Friday, October 30, 2009

Quick Hits: Live Blog, goaltending, whining, etc.

Just a heads up, one of the sites I write for, Wild Nation, is doing a live blog during the game tonight. Russo says Gaby is waaaay questionable for playing, but we'll be there mocking him one way or the other.

Suck on that, ya glass-groined hack! (Kidding, I really don't have an issue with Gaby, especially since he's been good to my fantasy team thus far.)


This got posted on one of the blogs I read today. Sorry for not crediting them but I don't remember and I'm too lazy to go back and look. Anyway, I do so enjoy watching skaters fuck up their attempts to outsmart goalies, so this video of the top 10 worst shootout attempts made me feel warm and evil inside.


One of my tasks for the day is to write my PHN article, which I've been putting off hoping that the Aeros would give me a sign as to their personality. And they did, but it's more of a gut feeling I have rather than something I can point to. So, now the strug-gle is to find a way to quantify that feeling objectively. Hmm.

Bottom line is my gut feeling is this team will be okay.


Can I take a sec to whine about things that hurt on my body?

  • The gnarly bruise on my leg is ... gnarly. Huge and unpretty, but still rad. Just wish that shot hadn't gone in.
  • Both knees have been hurting on the outside (like ACL or IT Band) the last two days. Gonna do some stretching and see if that helps.
  • I whacked myself in the head getting my leg pads out of the car Sunday and that left a cut on my eyebrow.
  • I'm coughing stuff up from that cold and still kinda tired from it.
  • My tweaked ankle is still tweaked and makes me nervous shuffling to the left (which I've never been very good at anyway). Murgh.
  • My left shoulder has been hurting for 3 weeks now. No clue what I did to it. Definitely some kind of rotator cuff thing.
BUT I got invited to play again on Monday at SLICE, so another 3 in 3 for me, baby. LOVE! IT! Though at some point I'm going to have to get another set of underclothes. I have 2 pair of yoga pants. Will just have to put knee pads in the second pair and maybe hit up Target for another long-sleeve wicking top.

For 10 months, I've never worn any shirt but my Portland Marathon finisher's shirt under my goalie gear. It's held up great but it probably does need a friend to take the load off and I'm not as desperate for the "proof that you can do anything you put your mind to" boost it gave me when I first started.


You know what's awesome? I thought we were dangerously low on toilet paper in the house and I was gonna have to make a dreaded Costco run, but I found a stash of 12 rolls in the downstairs bathroom! Woohoo!

Seriously, it's the simple things.


Aeros play tonight in addition to the Wild. This will be 3 games in 4 nights for Dubielewicz. He's not exactly a brick wall on a good day, so perhaps there's a change of scene in goal, either to start or during the game if it gets away from Dubie? We shall see. I'm excited.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Robbed and ransacked

I broke down and got an iced mocha this morning. I knew I'd regret it later but it tasted so good, and for about 15 minutes, man, I felt like I could conquer the world if I needed to.

But I already feel like I'm coming out of my skin a little bit. Urgh. So, I'll blog to distract myself, eh?

Played drop-in last night and as great as my legs felt Monday night, boy were they tired last night. Every time I recovered from going down, my legs whispered, "You suck and we hate you" in my ear.

But the organizers were very accommodating and set it up so I had my own net all night, which took away some of the sting of missing the third period and OT and shootout of an incredible Aeros game. Definitely got my sweat on and made a few nice saves. Had lots of trouble with my right pad though. Dammit. And now my left pad is not flipping up occasionally. Wish I had an ounce of athleticism... this shouldn't be so difficult.

One funny thing is that I think the guys I'm playing with are starting to get used to me now. On both Monday and Tuesday I had guys breaking the Avery Rule at the top of my crease. And then on one particularly nice goal against last night, the kid even did the Ovechkin hot stick celebration. :)

I dunno, I guess some goalies would get pissed about that stuff, but for me, it reminds me to just have fun and lighten up, so I don't mind. Though the one guy doing the Avery shit last night did almost get nutted. He persisted a little too long so I started swinging the stick a little bit and reminded him that I know exactly where his nuts are. He got the picture, but he did not get the goal. Ha.

Nothing too crazy last night though. I was tired and worn down from being sick and playing 3 nights in a row, so there was some slowness on my part, but I'm not gonna beat myself up over it. I protected my 5-hole a lot better, made one really nice save with the shaft of my stick, stopped some of the better guys even on some breakaways, etc. so I feel okay about it, all things considered.

I'm gonna have to learn to start catching some of these shots at my chest though. I keep getting crushed in the boobs and that hurts. I need an armored bra. But at least I know I'm square to the puck. :)

The bruise from Monday on my inner thigh is a real sight though. It's gonna be around a while, I can tell. I'm gonna wear skirts as often as possible so I can show it off. It's quite literally in the shape of a moving puck. Just gonna get "Made in Slovakia" tattooed there.

Instead, I offer you a picture of the scene I came home to just after midnight last night. I think my boy had a party on the sofa in my office while I was gone. I thought for a second we'd been robbed and ransacked...

"Why are you laughing?"

Oh, I'm loving this song. Great mellow vibe.


Monday, October 26, 2009

Not work... PLAY!

Man, I had a blast at drop-in tonight. Actually was feeling like shit all afternoon, lungs were wheezy and throat sore, but it's hockey, so you go anyway, right?

I guess feeling crummy kind just got me out of my head and I just played. When I stepped on the ice, my skates felt so good. Do you guys know what I mean by that? Like, I might as well have had on shoes. The ice was really nice. I could shuffle easily, but it wasn't so hard and slippery that I was oversliding. It was like butter out there. Easy and natural and so good. Might as well have been playing on plush carpet in my socks. That's how good it felt.

So, feeling great in my skates and my legs having a ton of energy really gave me a lot of confidence, but I guess I got so enraptured by the lower half that my glove and blocker disappeared on me and it was the second half before I found them again.

I've started really thrusting that glove out there deliberately when I start to challenge a shooter, both to look bigger, but also to remind myself that it's there and maybe I should use it.

We had a new chick playing, who came down from Dallas, and man, she was SO good. Tell me if she isn't my kind of gal: She pulls out this hot pink jersey, says she got it for $5, hates pink but wears it because it pisses the guys off.

And after watching her, I understand why. She was dancing around those guys, carving through them like a Christmas roast. Luckily, she's also a sport and didn't light me up like I know she could have. She put some challenging shots on me but kept them low and gave me a chance. I appreciated that.

But her dark teammates did their best to have their way with me, and I made some sweet saves in the second half. One was quite the circus save. I dropped into the fly, it hit my stick and bounced up, hit me in the head, went over my head and down my back, and I stuck my glove behind me and it went into my glove and down between my pads. Crazy save. I had to take a few seconds to let that one sink in.

It's amazing what adding an extra night or two a week has done for my stamina and energy out there. I could have gone another hour last night and tonight. I feel like I've definitely gotten over some kind of hump in terms of strength and conditioning. Maybe some other humps will be gotten over soon, too. Plenty of humps. My humps, my humps...

What's weird is that I was so relaxed after. I'm NEVER relaxed after I play. I'm a bundle of angst thinking I should have done this or that, or here's this new problem I need to work on, or blah blah blah. Well, you know, because you suffer through it here on the blog with me, eh? :)

Tonight, I left the rink feeling like I'd just gotten really well shagged. I just wanted to roll over and go to sleep. "That was awesome. Night-night."

