Friday, April 29, 2005

Another saying that "gets my goat"... is

"a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush"

Now I hadn't heard this saying until I moved to New Zeland and it confused the hell out of me. I did discover it's meaning... that it implies to not "look a gift horse in the mouth", but to me it still doesn't make any sence if taken in the literal sence. Why does the value of a bird in the hand change when taken into the bush. Also you potentially could catch a second bird outside of the bush if you wanted to. I could go on about the gift horse. To my knowledge I have never heard of horse's having a problem if you looked them in the mouth. I know dogs can get aggressive if you look at them directly in the eye. They see is as a threat.

Anyway --- call me digressing.

Yours faithfully - K1W1
Consider yourself dismembershiped Sully.
Hey Matt. As the old Admin of TOP, could you "remove" me from their list? I'm unable to delete that as a Blog choice on my Dashboard and I think I need your help there. Are you able to do that?

Mario...so I get my box of Frosted Flakes and lo and behold. I get my choice of SabreSpoon. GREEN!!! The green lightsabre is my preference...well, if I was a "real" Jedi ya know. I think I'm having a geek moment. And then I'll have wings with Scotty at Hooters to make up for that. ^_^

Speaking of Geeking. Does the colour of a lightsabre signify anything?
Get ready for the GeekDown here...
Congratulations Sully... that's wicked cool dude.

Kiwi, have you tried WinAmp? It does a better job with most video formats than any other player I've tried, and it's also a great audio player. It's a free download, and worth checking out.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

WHOA! The Smoking Puck SYNDICATED???
That's right, OCHO! The Smoking Puck will now be posted at The Boston Sports Massacre's web site. Check the Featured Links to the right and you'll see the Boston Sports Massacre's link. The BSM is a PodCast show, a Boston-local Sports Fan broadcast. The hosts are two buddies of mine, Tim Douglas and Brian Polack. Both who are really funny and talented actors but they have a great Sports Talk show and it is produced by OCHO's own Peter "Dr. Hooey" Fernandez at his home studio, Studio OCHO. It sounds really slick and the production quality makes it but better than an average PodCast. New episodes of BSM's half-hour long show are done every week and I hope you check out this quality piece of entertainment. What follows is the newest Smoking Puck but also the First (of hopefully many) Smoking Pucks to appear on BSM. Look for it in the future here and at BSM. Thanks! ^_^


The NHL Revolution will be televised, although no one will air it in the USA due to "lack of interest".

By Rev. Sully

Rev. Sully’s second favorite activity after watching Hockey is eating Ribs. Thankfully, both can be done at the same time. Copious amounts of beer drinking is associated with either activity.

Hello and welcome to Rev. Sully’s "The Smoking Puck". The Smoking Puck is a Hockey article and thanks to the boys here at Boston Sports Massacre, smoke will fill the room. So you’d better open a window. Rev. Sully is a lifelong hockey fan, a born-again goalie and probably the guy who spilled beer down your back at that last Bruins game you went to. He is one of the 23 people in America that actually watched NHL2Night on the Deuce and forgave Barry Melrose that awful hair because he is that much a genuine hockey personality. The Smoking Puck has been burning a little under three years on my Blog, Channel Ocho. Dupont's days are done in this city once I get a real Editor but I digress...I rip off the same source wire that he does. We pull from the same roll so to speak. Whenever there is Hockey News, there will be a Smoking Puck. Check out OCHO for the Smoking Puck: Funeral Edition from March 10, 2005 if you want to talk about the NHL’s failed 2004-05 campaign and how to fix it. Why waste BSM’s valuable server space with meaningless copy. That's already yesterday's bagel.

One would think that in the Years of the Common Era (formerly Anno Domini), Two-Thousand Four and Five all there was to talk about Hockey was the NHL Lockout and the unfortunate cancellation of the Season. You would be 95% correct in that case. Nevertheless, there is a lot going on without the Zamboni coming out between Intermissions at the FleetCenter. I mean the TD BankNorth Garden. Gimme an "Ewwwwww" if you can hear this. There is still Hockey in the world regardless of what our hosts, Tim & Brian tell you over the "airwaves" here at BSM. Actually, there is plenty of it. You just have to know where to find it. Hockey is Life in the Northeast. Anyone who has had to drive the kids to the MDC rink at 5AM for practice can tell you that. Just because the NHL was the most visible form of Greed and Gluttony in the history Major American Sports culture does not mean there is no Hockey. It's Spring. Hockey talk usually at this point in a calendar year would mean the end of the NHL Playoffs first round. The subject hasn't been far from my mind. Remember that a Pope decided what that calendar currently is so chew on that when thinking of how important choosing a Pope can be.

The Providence Bruins of the American Hockey League, hockey's version of AAA baseball’s Pawtucket Red Sox are in the playoffs. They are tied in their first round if anyone out there cares about Pro Hockey. The AHL has been playing all season. They might not be the NHL but each team is a "farm team" to a NHL club. Eight of the 28 AHL teams are in driving distance of Boston, MA. I checked out the Manchester Monarchs (LA Kings) play the Philadelphia Phantoms (Flyers) in March. The sound of skates on ice. The Referee whistle. The goal siren. The announcer on the PA. It was great being able to enjoy hockey in a supposedly "Hockey-Less" season. For the truly Hard Up, there has been plenty of College Hockey to check out on NESN here and there. As I said, College Hockey is only for the truly Hard Up. I’d rather watch AHL Hockey on the television but for some reason in a NHL-less year, there has been ONE Providence Bruins game shown on NESN, the local pay-television broadcaster of Boston Bruins Hockey. Remember: FOX Sports New England long ago was once SportsChannel and they showed Hartford Whalers hockey and if you were lucky enough to get the New York one too, you'd catch the Islanders. I thought the only reason to broadcast a game was, not for the fan’s enjoyment but as a tool to remind you to go to Foxwoods, to go to Dunkin Donuts, to buy Mobil gasoline or to bank with Citizen’s or BOA. The Hockey Hungry got Charlie Moore fishing instead of the next best thing.

