Posts Tagged ‘hockey’


“We can make fun of hockey fans, but someone who enjoys Homer is indulging the same kind of vicarious bloodlust.”~ Steven Pinker

Okay, so if you have ever gone to a major sporting event, you know that there are those fans that love to interact with the players for whatever reason. From young love to pure hatred.

But ever wonder what would happen if these signs and banners caught the eyes of the players??

Enter BRANDI JOHNSON. Watch what happens here:

The thing of it is, is that when I took away the soundtrack and ignored it and focused on the point of the video….. I wondered about whether or not Claude Giroux actually went out on a date with the beautiful fan..

And the only thing that I could find was the follow-up article here:

I don’t know anything more than this, but I am sure as heck curious as to what happened next.

If anyone else is privy to knowing what happened…. or if they ever went out on a date. Please leave it in the comments below.

Gosh, I HATE being stuck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Ladies and gentlemen:

We have something new for you.

For the low cost of $20, you can pre-order your very own “PUCK OFF!” t-shirt as you see here.

For a limited time, you can pre-order your very own t-shirt. Orders must be collected by the 4th of August.

The goal is to sell twenty t-shirts in that time.

It is low (for now) so that we can monitor how well this campaign goes for the next few weeks.

If we do not reach our goal, then the t-shirts will not be made and any customers who have placed an order will not be charged.

It fits the perfect hockey fan in this world. And its divinely vulgar. Just like hockey can be at times. Vulgar, but not offensive.

So show your support, pre-order your very own t-shirt today before time runs out!!!


“I’m not great at dating, but I need to do it to relax.”~ Lena Dunham

Why women do you torture me so???

In the moments after the Chicago Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup, I came across a fan who was cheering for them the whole way.

A few actually. I proceeded to tell them that NHL is nothing, and that these NHL players should attempt something more courageous and bold like sledge hockey. There’s no flexible glass in sledge hockey if you hit the wall.

They were impressed. I offered autographed photographs of me playing the sport. Some accepted, others rejected the offer.

So as I am sitting there checking to see if there was any other sledge hockey program in their individual areas, I noticed that one of them who had accepted the offer and sent me an address had actually sent me the address of a Super Cuts.

Umm, really?? REALLY?????

The only benefit of this doubt that I can think is that the information was old. There was a typo in the address that was sent. The Super Cuts is now a residential area. OR that is where this person works.

If the truth is none of the above, then I have to say that this is a brand new low in behavior in this situation.

This crap is just confusing. And again, if its none of the above… its just WRONG!!!!!!!


The time is here, it has come for the 9th annual USA HOCKEY Disabled Festival.

But here I sit at home. No packed bags. No final check on equipment. Nobody from the Austin Blades are  going.

Pretty sad.

After joining forces with counterparts in Houston last year and winning 3rd place, one would believe that our team would re-group and aim for gold this year.

It never happened.

The idea was actually discussed at a team meeting before the 2012-13 season even began. A meeting that had no leadership in attendance and the ones really doing any of the talking were the leaders ON the team.

After a unanimous vote to NOT attempt to use funds or even raise them as a team to go to this tournament, it was very painful and disgusting to me to hear individual players talk among themselves after the meeting stating a desire to still try to go to Philadelphia.

It made no sense. Why in the world vote NO when your heart is saying YES?

Houston had already made up their minds that they were going to strive to go and that meant doing anything that they could to raise the money.

I believe there were several factors involved for the Austin Blades.

For one, it was estimated that each individual player would have to come up with $2,000 a piece in order to take care of transportation, lodging, and everything else that would be involved in going to Philadelphia. I think that each of the Austin players defeated themselves in believing that they would never be able to come up with that kind of cash. Never in a million years.

Upon that hearing that assumed magic number… each player immediately gave up.

Also, two of our ice rinks were stripped and torn away from us as the ice rink was sold. Leaving us with only one sheet of ice. And that sheet of ice was to accommodate for everything from hockey to skating lessons to figure skating. The sledge hockey team was seemingly thrown into this mix and we’ve not been able to have access to a full sheet of ice during any time that we have had practices.

At the beginning of the season, there was a series of bake sales that took place. With me taking care of my niece so that my sister could at least go to work once a week, I never participated in those bake sales. The scheduling of them was just not convenient for me to attend. And it pissed off the entire team that I was never there. They never quite understood.

There was but a few bake sales and then that disappeared. I suspect that the money that was earned from all of them went towards buying ice time for practices. But that’s information never willing to be confirmed. It would however stand to reason.

