Archive for the ‘Nonsense’ Category


It’s So Eggciting

January 14, 2012

In an article in Thursday’s Buffalo News, Sabres owner Terry Pegula compared the Sabres to that famous egg Humpty Dumpty, claiming that the Sabres would get better once all the pieces fell into place again. This comparison does make some sense if you forget the fact that Humpty Dumpty suffered irreparable damage that none of the kings horses nor men could fix. (And why are horses trying to fix an egg, anyway?)

Just think about it for a minute. Sometimes, when you have a broken egg, you can add a few tasty ingredients and some cooking skill and end up with a delicious omelette. If the Sabres trade away one of their current eggy bits, they may get some tasty ingredients in return. A little magic from Chef Lindy and poof…we have an omelette. Whether it’s a Stanley Cup winning omelette is a discussion for another day.

I can also see the Humpty Dumpty analogy working in a slightly different way. Imagine Lindy placing a cardboard cutout of Humpty in the locker room. Every time an injured player returns or the team wins a game, part of Humpty is put back in place. By the time the season is over, the egg should be whole again. Humpty could become this season’s version of The Pigeon, accompanying the team on road trips and playing a prominent role in post game interviews.

And because this post isn’t cracked enough, I leave you with another famous Humpty…The Humpty Dance, that is. Enjoy!


Eight Guilty Pleasures

September 6, 2011

For the last month or so, the Puck Daddy blog has been running a guilty pleasures series, where assorted bloggers, hockey peeps and others answer questions regarding their hockey guilty pleasures. Since we’re in that hum-drum phase of the summer where hockey is in the air but there’s not much new to report on, I thought that I would share my hockey guilty pleasures with you.

1. The Player You Most Love To Hate

Zdeno Chara. He’s a tough hockey player with a killer shot and the potential to knock any opposing player into the third row.

But there’s a caveat to this answer. I hate Chara the hockey player, but think Chara the person is awesome. His dedication to Right to Play is admirable, and I won’t ever forget him competing in the All-Star Skills Competition while wearing that tasseled Right to Play toque. In this case, Good Person is dueling with Evil Hockey Player, and I’m not sure who comes out ahead.

2. Other Than Your Own, The Team You Can’t Help Rooting For

Vancouver. It has a lot to do with the fact that they came into the league at the same time as the Sabres.

3. Favorite Fight or Brawl of All-Time

I have both a fight and a brawl to mention here. The brawl is obviously the Sabres/Sens brawl from 2007. It’s notable because it encompassed everyone on the ice, including the goalies. Biron & Emery were laughing as they were trying to fight and Lindy was practically having an aneurysm on the bench as he hollered at Brian Murray. It was also Biron’s last game in a Sabres uniform, and what a way for him to go out.

My favorite fight happened this past season when Kaleta fought that guy from Columbus in November. It was memorable just because Kaleta was so dominant and really didn’t give his opponent a chance to respond.

4b. The Hideous-Looking Hockey Jersey You Secretly Love The Most

The Ducks purple “Donald Duck meets Jason” design that they used when they first entered the league. Don’t judge. I was in sixth grade when the Ducks first wore this sweater. It was the height of cool at the time.

5. Your Favorite Hockey Cliché (terminology, traditions, announcer-speak, etc.)

The fact that almost any hockey phrasing can be turned into an innuendo. Phrases like “banging away in the crease,” “going five hole,” “he shoots, he scores,” and a host of other phrases all bring out my immature 12-year-old side.

I also love the handshake line at the end of playoff series and the stick taps on the boards to celebrate/acknowledge a good fight, jersey retirement, past legend, etc.

6. The Injury You Couldn’t Stop Staring At (Non-Skate Lacerations Only)

Gaustad’s cut tendon a couple of years ago. I know it’s a skate laceration, but work with me for a moment. I was at the game where he got hurt, sitting at that very end of the ice, and I just remember wondering how such an innocent looking play could cause such damage. In addition, I think the description used by the doctors post-surgery is what makes this injury so fascinating. I mean, they mentioned that the tendon on his leg could have rolled up like a window shade had it been cut all the way. It’s not every day that you hear injuries described in terms of window treatments. It’s also a very powerful visual that leaves you almost whimpering and clutching your leg in sympathy.

