen on BB.

It was Christmas in the Big Brother backyard, where they were all fighting for the gift that held the veto. The game was curling, and the rock furthest away from the red line eliminated one from the competition, forcing the player to select a gift from under the tree. When it all boiled down, Jen had to wear a red unitard for the rest of the week, Amber had to handcuff herself to somone, Joe got the slop pass, Dick won the plasma TV, Mike got a romantic dinner for 2, and Daniele won the Veto.

If I had to pick my favourite girl in the house, it would probably be Daniele, so I was happy she won the Veto and was able to remove herself from the block. Jen replaced Daniele with Joe, and I have the feeling the house is planning to back-door him. I'm not a big fan of that idea, because as much as I disliked Joe in the beginning, he's actually pretty fun to watch. He's not afraid to put Jen in her place, for one, and he also likes to keep the pot stirred - and let's face it, that just makes for better TV! But I also don't really want Dick to leave yet either, as the relationship between him & Daniele is probably the most fascinating aspect of this year's "twist". So I guess if I had to vote, I'd probably say buh-bye to Joe. I'm interested to see who America chooses to vote out by way of their player, Eric (who has also really started to grow on me).

The only other thing that disturbed me about last night's episode was seeing Nick start to defect from his alliance with Kail, Mike & Zach in favour of Daniele. He had a little heart-to-heart with her, shared secrets about his alliance, and told her that he trusts her above all else. Pretty stupid move, as far as I'm concerned, especially seeing I think Mike & Zach are already onto him...It's never a good idea to break off from a group of 4 to become an alliance of 2 this early in the game. I'm just glad his alliance was able to save his ass from the wrath of Jen (she really wanted to put him up, jealous litte bitch!) - it'd be a shame to lose his handsome mug this early!!

Next episode is tomorrow night - the live eviction will take place, and I can't wait to see who gets the axe - Joe or Dick. And here's an idea for a drinking game if anyone wants to play - every time Amber cries, you gotta take a shot.

You'll be drunk in 10 minutes.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Canada's Top 10 Revealed

I had a crappy night at the ball park last night. I was cranky & bitchy & highly unhappy with how I played. So needless to say, I was very relieved to go home, settle down on the couch, and watch the Canadian Idol results show.

I was mostly happy - and more than a little bit shocked - to find out who Canada selected to represent in the Top 10. You've all heard me ranting on how much I hate Tyler Mullendore & Montana Martin Isles. I really hoped they would be voted out last night, but I really didn't expect it. They've been the judges darlings up to this point, but I never quite understood why. Because they're funny-looking? Because they have no talent? Because they're weird & unusual? Apparently, the rest of the country finally woke up and saw things the way I did - Montana and Tyler were the first two eliminated last night, sparking a big happy dance from yours truly!!

So with Montana & Tyler out, it left just one girl and one boy to go . The biggest surprise for me was that Liam Styles Chang was next to get cut. I had said that he should have no problem sailing on through, despite the fact that I'd never heard his song before. Well, apparently that obscure song choice spelled doom for Liam. It's really unfortunate - I was disappointed to see him go, because I loved his voice, and he captured that "oddball Canadian" thing, without going overboard (a la Montana & Tyler). I would have gladly switched him up with Brian Melo; however, I didn't vote, so I don't get to complain, right?

The last mini-surprise came when things had all boiled down to Khalila Glanville and Annika Odegard as the final 2. Annika was, in my opinion, the "most improved player" in the whole show since the beginning, when she blew me away with her performance Tuesday night. I wasn't really sure if she'd make the Top 10 or not, but when it came down to just her & Khalila, I thought for sure Annika was in. I guess she decided to show her "true self" a little too late, and Canada punished her for it. Khalila was in; Annika was out.

So the Top 10 who will by vying to become Canadian Idol starting next week are: Greg Neufeld (my #1 - so HOT), Tara Oram (the country gal), Matt Rapley (gospel choir boy), Mila Miller (Miss Roll-Around-On-The-Piano), Brian Melo (smooth & funky), Khalila Glanville (classy & sophisticated), Jaydee Bixby (16-year-old Elvis), Carly Rae Jepsen (cutesy-folk singer), Dwight D'Eon (rocker dude), and Martha Joy (Celine wannabe).

I haven't been all that great with my predictions thus far, so I'll just give you my hopes this time:

Final Four - Greg Neufeld, Tara Oram, Carly Rae Jepsen, and Dwight D'Eon.

Projected Winner of this year's Canadian Idol: GREG NEUFELD!!

OK, so now that I know I have some other BB fans out there, I'm going to try and recap some of those shows in the future, so look forward to that!!

Have a good one, gang! :)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Ladies Get It Right...Sorta

For the first time in this season's Canadian Idol, the girls finally stepped up and showed that they can at least compete with the boys. Here's my thoughts on how the final 7 ladies performed:

Annika Odegard: Annika shocked me. Going into tonight's show, I thought she was a sure bet to be sent home this week. However, she plunked herself behind a piano for her performance of "Ordinary Day", and she really hit this one out of the park! She was awesome! Her voice sounded good, she was energetic, and the judges finally saw what they hoped to see from her. This was easily my favourite female performance of this season. Annika just might've saved her chances of getting into the Top 10.

