Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Feeling Christmassy

Today, I really wish I was at home decorating for Christmas. I'm not sure why, but I feel 110% festive today - it's brisk & cold out, the sun is shining, there's a fresh skiff of snow on the ground - and I want to decorate!! If I were at home right now, I'd maybe make a cup of hot chocoate, put on my Elvis Christmas CD, and start digging out the boxes of decorations and the trees.

Alas, I'm not going to be decorating today. Because I'm working. But I do have tomorrow to look forward to. I've booked tomorrow off to go to the city with my neighbour Brittany to have a total girls fun day. We're going to do some shopping, eat at a fun place, go to the movies - the whole nine yards. I'm really looking forward to it, and I hope the weather co-operates!

I've still got quite a bit of shopping left to do, so I'm thinking I may need at least one more day after this. Seeing tomorrow is "Brittany's Day", I don't want to trail her all around while I do my own shopping. I was considering going again Saturday morning, but this desperate urge to decorate has quelled that thought. I think Saturday morning, I'll start putting out the Christmas stuff, possibly even decorate one of our trees. Then Saturday afternoon is my Grandma's church Christmas Tea, which I love going to and it always puts me in a Christmas mood.

Also getting me in the festive spirit will be the Mountainview Christmas Party on Friday night. It's really the "kick-off" to the holiday season for me, and I'm very much looking forward to it. Plus, on Friday I'm allowed to start singing Christmas carols and songs all day long. I can't wait!!

Just thinking of the shopping, the decorating, the parties, the food...Makes me all warm & fuzzy inside! I love Christmas!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Re-Thinking That "6 Kids" Idea

Ever since I was a little girl, I've always claimed to want a big family of my own someday. When I was in high school, I decided I wanted to have 6 kids. Partly because I love children, and partly because 6 is Wade Redden's number.

Now, I'm 24 years old, I have no boyfriend, and I'm no where near being close to getting married and starting a family, so logistically, those 6 kids probably aren't going to happen. It's just as well. I've discovered a TV show on TLC that I absolutely love, but it has also opened my eyes to what life is like in a zooey house filled with children. The show is called "Jon & Kate Plus 8", and it's a reality show that follows the Gosling family, Jon & Kate and their two sets of multiples - twin girls Cara & Maddy, and sextuplets Aaden, Collin, Joel, Alexis, Hannah and Leah. The twins are about 6 years old and the sextuplets are toddler age, about 3 years old.

I started watching re-runs of "Jon & Kate Plus 8" in the summer, and I was happy to see new episodes that began in the fall. To me, Jon & Kate are miracle workers. They have these 8 children to raise, and as far as I'm concerned, they do an amazing job. They are so organized, and they do such a good job of giving their kids opportunities, even though it would be easy to keep them all penned up in the house and yard all the time. They go on family outings, they have worked hard to maintain their family traditions, they feed them organic & nutritional food as much as possible, and on last night's episode, they even let the kids draw names and shop for each other's Christmas presents. There's often chaos, but they seem to handle it so well!

Jon & Kate's relationship must be extremely strong - I've heard criticism that they fight too much, but seriously, if you had 8 kids under the age of 6, I'm sure you'd also have moments where you'd want to rip your spouse's hair out. They do lose their tempers with one another, and get easily frustrated, but there are moments when they're joking around with each other that you can tell they have a bond so strong that nothing - not even 8 children - will break them.

The children are absolutely adorable. One of my favourite moments from a past episode was when one of the little boys, angry at his mother, told her, "Mommy, you a boy" - the biggest insult he could think of to hurl at her. They all seem to be happy, healthy, unique little kids with strong personalities. And all things considering, they are extremely well behaved. The family never ceases to blow me away with how adventurous and organized they are.

So yes, it's fun to watch Jon & Kate each week to see what's next for their young and exuberant family.

But I think I'll just stick to 2 or 3 kids someday!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Murder Aboard the Pontiac Princess!!

Saturday night was the annual Quyon Lionettes Murder Mystery, and I must say, we managed to pull off another one without a hitch!

This year, I was working behind the scenes, as I had my first taste of directing one of these productions. To be honest, I think it's much easier to play one of the parts - all you have to do is learn your lines and show up for practices. The women who are organizing everything - Mona, Donna, Lynn, and Barbara - have the responsibilities of choosing roles, preparing the sets for painting (by the ever-creative Rolly, who deserves his own shout-out for all his hard work), getting costumes, dealing with an oft-stubborn and unpredictable cast, preparing tickets, programs, placemats, and so many other little tidbits. It definitely makes the acting part look much easier!!