Teams USA for the Women and teens Under 18 won Gold Medals at their respective World Championships both against Team Canada, US hockey's natural adversaries. The "real" World Championships are being held in Austria this year. Canadian television will be showing them on Sports networks TSN and Rogers. American Sports television will not be showing this Tournament at all. Mediazone Dot Com will be the ONLY place in the USA to view the World Championship. In a Lockout year, with NHL Players representing their countries. I shake my head and cry over that one. Bruins Hal Gill for Team USA. Bruins captain Joe Thornton centering Junior year phenom Columbus' Rick Nash. Sergei Samsonov for Russia. Even "Where Are They Now" former Bruin Vladmir "Rosie" Ruzica is the coach of the Czech Team. I cannot believe that just because the NHL is being bratty that there is no draw whatsoever for professional level hockey. Hockey’s television demographic is selective as NASCAR and about as mutually alien to the other’s culture. I still cannot make heads or tails out of NASCAR’s NEXTEL Cup scoring system. But try to explaining a two-line pass to a redneck. ABC Sports told the NHL that they could do without Hockey. Hockey did better when it wasn’t held to a National Standard such as the NBA or NFL. Selling Hockey on TV is tough but in the Northeast? I just don’t "get" why a local network such as NESN or FOX Sports New England couldn’t purchase rebroadcasting rights from a Canadian source. Any Sports Broadcast is about reminding you to buy beer or get the new Pancake Flavored Donut with Syrup Sprinkles from Dunkins, not about entertaining you. The only thing Hockey on the TV in the States is about some poor French Canadian girl who shouldn't have listened to her agent.

Also, for those with hopes of NHL Hockey coming soon to a rink near you in the 2005-06 season, understand that change is the nature of the Cosmos. If there is to be NHL Hockey, there will be changes made to the game. From the minutiae of game play rule changes (i.e. two-line offsides, icing, bigger nets/smaller goalie equipment to improve scoring, zones for the goalies to not be able to handle the puck as experimented on in the AHL this year) to Shoot-outs and Lottery Rookie drafts, strange things are afoot at the Circle K of Professional Hockey. BSM's Brian actually summed it all up quite nicely in the BSM April 15, 2005 PodCast (after a phone call from yours truly) about what should happen. Nevertheless, what will probably happen is a lot of BS and Sports Radio call-in fodder. Fans are going to have to put up with a Great Experiment for Hockey to be "viable" in the eyes of the masses. Hockey is just fine the way it is however that's only how the established fans feel, not the potential ones. It's time to change not the goalie but how we watch the game. And where we watch it as well. Being at a live hockey game does wonders to understand the motion and flow of the game. I find televised basketball to be on the lowest of rungs on the Sports ladder but I went to a game at the old FleetCenter several years back. Lakers versus Celts. Kobe, Shaq, Gang Green. I saw the backcourt, I saw plays develop. I saw the players lining up, pairing up, calling for spots. I went to my first Patriots game this past Super Bowl, Undefeated at Home season. I saw myself counting the number of blocks on rushing plays; one, two, three blocks...17 yard gain or the like. No bloody first down & scrimmage lines. No car commercials.

It does no good to suggest to a casual fan to look where the puck isn't and where the puck should go to when watching a hockey game on TV. Where the pass will go next; the man on the point or the power forward jostling for position in front of the net. It works on both side of the puck. The puck being too small to follow doesn't matter when compared to other successfully televised Sport with small balls such as golf and tennis. It's about the way it is televised. I would put up with changes in broadcast Points-of-View before goalie revisions. After all, one of the "best" playing perspectives on a Hockey videogame such as EA's "NHL 2000" line is "Up-and-down". The default POV in a NHL broadcast are lateral pans then close ups like basketball and football. Baseball though isn't televised "on its side" but usually from the pitchers POV and then tracking the average 2 1/2" diameter white baseball. A hockey puck, for the record is black and 3 inches in diameter.

Hockey is changing for sure. It will be part of Sports culture’s future. The Boston Bruins will one day soon skate again. Hockey is alive and well in places where snow is part of life. Pro Hockey though and the NHL will be changing. Once the NHL starts changing rules and the game play, International Hockey (IIHF) will either have to comply or be different. They already have larger ice surfaces where there is more room to pass & skate but the scoring is about the same. MLS Professional soccer thrives as a spectator sport but is not a Primetime televised sport. Maybe the NHL should emulate Major League Soccer in that business aspect. NHL Hockey will return in some form so prepare to be as pliable as a reed in the wind or you’ll break under the strain.

The Smoking Puck will return with more news later. Thank you and keep that window open.

Rev. Sully
Sounds like a sweet premire event Leah... Enjoy!

I have a whole crapload of DiVX movies. I'll send some along with the invitation and shirts.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

From Yahoo:

"Star Wars" Downsizes
Tuesday April 26 3:19 PM ET

Got the Boba Fett blues now that George Lucas has wrapped his final Star Wars movie installment?

Fret not, Force faithful, there is a new hope.

Jedi master George turned up over the weekend at Celebration III, a mega-gathering of 30,000 Star Wars geeks in Indianapolis, where he announced plans to move his space opera to the small screen.

For his first appearance at a Star Wars convention in 17 years, Lucas made a big splash. During a Q&A session, he announced that he is going to produce a 3-D animated action series expanding on the Cartoon Network's Emmy-winning Clone Wars. Then he dropped a bigger bomb, confirming a live-action Star Wars spinoff series is in the works.

Does that mean we'll get to see Darth Vader duking it out with the Donald on the next Apprentice?

Not quite.

According to Lucas, both shows will take place during the period between the end of Star Wars: Episode III--Revenge of the Sith and the original Star Wars (aka Episode IV--A New Hope), when the Emperor became all-powerful and started hunting the Jedi down.

Lucas said the live-action series is the more ambitious undertaking, attempting to translate the magic of the Star Wars universe to the small screen via supporting characters that fans have only briefly come to know from the movies. The filmmaker added that the show will also be similar in tone to the Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, the TV adventures inspired by his other mega-franchise.

"We're probably not going to start that for about a year," Lucas said. "Like on The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, we want to write all the stories for the entire first season all at once. I'm going to get it started and hire the showrunners and all of that, then I'll probably step away."

It is not known whether the two TV projects were the basis of a highly publicized Internet rumor a few months back speculating on future Star Wars adventures.

Lucasfilm has yet to make an official announcement on the new shows. The company doesn't even have a deal in place with a network to air either series because it's been marshalling all its minions for the hugely anticipated May 19 release of Revenge of the Sith, the final prequel.

This isn't the first occasion Lucas has packaged Star Wars for the boob tube. First, there was the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special in 1978, which Lucas has disowned. Then, after 1983's Return of the Jedi, he hatched two made-for-TV spinoffs, 1984's The Ewok Adventure and 1985's Ewoks: Battle for Endor, both of which were largely derided by Star Wars fans for focusing on the relatively tame deeds of the furry critters at the expense of action-packed escapades of cooler characters.

Lucas' infatuation with Ewoks continued with the Ewoks cartoon series, which was paired with another kiddie-themed 'toon, Droids, focusing on the mishaps of R2-D2 and C-3PO. Those shows ran from 1985 to '87.