You feel me, right?


Anyway, the other goalie was a blast to watch, too. He was wearing an uncrested Bruins sweater and I swear to God, it was like watching Tim Thomas down there. He did a great job and played the way I love to watch goalies play. Just kind of wild abandon. He's a good enough skater to pull it off and through 40 pounds of gear, you could see he's just having a kick ass time.

So watching him really made me realize, that's what it's about. It's just doing your best and having fun. I'm changing The Word on my knob to "PLAY!" tomorrow instead of "WORK!"... because that's what this is.

Should have a couple of dandy bruises to show for this one. Took one off the bicep and another somehow found my inner thigh and STILL went in the net. It was a HARD shot. Already got a bruise and a big lump going there. Pretty.

This song just seems right for my love affair with goaltending, doesn't it? :)


Medicate here with me

I'm kinda frustrated with my game tonight.

A simple list, because I'm grouchy:

  • Too much 5-hole. Stick on the motherfucking ice, bitch. It's not rocket surgery. Two goals in this way tonight.
  • One goal was a beautiful back door pass where I was focused too hard on the puck carrier and wasn't loaded to slide.
  • One goal hit the top of my leg pad and bounced in. Don't really know what to do about those, but I never see it happen to pros, so I know I'm doing something wrong.
  • The final goal was a tip-in by my defenseman. Kind of a weird one that would have just fluttered to safety, but my D batted it down and into the net. I guess there was probably more I could have done there, but in the mental math of goaltending and calculating threats, my own guy putting it in the net was a lot lower than my concern about covering the bottom of the net. So I was down, and he was up, and goal.
  • How come MY guy can bat it in with a high stick but if the opponent does, the goal is called off? Huh? HUH? Fuck that rule sideways.
I did catch a couple. Man, nothing better than a nice glove save. But I'm still frustrated that I let in those softies. Would have been a tie without those. Jessica played well at the other end. *sigh*

Apart from the glove saves, which were badass, Scotty rifled one at me and if I had implants, would have busted one of them. Ouch. But I stopped him, so there. I made a toe save on Peed that normally would have gotten past me. Also had a nice sliding save to stop a shot on a back door pass. Great positioning there.

Oh, and one other good thing I did. When I was getting lit up in the second period and getting frustrated, I remembered that I was supposed to be HAVING FUN. I rarely remember that when I'm getting beat up, but it helped (so, thank you to my fellow goalie readers who remind me of this occasionally).

Also, these games don't wear me out like they used to, so I stayed on the ice a few more minutes after the game, since they were slow to get the zam going, and worked on my butterfly a bit (including keeping my stick on the ice). I'm not usually an "extra work" kinda gal, but I'm glad I stole a few moments of ice there.

Looking forward to playing SLICE tomorrow.

Haven't eaten for about 12 hours now, but I've got my usual disappointing-game=lack-of-appetite thing going. Not even a little hungry, other than I know I should eat or I'm gonna feel like dookie tomorrow. I think a bowl of cereal just so I'm not chewing on my pillow in the morning is probably a good idea.


Friday, October 23, 2009

More Quick Hits: Head pinching, Chris Holt, 5-hole

Wow, what a title!

First, this post by the Hockey Junkies made me laugh. Top Ten Things Injured Players are doing in the Press Box during a Game. I think the least you could do is pinch opponents heads (#1), especially if you don't know my cell number (#10).

Sexting. Hahahaha... yeah.*ahem* Anyway...


Speaking of which, my goalie fetish continues to spread like kudzu. The latest on my mind is Chris Holt, for whom I fell during those endless strings of games against Peoria last season.

He never did anything but warm-up behind Manny Legace, but he was energetic, charming, forthright, and engaging with the fans and worried about cutting my toes off with his skates as he paced around during a particularly intense shootout, so I was smitten.

That said, he's with the Senators organization now and he got sent down to the ECHL Elmira Jackals due to overcrowding in the ranks. He finally gets his first start sometime this weekend. I can just picture him bounding around the crease. In warm-ups, he looked spring-loaded, which is pretty unusual for a big guy (6'3" 230).

Why am I writing about this here? Well, he's not back in the AHL yet, so no excuse to write about him for InGoalMag. If I didn't have a real job or if I didn't cover the Aeros, I'd totally cover the Coast and the CHL for InGoal. Which reminds me, I owe a daily report over there.

If there are any Jackals fans reading, let me know how he looks, will ya?


Illegal Curve wants an update on my five-hole. I think, like most hockey fans, they want to hear that it's nice and tight, and I'm happy to report that it is. No problems there lately. It's the other holes that are getting the action.

Thank God I've never told my mom about this blog.


Easy come, easy go

Like any other gear-intensive activity, goaltending does lend itself to giving you GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome). Fortunately, I'm pretty happy with most of my stuff. While I'd love a more protective chest protector, I like my light little Brian's protector.

But I realized lately, I had to make a change in neck protection. I've grown to hate my dangler. It rattles, it interferes with my view, when a puck hits it, it dings the paint on my mask chin, it comes untied (came untied twice last time I played SLICE). I just hate it.

So, I've been sold on the Maltese neck/clavicle combo to replace it. And I've read a lot of people who say to just cut off the crappy little neck "guard" that sticks up on the chest protector, which I may do. It interferes with the chin of my mask when I look down and that's kind of a problem.

Of course, the more I read about the great Maltese gel products, the more I want to just replace all the padding in my mask with gel. Supposed to put your face closer to the cage for better visibility. But it's just not in the budget right now.

The combo isn't cheap but it's hand-made and I know I can rely on the quality because their customer service is supposed to be out of this world. But I am selling my inline skates on Craigs List to make up for it. Easy come, hopefully easy go. I'd love to get those skates sold. I just couldn't get used to skating in them and they're nearly $200 dust collectors at the moment.

Anyway, I'm really excited to get the Maltese after all the great things I've heard about it. I think that's going to work a lot better for me.

And with that, that's probably the last new gear I'm getting for a long time. I've got my knee pads working for me, though I keep having to re-sew them into the pants I wear... yeah, the sweaty yoga pants... because they get a little banged up and washed a ton and whatnot. Everything else fits nicely. The only thing left that I want is one of the black practice jerseys I saw the Aeros goalies wearing... will have to see if I can secure one of those when the season ends. :)


Thursday, October 22, 2009

So, Cal...

Amazing to think this time last season, Clutter was just revealing himself (not in a streaker way, but in a hockey way) to the Minnesotans. I was holding my breath wondering both how his game would translate up there and how the sometimes-stuffy (oh, just accept it, you are!) Minnesota hockey fans would accept his edgy style of play.

Well, it didn't take long to breathe regular again because he couldn't have approached his entry into the NHL with any more poise and intelligence.

Anyway, he seems to continue to constantly raise the expectation level and make bigger, better paid, more lauded NHLers look like candyasses. This time he's doing it with the dreaded high ankle sprain, which lays most guys out for weeks on end, and even then, they take a long time to get back to where they were before the injury.

I actually wasn't quite sure what a high ankle sprain was exactly. I mean, the ankle isn't that big, but apparently there's enough of it to have a high and a low. Here's some info on it. Note that even for a "stable" sprain, it's 3-6 weeks in a cast.