Times since then have been very few and far between that the Austin Blades have been on the ice, for any reason at all.

Meanwhile, Houston has been going at full force.

I did make a personal attempt to raise the money for MYSELF to be able to go. But out of the estimated guess of $2,000 that I needed, I was only able to raise $260. The link to the website was even on the Blogroll. Still is. But that’s all I was able to receive.

I found the lack of inspiration and willingness to sacrifice to make it to Philadelphia by the team lacking and pathetic. There’s no drive whatsoever! Only fear and self-intimidation.

This entire season I have been struggling in the back of my mind of whether or not to actually quit the team. But using that as a threat isn’t the point. The point is that the team seems to be slipping back into a comfort zone of doing seemingly nothing to go forward or get ahead. And that really kills my personal dreams and goals of participating in this exciting sport.

I know that Houston would welcome me with open arms if I end up there. They have always been inviting the Austin Blades to join them for a practice or two. Even challenging us to friendly competition…. going as far as to pay for gas and hotel. But the Austin Blades did nothing. It wasn’t even discussed as a team.

See what I mean by lacking??

Sledge hockey to me is not a hobby. Its not just something to do in order to get me out of the house for a few hours a week. It is a passion, a heartfelt interest. I’m driven by the idea of playing. It took more than three seasons to even get jerseys! Or something that would even resemble us as a sports team. And that was only done because I had a fire under me to push, push, push.

So much for the Austin Blades I suppose.

The team going from Houston is playing under the team name of Texas Stars. Which ironically is the same name of the semi-professional hockey farm team nearby. The Austin Blades will be playing on their ice after they play a full game later this weekend. But I seriously doubt anyone will be sticking around to watch us play. We tried that when our team had it together and we went to Houston for the first time. Over 9,000 people in the stands and nobody stayed behind to watch.

But I will be hoping and praying that Texas Stars do well this year in Philadelphia. The teams in that pool are many so there will only be two games played before they start a semi-final round, going by points. They must win five games outright to bring home the gold!

I noticed that their second match is against G.L.A.S.A., the same team that ruined us last year. I hope for some athletic vengeance on the ice. Games can be watched online at, but they are not free! I think its something like $7.99 per credit. And of course if you buy more credits, the price goes lower per credit.

I am hoping for the gold. And at the same time, I know that deep down I will be totally miserable about it…. KNOWING that members of the Austin Blades, including myself, could have been a part of it.

So I will wear my green and black this week. And then I’ll be on the ice this coming weekend in our Austin Blades jersey doing my best to represent.

Speculation and rumor has it that the tenth annual tournament will be in Florida. NOW is the time to start planning for it, for those of us who didn’t go to Philadelphia. I’m going to be busting some serious ass to raise enough funds for that to happen. Even if the rumors are wrong, I will do what I can to get there and it doesn’t really matter where its located. Just as long as I AM THERE!!!!



And there it is!

The bronze medal in which I won when I participated in the USA Hockey Disabled Festival in Dallas last month.

It has been a long road these past few years. Sometimes difficult, sometimes fun. All of it: worth it!

For many years, I’ve seen players come and go on our team. A majority of them with the desire to go out and play and travel and do things like enter tournaments. But for whatever dumb reasons there were at the time, its just not what our team did. And because of that, those players left.

It is too bad, because if they would have held on, they would have been able to go to the tournament last month and play in games against other teams across the country. Finally, our team did and we received our deserved rewards yesterday at a team party which was hosted by our current coach and team leaders.

Those who went, all reflected on our progress. Coming from a crushing loss of 13-1, and then getting a chance to play in the Championship Game. But only to face the same team again that gave us that bruising defeat. They got the win 2-0, and played against the top team in the Division, but when our team watched the video tape of that second game, you could tell that the team was frustrated because they didn’t score over ten goals on us again.

All the past seasons of being a member of this team, all the practices, all the fights, all of the ups and downs, and even watching people come in and out, it takes into account all that we have done. And we put it to the test in our FIRST ever tournament and win Third Place!! How amazing is that??

But the 2011-12 season is coming to an end. The team has done so much more in this season than we have ever done before. And honestly, we have one more weekend of hockey in Houston before it all comes to an end. At least through the summer and probably won’t get started up again until October.

Sledge hockey has given me a new kind of freedom. I do not know what I would be like, if I did not have sledge hockey. I do not know what I would be doing or what would be going on without it. I’m just very glad that I do!!

“He tasks me! He tasks me, and I shall have him! I’ll chase him round the Moons of Nibia, and round the Antares Maelstrom, and round perdition’s flames before I give him up! Prepare to alter course!”~ Ricardo Montalbon in “Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan

Night two of sled hockey activities ended last night with great success.