It's expected that the new standalone animated series will showcase the same kind of epic battles as seen in the more action-oriented Clone Wars series of shorts--with the added benefit of adding potential new Star Wars enthusiasts and giving merchandisers the chance to sell even more action figures.

In some related Star Wars news, premiere fan site TheForce.net quotes Lucas telling people backstage at last weekend's confab that he's prepping yet another box set--this one will include all six films, plus a possible seventh disc featuring deleted scenes from the original trilogy. He says he doesn't expect to make any more tweaks to the films as he did with the last box set.

And lest you think you've seen the last of Darth and the gang on the big screen, think again. Lucas appeared at last month's ShoWest exhibitors convention in Las Vegas and announced that, starting in 2007, he'll rerelease all six episodes, beginning with the original Star Wars, in IMAX digital 3-D.

Meanwhile, the typically media-shy filmmaker is gearing up to make his own splash on the small screen. He's scheduled to guest star as himself on the May 12 episode of Fox's The O.C.. The plot: Lucas becomes interested in a graphic novel written by Seth (Adam Brody) and invites him to dinner to offer some sage advice. Seth is forced to choose between taking Summer to the prom or hanging with George.

Let's hope the Force will be with him.
Try this one...

Yeah I'm pretty stoked we got tickets to the National premiere. Also at a thrid of the price as last time. This is the second premeire I've been to. Some advantages to living in a third world country eh?
I hadn't heard about the Exotic Expo though. Might have to check it out if we have time!...
BTW Matt: Remeber all those Divx discs you mailed to me. Chris is hooked on them at the moment - thinks it's the coolest thing. I managed to find a good player on Two Cows that is solely for Divx and an the picture quality is suberb (I still can't play the Kids in the Hall though - but that's no major). Avoid any Quicktime format if possible. I've tried 6 times to download the free player but our PC won't stay on long enough to get it. I'm sticking with WMP.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

My Sabrespoon did indeed say "Bad Muthaf&@$ah" on it" (in addition to Do Not Use in Dishwasher and do not let chlidren play with bag)...

I did the food shopping the other day - and yeah, it really is pretty crazy how much EIII promotional stuff is out already. I dunno much about the EI marketing blitz since I was still shipping out at the time and missed all the mania.

And speaking of promotional blitz stuff...did anyone collect the EI Pepsi cans? One of the guys I work with (a pretty big SW fan) is missing the Sebulba can.
Kiwi, I didn't see anything about Star Wars on the link you provided, so I can only assume I'll be getting advance updates on the Erotic Lifestyles Exposition. I'll be eagerly awaiting your reviews on the latest and greatest, and will do my best not to spoil the suprise for Sully. :)

Seriously though, I'm a bit jealous, and hope you won't spoil any of the BIG suprises for me. I'm still working on converting the clone wars saga to DVD, but I should have it for you on .avi when you come to visit either way.
STAR WARS: Clone Wars Vol. 2

Does anybody know if/when the Vol. 2 video will be released before Episode III comes out?

And by the way, Mario...I got my Frosted Flakes and my Sabrespoon yesterday. Well, I haven't opened them yet to know which colour I got. What colour did you get (since I'm spelling "sabre" with an "re"...why not "ou" some colorful language? ^_~ WAH!). How'd ya know it was a Windu? Did it say "Bad Muthaf&@$ah" on it? Did I miss the other sabre hilt? It looks like the Obi-Wan style on the box cover but I've yet to eat my Flakes to know fer sure.

The supermarkets are FILLED with Episode III related PepsiCo. (Frito Lay, et al) items. It's not quite as bad as the Episode I deluge but lemme put it to you this way...GOOD THING I watched all of the animated Clone Wars or else I'd be either really sore or blindfolded. Since I'm the one with the Dietary Restrictions, I'll broker this much on the "evolution" of asthetic. From the Delta fighter to what will become the TIE Fighter. Perhaps the ARC 170 to the X-Wing. Definitely the Clone Troopers to the Storm Trooper. The newest Cingular (Cellular Phone store) Ad blitz with Star Wars faceplates and exclusive video downloads for members and new subscribers has what I call "The Shot". I've seen a few dozen times, no not on purpose.

"The Shot" on Pepsi cans, Kellogs cereal boxes, Nabisco cracker & cookie bags and cell phone ads too. The inevitable "Round One" to be settled when the "Circle is complete" in Episode IV, A New Hope on the Death Star.
Though normally being on the other side of the planet I nortmally have the advantage over you meager Americans by having the regular opportunity to view many well anticpated films before you... Here again I will having that joy not one day before you lot but 3 days... Sully I vow to keep my mouth shut. But Matt you may get an email or two in advance... Check it out
EXTRA EXTRA... Get yer Hockey News here!
We got the news of a french canadian girl singing the US national anthem at the USA va CANADA game recently. (no more details other then that on 3 National News @ 6). She forget the words not once, but twice, she was so embarrassed but knew she had a job to do. She went into the boxes to get her copy of the words. She came out a third time to complete her duty only to find that someone had put ice down on the ground and down she went... OUCH!
Apparently she did come out later and sang it through to the joy of the crowd... but we didn't quite get the full coverage...

Monday, April 25, 2005

Orr Speaks:

Orr: Get deal done or get out of the way
By Bobby Orr
Special to The Eagle-Tribune