But of course, Cal is back on the ice already, trying to get back in game shape and shake off the tentativeness that comes with recovering from an injury.

Of course, whenever you have something injured, you compensate with other parts of your body, which can throw your whole body out of whack. Hopefully they're guarding against that, or at least treating with that phenomenon in mind. Otherwise, you end up straining the opposing muscles, jacking up your back, etc. Got the t-shirt on that one.

Anyway, I think it's interesting that they're letting him go full bore already. Given my experience with soft tissue injuries, it does make some sense. It will be interesting to see if the approach works to get him going sooner with this particular injury though. I've never seen anyone not just wait it out, though I know a few guys have in playoff situations.

I'm not typically one for medical stuff, but sports medicine is pretty interesting to me, mainly because I've spent a stupid amount of time and money being hurt, misdiagnosed, mistreated, etc. so I've had to do a lot of research on my own to get the right treatment.

Luckily I haven't hurt anything yet playing hockey that hasn't mostly gotten better on its own or with a visit to the chiro or massage therapist. Knock on wood. Though I am getting a lot of pucks to the head lately. I'm hoping it makes me smarter.


Saying it again...

If you haven't set your Google Reader to subscribe to A Theory of Ice, which is among the most thoughtful writing about hockey you're going to find anywhere (think Ken Dryden's The Game), you're really missing out.

Don't be scared off by the long posts. They're not very frequent and they're dripping with goodness. Today's, especially, touched home on a variety of levels for me.


Quick Hits: Ms. Understood

Okay, first of all, I don't think I'm gonna make it into the NHL. At least, they are trending in the exact opposite direction of my body type for goaltenders. Damn them.

Of course, there's also the whole thing about how I suck and I'm a girl and I'm old. But still... sad to see a pretend dream die.


I was watching Flipping Out (best reality show on TV) tonight after watching the Wild game on fast-forward (fights and goals only) and I had this sudden wave of panic that I missed a time I was supposed to play goal somewhere.

I know full well I don't play again until Sunday but I've gotten so used to playing pretty much every other day, I'm actually having to remind myself that, no, you don't have to go play. I do have another 3 in 3 lined up for Sunday-Tuesday next week. Confirmed the Monday SLICE gig this morning.

Wednesday was supposed to be gear cleaning day but I had too many other things going on so that got pushed to Thursday. I should take a picture of the water in the tub when I wash my chest protector so you can appreciate what it smells like in my garage during the summer.


So, I shot my mouth off (well, my fingers off) twice tonight and I feel like talking about it here. The thing is, I hate to be misunderstood. So I will explain myself to really anybody, whether they want or deserve an explanation, until either they understand or they pretend to understand so I'll shut the fuck up already.

Here I go:

On my comments about the vulnerability and shakiness I saw in the first two periods of Anton Khudobin's game tonight against Lake Erie... it wasn't a criticism of his effort or his talent, but more just an observation of his body language, his steadiness in that moment.

You have to understand that I watch goalies like a hawk, often to the exclusion of other things I really should be watching as someone who writes about the team. I may not understand everything I'm seeing or why I'm seeing it, but generally, if you put a goalie in front of me that I've seen quite frequently, I feel like I can read them pretty well.

And I know what a confident, in-control Anton Khudobin looks like. I've seen it over and over. And regardless of the reasons, I thought he appeared to struggle in the first and second periods. I thought he got some really lucky breaks in the midst of his scrambling and unsteadiness, and the guys in front of him did an amazing job clearing away several really juicy rebounds.

Now, what I didn't think through before I pressed Publish Post was why he was having to scramble. Coulda been the umpteen dozen turnovers and breakaways. Duh. I know I've complained in this very space a few times about what a mind fuck it is when you don't feel like you can trust your defense. You begin to play deep and desperate and frantic. It's ugly.

So, okay, Anton may not have looked all Zen doing it, but he did a great job tonight with what he was given.

BUT, even though my analysis of the situation was somewhat flawed, I stand by my observation that he was not in charge of his net in the first and second. He held it together, but he wasn't in charge. In the third, he was In Motherfuckin' Charge. I could see it in his body language, the way he addressed saves, with more decisiveness and crispness.

I should have asked him about it after the game. If I'd realized at interview time that I was the only one who didn't think he had "the game of a lifetime" (seriously, someone said that to me afterward), I certainly would have.

I will watch the game again to see if I can maybe get more clarity about it, even just for myself. Because it's not like I want to be a blowhard, ragging on players who don't deserve it. I'd like to give credit where it's due and I'd like to give clear-headed observations about a player's game, especially when it comes to goalies.

It was so much easier for me when Brusty was in goal because everything he did was fantastical and every goal was the defense's fault. ;)


The other thing I mouthed off about was saying on Twitter that I'm not so crazy about the Wild's new third jersey. I immediately got disbelief about that. Even a "shame on you"... for what? Having an opinion?

I stand by it 100% (even though I sarcastically backpedaled on Twitter) because I really don't love it. I'm not saying it's the worst third ever. It's not even close, and for the market, I don't think they could have done better. Minnesotans have a proud hockey tradition that I just, personally, don't relate to.

They're just. so. relentlessly. green.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Yank-ee Tuesday

I dunno what it is but Tuesday drop-ins don't inspire much reflection for me lately. Perhaps because it's difficult to "own" a game when there are 3 or more goalies and you're having to rotate out. It's a distraction I haven't learned to manage through yet.

It's like, as soon as I feel like I'm getting into a rhythm, it's time to either head to the bench or the other net. Hmph.

Wasn't a great night for me, but pretty typical for this group. As I suspected, the right pad flip is not fixed. More work to do there.

The one fun moment was with a novice level guy who is SO nice and just started a couple of weeks ago. Just a really sweet, humble guy who is having fun getting (back?) into the game. Anyway, he got a breakaway and he's coming at me and I hear him say, "It's you and me!!"

He shoots.

I stop him.

"You're the greatest goalie in the world!"

"You're my favorite shooter!"

HAHAHAHA!!! We're so funny. It was just one of those moments.

He got another breakaway later and I stopped that, too. I heart guys who haven't learned to deke well or go top shelf.

I don't usually have a lot of laughter and fun at these drop-ins. There just aren't the relationships there that make that happen, and that's okay. I kinda accept that I'm the whore goalie at drop-ins--come in, do my job, and get out. So, while rare, I enjoy little slices of camaraderie like that.


I wish I took coaching better, but I really don't. Especially when I get it right before a game. I guess a few pointers are okay but then, let it go. I need to clear my head. I make enough noise in there on my own. Uninvited goalie coaching is sort of like touching a pregnant woman's stomach. You should probably ask if it's welcome first. Is that just Me being Grouchy Old Me? I don't know, but it's how I feel. (Unless it's from your actual coach. Then it's expected and fine.)

Speaking of grouchy, I kinda am. I'm glad I don't play again until Sunday. I need a few days to crave it again. I'm incredibly grateful for the all the ice time I'm getting, but man, sometimes the old girl just needs to go lie down in the barn for a while and have some chocolate milk, eh?

Wow, this song is awful. Enjoy!


Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Gift of Patience

Sometimes you don't know what you really need until you get it, but I got what I needed tonight: the Gift of Patience.