Even though we were not on the ice to play, we were there for a very important fundraising event. The beloved “Chuck-A-Puck”. Our team stayed within the concourse of the arena selling pucks for this event. Myself, along with a few other team members were shouting to the crowds to get them to come and buy pucks. A couple of us, ended up losing our voices by the time it was all said and done.

We do not have an official word and its too early to tell, but several people have estimated that we sold enough pucks for the event, that it would pay for at least one hour of ice time.

That works for us!!

It was a new experience to go through. Up and down the entire concourse shouting and yelling, “Chuck-A-Puck, two dollars, six for ten!!”. Non-stop for nearly two hours.

The youngest member of our team, who I think is under the age of six, used all of his charm to get people to come to the tables to buy. Suddenly, we have someone who is irresistable! Go ahead and try to tell him “NO”. It can’t be done. I think I am going to ask his mother if I can borrow him for a few hours and go to the park or the grocery store or something.

The kid is quite the business man!! He worked tons of angles from the element of surprise, to running straight up to people and asking them to buy pucks. I mean, whatever he was doing, it worked.

Doing Chuck-A-Puck for a fundraiser can be fun. But it’s definitely not simple. There’s a lot that goes into it. But having as many people to volunteer as we did, was a great help.

When we were finished selling, we were told that we could stay and watch the third period of the game between the Oklahoma City Barons and the Texas Stars. We were all getting ready and were excited to watch some hockey for FREE. But nooo.. we weren’t done. We were also employed to assist with the thousands of foam pucks that were launched at a target located at center ice. Gathering them all up was quite the task as well. But I personally did not go out onto the ice for the clean up. I stayed in the tunnel to watch. And since I did that, I was given the task to find the numbered puck that went along with the winning puck that made it closest to the target.

Luckily for me I looked up at the Jumbotron and there was a cameraman there to zoom in on the back of the winning puck. We were previously told to focus on the last three numbers of puck that were on pages and pages and pages of a giant list. When I looked up at the screen, I caught the last two numbers.

I was given the winning puck by the cheerleader that I had been chasing down for a photo in the past two nights. And sure enough, those of us who had lists were told to search hard and fast. The faster we found the winning person’s name, the better it was for everyone.

It didn’t take but five minutes, perhaps even a lot less than that. The winner was in my stack of papers. We found out that he had bought only two pucks. And one of them was the winner. Lucky guy. Those involved with the event were shocked that I had found the name so fast.

They called it very successful. One of the most successful Chuck-A-Puck events that they’ve had all season long.

And then after all of that, we were allowed to watch the third period. Tickets were being held captive by our team’s new leaders. She taunted us for about 30 minutes with them before she distributed them out to those who were planning on sticking around.

She gave me one, but then took it back and then gave me another. Her decision to switch tickets would work out in my favor.

I got to sit right up against the glass. And, the one cheerleader that I just couldn’t get a decent photo with, was there doing her thing. There I sat for much of the rest of the game, playing with my camera that seems to be malfunctioning for one reason or another, and not paying close attention to the game.

That would be a mistake.

Being so close to the corner, near the goal. I was attempting to take photos of my feet, just to test out the camera to see if i could figure out what was going on. And because I was not paying attention. I jumped clear to the moon when there was a body check up against the glass. The very same glass that I was sitting in front of!

Needless to say that I put away the camera from that point and watched the rest of the game in silent humility.

After the game, it was time for a quick check on the camera to see if it corrected itself. But no. So, I ran off to find a team member to see if they would take their cell phone and get a photo that way with the one remaining cheerleader that I had attempted at least four or five times in two nights to get something decent.

I ended up leading the team member all the way to the opposite side of the concourse. I started to feel bad about it, but then I was constantly reminded by the quote in the movie Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan … switching it up to fit the situation that I was being tortured because I just couldn’t get it done.

 And so I felt like a moron after talking to her here and there all night long. I even looked up at her and told her that I had my camera working again. Only to have it not do so again after taking two actions photos of the game in progress.

Luckily for me, the one I dragged out to do this, didn’t argue too much about it. I swiftly jumped in and told her that I would buy her some beer if she took the photo and then sent it to me.

I probably would have broke down into tears if I wouldn’t have shut up at some point, giving her adulation and appreciation for being so patient to get the photo taken. I understand that it is part of her job to take photos with people. But dang, I had tried so many times in two nights and this was the only way it could get done.