"To date, I have resisted the urge to publicly comment on the subject. My personal belief was that the leaders of our sport were professional and conscientious and would diligently work for a fair contract and a win-win resolution of their standoff. Ultimately, I had faith that both sides would be motivated by a common goal, namely, the health of our game. That is no longer the case. -->Hockey legend Bobby Orr. Eagle-Tribune photo by Carl Russo
Sunday, April 24, 2005 -->
By Bobby Orr Special to The Eagle-Tribune
Last September our game shut down because of the headstrong attitudes and selfish motives of some.
To date, I have resisted the urge to publicly comment on the subject. My personal belief was that the leaders of our sport were professional and conscientious and would diligently work for a fair contract and a win-win resolution of their standoff. Ultimately, I had faith that both sides would be motivated by a common goal, namely, the health of our game.
That is no longer the case.
After spending over six hours in their latest negotiating session, the league issued a statement indicating that no substantive progress was made. It said the two sides would attempt "a more aggressive meeting schedule over the next several weeks in an attempt to move the process forward."
A top union official said in a statement that he failed to see "how we can make any progress if the NHL maintains their single-track approach."
Does that sound like two groups trying to make a sensible agreement? This disconnect between the two sides is ridiculous.
With the unacceptable lack of progress and the continued bickering, I am no longer convinced that there was a genuine interest in getting a fair deal done.
The win-at-all costs attitude of both sides in this process has been disastrous.
Both NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and Players Association Executive Director Bob Goodenow have wasted time and squandered goodwill. They now have a responsibility to either lead or get out of the way.
Because of what has happened, our sport is in danger of becoming irrelevant unless both sides immediately put an end to this nonsense.
The collateral damage caused by their refusal to compromise is a disgrace. Our fans have been used and abused. Those associated with our game have had their careers severely damaged or ruined.
What about the families of those who depend on NHL hockey for their livelihood? Where is the sense of accountability to them by those to whom the game has been entrusted?
These people and the history of our game deserve more than hollow apologies and empty promises.
Somebody asked if I'd be concerned about what Gary Bettman or Bob Goodenow would think when I publicly said what was on my mind. In reality, by now they may be immune to what anybody says or feels.
What concerns me far more is the lack of care about the game and its future.
What about the fans? What about the down-to-earth working families who support our game? Don't they count anymore?
Where is this game going? How can rational people continue to justify the irrational behavior that has resulted in this standoff?
It is time to end it, time to produce, time to think about the good of the game and time to think about those affected by the shutdown. The game has never needed more caring, more focus and more guidance.
Forget the finger-pointing and the blame game. Forget trying to squeeze every ounce of advantage out of a new deal. Stop the PR spins. Use common sense and creativity to get this sport back where it belongs. The reckless death match has gone on far too long.
We all are hostages to the so-called leaders who disrespect the game and the people in it.
Are a few greedy owners going to control the destiny of the NHL? Is the entire league supposed to suffer for past inept management decisions? Are some multimillion-dollar players going to keep saying no to a new contract without caring about where our sport is headed? Do they care about the future players of the game?
Will they come back and play harder? Will they care about performing the way they should in every game?
These are questions I've been asking myself for months.
Let's get our focus back. It's time to stand up and make a commitment, to quit killing this game and start caring about it..
Most of us are sick and tired of the way the sport is being strangled by those responsible for serving it. They've made no progress in two years, and they have no excuses.
There is much work to be done by players and team management to repair the trust destroyed by the implosion of the process.
It is clear that the priority of every person involved with pro hockey needs to be a mutually healthy league with a vision for moving our game forward. There is no more time to waste.
To every player, and every club owner, it's time for those of you who care about our sport to insist that those who have accepted responsibility for getting a deal done meet without interruption. And to demand that they continue until an agreement is made or they announce that they have failed to come to a resolution and are stepping aside.
Enough is enough.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Hamjambo! Habari za alasiri? (That's Swahili for "Hey y'all, how's your afternoon going?")

Yeah... I'm getting my learn on for the upcoming trip to Kenya. Africa! Yay! Four continents down (counting Oceania as part of Australia... sorry kiwis) two to go (I don't plan on seeing Antartica in person). I'll have to see if I can get my DIY night-vision video camera small enough to take along! If only those home made 12v NiMH battery packs weren't such a pain in the keister to charge properly. Oh well, I guess I have 7 months to figure out how that'll work. I wonder if the Masai think duct tape is as cool as I do. I figure if they have hot air balloon trips over the Kalihari, that must know about duct tape.

Good diving there too I hear. Clear warm water, octopi, manta rays, barrier reefs, biggest sharks in the world. Mmmmm... honeymoon.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Is the Lava Lamp a throwback to the 20th Century?

The 21st Century Version Of The Lava Lamp

The Laserpod is one of the most innovative lighting products to hit the scene since peace, love, and understanding were the only things to strive for. These days there are more interesting things to strive for. For example every self-respecting geek realizes life would be empty without interacting with the latest and greatest gadgets, gizmos and doodads. Enter the Laserpod, it's a veritable cornucopia of techno-appeal. This desktop sized device splits three electronic lasers and three high-intensity blue and ultraviolet LEDs, then throws them into a hand-cut faceted crystal to create some of the most unique and memorable mood lighting you'll ever witness.

By default the Laserpod will cast it's mesmerizing and organic lighting display up to your ceiling and around your room. This is our favorite Laserpod mode. The changing patterns , colors and textures that are projected are simultaneously alien and soothing. Not alien in the Space-Marine eating variety, alien in the otherwordly moonscape variety. You can also use the included diffusers to subdue the projected effects and create a more intimate setting contained within the Laserpod itself.

You can even interact with Laserpod by placing on top anything optical. Glass, crystal or clear plastics will produce the most profoundly beautiful effects that will continually evolve in time. For the best Laserpod experience, the device should be activated in complete darkness when the subtler, more meditative and organic beams will be seen - these are quite extraordinary and are unique to Laserpod.

The Laserpod is a patented invention of the innovative UK light artist Chris Levine, whose varied and ground breaking work in light has ranged from light sculptures for the band Massive Attack and some of the leading edge fashion designers, to an historic hologram portrait of the Queen of England. His work is about the experience of seeing and the living power of light, an ethos that is distilled into Laserpod. Sound too wish washy for you? Believe us, the Laserpod belongs in Science Fiction decor.

Thank ThinkGeek Dot Com!
It Was Al We Could Do to Keep Up with Yer P's & Q's

Minding your P's & Q's did originate in the Publick House. Back in the Olde Days, one's bar tab was kept by minding their Pints and Quarts of their drank libation. Say a knave were to put a few of his P's by yours while you were busy listening to someone else's engaging conversation and left the knave left said Pub. The bardtender doesn't want excuses. He wants his money. Tend to things your own.

It was all we could do to keep up". Sounds more of an excuse than a cliche. It wouldn't be a cliche if you were fighting a wave on a raging sea in a lifeboat though. Context matters.

I still am of the opinion that some cliches are modern vessels of Wisdom. They are mnemomic. They are also culturally subjective though. Does "Cross to bear" have the same empathic hook to someone who didn't grow up aware of Christianity (regardless if you're atheist, you'd still "get" the reference if you grew up in the Western World).

Hair up/across yer ass is another. Up, across, who cares which direction the hair is in. It's still in your ass. It's gonna give you a bad time. Jimi Thing taught me the value of that cliche and the lengths one will do to eliminate sadness from life as the Buddha explained to me.

That Sucks is a cliche I totally get. It's still in this opinion blatant homophobia and it is definitely elluding to the compared & quantified task being so unfavorable making it the eqivilent of having to perform fellatio on a man. It is a textbook illustration of a cliche as hyperbole. Remember: everything "sucks" and everything's "gay" and it's a cliche used over and over by the teenaged. What happened to teaching our young tolerance? Is there a generation of homophobes arrising after us? ^_~ WAH!

Anymore "old phrases"...ahem...get yer goat? I hear ya though. What does that mean get your goat? What does that mean anymore?