In any case, this year we were all aboard the Pontiac Princess cruise ship when Captain Emery (played by Rolly Bernier) went missing after a late-night scuffle on the upper deck. (And no, I had nothing to do with his name. That was what he was actually called in the original script. Although, someone did suggest that we should've changed his name to Captain Gerber. After the past few games, I'm not sure either one of them should be called Captain!!) The investigative team of Carla & Lawrence Woo (Donna Kennedy and Glen Leach) were fortunately on-board and they appeared on deck to solve the crime. Their suspects included: Tim Sawyer (Robbie Fraser), the first mate of the Pontiac Princess; Rita Fendley (Cecile Dumont), the overly-enthusiastic, energetic cruise director; J.D. Nash (Kenny Fleck), a big, loud & boisterous Texas oil tycoon on vacation; Mary-Lou Nash (Dawn Dolan), J.D's wife, and a Southern-Belle-to-the-max; Falcon Marlowe (Troy Young), an Austin Powers wannabe who was wishing he was back in England; KiKi Corbett (Jo-Anne Harrison) and KoKo Corbett (Carmen Trudeau), identical twins, but KiKi was shy & quiet, while KoKo was the life of the party; and Stephan Carusoe (Troy Cote), a freelance photograph blinding the other passengers with his flash.

As usual, the investigators did their interrogation, then left the suspects to point fingers at one another for the next 2 hours or so, with dinner being served between scenes. The most tension I experienced was at the start, when the murder happened - I had to make sure all the lights in the building were shut off. After that, I got to sit back and relax and watch the show, which was once again highly entertaining - lots of laughs (and some that were entirely unexpected - I did say they can be unpredictable, and they were!!), and they didn't get too carried away (as some have said my cast did last year).

By the end of the evening, the Kung-Fu detectives revealed that Tim Sawyer, the first mate, had hit Captain Emery over the head with a flashlight and tossed him overboard, and I can't really even remember the reasons why, other than he was in love with Rita and didn't like that the captain was trying to keep them apart. Something along those lines.

The cast did a wonderful job - the Troys mastered the daunting task of learning two accents each (one British & Russian, the other French & Russian) - quite impressive!; Kenny & Dawn pulled off their relationship despite the age difference; Jo-Anne & Carmen were a hoot as the French twins; Robbie played the goofball murderer to a T; and Cec never let the party stop on-board our cruise ship!!

All in all, the Murder Mystery could once again be considered a resounding success. I have only heard good things from the audience members lucky enough to be in attendance for what can easily be called the hottest ticket in town. I enjoyed my glimpse from "behind the scenes", and while I'd certainly like to be in the cast again sometime down the road, I'm glad the Lionettes, especially Mona, Donna, Lynn, and Barb, have allowed me to take part in this way, and I hope I was at least some small help to them. It truly gave me an appreciation for all that they do to keep this thing going year after year.

And now it's curtains until next year!!

Friday, November 23, 2007

I Guess This is the Slump

It's been so long since the Sens had a slump, I'd almost forgotten what it felt like.

But now I remember. It sucks.

A team that currently has a record of 16-4-1 is hardly worth cringing over. They're still widely-considered the elite squad of the NHL, despite the fact that they have just lost back-to-back games, the first time this has happened since December 2006, almost a full year ago.

Last night's loss was truly disappointing. It was an exciting, back-and-forth, action-packed affair with lots of scoring and numerous additional chances, but at the end of the day, the Sens blew two 2-goal leads over the Pittsburgh Penguins, and eventually lost in a shoot-out, 6-5.

Coming on the heels of a 4-2 loss to Buffalo the night before, we can now say we're on a losing skid. Add to the fact that the Sens have now lost 3 of their past 4 games, and you could say that they've completely gone in the crapper. Oh, and apparently Daniel Alfredsson, consistenly the best player for the Sens thus far this season, "tweaked" his groin at the end of last night's game. No word yet on how severe it is, or how long he might be out, but if he's out for even a couple of games, this could be disasterous.

OK, not gonna lie - I've kinda had a crappy week. I'm hoping it's just the doldrums before I hit the Christmas cheer. But perhaps my sucky mood is turning this little losing streak into something far worse than it actually is. Hopefully it's not as bad as I've already twisted it into. Maybe this is the worst string of games the lads will have all year. After all, ya can't win 'em all, right? These are the ups and downs of an NHL season, and there's still lots of hockey left to play. The Sens were bound to hit a downer eventually.

On a different note, I would like to mention that it would be nice for once to put up the $10.95 for these stupid Pay Per View games, as we did last night, and actually watch the whole thing without a technical glitch marring the purchase. It seemed last year that something went wrong in every game. Last night, between the second and third periods, after we went hunting with Mike Fisher, and were about to go grocery shopping with Gary Roberts and Mark Recchi, the picture froze, just as Roberts was leaning in to grab an organically-grown zuchinni from the produce shelf. So far the rest of the intermission, the screen was frozen at that one image, and as minutes passed by, I grew increasingly frustrated.

Just as the third period began, we returned to the action, but the feed had been changed from the Ottawa broadcast to the Pittsburgh one. To be honest, it was kind of nice to listen to someone other than Dean Brown for a while. Aside from the fact that they said the name "Ryan Malone" far too often, they were enjoyable to listen to. I was a little ticked when they switched back over to the Ottawa feed for the shoot-out.

So yeah, they lost, I was cranky, went downstairs to watch Survivor and Grey's, and then still had trouble falling asleep around midnight. That's how wound up I was over this silly little loss to the silly little Penguins.

Man, I spend too much time worrying about hockey!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The First Snow!!

Since Monday morning, all I've heard around the office is talk of the snow that's coming on Thursday. Gotta get the guys prepared, get the plows ready, have everything in place for the first snow on Thursday.