7. Your Favorite Cheesy Hockey Reference in Popular Culture

You go to the box for two minutes and you feel shame and then you are free. – Slapshot

I also enjoy “Ducks Fly Together” from The Mighty Ducks and “This isn’t Junior Pairs ’82!” from The Cutting Edge. I know it’s debatable that the latter is a hockey movie, but in my book, it is. Also, if someone could remind me where I placed my dvd disc of this movie, that would be greatly appreciated.

8. Finally, What’s The Thing You Secretly Respect Gary Bettman For The Most?

The fact that he completely ignores that fans boo him mercilessly. Being able to ignore that level of hatred is an impressive skill.


Sad Goalies Not Always So Sad

March 7, 2011

Yesterday, the awesome Carole Browne shared a link to the very creative Sad Goalies Tumblr. While there are some legitimately sad goalie photos posted on the site, there are a few that a borderline sad or not sad at all.

For reference purposes, this is a sad goalie. Heck, this is a “make sure the goalie doesn’t have any sharp implements or shoelaces or bedsheets in the immediate vicinity for the next twenty four hours”, sad goalie.

This is not a sad goalie. This is a pissed off, in need of a clean pair of jammies, a nap and a juicebox goalie. (I may or may not have wanted to act like this sad goalie this afternoon due to events out of my control at the office. But I did not, because that is not appropriate office behavior.)

This is not a sad goalie, either. This is a dead goalie. Or one that’s just resting. Or one that’s contemplating the end of his career, which might actually make him legitimately sad. Then he remembers that he is getting paid a lot of money to be a glorified assistant coach/doorman. Then he is happy again.

Finally, this might not actually be a sad goalie in the traditional sense of the word, but sad in that he’s become nothing more than a punchline.

And it’s not on the site, but a sad goalie stick tap definitely has to go to Jose Theodore of the Minnesota Wild for his valiant performance in giving up Rob Niedermayer’s first goal of the year. Buck up sport, you’ll go down in history on that one.


A New, Upgraded System

February 13, 2011

We here at Shots Off the Crossbar are big fans of The System. However, it is about time that Lindy Ruff slightly adjust The System. I’m not saying that The System should be completely thrown out the window, but that The System should be upgraded.

Upgrade #1: Ryan Miller needs rest desperately. He shall be relegated to his apartment with a 100% full DVR, a laptop, a full refrigerator and Patrick Lalime to order takeout. His only role during this time is to sleep, watch TV and get some rest. He may not leave the apartment until the DVR is completely empty. If he tries to leave the apartment before the appointed time, he shall be met by several bloggers with their keyboards of fury at the ready, at which point he will be so intimidated and have no choice but to return to the apartment and finish watching TV and resting.

Upgrade #2: While Miller undergoes the Seven Days of Sloth portion of the upgrade, Patrick Lalime will be quietly stripped of any goaltending responsibilities and Jonas Enroth will  be called up from Portland. Lalime will serve as a goalie of affairs for Miller and Enroth, attending to equipment and morale.

Upgrade #3: Drew Stafford shall be cloned and the Stafford clone shall start wearing #55 sweaters and assuming Hecht’s place in the lineup.

Upgrade #4: Tim Connolly should be sent to a farm upstate where he can live out the rest of his days in scholarly pursuits.

Upgrade #5: Jason Pominville will change his pregame Timmy Ho’s muffin order to a banana nut instead of a berry. The added fiber will lead to regularity, which will hopefully translate to on-ice regularity.

Upgrade #6: Patrick Kaleta will calm the heck down and stop looking for trouble and let trouble find him. To ensure this will happen, Kaleta will be fitted with a goofy buzzer inside his helmet that is remote controlled from the bench. When Kaleta is wandering dangerously close to the trouble line, Patrick will zap him before he steps over the line and does anything detrimental to the team.

What other System Upgrades would you recommend?