As I mentioned in my game report from the Toyota Center game Saturday, I wasn't happy with my play and was honestly left with a bad taste in my mouth and a good bit of disappointment in myself.

But Coach Dan came by my net tonight during practice and talked to me about it. Told me he thought I did a good job against higher level players and he was happy with my performance. He was very kind, even though I told him how unhappy I was with my play.

Now, I'll say this, I'm not letting myself off the hook, but there's disappointing myself and there's disappointing others. I react to those two things differently and they weigh on me differently. When I'm disappointing myself, I know what I need to work on to get "back to good" with myself. When I disappoint others, man, that's so much worse to me because I don't know what it will take to fix the problem. So I spin on it and become even less effective at solving the problem.

So, having that weight off my mind is a blessing and I'm reminded how lucky I am to have this group of people by my side, not only my Sunday night bunch, but the guys on Tuesday who love me simply because I show up consistently. Hey, some jackass has to win the Attendance Award, right?

Anyway, I spent most of the weekend feeling crappy about that game, but it was sort of under the surface and getting mixed up with a raging case of PMS. But I left hockey tonight feeling cleansed.

Part of that was that it was just a darn good practice. The skaters worked on stuff that I think is really going to help them be better hockey players. More fundamental stuff, like passing and wrist shots. And I finally got the balls to talk to one of the coaches and say, "Okay, look, I've got these things I need to work on. Can I bail on the skating drills and have a shooter and just do goalie stuff?"

Ah! It was perfect! Peed got some pucks and I told him I wanted to work on this situation with my right pad not flipping up, so just put a bunch of low shots on me.

I started out landing on top of my pad every time, but after about 6 shots, I started getting the pad flipped every time. I nearly cried, I was so happy. So, I think that's going to be part of my practice routine until that pad is flipping up EVERY time I drop into the fly. I know it's not going to stick from this one practice, but getting that muscle memory going is great. This was part of me fixing my disappointment in myself, so I'm proud of having taken charge of making sure I got what I needed out of my practice time.

Jessica is in goal for the red team now (I LOVE that she's loving the position so much!), so she jumped in on the shooting and we rotated out with Peed and Sutton shooting on us. It was good, until they did breakaways on us. I'm not sure I stopped any of them. I called it the "Why I Love Defensemen" drill.

Anyway, it was a good, cathartic night of practice. It was what I needed in a lot of ways.

Sometimes the perfect song is out there, too:

Changing subjects a bit, I've also been talking a bit with a guy, Shaun Smith, I've met through Twitter who works with goalies (and other athletes) on the mental side of the game. If you're a Twitterfied goalie and not following @absolutemental, you're really missing out.

He does some great articles for The Goalie Guild and I've gotten a lot out of them, but I'm lately getting increasingly frustrated by my reaction to praise during a game. I've mentioned it here before, but now it's becoming a really ingrained problem and I'm not sure what to do about it, other than get ear plugs. :)

I think what's happening (or at least how the problem originally started) is that when someone tells me I'm playing well, I start to "value" my "good game" too much. I suddenly feel this added pressure to maintain whatever goodness I have going on.

Naturally, that changes my focus from just playing the game with a quiet mind to what I'm calling "I've Gotta..." thoughts, like I've gotta keep playing well, I've gotta make sure I don't screw up. NOISE! Augh.

And now, this has happened so many times, not only do I have THAT reaction, there's the, "Oh shit, why'd you have to say that! Don't you know praise throws me off? Okay, gotta stay focused. Forget about it."


I've tried ignoring them, but some guys are so persistently nice, they'll keep saying it until I acknowledge them (yes, I play with people who are really that nice... like I said, I'm blessed).

I've got a few of them, including our regular ref, trained to not say anything at all.

But this is my problem and I need to deal with it. Because frankly, I LOOOOOVE positive reinforcement and praise and all that other great stuff. The more the better! Adore me and my brilliant work!!! I live for it.

Which kinda makes me think that perhaps the ORIGINAL-original problem BEFORE the original problem I stated above is that I'd let up if someone praised me. Like, "Okay, I did good. And that wasn't too hard. So, maybe I don't have to worry so much." Um, no, if you don't worry about the puck, you don't stop the puck, smarty.

So, as with mental hangups, it kinda circles back on itself a few times. But the bottom line is that I'm still not sure what to do about it. I almost think if there was some way to break the thought cycle, right in the moment, that might help. Or some kind of mental cue like touching my posts or a stick tap or something that tells me it's okay to not worry about what that praise represents. To hear it, acknowledge it, and then send it into the universe somehow.

I remember reading that Thomas Edison or some other really smart guy used to write down his worries during the day so that they were acknowledged, but he could stay focused on the task at hand and not actively worry about them.

I wonder if a cue like that might work, where I mentally send the praise to the locker room to enjoy it later, but not let it disrupt my current focus. Hmm...

I'd say I'd try that Tuesday night, but I don't get a lot of praise at drop-ins. But it might still be a decent cue for when I make a save I'm particularly proud of. "Send it to the room, enjoy it later, you still have work to do."

If you made it this far, thoughts?


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Get Heat Stroke Like the Pros

First of all, kudos to Aeros players, especially goalies, who manage to stay lucid for an entire game at the Toyota Center. Maybe the heat is what got to Montoya last night? :)

I didn't play my best today and I'm disappointed with my game. We would have won or at least tied if I'd taken care of a couple of soft (aka stupid) goals. And it would have been worse than 8-6 if not for some generous whistles. I won't say how much worse.

I let the line-up of the other team get in my head right away. Sutton, Mikey, Pata, Jessica. *gulp* So right away, my mental game was not in a confident, FU place. (I need to hang around Dimples, pop the collar up, strut around...) But I'm taking it as a learning opportunity. I had an awesome poke check on Sutton late in the game that made me pretty proud. I can beat those guys. I just have to jump out there and do it.

So, it is what it is. I'm glad I did it, I'm glad I didn't barf on the ice or in Chilly's dressing room (yes, I had to change with both the Beaver and the Dog's heads lying around the room. Urgh.) But I'm happy to go back to less expensive, less toasty venues. :)

Novice is a new season tomorrow night, a practice, so I'm looking forward to maybe getting a few minutes during skating drills to work on the pad flip thing and some other stuff that I don't get much time for generally.

Meanwhile, Aeros tonight, where if I get through the night without falling asleep on my laptop or tweeting something really inappropriate for T3I, I'll consider it a success.


What's it like to sleep 8 hours in a row?

I know it's hockey season again because I start thinking things like, "My kingdom for an Ambien rx!" at 4 a.m. It's a bad combination: Hockey stuff happens at night, hockey stuff gets me all wound up, so I stay up late. Then I need a nap the next day just to stay conscious. And then I stay up late again, and the cycle just goes on and on.

It happens with my games all year but that's just a couple of nights a week and tolerable, but then add in Aeros games during the season and it's almost nightly that it's just me and the possums traversing the dark of night. Well, me, possums, and all the drunks on Washington Ave. by my house.

Add to that my excitement about my debut in goal at the Toyota Center tomorrow and my attempt to go to bed when I got home from a rather exciting victory for the Aeros (and if I may say, a really fantastic stick figure drawing of Al Montoya playing dead) fell short. I slept for 2 fitful hours, laid there for another hour thinking, "Girl, if you get up, you're gonna be up for hours and you're gonna hate life tomorrow."