This morning, when I got up, I went out into the kitchen, all bleary-eyed and half-asleep to get a drink of water, and Mom said, "Look out the window!"

Snow. Lots of it. Everything completely white. Like a perfect little winter wonderland!

But here's the problem: It's only Wednesday morning!

The weatherman was calling for freezing rain, drizzle, rain for today. Not snow. The snow wasn't to come until tomorrow.

Just goes to show how smart those guys are!

So yes, things are a wee bit crazy around here this morning. But for the most part, everyone was already prepared for this, even though they were targeting Thursday. And here at Mountainview, we don't do much plowing anymore anyways, just driveways and a few of the local establishments' parking lots. The snow is wet enough that laneways and roads are pretty much already melting anyways.

But they're still calling for a dumping tomorrow, and colder temperatures as well, so it could get worse before it gets better.

I'm not going to let that stop my Snow Euphoria, though! I love the white stuff!

I just wish this was Christmas Eve...Now my Christmassy mood can officially begin! Yipee!!

If you're out in it today, enjoy it - but drive carefully!! :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Darth Gerber Rebounds

The Sens rebounded nicely last night after that game that we do not speak of. Taking on the Habs at the Bell Centre in Montreal on "Larry Robinson Night", they were trying to prevent a two-game losing streak, which they have not had since December 2006, almost a full year ago.

As per usual, I missed the first period thanks to Murder Mystery practice (I'm not in it this year, just helping out) - so when I got home, it was already 2-0 Ottawa, thanks to goals by Patty Eaves and Chris Neil. Yes, that's right. I said Patty Eaves and Chris Neil. Not Daniel Alfredsson. It was like a small Senators miracle!

Not that there's anything wrong with Alfie getting all the goals. In fact, I love it that Alfie's off to such an amazing start. He's been arguably the best two-way player in the NHL this year, and has already garnered much talk of being the early favourite to win the Hart Trophy for MVP. Not too shabby at all.

However, with Jason Spezza out injured for the past few weeks and Dany Heatley mired in a 10-game scoring slump, Alfie was pretty much carrying the load, and it was starting to make me a little nervous. Being shut-out on Saturday night in the game that we do not speak of only brought to light a problem that I was already contemplating: Alfie can't be the best every night, so we need other guys to start picking up the slack, and they're not really doing it.

Now, last night, Daniel Alfredsson did have an amazing game, and he collected a couple of assists I think. He just didn't get any goals. But thankfully, some of our "role players" did. Not only did Eaves and Neil score, but so did Chris Kelly. And thankfully, Heater broke out of his slump and finally potted one too. The Habs never gave up and came at the Sens relentlessly, but they were only able to tickle the twine twice, leaving us with a 4-2 final score.


Darth Gerber (as he now likes to be referred to) had another strong game between the pipes. I was a little surprised that he got the start, after the loss in that game that we do not speak of. I thought that would just be a perfect opportunity for Coach John Paddock to give Ray Emery another chance to prove himself. But he's letting Gerber ride this thing out, handing him the reins and seemingly saying, "This is your buggy now, Darth." And Gerber righted his wagon, bouncing back nicely and making some big saves.

I really love my 16-3 Sens this year. Absolutely love them.


Monday, November 19, 2007

Bad Medecine

There was a moment during the Bon Jovi concert Saturday night at Scotiabank Place when I had a flashback to my 6th birthday party. I was opening gifts, and left right til the end were two packages, one large and one small. The first, the larger one, was a brand-new tape player...or a "boombox", as I so proudly called it - my very own boombox!!

The second, the smaller gift, was a cassette tape to use in my new boombox. I literally shrieked with joy when I opened it. It was my very own copy of the Bon Jovi "New Jersey" album - it was exactly what I wanted.

That was before the New Kids. Before Tiffany. Before Debbie Gibson. My first musical love was Bon Jovi.

And it was all because of the song "Bad Medecine".

So yes, Saturday night, while up in the third level right at the side of the stage, probably the biggest, most thrilling highlight was when Jon & the guys swung into "Bad Medecine". I screamed til my throat was sore and there was no voice left in me. Suddenly, I was so very, very glad that I had accepted the last-minute ticket offer to sit in the nosebleeds and rediscover my love for Bon Jovi, rather than stay home and watch the Sens game.

(For the record, I'm choosing to pretend that game never happened. I didn't see it, so therefore we did not lose to the Leafs. End of discussion.)

Bon Jovi was awesome!! The show was energetic from start to finish, and I heard all of my old favourites. We barely sat down. Aside from "Bad Medecine" (which included a lively interlude of "Shout!" and even had Jon down on the stage doing push-ups...YUM!), other highlights included "Lay Your Hands on Me" and "Livin' on a Prayer". We expected "Livin' on a Prayer" to be the encore, but instead, he did a moving and beautiful rendition of "Hallelujah" and then rocked out to "Dead or Alive" (absolutely amazing) - then we left, and of course he kept playing, but I don't think I recognized the songs I was hearing while we walked along the concourse, so it wasn't a huge disappointment.

I also absolutely loved when he went out on the little platform in the crowd to perform his new song, and when Richie Sambora joined him for "I'll Be There For You", I got goosebumps. Then he did a wonky version of "Bed of Roses" that was just about the only disappointing part of the night. Aside from doing some of his new stuff early on that I didn't know, the rest was absolutely perfect!!