Potential All Star Break Activities

January 29, 2011

So with the NHL on break until Monday (and the Sabres off until Friday – what kind of malarkey is that?), most players have departed for places far and wide for assorted debauchery good clean fun. So what is there to do for those players still left in town? We here at Shots Off the Crossbar have brainstormed a list of both physically and mentally stimulating activities that will allow a player to relax and recharge his batteries before coming back to engage in a playoff push (or high draft pick push).

– Participate in their child’s education by acting as a room dad at school – handing out juice boxes, participating in story time, reminding the kids that eating crayons is bad, lecturing little Timmy that violence is never the answer unless you can avoid getting sent to the penalty box for it.

– Tackling the “honey do” list.

– Reading the Buffalo News archives and making a list of how many times Bucky Gleason references the following: “Kennedy,” “Briere,” “Drury.” This activity should be done over the course of a year’s worth of columns, as any longer may cause the player’s head to spontaneously combust from the sheer volume of content generated from the exercise.

– Firing pucks at a tiny circle on their garage door so that they can keep their aim steady for the “shoot the puck through the photographer’s hole” contests held during practice.

– Shopping for the perfect Valentines Day gift for the wife, girlfriend or favorite lady friend(s).

– Reading “War & Peace.”

– Catching up on their favorite blogs, both of the hockey & non-hockey types.

– Educating themselves on the American political system by watching The West Wing.

– Making notes on how to enact an Aaron Sorkin “walk-and-talk” with a teammate while wandering around the arena.

– Writing the Great American Novel. They will receive more credit if they continue the story past “It was a dark and stormy night.”

– Taking Sabretooth for a trip to the groomers for his mid-season fluff and fold.

– Concocting a fiendish plan to lure the opposing goalie out of the net so that Rob Niedermayer can score a goal.

– Making sure that they have an emergency suitcase packed in case they are traded to points far flung upon the arrival of the new overlord, savior, owner.

I promise there may be hockey content and discussion on this blog at some point soon.


New Year, New Team

December 31, 2010

Tomorrow is New Year’s Day. Many magazines/newspapers have a “New Year, New You” theme that runs at some point during the first couple weeks of the new year. I’d like to take that idea one step further for the Sabres team: “New Year, New Team.” If they follow these simple steps, they may be able to turn their current misfortunes around…somewhat. I’m not saying they would be a playoff contender, but it’s getting really old to keep saying “these guys really, really suck.”

But I digress. Here’s my “New Year, New Team” list.

1. Remember that a hockey game is 60 minutes long, not 40 or 20. Please note that a full team effort should be applied for the full 60 minutes.

2. Shoot the puck at the net. I don’t care if you can make the pass of the year on a two-on-one. If you have a clear shot at the net, take it. Good things happen when you shoot at the net.

3. See #1.

4. Stop taking dumb penalties. Lindy should not be turning that shade of red that often during a game. Think of Lindy’s health, guys!

5. Play a decent team game so Miller can have a relaxing night every once in a while. (As relaxing as a night in goal for a professional hockey player can get, I suppose.)

6. Stop deflecting pucks past your own goalie because your big foot or big stick was in the way.

7. Learn when to pick your fights. Or learn to fight better. (I suppose this one really applies to Montador only. Dude is 19 kinds of heart, but not that great of a fighter. He’s more of a grappler.)

8. Remember #1.

9. Pick up the scoring. Then again, I suppose that should come with following #2.

10. Switch up the locker room music from the MJ. Obviously, MJ has ceased to work.

11. Listen to Lindy. For the love of everything holy, stop tuning out the coach. He knows what he’s talking about.

12. Don’t forget about #1!

13. Play every night like your contract is dangling over a lit Bic lighter in Darcy’s office. Then again, with rumors of the new owner coming aboard sooner rather than later, your contracts may actually be dangling over a lit Bic lighter.

14. For those on a contract year, quickly come down with that case of contractyearitis. (I suppose this only really applies to Timmy. When Stafford has been healthy and been on the ice, he actually hasn’t been half bad.)