But finally, I just had to. I can't stand to be in bed and not sleeping or otherwise, um, actively engaged. Neither option was on the docket. I'm hoping a few more hours of sleep and adrenaline will carry me.

So, I've gotten another day's worth of AHL goalie news pushed out to the world, including more mockery of Montoya. (Sorry, dude, I enjoy goalie antics, but don't f**k your team over like that in a close game.)

I didn't mention what Constantine said about his decision to play Khudobin tonight, but it certainly validates my feelings about Dubie, so I feel better about jumping the gun a bit on expressing my displeasure with his play. John quoted it in his piece on T3I and I'll use it in my next PHN piece next week. It suffices to say, I was surprised and pleased by his candor on the subject. Also, I very much enjoy being right.

Though I did feel like Anton was fighting it a bit tonight, and his team bailed him out a few times. But he could have fallen apart on that misplay of the wraparound. But the kid's got so much confidence, he was able to shake it off and hold down the fort. Doesn't have to be pretty. Just has to be done.

Okay, back to bed to try and get some winks. Have to be at the TC at 11:30 for my game tomorrow and then back at 6:30 or so for the Aeros game and hopefully mashed potatoes at the pre-game feed. No doubt, there will be a nap in between. And the cycle will continue. Argh.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Quick Hits: 5 Things w/ a 2 Thing Bonus

First of all, my legs hurt and I'm tired. Just so you know.

Second of all, OMG are the Wild bad or what?

Thirdly, I did a little write-up on the Aeros for my pal over at Deuce by Definition. I really hadn't intended to start firing shots at Dubie yet, but I did so fully disclosing the goalie baggage I'm carrying. I didn't mention that I'm tired and my legs hurt, but that's probably part of why I'm cranky, so I'm disclosing it here.

I still want to give him a chance but really, the back to back of he and Dimples last weekend was like night and day. And I don't think it's just a matter of style. Schaef and Brusty both had quite different styles but I usually felt like their effort levels were on par with each other. I don't get that feeling here.

Promise that's all I'm saying about it until I've had more pudding (you know, because that's where the proof is). Prove me wrong, Wade.

Quatro: I fell asleep on the couch last night at 8. Woke up at 9 to go to real bed, put the Wild game on, turned the Wild game off, and dozed off about 10 times, but each time I was nearly asleep, someone shot a puck at me and I jumped awake trying to make the save.

Think I'm a little anxious about Saturday's Toyota Center game?

So I finally gave up around 10 and got up and watched the end of the Wild game, had a snack, played about 300 games of Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook, got today's AHL goalie news written up (I'd link it if I weren't so Dubie lazy) and finally went back to bed around 3.

I need a new game on FB that doesn't suffer when my eyes get tired. Or an Ambien rx so it just doesn't matter.

Random thought: It's amazing to me what beautiful people can get away with saying sometimes without annoying or offending anyone.

Fiverino: The only arena in which I just kinda hate all goalies is in fantasy hockey. Especially you, Dan Ellis.

6-Hole: You should see the bruise on my shin. I'm telling you, it takes some really REALLY bad goaltending to get a bruise on your shin, but I did it. It's like half a puck sized. If I weren't so embarrassed by the location of the bruise, I'd be pretty proud of it. It's a nice one.

Seventhly, in this day and age of cell phones, internet, walkie-talkies, and instant fuckin' everything, it's absolutely ridiculous that the 3 stars of a game are still decided with 3-4 minutes left in regulation play. Some of the greatest heroics in hockey have come in the final seconds or minutes or shootouts. I don't really know the mechanics behind it all, but is it really that hard to make a quick call to the appropriate parties and change the list?

Good day!


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Trying something different

I'm not talking about my game tonight. I'm tired of talking about my games. I play at the TC on Saturday and I just want to numb out until then.

I AM getting a massage tomorrow, though I'm in 70% better shape than I was last time I played a 3 in 3. It helped that tonight I only played maybe 45 minutes due to there being FOUR goalies. And I never really got in a position where I had to do any big splits or anything, so my hips and groins are happy about that.

Normally having an excess of goalies would bug me, but given my crease time lately, I was okay with that, especially since I shared a crease with Scotty, who I haven't seen in ages. Fun to team up with him again and fun to just watch some hockey.

But I'm posting anyway because I've got an update on the weird locker room situation I posted about last week. One of the good guys (as in, guys who are just ridiculously cool and fun to play with) mentions how a guy last week seemed like he was drunk or high or something.

I was thinking, "Who?" and then it dawned on me: THE GIGGLER!! And it WAS him.

So there ya go. It wasn't a weird locker room situation because of ME, it was weird because the dude's a freaking stoner and was having a giggly fit! It all made sense when I thought about it. It would be even more ironic if it were the guy who looked like Clayton Stoner, but he's not.

Maybe I'll keep some Doritos in my bag and become his best friend. Though apparently he hooked one of the white team defensemen around the neck last week. THAT must have been what the other goalie was having a shit fit about. Good for him. Ahhh, everything falls into place!

So, that's kind of a weight off my mind. I actually dreamed about that whole situation last night, so obviously it was weighing on me more than I was admitting to myself.

I'll be getting out to buy black nail polish tomorrow, too. Took a couple of shots off the mask tonight and I guess one off my dangler, so now I'm missing a bunch of paint off the bottom of my chin. :( Boo.

Heard this Weezer song on the way home. Love this: "If you don't like it, you can shove it. But you don't like it, you love it." I'll admit, however, that the bad grammar is really irritating. The greatest man WHO ever lived, boys... WHO.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Stick a fork in me

Someone please tell my dog he's already had all the food he's gonna get today? Mama's tired and not getting out of her chair again unless the house is on fire or it's time for bed.


Kind of a weird night again. Usually I get worse as a game goes on but this particular drop-in, twice now I've gotten better as the game goes on. The first half, I just got murdered. Felt like everything went in. I couldn't do anything right, and they were just getting breakaway after breakaway.

Second half, for some reason, I started stopping everything. Admittedly, there was only one extra person per bench, so they were pretty tired, but that meant I didn't have much defense either. The team shooting on me in the second half were mostly decent players but had one ringer who cherry picked the whole game. I think he was trying to get a goal in all 7 holes, just for sport. Whatever.

He also put such a hard shot from the slot into my forehead, he chipped the paint off my mask. That sort of irritates me, I have to admit. I like the puck marks on my white gear, but I don't like the white chip on my black mask. How bad would it be to touch that up with a sharpie? :D

That said, I LOVE YOU, HACKVA! A shot hard enough to chip paint off my mask but barely phased me. Ears rang for a second but nothing else. I love my mask and am so glad I invested in a good one.

I used the Khudobin stick again. It's amazing how different it feels from my RBK stick. It's much more lively, and I don't mean just in terms of handling the puck (because I continue to suck at that), but even on stick saves, the puck goes springing off in unpredictable directions. The RBK stick, pucks have a much more dull reaction.

Even tapping my stick on the ice for a good save at the other end or whatever (yeah, I cheer for the other goalie... it's ingrained in me... though I did get freaking sick of the other guy stopping absolutely everything, but that's my problem, not his. He played really really well), the Sherwood is louder and lighter.