The place was packed, Jon was smokin' hot, and I couldn't think of a better way to spend a Saturday night!!

Bad Medecine indeed...

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Band Geek with Coke-Bottle Glasses

Sens won again last night - WOO-HOO!! This time, 3-2 over the Buffalo Sabres (the cream of the crop at this time last season, who have now settled at the bottom of the NHL standings - my, how the roles have been reversed!) - with Captain Alfie scoring 2 in his 800th game. Seriously, the dude is on fire!! Shean Donovan also scored, his third of the season (and third game-winning goal), and Martin Gerber was strong once again between the pipes.

Tomorrow night, the Sens are taking on the Leafs, but for the first time in a long time - maybe ever - I won't be watching the Battle of Ontario, because I'll be at Scotiabank Place for the Bon Jovi concert. Wonder if Jon will keep us updated on the score??

After last night's game, I watched both Survivor & Grey's Anatomy. On Survivor, James continued to be my favourite player, but once again, things didn't go quite right. The plan was to oust PG-13 - clearly the most annoying player now that Jean-Robert is gone - but she won Immunity, so they had to switch up their plans. The obvious targets were either Eric or Frosti, the two remaining players from that former tribe, but Courtney's name was also tossed into the mix. Honestly, I think they should've sent her home. The girl cannot get any more skinny or she's going to start falling apart. She's frickin' skeletal. In fact, that may be my new nickname for her: Skeletor.

Todd continues to be the ring-leader, calling the shots, but James is also influential in what's going on around camp. I loved it when he shot down PG-13 after she accused him of being lazy during the challenge. This, from the twit who purposely giggled and threw a challenge the week they got rid of Aaron. It burnt me that she won Immunity and is still in the game.

When it all came down to it, the gang viewed Skeletor's blossoming relationship with Frosti as too dangerous to their group plans, so they axed him. Meh. Who cares. His name was Frosti, for crying out loud.

Now, on to Grey's - I've been loving the show this year, and this episode really hit home for me. Dr. Bailey, the hard-core hard-ass Nazi of Seattle Grace, was transformed into a giggling schoolgirl - or, as Dr. Hahn called her, a "blithering idiot"- when an old crush of hers came into the ER after the bus of teens he was chaperoning on a school trip from California crashed. Marcus held her hand, flirted relentlessly, asked her to take special care of him, even had her filling out the massive amount of paperwork for all the students under his care who were admitted.

Then, Marcus took an unexpected turn, and they had to perform surgery on him. Dr. Bailey saved his life, and when he woke up, she was at his side, smiling adoringly at him. He thanked her for all she had done, then held her hand and asked if she had remembered to fill out all the paperwork he'd asked her for.

Suddenly, Dr. Bailey was brought back to what life was like back in high school, when she had been Marcus' tutor. The scene where she breaks down in the lobby and rips Derek apart for being "one of those guys" was so perfect. She tells him how Marcus was the track star, and she tutored him through high school while harbouring a crush on him, and he didn't even ask her to the prom because she was a band geek that wore Coke-bottle glasses. She takes her anger out on Derek, because she sees him as the same kind of guy - the kind of guy who takes advantage of love-struck young fools to build up his own ego and get his work done for him.

I connected with Miranda Bailey at that moment. I cried for her; I cried for myself. I know I wasted a pile of time in high school and college, trailing after a few "cool" guys, offering to do their homework or help them study, just so I could spend time with them or hear them praise me for helping them get by. But at the end of the day, all they wanted was a better grade, or a passing mark, without actually doing the work. I was just their stepping stone to a better life, and made them feel good about themselves because I adored them. They were never interested in me. They used me.

Now, I wasn't a band geek with Coke-bottle glasses. But I was the fat girl who would do anything to get a hot guy to pay attention to me. Even if it meant tireless hours of studying with a jock, or writing an essay for him. But the smile and thanks afterwards were never quite enough. I didn't have a date for grad either. Nobody even thought about asking me. I was the loser who brought a stuffed dog as her date.

But then, the show brought me solace. When Derek pulled Miranda down beside him, and told her that in high school, he was skinny and had an afro and bad acne. And that he would have been honoured to take a girl like her to the prom.

It was a bittersweet moment that brought me peace and gave me hope. Of course, it didn't hurt that it was McDreamy saying the magic words.

God, I love Grey's Anatomy.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Need a Good Laugh??

Sorry, guys, couldn't think of anything to write today. But if you need a good chuckle, check out the following story. It's always fun to laugh at the Leafs, but lately, they're just making it too easy!! This is taken from

Embarassing Times For Leafs Staff
11/14/2007 3:11:30 PM

Losing to the rival Montreal Canadiens is heartbreaking enough, but it was two other embarrassing stories that grabbed headlines in the fishbowl that Toronto fans call Leaf Nation.
Defenceman Bryan McCabe was the scapegoat again on Tuesday night, coughing up the puck to Montreal's Mike Komisarek and allowing him to score on Andrew Raycroft for a 4-3 Montreal overtime victory.

"It sucks," McCabe said after the game on Tuesday. "We played a hard game. Seems like it always ends up in a glaring error."