15. Don’t forget about #1!

And for us fans: if we’ve learned anything this year, its that we should double check our rumor mongering sources. Then again, if someone did, we wouldn’t have been treated to Punch-Gate and Vogl’s prejudice against the land of feces known as Twitter.

I hope you all have a wonderful (and safe) New Year’s Eve. Catch you back here in 2011!


It’s Toast!

December 26, 2010

Guess what Santa brought me?!

(That would be the toaster. Not the coffee pot.)

Of course, I had to take the toaster for a test drive. Once I stopped laughing at the instructions that is. Other than the usual “put bread in slot, push lever” and “do not stick metal objects into toaster,” there were others that were pretty freaking sad like “do not submerge in water,” “do not shake” and a whole bunch of others. What makes it all the more insane is that you know if these were included, that someone actually tried to do them at one point. But I digress.

Back to the toaster. The test bread was a lovely piece of Wegmans rye.

It’s not a bad representation of the Sabres logo, not bad at all.

So I have toast. And before I eat my yummy toast, there is one more photo I have to take. The Sabres have been headed on a playoff-less path for awhile now. The loss of Roy for the season might have just cemented their fate as a non-playoff team.

They’re done.

Of course, if they prove me wrong, I will gladly eat some toast in penance.


Airing My Grievances

December 23, 2010

First off, these gentlemen that dare call themselves hockey players ruined the joy that was the last day at work before a 10-day Christmas vacation. Did I mention it was also Sombrero Thursday at the office? Losing tonight ruined Sombrero Thursday. That is unacceptable. (Sombrero Thursday is the office equivalent of Rex Manning Day. You don’t ruin Rex Manning Day.)

I’m mad that these guys blew Miller’s shot at his 200th win. And winning it on home ice would have been nice. Hell, I’m mad that Miller blew his own shot at his 200th win in front of the home crowd.

If the Sabres are going to stand around and watch the Florida players outwork them in front of Miller, then they are more than willing to come to my living room and stand around and assist me in the wrapping of Christmas presents tomorrow. Better yet, they can go to Wegmans for me. Both will involve copious amounts of standing around. At least with me, they might be useful.

If Crunchy is going to whiff on a couple goals, then fine. He can whiff all he wants, but not on a night when the idiots in front of him don’t give a honk. Whiffing and indifference from the skaters cannot happen on the same night.

Non grievance: I did like the comeback tonight. Too bad it was all for naught.

I hate badly refereed games.

And cliched locker room interviews. Just speak your mind and worry about what the PR guy says later (within reason of course.)

I do not like that there are no Sabres on Twitter. This needs to be rectified immediately. Is it the fact that they have to interact with the fans and pull their heads out of their arses? Is it that they can’t handle the criticism? Is it the fans being “mean” to them? Has the team put a moratorium on usage of The Twitter? I guess I’ll just have to enjoy the witty BizNasty, Bobby Ryan and Joffrey Lupul until the Sabres decide to tweet.

I’m annoyed that ABC is re-running a General Hospital from 2007 tomorrow. Nothing says Merry Freaking Christmas like a shootout. Ho hum.

I’m irked that we’ve wasted time discussing Rex Ryan and his wife’s personal life. More power to them for having frisky time, but don’t put it on YouTube.

I hate that the late, late game (San Jose) from the upcoming road/home/road trip happens after I am back at work. Do you know how difficult it is to do a 10:30pm start when you work the next day?

I’m ticked that Dirty Jobs has been airing clip shows with a few minutes of new footage or some random Mike Rowe popups and has them labeled as “new” episodes.

I’m still angry that in this day and age CBS hasn’t figured out that when they have a 4pm football game, they should move the start of 60 Minutes to at least 7:30 so as not to mess with the DVRs of dedicated Amazing Race fans.


A Very Sabres Christmas

December 18, 2010

We here at Shots Off the Crossbar accidentally came across several letters submitted to Santa by members of the Sabres organization. I feel that I would not be doing my bloggerly duty if I did not share them with you.