Khalila Glanville: No doubt, Khalila's got a powerful voice. Her performance tonight was old-school soul, and it wasn't really my style. I agreed with Sass that she's lacking the "wow" factor. She's just one of those forgettable performers, and while she's got talent in spades, she just doesn't bring a whole lot of charisma to the stage.

Carly Rae Jepsen: I didn't know Carly's song tonight, but it was a nice acoustic performance, and that's Carly's niche. I really liked it, and I can actually imagine myself buying a Carly Rae CD someday. She's got a cutesy look, and she knows her own strengths & style. She should be a shoe-in for the Top 10.

Tara Oram: Tara's probably my favourite of all the girls, and she sure didn't stray far from her country roots with Martina McBride's "When God-Fearin' Women Get the Blues". It was clearly a fun song for Tara to perform - she looked like she was having a ball, and it really demonstrated her powerful pipes. If country's looking for a new "IT-girl", Tara might just be the one to fill that position.

Montana Martin Isles: OK, so I've made it clear that I detest Montana. But to give credit where credit is due, I actually didn't mind her act tonight - she laid off the ridiculous, creepy stageshow, and just played guitar and sang Alanis' "Ironic". It was the first time I think I actually heard her sing. It wasn't great, but it wasn't as God-awful as the theatrics she's displayed in the past. I disagree with Zack's statement that the accent doesn't matter, though - I find it really distracting when she can't pronounce her "th" words. The judges love her "x-factor", but to me, she's just an oddball, and that doesn't necessarily make someone a star.

Martha Joy: Martha Joy can sing, there's no doubt about it. But I really didn't enjoy this week, when she sang "That's the Way It Is" by Celine Dion. I thought she was pitchy. I thought her voice clashed with the back-up singers. I thought she sounded like she was shouting by the end. I thought she still lacked the "joy" the judges had demanded. But apparently, they were watching a different performance, because they contradicted everything I thought. Guess that's why I'm not a judge!

Mila Miller: I didn't know Mila's song either, but it was something about going to rehab. She rolled around on a piano and acted all coy for the camera, and while it was a fun song, I wasn't all that impressed. She's got a star quality, but I just didn't get it tonight. It's too bad, 'cause I think she could've really blown everyone away tonight.

Who Will Be Going Home: Khalila Glanville and Mila Miller

Who I Want To Send Home: Montana Martin Isles. Just her. I really don't like her. She can go jump on a boat with Tyler Mullendore and sail far, far away from here, as far as I'm concerned.

Best Performance of the Night: Easily, for me, it was Annika Odegard on the piano. She really won me over tonight. Carly Rae Jepsen was a close runner-up.

So the girls did much, much better, and I can't wait to see who will be making the Top 10 tomorrow night. Then the REAL competition can begin!!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Vote Tyler OUT!!

Here's tonight's rundown on the 7 remaining boys vying for spots in Top 10 on Canadian Idol:

Matt Rapley: For once, Matt didn't strike me as a member of a gospel choir. Perhaps it was because he chose to sit behind a piano and sing "I'll Be There" - easily my favourite Matt performance. He's got an amazing voice. It'll be a shame if he doesn't make the Top 10.

Greg Neufeld: Alright, it's no secret - I adore Greg. This week, he offered up a new side of himself by stripping it down and singing that John Mayer song about mothers and daughters and fathers, just him & his guitar, and I ask all my blogging faithful who actually watch Idol: Is there anything sexier than Greg Neufeld sitting on stage with just his guitar?? The judges liked it to, and I think he pretty much cemented himself as the frontrunner of this whole damned competition.

Tyler Mullendore: BLEH!!!!!!! He crucified yet another one of my favourite songs - "Rockin' Me Baby" by the Steve Miller Band. Tyler SUCKS. But the judges still love him, calling him genuine & the "real deal". I think he's just cheesy and untalented. I really hope Canada gets it right and sends him home Wednesday night.

Liam Styles Chang: I didn't know Liam's song this week, but that was about his only downfall. The boy can sing - I love the tone of his voice. Not too fussy on his wardrobe selections or hair style, and I'm not sure his song was spectacular enough this week, but he should sail on through without any problem.

Dwight D'Eon: OK, in my last blog, I indicated that Jaydee Bixby was my "sentimental favourite" - I might have to switch that to Dwight. He gave my butterflies by singing Matchbox 20's "Bright Lights". I love that song, and Dwight rocked it pretty good. I loved his performance, and I really hope the voting public makes room for a rocker in the Top 10. Dwight deserves it, big time.

Jaydee Bixby: Jaydee went a little overboard for my liking tonight. He sang about as twangy a country song as he could with that "Hey pretty lady" auction song while working the crowd as if he was a seasoned pro. To say he's 16, I guess it is pretty impressive, but he did get kind of out of breath. Then again, he was singing a song with about a billion words in a 2-minute span while running around shaking hands and kissing babies. I still like Jaydee - I just liked him better when he was doing his Elvis bit, rather than seeming like a pretty good candidate to headline Jam Fest next year.