Rev. Sully
A Smoking Puck EXTRA

Follow the Hyperlink Blue for some good Hockey News. Ray Slover, who is an associate editor for Sporting News (e-mail him at rslover@sportingnews.com) wrote this piece of advice to fans in the United States who wish to watch NHL players in the 2005 World Championships. Not even Pay-Per-View??? That's just wrong, huh?

Where to watch: All Team Canada games will be shown live on TSN/RDS. Your best bet in the States? View webcasts from mediazone.com.

Source: Yahoo! News

The World Championship of Hockey takes place April 30th to May 15 in Vienna and Innesbruck, Austria. That means Professional level Hockey with NHL players happens in less than 12 days.

Did somebody chant "USA!!! USA!!! USA!!!"?

In International Play in 2005, Team USA finished 4th behind Canada (gold), Russia (silver) and Czech Republic (bronze) in the World Junior Championships and Team USA for Women's Hockey finished with Gold in their World Championship. A vast number of NHL players have been playing overseas in European, Swiss and Russian leagues so the ice dimensions, general rules and more intimate knowledge of the rules, gameplay and other players now give Team USA an edge for gold this year. Canada will have this same advantage. Look for them to go gold & silver this year...will we be able to view it on Cable Pay Television this year with already no NHL Hockey to watch? Vienna is 5 hours ahead of Eastern Daylight Time. Do you think a Sports Programming Provider cares enough about Hockey fans to broadcast or time-delay these matches? What about products to advertise, the whole reason for televising games to begin with. You don't think TV broadcasts are there for your convenience and enjoying, do you?

Rev Sully
I am annoyed... there are too many traditional old phrases that just plain DON'T make sense.

For example: ... "it was all we could do to keep up!" What was all you could do. I see no indication in that sentence that you made any effort at all. For all I know you might have rolled over on your arse while everyone else busted there butt - you moron.

"mind your P's and Q's" - which I later found out means "mind you pints and quarts" - which can only be assumed to make any sense in a bar or pub situation - yet my mother choose to harrass me with this non-sensical saying continously as a child (ah! more insight into the frustrated being that is little K1W1).

Now that I sit here divulging my pet peve.. the words have escaped me. I will have to keep you updated on this...

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Dear Prudence,

Won'tcha come out to play? Tee hee! I'm Leah's dear old friend Eric O'Sullivan aka the Sully in the States she can't shut up about. ^_~ Was that too egotistical? WAH! But really...

Talk about Star Wars but know I really, really HATE Spoiler knowledge. I haven't seen any of the trailers so if you know anything, keep it under your hat until after the movie comes out. I think that's the only rule here. ^_~ Mebbe also don't post nudie pics (unless they're of Leah then that's OK...she really did break out of those Tomboy overalls, didn't she? ^_~ TEE HEE!!! WAH!!! ^_^).

You can swear if you like. I used to ALOT but then I thought it took away from whatever amateur journalistic integrity I was trying to build by actually writing articles about Professional Ice Hockey and Comic Book (loving coined as "funnybooks" as my grandparents would have said). Dirty jokes are always welcome such as...
"What do you call a Black guy who flies an Airplane?"

"The pilot, you bloody racist".

BWAH!!! ^_^

We also love to talk theology and spirituality. "Preacher" Matt, "Kiwi" Leah and myself the "Rev. Sully" are all ordianed ministers of an independent spiritual "Church". Both Preacher and I have performed weddings. "Dr. Hooey" Peter plans on a grand return to OCHO after the completion of his first on-stage musical. Please check out the Featured Link "Peter Fernandez Dot Net" for more on "Duplex"! In a nutshell it's about Four Hearts, Two Bedrooms and One Big Problem. While you're there check out "Music" for Nero & Pedro's SAMMICH! A legendary hit single in a Baby Universe 11 vibrations above this one. Nero & Pedro are Peter and myself.

We're all busy so we try to post as much as we can. Interesting news links. Original thoughts. Dive reports from Preacher when he gets his skin suit on. Check out the Archives for almost three years of "Blah-Blah-Blah". Lots of Comics & Hockey and the occasional original short story.

Thanks for coming!

Still thinking impure thoughts of rolling donuts,
Rev. Sully

Saturday, April 16, 2005

I would like to invite Prudence to our humble abode. A good friend and fellow student of Physical Therapy. She has partaken in previous blogs, prior to our conversations here on OCHO. Currently discussion is focused on Hockey, Comics and Star Wars, but please feel free to bring up any topics you feel inclined to discuss. My collegues here have an opinion on most everything.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Interesting tidbit... I started to revise my profile here on OCHO. As I scrolled down I noticed that my "Homepage URL" had already been filled in on my behalf... I thought I would share with you the link I was directed to. Didn't think I was into Pakistani Porn... but they say you learn a little about yourself every day.
Hope Still Burns Bright for the 2005-06 NHL Season

Read today on Yahoo! Sports,

The NHL has vowed there will be a 2005-06 season, even if it means using replacement players if owners and the union are unable to agree on an economic system. And it's clear that the names on the backs of the jerseys aren't the only possible alterations.

"To me, and maybe it's because I live in this area, you have to be open minded," Sharks General Manager Doug Wilson said Tuesday of the many proposals at last week's meeting of general managers outside Detroit. "You don't make a change just for the sake of change, but if it ultimately makes the game of hockey the best it can be, you go ahead and do it."

Wilson sounded confident that several rule changes -- including one that reduces the size of goalies' equipment -- would be in place whenever the NHL resumes action.

Even though the players' union rejected the latest NHL offers last week, there were hints of progress for the first time since mid-February, when efforts to resuscitate the season collapsed.

The New York Post reported the union had countered with a plan that established a payroll range between $24 million and $42.5 million, with those figures linked to percentage changes in "identifiable league revenue." The NHL was said to be crunching those numbers and could have its response before the April 20 board of governors meeting, when some of the rule changes could be approved.

"I'm off the roller coaster," Wilson said, trying to keep some emotional distance from bargaining rumors. "When it's done, it's done. I'm just zeroing in on doing the things that I can control."

And does that include assembling a roster for next season that uses replacements?

"We have no choice but to prepare for everything," he said, "and I'll leave it at that."