McCabe, who made the front page of the Toronto Sun last month for inadvertently scoring the game-winner on his own net, didn't have have Leafs head coach Paul Maurice in his ear after the obvious gaffe.

"There's not a lot of conversation after that," Maurice told reporters after the game.

McCabe was spared front page humiliation in the Toronto papers on Wednesday, but at the expense of rookie forward Jiri Tlusty.

The Leafs' 2006 first-round pick was the latest victim of the World Wide Web, as nude photos of the former Sault Ste. Marie Greyhound appeared on a Canadian gossip web site last week.

"It's tough in this city to censorize anything," said Leafs forward Wade Belak on Thursday. "I've been known to take out the trash naked from time to time. Now with all these allegations with Jiri I don't know if I'm going to feel safer out there."

The revealing pictures, which were taken by Tlusty himself last year with his camera phone, have since been removed after the Czech centre's lawyer threatened legal action. As expected, the team has been supportive of Tlusty through the last couple of days.

"It's obviously the price of being a young guy, coming in and playing for a month, having some success and having someone try to knock you down and embarrass you," said Belak. "We've lent our support to him and it's not a big deal, everyone's been caught with their pants down."

Such is life playing for one of hockey's hotbeds, and life doesn't get any easier for the team this week. The Leafs visit the Boston Bruins - who trail Toronto by just one point in the standings with three games in hand - on Thursday, and host the powerhouse Ottawa Senators on Saturday.

(Related Info
Leafs' Tlusty regrets controversial photos
McCabe's blunder leads to winning goal
Costly Mistakes
Hockey Hotbeds )

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Luckiest Girl in the World

A few days ago, I was telling you all about what a jinx I was.

Turns out, I was wrong. I'm not the Sens jinx after all. In fact, on Saturday, I was the exact opposite. I was just about the luckiest girl in the world!!

Less than 48 hours after being offered free Club Seat tickets to Thursday night's loss to the Washington Capitals by my Uncle Paul, I received a call with an offer of a free first-level seat for the Saturday matinee against the Montreal Canadiens by my Uncle Garry. He did some work for Sens GM Bryan Murray, so he was given 4 tickets for the game. His son Troy backed out, so he chose me to join him, his son Jim, and daughter-in-law Kathy.

Scotiabank Place was absolutely insane. There were a pile of Habs fans in attendance, and calling them rowdy would be an understatement. It definitely felt like a playoff atmosphere! Add to the fact that the action was back-and-forth and extremely exciting - well, I didn't think it could get much better than that.

The first period was awesome, and the Sens had many great chances, but it was Montreal that jumped out to an early 1-0 lead. Kathy and I were screaming and cheering like crazy; however, it was the Habs fans who were getting all the glory. A couple of guys sitting in the next section over all decked out in Montreal apparel were gloating like crazy, winking at us and really rubbing it in. Every time Habs netminder Christobal Huet made a save, they were chanting his name, and they were doing the "Ole! Ole! Ole! Ole! Ole!" song, even that early. They were funny though, so it was a nice change from the drunk ol' Caps fan I had to deal with at the Thursday game!

Now, some of our neighbours were sitting in the first row of the third level right above us, and in between the first & second period, I was looking for them when I suddenly saw Wade Redden's dad again, talking to some girls in the row behind us. I couldn't believe I was seeing him again for the second straight game! I was watching them pretty closely when I suddenly shifted my gaze and caught the eye of the guy sitting directly behind me. I couldn't believe it: it was Wade's brother, Bart!! I recognized him instantly from seeing pictures of him on the Net, and he looks sooo much like Wade in real life!

So Kathy insisted that I talk to him. I turned around and asked if he was, in fact, Wade Redden's brother, which he quietly confirmed was correct. A while later, I turned around and asked if he could do me a favour. He said, "Sure". So I asked him to tell Wade to stay in Ottawa. I told him I'd even try to help pay his salary if he agreed to remain a Senator. Bart laughed, and told me he'd see what he could do. He said that Wade loves Ottawa, so he didn't think he'd have to do much convincing. Kathy then informed him we were sitting in Bryan Murray's seats. He said, "Oh, so you guys know Bryan Murray?" We said yes, then turned back around, feeling we'd taken up enough of his time with this silly chat. Moments later, he leaned forward and said, "Umm...If you guys know Bryan Murray, why aren't you talking to him about keeping Wade here?" We laughed; I told him I thought he probably knew Wade better than we knew Murray, and he probably had more pull with his brother than we have with the Sens' GM.

So yes, I was absolutely glowing from meeting Wade's brother and actually chatting with him. The icing on the cake? The Sens, who were still down 1-0 late in the third period, scored to tie it up - thank you, Captain Alfie!! Less than two minutes later, Chris Neil scored to put them ahead, and then Alfie tapped one into the empty net to seal the victory and send the Sens fans into a frenzy, while those over-zealous cocky Habs fans who had started celebrating far too early were suddenly subdued. It was funny, because Bart and his buddies behind us were chanting "Huet! Huet! Huet!" at those crazy Habs fans in the next section every time we scored, and you could tell it was really ticking them off. At the end of the game, while they were announcing the 3 Stars, I was able to make eye contact with one of those guys and I blew him a big kiss. He burst out laughing - they were really good sports about it!!