I would do the Chuck-A-Puck all over again. Now that I know for sure what I am doing and what is to be expected. I had many people that would look at me. I took advantage of them being rude and “staring at the wheelchair”, and would ask them “Wanna buy a puck?”. If you gave me ANY eye contact, I was going to pounce!  No matter how many times that they verbally rejected me, I know that some people went by the tables and did end up buying pucks. And even if I saw them carrying pucks, I asked them if they wanted to buy more.

I was not dejected if I received a “NO!”. Because I knew that someone would eventually turn it into a “YES!”.

I just need to make sure that I have plenty of water with me, so that I don’t ruin my voice. Going all over the place like that, AND still being sore from playing the night before, I hurt from head to whatever I could feel.

Today has been a more restful time for me. I’m not going to have any further hockey events until April. And I won’t be doing anything that stressful for another two weeks. At that point, it will be travel, travel, travel…. through the end of May.

Anyone wanna join me??


I enjoyed myself last night with family at a local AHL hockey game between the home team, Texas Stars against the Abbotsford Heat. (My apologies for those who read my Facebook profile as I had mistaken the team to be from “Abbotsville.”)

I did not realize that the visiting team was from Canada, until it was time for the singing of the National Anthem. First was the Canadian anthem. I had never been to a sporting event before where it had been sung. It was a nice experience. I felt that the choral group performing did a nice job.

Then came Star-Spangled Banner. It started wonderfully. Until they had reached the phrase, “Whose broad stripes and bright stars“. The crowd over 5,000 people literally shouted the word “STARS!!!” when it came up.

What in the world? What were these people thinking? Aren’t you standing up with your attention towards the flag, as you should have learned it in school?

Because the word “stars” appears twice in the verse that is commonly sung, the crowd shouted it twice as well. As I was standing there repulsed, I did hear giggling after the first shouting of the word.

This bothered me. So I went searching to see if there was any specific rules or terms of etiquette with regards to observing the National Anthem. Most of what I had found was placing your hand over your heart. You also observe by taking off your hat and stand at attention and facing the flag. You don’t talk on your cell phone, you don’t chew gum, and you don’t move from where you are standing.

But what about shouting out during the performance of the National Anthem?

Seems as if this battle is not a new one. During the performance of the National Anthem before a game of the Dallas Stars of the NHL, it happens there as well. Screaming at the top of their lungs “STARS!” whenever it is sung.

Also, during the performance of the National Anthem at the games of the Baltimore Orioles, they shout out the word “O!”… as in “O say can you see“, and what not. Mainly these incidents have utter disrespect for the nation has been going on for years, so this is not the first time anyone has complained about it. Francis Scott Key must be vomitting his own bone dust in his grave each time this occurs.

I have read both sides of this. Those who are disturbed and appalled by it, and those who have no personal problems with it. They say that its only a way to keep the crowd’s enthusiasm for their team.

This particular post has to deal with the opinion that this kind of behavior from people is terrible and it shouldn’t be allowed to be happening anywhere in this country at any time because it is truly an outrage. This country is too valuable for its citizens to be taken advantage of in the name of disrespect towards those whose hearts are on fire with pride, love, and patriotism.

Honestly though, “disgusting” is not a strong enough word to describe this behavior. This country was in fact, made for you and me. But it was not made for it to be trampled on by its own citizens. I personally believe that if they would have done something similar during the Canadian National Anthem, people would have become unglued and there would have been chaos to the extent that it would have been all over the Internet. But why do this to your own country?

This was my fourth Texas Stars hockey game that I have attended. The first game that I went to, this did not happen. From that point on, things changed and the crowd was shouting.

What really is disheartening to me is that each time I have attended, the game announcer has always brought the crowd’s attention to the presence of the military being present at the games. Whether currently serving or retired. And then this happens.

And another point to bring is that I do not think that the crowd is taking into consideration the person or persons who are performing. What about their feelings as they are doing their best to proudly present themselves and their country during a performance piece which has been deemed the most difficult song to sing? For myself, I performed it three times when I was in high school. I did it by myself and I performed it A Capella. Had this happened to me while I was performing, it would’ve ended right at the time the people would’ve shouted. Mainly for the reasons that I was nervous enough to perform, and the sudden eruption of shouting voices would’ve distracted me and caused me to perform with errors. Which in turn would have caused a lot of embarrassment for me and I would have been unable to finish.

Instead, it seems as if the people of this country is just going to do whatever it wants to do, and then hide behind the First Amendment for their actions. But I am not going to get into a debate over Constitutional Law.