I did have to go out again and play the puck. It was floating in and the cherry picker was loafing behind it. So I get to it and try to pass it out to my guy who was skating in behind him to the right, but CP got his stick out and intercepted it (because my shot is so friggin' weak).

It was lame, but since he'd scored his 43 goals on me was just dicking around and scowling at me for wasting his precious A-league time, he didn't even shoot on the empty net. He just hung out in the circle, until I got back in and he had some teammates to pass to. I stopped them. Neener.

Had one crazy save where it hit the stick and bounced into my glove. Now, I've seen real goalies do this on purpose, but frankly, I just got lucky. Still, it was cool as shit. And everyone on the ice thought so, too.

Anyway. I'm beat. Drank the nasty Endurox afterward, will take some Advil in a little bit. Also have to put an ice pack on my ankle. I caught an edge Sunday night and think I sprained it just a hair. It's been tender today and even more so now. And my shoulders hurt a lot for some reason. Can't figure that out either.

But then away I'll go again tomorrow night. Argh. Can't say I'm looking all that forward to it. Between the locker room drama and Tuesdays generally being my toughest game of the week (at the END of the 3 in 3)... I'm really looking forward to a night of just watching other people do all the hard work. My luck there will only be 2 games on Wednesday and they'll both be on Versus. FU NHL schedulers!

Never thought I'd see the day where I'm playing so much hockey that I don't have time to watch any of it, beyond the Aeros.


Quick Redemption

Well, I get a chance to redeem last night's lousy performance sooner than I thought. Got an email from the gal who organizes the Monday night drop-in at SLICE and both her regular goalies are sick.

I never say no to free ice, so me and my aching bones will be grinding it out on Rink B at 9:15 tonight.

And that means a 3-in-3, since I'll play Tuesday, too, from which I have to recover nicely by Saturday for the Toyota Center game.

I'm not complaining though. The more goal I can play, the better. Just means I hope we have plenty of Advil in the house. And it means my MT (who is THE gal to see if you need a sports massage... hurts so good!) is gonna get a visit from me on Wednesday or Thursday to work the kinks out.

Time to get water and food in me.


Bleh. Did that just happen?

Had another game tonight where I was into it fun-wise, but not sharp at all mentally, which is what I was afraid of given my mellow mood today.

We had the win with just a few seconds left, but they pulled the other goalie for the extra attacker, and Peed came in and did his deke deke deke shit and then popped it over my shoulder glove side (where else). And actually that was the only shot of the night that I would have felt okay letting in. The rest were craptastic and I should have had them.

I'm so frustrated with my right pad, I could cry. 80% of the time it still flips down under my leg instead of to the front of my leg. Left pad flips up correctly every single time. But I let in two tonight that would have gotten stopped if I had the right pad flipping up properly.

Tuesday night's #1 objective is to figure that shit out and get my right leg doing whatever it needs to be doing to make that happen correctly. I don't care if they hang a hundred on me, I'm gonna get that muscle memory going on the right leg so this stops happening.

If I do it slowly, like when I'm going down to stretch, it flips correctly, but when I need to drop quickly, ugh, it's a mess.

Speaking of stretching, I had pretty good lateral movement tonight, making a few sliding saves but boy am I gonna feel that in my groins and hips tomorrow. Gonna pop some Advil shortly because I definitely overreached the boundaries of my flexibility a few times tonight. Fortunately I made the save each time. I don't mind hurting for a save. :)

Also, apparently the whole Tuesday night locker room deal has gotten around my team, though the story has changed (as stories do) to be that I was asked not to use the locker rooms. Not true at all. Or if someone has asked, no one has actually conveyed that to me. And until they do... I change with the boys. They can either get over it or they can go change in the restroom.

Back to tonight, I was playing around in the garage with a puck and my stick before I left tonight. Barry and Joe talked on the radio last night about there's some trick to launching the puck with a goalie stick. Something to do with the heel of the stick and then saucer it. I don't know. I do everything else so badly, Scott and I have never worked on stick handling, so I'm winging it until I can get some help.

Anyway, I was playing around with this in the garage with the stick I normally use, and it was going pretty badly. So I thought, "Hmm, let's try Anton's stick." I bought one of his at the post-season sale, had it taped up and ready to go, but hadn't used it yet.

So I give the puck a few shots with it and WOW the puck was much more responsive. Immediately, I decided the Anton stick was in the game tonight.

And as it turned out, I did end up having to go out and play a puck that was coasting up the ice with one of the red team's best players in hot pursuit. I got there just a second ahead of him and definitely got a piece of the puck but our sticks got tangled and he was able to kick it past me. He got a shot off but it was way wide and I was able to get back in net while my defense dealt with him.

I hesitated less though and felt the "Power of Dimples" give me the confidence to get out there and try to play that puck. Just glad it didn't go in. Clearly the hockey gods want me to learn to play the puck more and that's why, even when I bung it up, I'm not getting burned.

Anyway, had lots of people saying I played well (though I think the gist was... you started well, but maybe fell apart at the end, which is true), but I never felt like I was playing well. I'm getting better, for sure, but I'm still really bad.

I'm so hungry and tired, even though I don't feel like I worked all that hard. I think it's a snack and then bed for me. I needed to work when I got home but I think sleep is going to win.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Quick Hits: Sleep, radio, novice game, hits, Playing Like a Pro

Watching Rangers/Ducks. They showed some highlights of Gaborik goals recently and man, he sure does make it look easy. I like him better on my fantasy team than I do on the team I actually care about though.

(Wow, helluva save by Valiquette. Talk about a guy who flies under the radar, but has a sweet gig.)

(Took me so long to write this, the game ended with a shutout for Valiquette. 18 saves, but still really sweet.)


I caught up on much needed sleep this morning and still feel like I could do with some extra winks. Also rewatched/listened to the archives of last night's Aeros game. Ubersad that Brusty is hurt, but he's rocking the radio gig pretty hard. Always good to get a player's insight during the broadcast, but of course, I'd rather hear from a goalie because that's the perspective I can relate to.

They talked about how weird it is when a shot hits the outside of the net and you know they've taken a shot, but it makes no noise and you don't feel it. There's that split second of, "Oh fuck, did that get past me?" Man, that's fun.

My second thought is, "Haha... stupid shooter."

Ego problem? What ego problem?


Got the final game of our summer season tonight. I haven't had a single butterfly in the tummy yet, which concerns me. I may be feeling a bit too mellow to play well if I don't get a little amped. I'm gonna try and wake myself up a little later by whacking the tennis ball around in the garage, get the hand/eye going. Seems to help my pathetic glove a bit when I do that before a game. The dog should enjoy that, too.

Need to get focused though. My mental state was so good on Tuesday. I'd love to get in that quiet-mind state more consistently. Gonna go back and read the piece that The Goalie Guild happened to post just a few hours before I played Tuesday: Do you Overthink your Performances?

Um yeah. It's #5 on that list that gets me.


Interesting piece here trying to give some perspective to Clutterbuck's hit record last year. Bottom line is, he's still an epic BAMF no matter how you crunch the numbers.

But he got hurt last night, so the Wild are suddenly a lot less interesting to me for a while. They suck right now and the only reason I bother to still watch them suck is because of Cal. Now they're sucky AND Cal-less. FAIL.