Other changes mentioned were Shootouts to break ties and also a new Rookie Draft system like the NBA using weighted lottery balls.
As we all know, following the moral high ground has rarely led anyone to massive wealth. Drinkin', smokin', gamblin', shootin', and whorin'... that's where the money is, and it's that notion that has led to the creation of the Vice Fund, possibly the single most recession-proof mutual fund in history. It also does okay when times are good... that is, if you call outperforming the market good. I haven't seriously considered investing in any new funds lately, but if I had a spare $2500 kicking around, I'd be sorely tempted by this one. I guess temptation is the name of the game. :)

Thursday, April 14, 2005

and don't be confused...OCHO got a new suit. Looking stylin'! ^_~
The Smoking Puck: Our Cup Runneth Over

The Stanley Cup, originally a decorative bowl purchased from a London silversmith worth 10 guineas ($48.67 USD), was originally donated in 1892 by Lord Stanley, Governor General of Canada, who had become enamoured with ice hockey. It was originally used as the trophy given out to the top amateur hockey team in Canada, decided by the acceptance of a challenge from another team by the Cup holders and trustees.
Lord Stanley had made several preliminary regulations regarding the Cup:

§ The Cup also acted as the league championship of the league that the champion belonged in.
§ The Cup was not the property of any given team at any given time.
§ The Cup trustees have the final say on disputes should there be any on who the Cup holder should be.
§ Challengers for the Cup must have won their league championship.
§ The challenge games (where the Cup could change leagues) were to be decided either in one game affair, a two-game total goals affair, or a best of three series, to the benefit of both teams involved. All matches would take place on the home ice of the champions, although specific dates and times would have to be approved by the trustees.
§ Ticket receipts from the challenge games were to be split equally between both teams.
§ A league may not challenge for the Cup twice in one season.
§ The Cup champions have the responsibility to return the Cup in good condition when required by the trustees.
§ The Cup champions could add a silver ring to the Cup to commemorate their Cup victory.

The Cup was originally presented in 1893 to the Montreal AAA, the champion of the Amateur Hockey Association, the top hockey league of Canada at the time.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanley_Cup

Bolded in the list above would be the argument I think. The link gives a complete history of the Cup and in 1925 it became the Championship award of the NHL because all other competitive leagues had folded. Now there is a legal, binding agreement but there should be some credence given to this situation. I’d guess that a team comprised of Tampa Bay Lightning championship players could defend the Cup against a challenger from another league be that the AHL, ECHL a University or even an International Team.

Realistically, this is just a Sports fluff story but I think that there should be a Cup Challenge because it’s a great excuse to see some competitive Ice Hockey.

Rev. Sully

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Now this is a pretty interesting debate and will be interesting to see how this plays out in court...

Amateurs Want to Play for Stanley Cup

TORONTO - A group of amateur hockey players is taking the NHL to court to determine whether somebody can play for the Stanley Cup.
The 'Wednesday Nighters' filed a claim in Ontario Superior Court on Wednesday asking it to clarify the terms under which Canadian Governor-General Lord Stanley donated the Cup in 1892. The NHL season was canceled in February amid a labor dispute.
"The fact that the NHL has suspended its play this year doesn't mean that Canadians and others don't have the right to compete for the Stanley Cup," said Tim Gilbert, the groups' lawyer.
Gilbert said Lord Stanley's intention when he donated the Stanley Cup was to have teams compete for the trophy every year, and a labor dispute shouldn't prevent that from happening.
He hopes the court will force Stanley Cup trustees Brian O'Neill and Ian Morrison to find teams to compete for the Cup.
"We do not take this lightly," said Gard Shelley, an amateur hockey player in his mid-50s. "The Stanley Cup is the greatest sports trophy anywhere, ever. It is unique and a huge part of our culture and heritage."
The 'Wednesday Nighters' initially offered to play for it themselves — white jerseys against black — but eventually decided that competitive teams should play for it. They don't even use goalies in their league.
"This did start off as an amusing idea after Wednesday night hockey one night," amateur David Burt said. "I'm frustrated as most hockey fans are that the NHL and the NHLPA lost the season. I don't know which side of that issue I'm on. I'm just frustrated with the fact that there is no hockey being played. I don't think that's what Lord Stanley intended. I think he had a higher purpose for his donation."
Current Canadian Governor-General Adrienne Clarkson suggested in February that if the NHL won't award the Stanley Cup this year, then it should be the top prize in women's hockey.
O'Neill declined to comment Wednesday but said the claims would be contested.
In February, O'Neill said there was no legal way the trophy could be awarded for another competition under an agreement with the NHL. He said it would only be possible if the NHL decided it didn't want the Stanley Cup anymore, or if the league went out of business.
The 'Wednesday Nighters' application is scheduled to be heard by the court July 18 — well after the Stanley Cup is usually awarded — but Gilbert hopes to have the date moved up to sometime in May. This could be just the second time the Stanley Cup isn't awarded. The last was 1919, when a flu epidemic forced the finals to be called off.

Source: Yahoo! Sports
The Comics Gnome Adds It Up:
an olde fashioned weekly report of some new releases

The Comics Gnome brought forth a small stack this week. The Gnome won't let me spend more than say $15/week lest I’d have to start feeding Chow-Chow real dog food. If this made no sense seeing I do not own a dog named Chow-Chow please don’t dismay OR confuse this with feeding my Quasi-Asian houseboy, Cho-Cho but I digress.. So that on a "lite" week, I got to get something a few weeks older. Total this week: Four funnybooks, $11.14 at NEC Harvard Square. $12/week is still over $600/year ya know...not counting trade paperbacks either. I might get the NEC VIP for the discount so I can squeeze in a few more issues here and there like the DC Countdown to Infinite Crisis. That's going to be four 6-issue minis. Say $3.00/funnybook and that's already $72.00. I call events such as these Sales Driven Fealty. Enuff moaning about the prices..

What did the Gnome poot forth?

The Ultimates 2, #5

Seven Soldiers #0

Nightwing #107

Powers Vol. 2, #10
No Image Available
Cover Art for next issue, #11

Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming’s creator-owner/Indie powerhouse POWERS, now on MARVEL’s Icon imprint, was excellent not just for the ongoing story but for the letter's column. No letters this month but actually a GREAT interview with friends & colleges Bendis and MARVEL Editor In Chief Joe Quesada. It's worth it to get the issue regardless if you're current or not for the interview/article. SO GOOD!!!

I got Seven Soldiers because I wanted to represent with good writers. Bendis (Powers), Millar (Ultimates 2) and Morrison (7S). Nightwing...sigh wasn't that good. I got it because I've been kinda following him since "War Games" and the art is by Phil Hester who until recently did the entire new volume of DC's Green Arrow (Kevin Smith & Judd Winnick, scribes). I won't be getting anymore of these though sad to say. Think about Seven Soldiers though. Issues #0 & #1. $3/each for $6 (yes I know it's $2.95 but I rounded up). Seven four issue mini-series at $3/each: $84.00. $90.00 for the whole kit & kaboodle (or just under from the stray nickels but we Americans throw out nickels all the time...just ask the (stereotypical) Asian lady picking your beer cans out of the trash. I always seperate the cans & bottles for some dignity. Sheesh...I'm moaning about the prices again. ^_~ But it all adds up. I wonder how that's going to be packaged for the Trade Paperbacks?