As we were leaving, I happened to make eye contact with Bart again and he gave me a big smile. So I said, "It was nice meeting you," and he said the same and shook our hands. Needless to say, I was floating on a cloud!

Amazing how much my luck changed, eh? An awesome come-from-behind win amidst a pack of wild Montreal fans, meeting someone from the same gene pool as my beloved Wade...It couldn't have been more perfect!!


Friday, November 09, 2007

It's Official: I'm the Jinx

I had a delightful surprise yesterday afternoon. My Uncle Paul, who is the president of a major pharmaceutical company in Canada, had told his Ottawa office that if they ever had any extra Sens tickets that they needed to get rid of to call his Sens-lovin' niece in the Valley. (That would be me). So yesterday, I had a call from Jacquie at GlaxoSmithKline in Ottawa to offer me tickets to last night's game vs. the Washington Capitals!

It was a bit of an adventure just to get the tickets. I chose Sarah to come with me, as I know she's a big Sens fan, and also because I know she has a pretty good knowledge of how to get around in Ottawa. That was my biggest fear in this whole shemozzle - I had to pick up the tickets downtown on Bank Street, then somehow get out to Scotiabank Place. I've never driven downtown. I've never driven on the Queensway. And I've never gone to SBP without taking the Ferry, or the long way around by Renfrew. Bill explained to me how he would go about it, and wrote his instructions down for me. Then Jacquie also told me she'd leave detailed directions at the desk with the tix.

It's a darned good thing I had Bill's instructions and Sarah with me, because Jacquie's idea of "detailed directions" were as follows:


Head to Queensway West. Kanata.

Have fun,


Apparently she didn't quite grasp the part where I said I'm not a city driver!!

In any case, Sarah knew a way out to SBP where I didn't even have to take the Queensway, and as it turns out, driving downtown's not that hard, as long as you don't turn down a one-way, which I did not. Phew!!

So we get to the game, and we have a parking pass for P1, and I slid the Rav into a spot right near where there was a section blocked off with a sign that read: "Reserved for Players' Family". How cool is that? We had Club Seats in the first level, last row, right at the Sens blueline. During the warm-up, Sarah & I were giggling because Wade was stretching right in front of us with his sexy ass up in the air, and we were snapping pictures, and all of a sudden I look to my right, and three seats down from Sarah was Wade's dad! I swear it was him! I've seen him in pictures in the paper and on TV before, and I'm positive it was him! I think he and his guests were just sitting there to watch the warm-up, because some other people came along and booted them out of the seats, but it was so cool to know I was just a few seats away from my hero's dad!

The first period was filled with chances, but I quickly got the impression things weren't "clicking" for the boys in Red, Black & Gold. Nothing seemed to be working the way it had on most nights during their record-setting 13-1 start to the season. Late in the first period, two men came to occupy the vacant seats next to me - the one next to me smelled strongly of beer and the first thing he says to me is: "You think the Sens are gonna win the Cup this year? I don't think so." He was yappy, and a little annoying - kinda funny, but after awhile, the novelty of sitting next to possibly the only Caps fan in the building wore off. (He was actually a Canucks fan, but cheering for the Caps because his buddy is one of the assistant coaches. Trust me, I know the guy's life story. He never shut up).

At some point, I divulged that Wade Redden is my favourite player, and he started railing on Redden almost instatnly , calling him a pylon and saying he won't be back after this year, good riddance, blah blah blah - the usual. Then, the Sens started losing. First one Caps goal, then another. Then another. That's when I kinda started ignoring Buddy-Boy, because he was grating on my nerves. Ruining my night. He then informed me I was a sore loser and that I wasn't any fun anymore. I still ignored him. He told me that if we lost the game, our record would still be 13-2, we'd still be the best team in the NHL, and that it's just a game. "Relax, girl."

I continued ignoring. I think he got the hint, 'cause he took off with a few minutes left in the second period (to go see his buddy, the assistant coach of the Caps - yeah, right) and he never did return. Then Alfie scored, and things were looking up again.

Alas, it was too much to hope for a comeback. The third period was filled with glorious chances, but when the Caps scored again late in the game, it was lights out. I was again unimpressed with Ray Emery. If someone had told me this time last year that I'd one day be rooting for Gerber over Emery, I'd have laughed, but it appears that that's where I'm at. Marty Gerber's got the hot hand - and I want them to keep playing him. Ray didn't look comfortable or confident out there in the second period when the roof started caving in. So move over, Emery, this is Gerber's gig now.

So yet another disappointing finish to a game that I was in attendance for. It's official now that I'm the jinx. Or at least, my whole family is. (Kara & Chris were at the only other game the Sens have lost).

Nevertheless, it was a fun night (even with Yappy McYapperson sitting next to me for part of the evening) - and I was thrilled that the Glaxo people thought to call me!


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Making History

Things have been rolling my way for the past couple of days.

Yesterday, I Blogged about Wade Redden's apparent desire to remain a Sen, even if he must consider a paycut. Then last night, we had spaghetti for supper, my absolute favourite. Further delighting me were snowflakes in the air this morning.