Next Saturday, I'm playing my first game in goal at the Toyota Center as part of the Aeros' "Play Like the Pros" deal. I did it once as a skater and it kinda stunk, honestly. Our team was bad that day, our goalie got lit up, it just wasn't much fun.

But one of the events that spurred me to want to be a goalie was watching Coach Stalin's first game at the TC. I just remember watching the goalies and thinking, "Damn, I want to be out there doing that." So, it's kind of a big deal to me to see that part of my journey come full circle. I should have no problem mustering up the butterflies on Saturday.

Naturally, it's free to come watch but with OU and UT playing at the same time, I doubt many will be out. I've even told Mr.C not to sweat it, because this game isn't about being seen; it's about playing in the same paint as the guys who inspire me every hockey season. The TC is a lifeless, sterile venue, but that crease is hallowed ground to me. I'm SO excited!


Swear to God, last night the Aeros announcer introduced Craig Weller as "Brian" Weller. Poor guy. I hope I misheard but I don't think I did.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Quick Hits: Goalie Gear, Aeros, mashed potatoes, Riverboat Gamblers

My colleague over at In Goal Magazine posted a great piece on the new "proportional goalie gear" rules coming out next season. I haven't done any research on this yet, but it really does sound like a preposterous scheme.

The logic reads to me something like this:

  1. The league wants more shots to get past the goalies.
  2. A few goalies take advantage and wear bigger gear than they need to for their size.
  3. These oversized goalies are the problem with getting enough pucks in the net (I have yet to see proof of either the fact that goalie gear is to blame for this or that hockey actually needs more scoring to be entertaining... I blame Jacques Lemaire for the whole kit and caboodle, but that's just me).
  4. So the undeniable conclusion is that goalie gear must be smaller.
  5. But goalies are different sizes, so each goalie needs to have different rules.
  6. So let's spend 3 years trying to find a solution.
  7. Uh oh, we spent 3 years trying to find a solution and really still don't have a good one, but now everyone's looking at us and we'd look more foolish to say, "Never mind. That was a dumb idea. How about you skaters just f**king go to the net more instead of being a bunch of pansies?" than to actually put these overly complex and likely fruitless rules in place. But hey, at least we have job security!
Laaaame. And like Hutch wonders, will this trickle down to the AHL level? Must remember to ask Aeros GM Jim Mill his thoughts on that tonight.

(Update: Okay, that wasn't what Hutch meant by minors, but I got John to ask Mill about this anyway since he was speaking to him already, and yes, the NHL rules for goalie gear will apply in the AHL as well.)


The Aeros had their home opener last night and I find myself awash in a lack of excitement for this team. I'm sitting with the feeling for a while. It's a 5 game home stand, so I'll get a better read over a few games, but right now... meh. There's just no component to this team that thrills me. I dunno. Giving it time...

Maybe my problem is that pre-season was a little too exciting. Heh. *sigh*


That said, the mashed potatoes they serve in the dining room before the game are so good. I feel like I need to go for a run just so I can have an excuse to eat a whole bunch of them. Ohhh, I can call it carbo loading for Sunday's game. Ha.


I like this song.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Dirt for dirt?

Just picked up this blog post by Mike Heika, the Dallas Stars beat writer about Iginla's trip on Souray last night that took him out of the game with a mild concussion.

Apparently Oilers coach Patty O'Quinn has on some thick Oilers colored glasses as he felt like the play was dirty by Iginla and basically threw his players under the bus for not immediately defending their fallen teammate.

Here's what I have to say about that:

What goes around comes around. Might take half a season, but you deserved a little "injustice."

Wild fans remember: Souray fought Craig Weller last year and basically beat him senseless with a hard plastic wrist brace, which is obviously not kosher.

The Wild asked the league to look at the video evidence of this, but the whole thing was put to rest with a little wink from both the league and Souray. You're the big star, Sheldon, and that other guy? What his name again? Right.

Even at the All Star Game a few weeks later, a reporter asked Souray about the "punishment" from the league, and the gist of his response was basically a big grin and "yeah, they really gave me a good talking to."

Well, enjoy your headaches, Sheldon. You've earned 'em. Dirt for dirt.


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Okay gentlemen, we need to talk

Dear Guys Who Play Hockey and Have to Share a Locker Room with a Woman,

Lookit. If I were freaked out by seeing your weiner flapping around or by you seeing me changing, I'd go change in the women's restroom.

And frankly, if I'm okay with it, being the fairer sex and all, then you should be okay with me seeing it.

We're all adults here (except for the ones who aren't) and the silly giggling when your buddy has the, um, stones to go ahead and change with me there (and probably did something obscene behind my back... yeah, I know how y'all are) is just being a baby.

Here's the bottom line, fellas: YOU are WAAAAAY more into your junk than any woman is. I frankly just don't care, and I think most women (especially women who are ballsy enough to play hockey with you guys a few nights a week) would agree, that thing only has one job that we care about.

What's more, I respect that some guys are a little more shy, so I keep my eyes to the floor, stay busy with my stuff, and I change my own bottom layer in the bathroom. Just based on the reaction of me being in the room, I think they'd all just fall over dead if I changed in there myself.

And it's not like I'm sitting there in my corner with score cards. "Oh yeah, you over there who skates like Clutterbuck, you're a 7.5." So, please, get over yourself. Take the age-old advice of "act like you've been there."


The Chick Goalie


Phew. Okay. Now that that's off my chest, drop-in was good tonight, if a bit irregular.

First, I left my good water bottle at Willowbrook Sunday, so I was using one I don't like as much AND I was out of Gatorade powder. I figured I'd just buy some Gatorade at the rink but for some reason, I walked right past the machine with G'ade and didn't see it.

Ended up filling up with water and for an hour and 45 minute ice time, I need electrolytes. I felt like I was gonna hurl the last 30 minutes.

And then I guess a guy who works at the rink is a goalie and since we were short one, he suited up and came out about 30 minutes into our game. It was late enough that we ended up never switching ends, so I had the better team the whole game. They actually played D clear to the end of the game, which was a blessing.

For some reason, the other goalie skated up to center ice late in the game and starts yelling at one of my forwards. I'm not sure what that was about, but I was really hoping for a fight. Had his mask off and everything. Weird, but a little crazy goalie never hurt anyone. Gotta keep these skaters in line.

I actually had to pull myself out of my net for a little bit at the end because my sweatband was so soaked, I was getting a TON of sweat in my eyes and couldn't even keep my eyes open. Burning! Ouch.

Anyway, in spite of all the weirdness, I felt like I played one of my best Tuesdays, though like I said, having real defense the whole game helped a lot and made it a lot more fun. I frustrated a few guys when I stopped stuff they thought they had for sure. Man, that's a good feeling.

5-hole was rock solid. Glove was pretty bad. Angles were good. I realize now I'd gotten really lazy about staying square to the puck. I still am, but recognizing the problem is the first step, right? Even made one big diving save that I normally wouldn't have made, but I swore that I'm going to be more balls out about just getting anything in front of the puck, even if it sometimes leaves me down and out for a few seconds. As KC says, gotta bring a certain level of compete.

My right hip was so janky all day and I thought it was going to be a problem, but once I got warm, it wasn't an issue at all. We'll see how it feels tomorrow. I think I'll go to bed with some Advil on board. I'm feeling good but it's probably still adrenaline for now.