Rip Simonick: My very own episode of Dirty Jobs. Forty years of uniform washing, bag schlepping, skate sharpening and player counseling deserves to be spotlighted, right? There’s nothing dirtier than hockey players.

Paul Gaustad: HONKHONK HONK HONK HONK HONK [illegible with a few peck marks] HONK HONKETY HONK. (Editor’s note: Google translator tells me that this is Goose speak for: “I wish that all the Camp Good Days kids that I baked cookies with win their battles with cancer.” As do I Goose, as do I.)

Patrick Kaleta: I want the Harry Potter Lego Hogwarts Castle. Or any of the Indiana Jones Lego sets. Or the Star Wars ones. (Editor’s note: there’s some scribble on here in a decidedly more grown-up hand about wanting Kaleta to bring his toys with him to avoid him playing with something else. Santa, bring him the legos, please!)

Lindy Ruff: an unlimited gift certificate to Napolis. Or Men’s Wearhouse. It takes a lot of clothing to look this good. And after this many years behind the bench, I think I deserve new duds.

Sabretooth: Pants. Why is it that I can wear pants to the Catwalk for Charity, but I can’t wear pants on game night. Do you know how cold a hockey arena gets?

Tyler Myers: Henrik Tallinder. Reggie is nice and all, but I miss Hank.

Darcy Regier: An owner with an unlimited checkbook. (Editor’s note: Darcy, this one might be coming true sooner than you think.)

Tim Connolly: Hair. I’m tired of the Kojak look. (Editor’s Note: there was more, but it involved references to carpeting and drapery. No one needs to go there.)

Craig Rivet: That I could get back on the ice again. The spirit is willing, Santa, but the body just isn’t what it used to be.

Thomas Vanek: an uninterrupted night’s sleep. Do you know what it’s like to have three kids under the age of 3, including infant twins? I didn’t think so. (Editor’s note: Thomas, you might want to wish this for your wife. You can escape to road games. She can’t.)

Ryan Miller: for the league to film a commercial of a child opening a box containing my jersey on Christmas morning. Why should Ovechkin get all the fun?

Patrick Lalime: to play in a game every now and then. I know that I got to play two whole periods the other night, but Santa, doesn’t Ryan deserve a night off every now and then?

Derek Roy: bedazzled Uggs. Oprah listed them as one of her favorite things. If they’re good enough for the most popular woman in the world, then they’re good enough for me. I think they would be a great addition to my wardrobe. (Editor’s note: Part of me wonders why one would need sparkly Uggs and where one would wear them to, but the other part of me thinks that they are just darling.)

Steve Montador: tickets to this summer’s New Kids on the Block and Backstreet Boys concert tour. It will be so much fun to be Hanging Tough with the Right Stuff. Just make sure, Santa, that you don’t Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely.

Nathan Gerbe: a goal. Uno goal-o. For the love of everything holy, one freaking goal. I don’t care if it bounces in off a goalie’s ass (Editor’s note: You can’t say “ass” to Santa! *facepalm*), I just want the puck to go in the net and the people to cheer. I’m not asking for much, right?

Mike Grier: to finally score on one of those breakaways that I get every now and again.

Editor’s note: I hope the Sabres get all that they ask for and more. As for me, I’d just settle for the playoffs at this point.


Sabres vs Habs Musings

November 5, 2010

Watch the video.

The Sabres are that baby monkey. When life is going great, they’re riding around on that pig, happy as can be. When things get rough, they tumble off that pig. However, unlike the baby monkey in the video, they have yet to figure out how to climb back on that pig.

I can only hope they figure it out soon, because hockey is getting pretty depressing to watch these days. Hockey should not be depressing. It should be fun. I know losing is no fun for the players either, but it seems so much worse for the fans. There’s only so many Buffcon1 jokes one can make before one just gives up.

And really, things seemed to be going well for the Sabres tonight. They had goals. They had pep. They didn’t commit a turnover until midway through the second period. (I don’t know about you, but I’m impressed by that one.) It’s like every bad mistake, every sneeze in the wrong direction, every stupid penalty somehow ends up coming around to bite Buffalo in the arse. When does it stop?