‘Namaste and see you at the FunnyBook Bodega next Wednesday!
-Rev Sully
"I had to touch the lightsabres. I keep an eye away from the action figures but the lightsabres...still no Mace Windu purple sound FX sabre."

Oh yeah....Dude...I got the coolest thing in my Kellog's Honey Smacks! I got a light-up, Mace Windu, purple lightsabre-spoon! You are so jealous huh?!!!!
Wistful Reminder Edition

Sunday, April 10th would have been the Bruins last regular season game against the Pittsburgh Penguins if there was NHL Hockey in ‘04-‘05. The Playoffs would have started Tuesday, April 12. Here on the “Smoking Puck” you’d have been reading about the 1-8 Seedings and who would have gained those precious points or played spoiler for those final playoff berths. Of who would have been in the race for Rookie of the Year, MVP or the Vezina (best goaltender). Of whose late season trades would have been paying off or foot shooting. I myself would have been starting my Playoff beard for the Second Season since the four rounds of hockey play off take about 6 weeks or so. I also would have been adjusting my “inner clock” for the 20 minute playoff intermissions for the ESPN commercials and the possibility of 2AM bedtimes after a 2nd overtime.

Remember the Bruins ended the ‘03-‘04 season 2 points behind the Stanley Cup winning Tampa Bay Lightning with 104 points and their record was 41-19-15-7 and had the Number 2 seed in the East. I should not remind you or myself of Marty Lapointe’s dumb 3rd Period penalty in Game 7 against Montreal, the big hopes of Sergei Gonchar on defense or Joe Thornton’s ribs. Oh, I guess I just did. Les Habs were swept in 4 games by the former Tampa Bay Crud. The Philly Flyers, who beat New Jersey and then Toronto, went toe-to-toe with the Cup winning Lightning in the Conference Finals. Bruins goaltender Andrew “Razor” Raycroft won the Calder for Rookie of the Year with Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron in close running (and after missing a few weeks due to injuries didn’t have the numbers to qualify at the end of the season).

So...here’s to us the fans once again. From the bottom of my broken heart, I wish the AHL Calder Cup Playoffs were televised. The Providence Bruins won the AHL Championship in 1999 over the Rochester Americans in 5 games. The Baby B’s are in contention for the 8-Spot in the 2005 AHL playoffs and include #37 Patrice Bergeron (66 games played; 20 goals, 40 assists for 60 points) and the 6th ranked goaltender Hannu Toivonen with a record of 52 games played 28-17-3-7 and a 2.02 GAA. The AHL East is deep with Harford (106 points) and Manchester (102 points) looking great and will either team could face the Bruins once First Place is locked up.

The 2004-05 Providence Bruins
There are still loud chants of “LET’S GO BRUINS!!!” Clap, clap. CLAP CLAP CLAP!!! And repeat...


Thanks Matt for the Clone Wars links. I've been watching 21-25 AGAIN! I've given myself whiplash from going into Newbury Comics and TARGET from avoiding the toys. Well...I had to touch the lightsabres. I keep an eye away from the action figures but the lightsabres...still no Mace Windu purple sound FX sabre.

Aren't those Clone Wars GREAT!!! ^_~ Wow! What a good story. Can't wait for the movie now. A little more than a month.

Monday, April 11, 2005

THE SMOKING PUCK!!! Hot Flash! ^_~

Hawt flash, indeed! Let’s hear for the Girls!!! Team USA beat Team Canada in the Women’s World Championship.

The thrill of Victory. GOLD!

The Agony of Defeat. Silver!

Team USA wins in a shootout over Canada in the Gold Medal game. Sweden takes the Bronze over Finland.

And in other news….

GMs meet to change the focus from a “defensive minded” product to an “offensive minded” one. Yahoo! Sports article on the GMs Conference.

Remember: Change is the Nature of the Cosmos. One must be ready to change and to deal with it. The NHL will be changing so….deal with it. We will have to accept change if we want NHL Hockey. To answer Leah’s question….NHL Hockey should start in late September as per usual but the rule changes are only one part of the “debacle” but the CBA is the key here. Without a CBA, rule changes are just smoke & mirrors for the Press to reports SOMETHING about NHL Hockey.

A prototype goal net to “improve” scoring. Ugggggh….

How about the 12-inch goalie pad versus the 10-inch?

The AHL (American Hockey League) regular season ends Sunday, April 17 and then their Second Season, the Playoffs start. The Providence Bruins have turned it around in a mediocre season and are vying for the 8-spot in the East! One playoff berth remains and two teams are within 7 points of the “Baby B’s with less than a week remaining.

April 10, 2005—

The Providence Bruins and Hartford Wolf Pack concluded their 10-game season series on Sunday afternoon at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center Providence, with the Bruins skating to a hard-fought 2-1 victory. The Bruins finished the season series with a 5-3-0-2 record. Providence remains in fourth place in the Atlantic Division with its 39-28-3-7 (88 points) record. The win, coupled with the Worcester IceCats’ 4-2 loss to the Springfield Falcons, reduced the Black and Gold’s “magic number” to clinch a berth in the Calder Cup Playoffs to two. Any combination of Bruin points gained and Worcester points missed equaling two will put Providence in the Calder Cup Playoffs for the 11th time in the 13-year history of the franchise.


Friday, April 08, 2005

Can anyone tell me when/if Hockey season starts next year....???
Sul. Don't read, but go to Toys 'R' Us...

Link: The Force Dot Net
Man.. that Clone Wars stuff is good!

I now have chapter 1-10, 11-15, 16-20, 21, 22, 23, 24, and 25 all in full screen format. I'm hoping to get some software that will let me edit them together into a 2 hour movie so I can burn it to DVD.

Don't tell George. :)
A Smoldering Puck

Mario informed us that Bruins Hall of Famer Ray Bourque's son Chris bolted from Boston University to play in the Quebec Major Junior League...did you know the Washington Capitals drafted him in the 2004 Draft.
Well "Baby Bourque" got a Try Out Contract with the Portland Pirates, the Capitals AHL affiliate.

Good luck, kid!

He's a Center...not a defenseman like his dad.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Scientific American
c/o www.sciam.com/

March 11, 2005

Astronomers Map Chaotic Galaxy's Magnetic Field

Considering its tumultuous nature, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) exhibits a surprisingly ordered magnetic field, astronomers have discovered. The observations, detailed today in the journal Science, have resulted in the most detailed map yet of another galaxy's magnetism and provide a starting point for determining the magnetism of most of the local universe.