Anyway, great night, in spite of all the oddness and men acting like babies.

In honor of the Wild's enormous comeback tonight after being down 3-0, John Scott shoving Parros' 'stache down his throat, and firing off a 4 unanswered goals to win in overtime (um, Jiggy... stick on the ice in front of that 5-hole, buddy):


Sunday, October 4, 2009


So, I had another sweet glove save tonight and driving home, it finally dawned on me what it's like when I catch a puck.

You know how on The Price is Right when someone wins a car, or the Showcase Showdown, or they land on the 1.00 on the wheel thingy?

Yeah. It's kinda like that. Maybe not the jumping up and down and screaming but, dude, it's exciting and shocking. It's like Derek Boogaard getting a goal. It's awesome and rainbows appear in the sky and birds sing pretty songs and my boobs look a little perkier...

Oh yeah baby. That's what it's like.

Got a nice one tonight. And every time, I do the whole look-in-the-glove-in-disbelief thing. It's the dorkiest thing ever, but hey, whatever makes your heart feel big and warm, right?

Had some nice stops, including a sliding save on a pass at my doorstep that Scotty would have been proud of.

Also, Jessica was chasing down a loose puck coming into my end, so I went out and attempted a big poke check again.

Problem with the BPC is that once I get to the puck, I'm not sure what to do. What I really WANT to do is just go lumberjack on the skater or do one of these:

But I don't want to hurt anybody and I'm not agile or fast enough to get to the puck and do something with it (geez, I suck at handling the puck), so my options are limited. So far, both times I've distracted them enough to make them miss their shot. And tonight, Coach Dan read the situation and intercepted the shot and cleared it to safety, so it was fine.

Oh well, it's a blast to just go out there and fuck with the skaters a bit. Just glad it didn't turn into a goal.

Anyway, my team won 12-10 in 105 minutes of play (we had extra ice time), though I let in some real stinkers so it was certainly in spite of me. My D was playing their asses off tonight, which makes it a lot easier for me to read plays, so I liked that. And I stopped the really good guy a few times, too, so that rocked.

It was just fun. Everyone was loose and lively and having a good time. It's always a blast when people aren't taking things too seriously (except, of course, defense in front of me... haha).

One thing I got burned on twice (and this is the third or fourth time now) is that when I butterfly, my pad isn't perfectly straight up and down. So then when I try to seal to the post at the bend before the toe of the pad, it leaves a puck-sized hole. I guess I need to work on getting the toe of the pad outside the post. Seems obvious, but for some reason, I haven't done it that way.

Oh well, something else to work on! I'll try to give some concentration to that at Tuesday's drop-in, where I will, no doubt, have my ass handed to me for the third week in a row. Ho-hum.

I like this song. Something about the chord change in the chorus turns me on. It's just hot.


Friday, October 2, 2009

Since I don't smoke...

I didn't finish my work tonight, nor did I watch Calgary/Vancouver, but I did get that mascot gig in Hawaii, so that's something. Suh-weet! Feeling much better...

But I'm wide awake now and in a pretty good mood. I hate to waste that on my actual job, so I thought I'd blather on a bit here.

I did watch the first two periods of Leafs/Habs after the relentless pre-game ceremony, during which all I could think was "OMFGDROPTHEFUCKINGPUCK!!!!! DROPITDROPITDROPITDROPITDROPIT!!!!!!!"

I had it on mute, so if it was moving and worthy of so much time, then I apologize to you, Canada. You know I love you, baby. I'm sorry I yelled. Here's some flowers.

It just sucks when they show the players, who are fired up and ready to go, yet they have to stand there during all this blue carpet crap. I'm just thinking of the boys. Someone should.

Speaking of which, tonight Mr. C got sarcastic with me about something and hit my Pissed Off button pretty hard. He realized his mistake quicker than I've EVER seen him do and said, "Sorry."

I'm still glaring at him.





All this time, if he'd just talk to me in Canadian, I'd never get mad at him. If he'd wear hockey gloves and a carry a stick around, he might never get to leave the house. Rawr!

Oh, hey, check it! Pics of me playing goal. These are the only ones where I even look remotely like I'm doing anything I'm supposed to be doing. All the rest, I'm incredibly out of position or way deep in my net. It's horrible! I can only imagine how much video work would help me, but I'm too chicken.

Keeping an eye on the puck along the boards. Should probably have moved forward out of my net by now.

What's going on here? I look like I'm doing some kind of animal impression. Rabbit? (Shut up.)

This is the part where Scott TFCG would be screaming "GET UP! GET THE FUCK UP!!!!" at me.

Am I an ad for RBK or what? Pads, gloves, stick. My pants are RBK, too.

I'm guessing I could get a non-endorsement deal from them. Like, "We'll pay you to stop wearing our gear." Fine. Pay me enough to get some Bauer X-Rated...

Anyway, thanks to Deborah, Jessica's aunt, for coming out and shooting our game a few weeks ago. And for not publishing any shots of me getting scored on. :)

Alrighty. Should probably have a snack and get back to work.


Thursday, October 1, 2009

NHL Twitter Contest: Dragging your butt into 2009

As proof that the NHL is actually in this century with us, they're running a contest on Twitter Saturday when all 30 teams are in action.

If you can predict all 15 winners and win the tie-breaker (assuming there are multiple winners), then you will score a trip to see any NHL team in action. If I win, I am going to go see the Hawaii Leis and try to get a job as the mascot.

Ten others will get subscriptions to NHL GameCenter Live.

@martinhavlat is not included. He's just the Lord of the Tweets among NHLers. Wonder if Tweets should be a new stat...

First thing to do is Get Over Yourself and go set up a Twitter account. Remember how you got over yourself about Facebook? It's just like that. I swear to you, narcissism feels better on than it looks on the hanger.

Then go to and Follow them. It's a decent tweet so don't worry that you're gonna get a bunch of crap you don't care about. It's all hockey. Then go follow @msconduct10. That isn't in the official rules, but I say you do it anyway.

Then (I know, it's three whole steps--hang in there with me) send @NHL a tweet with your 15 winners, your tie breaker answer, and a special hashtag so they know what you're on about. For more details on how to format the tweet, go here. It's pretty simple and you could win some stuff.

I'm hoping that it's like the gas station that sells the winning lottery ticket, where if one of my readers wins, the league will give me a Brent Burns t-shirt or something. *hint hint*


Open Season

Feelin' kinda emo today. Too much of the Alt Rock station combined with stuff going on that actually causes me to have feelings. Ugh. What a drag. But I'm sure I'll be back to cold and heartless and serene before long.

This song is stuck in my head because I like the word "fuck" an awful lot so I think it's cool when songs work it in. My friend gave me a whole book about it once. Actually was sort of a scholarly look at the word, its origins, and it's various uses. Oh, look, you can still get it.

NHL season starts today. I don't even know what games are on, but I know the Wild aren't playing so I'll probably just peek in on whatever looks most interesting tonight. Maybe Calgary/Vancouver will be my reward for getting my work done, since I'm on a monstrous deadline at work today (which is, of course, why I'm blogging this morning...)

YOUR reward for me getting my work done will be a new Hockey/Goalie Lesson on playing drop-ins. At least, that's the plan. We'll see if the god of hockey writing is on my side or not.


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