Members of my own family have fought and served in this nation’s military. After the National Anthems were finished, I looked at members of my family who were sitting next to me, and their shocked faces said it all. I spoke to a man who had served in the U.S. Army this afternoon. He was an officer in the military and he has attended previous Texas Stars hockey games with me in the past, so he has witnessed this horrible incident before. He said, “Many others have bled and died for this country, to provide these people the privilege to be doing shit that is totally disrespectful.”

Sledge hockey (known as sled hockey in the United States) is a sport that was designed to allow participants who have a physical disability to play the game of ice hockey. Ice sledge hockey was invented in the early 1960s in Stockholm, Sweden at a rehabilitation center. It is currently one of the most popular sports in the Paralympic Games.

Two men from Sweden designed the sledge for ice sledge hockey in the 1960s because they wanted to continue to play hockey despite their physical disability.

Essentially all of the regular ice hockey rules in able-bodied ice hockey leagues apply to ice sledge hockey. The only differences those necessitated by the ice sledge and the athlete. The first set of international rules was created in 1990 and was drafted from Canadian rules. It was introduced to the Paralympic Games in 1994, in Lillehammer.

Team USA brought home the GOLD in the 2010 Winter Paralympic Games in Vancouver.

Personally speaking however, as of the 2010-11 season, I have entered my third season in playing this sport. I fell in love with it the moment I got inside of sledge and was placed on the ice. It most certainly has become a passion of mine. And I have made it my personal goal to become good enough, strong enough, to try-out for the National Team and play with honor and valor for my country and win the gold.

Within my second year, I had improved my game to the next level. Earning nicknames like “Assassin“, “The Laser“, “The Arm“, and others similar based on my powerful shot. These given by the coaching staff of my team. I was honored this season to be named Assistant Captain of the team.

I believe that my most shining moment in sledge hockey was the opportunity to play in front of over 6,000 hockey fans in a team exhibition on the 13th of March, 2010.

My first goal was against Dallas on the 7th of March, 2010. A memory that I will have with me forever. (Even if we did lose 2-1.)

Our team however, does not “require” a person to have a disability to join. We have both male and female team members, young and old. If you are interested, please check out our Facebook fan page, “Austin Blades”. Leave a comment/question below.

Today is Super Bowl XLV. (That’s “45” for you non-Romans.) And yet I find myself not much in the hype of the big game, or at least not getting involved in it all. I have to be honest, the NFL is not one of the things I ascribe to.

But don’t get me wrong. I am like any other warm-blooded male who enjoys his sports. It just happens to be that this is not one of them.

My mood has been the same all day long. There’s been no crescendo of jubilation or any countdown to kickoff of any kind. And I understand that there are many out there who have been waiting and waiting for this day to come.

Locally however, the apartment complex in which I live in, they have been struggling with management to let them be able to access the community room in order to watch the game. Our community room has a television, VCR/DVD, several dozen books, furniture, tables, chairs, and six computers. Its there for our use in the first place. But since the great remodel job of 2006, its been closed to the residents on the weekends. A bit unfair, but I’ve adapted to the fact that we must be crammed into our tiny apartments like caves for the weekend. So in a sense, it is a great victory for us living here.

As far as just having it opened for the Super Bowl, I’m not so sure I agree with that. But as they say, one step at a time. The struggles and tribulations of the community room is best served for another time, another blog.

I have been given the understanding that there will be food. So I suppose that would be one good thing about it. One thing about being a bachelor is that I can take the opportunity to partake in the munchifications and nobody will say anything about it. Finding places like that to eat, that is on the outside of the home is always a bonus in my book.

But here we go back again to the game. Its not giving me any interest at all. The Super Bowl takes a common football game which should last about two and a half, and up to three hours and stretches it so far with special commercials and what they consider “Halftime Entertainment”. Including the pre-game, the pre-pre-game, the pre-pre-pre-game, the trophy ceremony and oh…. on top of that, the post-game.

And did I mention, they get some goofball to sing our National Anthem and turn it from a two minute and ten second moment of patriotic pride to a four minute church hymn?

Altogether, a heeping pile of five to six hours in total length.

There’s almost a guarantee to have nothing else on television. For those of us who do not have cable or satellite, you know what I am talking about. Options are absolutely nothing on this day.

Yes, I know the commercials are amusing and sometimes hilarious. But believe me, you’re not missing anything because those commercials will be re-broadcast again throughout the rest of the month. Plus, there’s always the Internet. So that argument is out.

I think that instead, I’ll just stick to my sledge hockey. (Sled hockey as its called in the USA.)