Oh, yes. And the Sens beat the Leafs again last night. This time, it was a thorough, complete, 5-1 romp!! Life is good!!

Of course, I missed the first period once again, because of Karate, so the Sens were already up 2-0 on the strength of early goals by Chris Phillips and Patrick Eaves by the time I tuned in. Early in the second frame, whilst on the PK, Wade Redden stepped up and chipped a puck to Dean McAmmond, who proceeded in on a 2-on-1 with Captain Alfie, passed it over to our fearless leader, and he rifled it home for his third shorty of the season. (The Sens lead the league with 5 total thus far). Later on in the period, Andrej Meszaros held a puck in at the blueline and fired it past Vesa Toskala for a 4-0 lead on only 13 shots, ending Toskala's night between the pipes.

Enter Andrew Raycroft. And it was also at this time that Leafs coach Paul Maurice called a time-out, gathered his troops, and subjected them to a severe tongue-lashing. I've never seen so many guys hanging their heads. I've never seen a coach look that mad at his players. Seriously. His head almost popped off.

Well, it kinda-sorta worked, but not really. The Leafs did manage to cash one on the powerplay, but too little, too late. By the time Chris Kelly put one past Raycroft to make the score 5-1, the game was already too far out of reach for the lowly Leafs. They were absolutely atrocious last night. They almost looked lifeless. They gave up odd-man rushes galore, and it sometimes looked like they were just handing the puck over to the Sens, as if they were saying, "Here, just take it. We don't wanna play."

Marty Gerber was a bit of a surprise start in nets. Not that he didn't deserve to be there. By all accounts, he has been the #1 netminder for this team this year. At first, it was just because Ray Emery was recovering from wrist surgery. But Emery deemed himself "ready to go" a few weeks ago, and in the few starts he has had, he hasn't looked all that sharp. Last night, Gerber looked calm, cool & collected, stopping 30 Leaf shots, and he's on a roll so far. Kinda like the dude I expected him to be last year. Oh well. Better late than never, right?

Last night's game was particularly special, not just because beating the Leafs is always a joyous occasion, but because the Sens officially earned themselves the best starting record in NHL history, collecting 26 points after 14 games with a 13-1 record. They're the class of the league right now, and they've got people talkign. They're being compared to the Montreal Canadiens team of the mid-70's that only lost 8 games all year. Perhaps it's a little early to be suggesting a season like that, but this does seem to be a truly remarkable team destined for big things. It's fun to be a Sens fan right now, that's for sure.

Dare I start dreaming of the Cup already??


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Hope Springs Eternal (Or At Least For Today)

This morning, while getting ready for work, I was listening to the Team 1200 morning show, and I happened to catch Stuntman Stu saying, "There are some interesting comments from Wade Redden in today's Sun, which we'll discuss in the next segment". I didn't have time to hang out and listen, but I decided when I went for the mail this morning to swing into the store and grab a copy of the Sun.

Imagine my astonishment when I realized that not only was Wade's picture the full front cover of the paper, but the headline read: "HE'D PAY TO STAY".

Yep. Today's a good day, folks!

You see, I had all but given up hope of seeing Redden in a Sens uniform next year. He's coming off a disappointing year as the team's highest-paid player at $6.5 M per season, and he's been dropped to the bottom of Bryan Murray's "priority players to get signed". Since taking over the helm from the ousted John Muckler as the Sens' GM, Murray has signed Fisher, Heatley, and Spezza all to long-term hefty contract extensions. Alfie's already locked up for pretty much the rest of his career. We also have two goalies getting paid more than $3-Mil a season each. That's a lot of cash tied up in 6 guys. It didn't seem feasible that Redden would fit under the salary cap unless he was willing to take a major hometown discount to stay here.

Well...Apparently, he's thinking about it.

As it turns out, the fact that Murray locked up those key players is what's giving Redden pause, and it has him actually thinking about taking a paycut to remain a Senator. He knows that those guys are huge, important pillars in the organization. By signing them, Murray, and owner Eugene Melnyk, have given notice that they want to be serious contenders for years to come, and their #1 goal is winning a Stanley Cup. Wade Redden likes the thought of that. He knows he didn't earn his paycheque last year, and so to stay with a team that has a real shot in his adopted hometown, he's talking about accepting less money to play for the glory.

I like it. I like it a lot. Forget the fact that this dude has been my favourite player since Day 1. Any hockey player who puts his love of the game and his love of winning ahead of the money earns major points with me.

Now, of course, this is all just talk at this point. We'll see if Wade puts his money where his mouth is, so to speak.

But right now, at this very moment, this is the best news I've got regarding my beloved Wade in months. Practically a year. His play has improved, the team is 12-1 to start the year, and the boy really wants to play here.

Hope does spring eternal. At least, for today.

Friday, November 02, 2007

My Horror Show...1 Day Late

Remember when I said I all but gave up my tradition of watching a scary movie on Halloween night this year?

Well, I almost got my horror show. It was just a day late.

Yeah. I'm talking about that Sens game last night. Talk about a near-meltdown!