Brian Melo: I'm not sure Brian will be around for the Top 10, but I did enjoy his version of Incubus' "Drive". He "funked it up" (Zack's words - but true), and although I did find him a little nasally, it was a decent choice for what his voice can do. I still think he's slipping a little when it comes to the big notes, but otherwise, a strong night for Brian.

Who Will Probably Go Home: Matt Rapley and Brian Melo

Who I Wish Would Go Home: Tyler Mullendore and...well...just Tyler Mullendore. I don't dislike anyone else as much as I dislike him. But the judges adore him, so it's probably wishful thinking. If Dwight goes and Tyler stays, I'll puke. I'm serious.

Best Performance of the Night: Hmmm...Well I love Greg, so I'm gonna give this to him again, but if I really go with my heart, gotta say it's Dwight's performance that I keep thinking about. I think he nailed it, and I really hope he avoids elimination.

Stay tuned for my thoughts on the ladies tomorrow night! They'll have to be a helluva lot better than previous weeks to even compare to the boys!

Thursday, July 05, 2007


OK, so where the heck did June go? The days sure seem to be flying lately, but lo and behold, I've actually found some time to sit down at my computer and write a Blog for all my faithful readers out there. So here it is...ENJOY!

Truth is, I've had many "Blog Topics" in my mind for the past week, so here's one big Blog sorta jam-packed with a lot of little tidbits that I've been wanting to share. We'll call it the MEGA-BLOG...

Soul2Soul 2007 - Tim McGraw & Faith Hill

I had the pleasure of taking in the Tim & Faith concert last week at Scotiabank Place, and it was well worth my $100. First of all, Tim's just about as hot as they come. I'd have dropped $100 just to see him. Country's powercouple kicked things off by singing Snow Patrol's "Chasing Cars", and it did that thing were the hairs on the back of my neck stood on end. I loved it. After that, Faith took over for her set, then Tim stormed the stage, and his set was by far the highlight of the night for me. His new song "If You're Reading This" brought tears to my eyes, and he didn't disappoint with favourites like "Cowboy in Me" and "Live Like You Were Dying". What a sexy, sexy man.

Canada Day Festivities

Q-Town celebrated on Saturday with a parade & fireworks amidst the annual Country JamFest. I'm on the Canada Day Committee, and I must say, things went off without a hitch, despite the downpour of rain that began just as the parade began, and ended just as we unfurled the gigantic flag to carry down the street. The fireworks were awesome as usual, and then I went on a rip (which apparently I should be regretting, but I barely remember it, so how can I regret something I don't remember?) The following day, the Committee celebrated with a little party of our own, involving drinking games (I hate being the 3-man), horseshoes, burgers & dogs, dirtbikes, hot tubs, fireworks, guitars, and toasted marshmallows. That's what ya call fun for the whole family!

I've almost got all the orange spray paint off my toes.

OH - and one word of advice - never mix Sour Puss and Tequila Rose. It looks like rotten strawberry milk. Very chunky.

Canadian Idol Thoughts

OK, so I can't provide indepth recaps for all the episodes I've fallen behind on, but let's just say that 2 of my least favourite contestants are still there: Montana Martin Isles & Tyler Mullendore. Blech on both of 'em.

Last week, Canada sent home Justyn Wesley *yay!!*, Derek Hoffman, Christine Hanlon, and Maud Whatsherface. This week, we said TTFN to Clifton Murray, Andrew Austin, Scarlett Burke, and Naomi-Joy Blackhall. No big surprises there, although I do believe Andrew deserved a better fate. He was probably one of the strongest, most experienced musicians of the group, but because he doesn't fit Canada's criteria of being weird-looking or super-annoying, he was sent packing.

With this week's performances, my #1 overall favourite remains Greg Neufeld. The boy's just soooo cute, and he sang a song called "Geek in Pink", and even though I'd never heard it before, he made me love it. For the girls, I'm a fan of Tara Oram - I like her country flavour - she's definitely Canada's answer to Carrie Underwood. The question is: Is there room for two Carries in the world?

The two that I previously mentioned as my least favourite are the judges' pets, though, and that makes me wanna puke. Montana, for instance, looks like she's a cousin of Beetlejuice, and I find her French accent annoying. This week, I laughed everytime she belted out, "Tanks for da memories" ... she's really gotta work on that "th" sound. And Tyler Mullendore actually sang one of my favourite songs this week with John Hiatt's "Have a Little Faith In Me", but Tyler still didn't win me over. I can't stand the sight of him, I think he's too cocky, and his voice, quite frankly, sucks! So of course, Jake, Farley, Sass and Zack blew sunshine up their butts and told them they were wonderful. Gag me.

My sentimental favourite as the competition goes on is Jaydee Bixby. He could be a young Elvis impersonator, if he didn't look so much like Nick Carter's little brother. But I love his schtick, and I'm a sucker for Elvis, so I'm definitely developing a little soft spot for Jaydee.

The guys are a much stronger group thus far; I think the girls have drastically paled in comparison. None of them even come close to being the talent that Eva Avila was last year. It'll be interesting to see who makes the Top 10.

That's all I've got for now...Have a good weekend, everyone!