When I got home from Karate after the first period, the boys in Red-Black-n-Gold were already up 1-0 over the lowly Atlanta Thrashers. I settled onto the couch to watch the second frame, and my team scored early & often, racking up 4 more goals to give them a nice, cushy 5-0 lead. Randy Robitaille, who had already scored the first one and seemed quite comfy between The Dans (Heatley & Alfredsson) in the absence of Jason Spezza (out nursing a sore groin), made his second one a beauty, putting a nice move on the goaltender. Moments later, while trying to get his hattrick, he was nailed in the crease and was forced to leave the game with what they called "facial contusions". (I never saw any blood, but whatever...)

50 seconds after Robitaille's second on the night (and as a Sen), Patrick Eaves rifled one past Thrashers netminder Johan Hedberg. Next, we had Nicky-Fo potting his second as a Sen, and while he did not reprise his celebratory leap, the guy up in the music booth was probably hoping he would when he played "Jump Around" after the goal. To cap off the scoring in the second period, Captain Alfie, left wide open in front of the net, made no mistake. And there we were. 5-0 for the home team.

Some would have said, going into the third, that the Thrashers might as well pack up and go home. Some might have thought the Sens had it all wrapped up. Some might have called it a romp.

But the Sens went on to be a bright & shining example of why you can never let up. Anything can happen. Anyone can win.

The Thrashers scored one. Then they scored another. Then, with about 5 minutes left in the game, Chris Neil took a 4-minute penalty for roughing. Not sure why they called it 4 minutes, but anyways. On the first minor, the Trashers scored. On the second, they scored again. By this point, I was chanting "Bring back Gerber! Bring back Gerber!" Emery kinda sucked. Damn Ilya Kovalchuk and his stupid hattrick!

The score was 5-4 with just a little over 2 minutes left, and then Chris Kelly took a delay-of-game penalty for shooting the puck over the glass while trying to clear the zone. The Thrashers pulled their goalie, so it was effectively a 6-on-4 powerplay for Atlanta. My stomach was in knots. This was horrible!!

Fortunately, it was Alfie to the rescue again, as he scored into the empty net, relieving the tension and sealing that long-lost romp that had turned into a nail-biter. The Sens are now boasting a 10-1 record, and all's well that ends well. No nightmares after all.

Just as long as they don't pull that crap again!

Now, after the game, to calm my nerves, I went downstairs to watch Survivor and Grey's. On Survivor, we had one of the most hilarious Survivor moments ever when Jamie thought she had found one of the hidden Immunity Idols, but she actually only had a blank board. Then the tribes merged, and Todd decided Jamie should be the one to go, especially after James revealed that he thought Jamie might try to play what she thought was the hidden Idol. Sure enough, at Tribal Council, before Jeff could read the votes, Jamie tried to play it, but was informed by Jeff that this was not a hidden Immunity Idol and that all votes cast against Jamie would, indeed, count. The look on her face was priceless. She looked absolutely devestated and mortified all at once! Todd's gang had all voted for her, while she, Eric and PG-13 had voted for Jean-Robert. So with that, Jamie's torch was snuffed out, and I was never so glad to see a Survivor contestant ousted. I hated that little bitch. Todd's little one-on-one with the cameraman about Jamie peddling on the little bike at the back and trying to catch up was a highlight for me. Frickin' hilarious!!

But bad news on the Todd front - looks like he's flipping on my boy James next week, and that's not gonna fly with me. Too bad. I really liked Todd.

And I'm not gonna bother with Grey's because nobody cares. But let's just say Alex was back to his asinine self, and I miss Ava already. Seriously - Meredith's little sister? C'mon!!

Have a great weekend guys!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

I See Hockey In My Future...

Good morning to my few faithful readers out there!

I'd like to thank Priscilla for her scary movie suggestion yesterday. While I do want to see the original Psycho, I don't actually have a copy of it, and it wasn't on the dish anywhere that I could find it, so I couldn't watch it. Actually, I pretty much broke my Halloween tradition of watching a scary movie. By the time the commotion died down at our house, it was almost 9:00. I put on my pj's and went downstairs to check what was on, and I found Halloween: H20 on The Movie Network just starting. Seeing it was one of my "possibilities", I just decided to go with it. However, 40 minutes in, my eyes were drooping and it was starting to get scary, so I bailed and went to bed. I didn't really get to see any blood or guts, but I did get to see plenty of Josh Hartnett, and that's all I really wanted anyways, so mission accomplished!

Tonight is my "BIG TV NIGHT", and I'm very much looking forward to it. Thursday nights are like my TV Treat of the week. Not only do I have Grey's Anatomy and Survivor back-to-back, there's also a Sens game on... Yes, you read that right. An actual real, live hockey game. It's been so long since I've actually watched a Sens game that I feel like it's opening night all over again! Two weeks ago, the Sens played on a Saturday night, but it also happened to be Car Rally, so I missed most of it. Then they played last Saturday, but the game wasn't televised. They've been through a ridiculous schedule through the month of October - a ton of hockey to kick things off in the first week or so, and then hardly any hockey for the past three weeks. I'm blaming this lack of hockey for my lack of Blogging. Most of you enjoy my post-game reports more than any of my TV re-caps or anything else that I wax poetic about, so I'm promising you a Hockey Blog tomorrow!

I hope everyone had a great Halloween, and enjoy the treats today!!