The LMC is the Milky Way galaxy's closest neighbor and, as a result, feels the effects of our galaxy's gravity. In addition, the LMC has experienced a variety of violent events, such as star formation and supernova explosions, which should disrupt a surrounding magnetic field. Scientists thus expected the magnetic field of the LMC to show signs of perturbation. Instead, they were surprised to find the field orderly and smooth. "It's like having a birthday party all afternoon for a bunch of four-year-olds and then finding the house still neat and tidy when they leave," remarks study leader Bryan Gaensler of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. "Some powerful forces must be at work to keep the magnetic field from being messed up." (ed note: Sully's bolded text)

The team measured the LMC's magnetic field by observing how it affected radio emissions from background sources as they passed through it, a technique previously used on only two other galaxies, the Milky Way and one called M31. As to what is keeping LMC's field in order, a number of theories exist. The current front-runner, according to the researchers, is a process driven called a cosmic-ray driven dynamo, which requires vigorous star formation. Says Gaensler: "You could say this galaxy is thriving on chaos." --Sarah Graham
Inside Move: Fanatics laying it on the line'Star Wars' fans stew in queue

If a movie isn't playing at a theater, will its fans still line up outside? For "Star Wars" fans, the answer is a befuddling yes.
Saturday, 46 days before "Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith" opens on May 19, the trilogy's enthusiasts began their vigil outside Grauman's Chinese Theater.
Problem is 20th Century Fox doesn't plan to open the film at the Chinese, opting instead for the ArcLight a few blocks east.
"Star Wars" or no, the diehards are resolute about keeping their line on Hollywood Boulevard.
Underneath a make-shift awning yesterday afternoon, 11 people were in line doing what appeared to be homework, pecking at laptops and talking to members of the media.
"We've heard all this before," said Sarah Sprague, one of the designated spokesmen for the group. In 1999 and 2002, there were plenty of rumors (ultimately false) that the previous two pics weren't going to open at the Chinese.
This year the rumors seem to be true. Fox and the ArcLight haven't finalized their "Star Wars" deal, but execs on both sides say they expect "Revenge of the Sith" to play the ArcLight and not the Chinese.
A media-savvy bunch, those waiting at the Chinese hope press interest in covering (and most likely mocking) them would persuade George Lucas and Fox to move the booking.
And Sprague was adamant the line isn't moving to the ArcLight. "This is still the epicenter for 'Star Wars' fans. For the big iconic pictures of the 1970s, people lining up were here. They weren't at the Cinerama Dome."
Their other reason is that it'd be more difficult to raise money for their charity Starlight Starbright if they weren't on Hollywood. However, cops won't let fans collect donations from passersby; instead, they pass out pamphlets with a Web site address.
"Even if it's not here, we'll just go see it somewhere else. We're not doing this just for the movie." Besides, she added, "What's the point of lining up at the ArcLight if someone is going to go online and get the best seat in the house?"
But wouldn't that still make more sense than spending a month outside a theater that isn't playing the movie?
"Lining up for anything, what part of that makes any sense?" she responded philosophically.
As theaters normally do, the ArcLight is likely to ask Fox that it be the only theater playing "Revenge of the Sith" in the immediate area. And even if it doesn't, Paramount confirmed it will open "The Longest Yard" at the Chinese the week after "Revenge," which means Fox won't want to book the theater for just one week. (Paramount partly owns Mann Theaters.)
The kerfuffle has inspired some soul-searching among the fans, and they have discovered that standing in a "Star Wars" line is actually more important than seeing a "Star Wars" film.
"The telling thing is -- for me, at least -- if the film is not playing at the Chinese ... I have zero desire to see it at all," a fan who calls himself Obi Geewhyen posted on the message board at Liningup.net. "I'm in it for the lineup only and don't give a darn about the conclusion of this lackluster, so-called 'Star Wars' series." Hope springs eternal, Sprague said. After the last two "Star Wars" films, "We're all a little beaten down," she said. "But this one could be it!"


Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Clone Wars FREE

No, you don't have to pay for Hyperspace membership to see the cartoons... unless you want full-screen.


Yeah Sully... it does look like a lead up to an opening scroll, doesn't it? It's almost too perfect a cliff-hanger not to resolve in the movie. SO much good material in there.
THE SMOKING PUCK!!! Pugilism Edition! I’M FIGHTING MAD!!! ^_~

Why fight? Well, fighting has been and always will be the “end all be all” of conflict resolution for any man, woman or nation. We learn these lessons the hard way on school yards and bar rooms. Insults, territorial pissings, hurt feelings, venting frustration, low self-esteem, coveting others things, miscommunication of emotions, satisfaction of blood lust. If you can think it, you can fight over it. Sun Tzu opens his infamous “The Art of War” with: “the art of war is of vital importance to the State. It is a matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin. Hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected”. Fighting is a part of life like it or not. It is why we have an Army. It is why boxing and wrestling are such huge spectator sports. It is why people take karate and other forms of self-defense. This is a violent world we live in. Our games & sports reflect that fact being one part strategy and another part physically dominating.

Hockey is a contact sport as Football, Soccer, Lacrosse and even NASCAR are. Never forget that. Ice Hockey is a high speed, all out chase for the puck. It is that simple. Get the puck. Faster than normal speeds can be achieved with just a few strides on ice skates. Checking is allowed to get the puck. It is a contact sport. Sometimes people don’t understand that Basketball in its own way is a contact sport. I once made the mistake of saying that to a lifelong college basketball fan and he then demonstrated the “hand check”, a legal basketball defensive move, on mine own self. He also eluded to the “cheap elbow” my bro Aaron “Posty” DeGraff can tell you all about, with or without his two front teeth. Baseball in its own right is a contact sport. My favorite play, offensively or defensively is the throw out attempt at home plate. That is when baseball becomes a contact sport. Also when stealing a base or sliding into the shortstop at Second to prevent the out at First on the Double Play.

Professional North American Ice Hockey has long been associated with a sense of “thuggery”, that only beasts and ingrates play that barbaric sport. There is cause for that sure with the NHL & the 1970s featuring teams such as the Philadelphia “Broadstreet Bullies” Flyers and the “Big Bad” Boston Bruins and movies like “Slap Shot” which lampooned that certain violence in Pro Hockey. Nonetheless, regard Wayne “The Greatest” Gretzky who looked like a skating stick and only had 3 fights ever as an NHL player (and then juxtapose to his muscle, Marty McSorley). Currently in the 04-05 Lockout Un-Season, reports from overseas in Europe and Russia report that their playoffs and the influx of North American/NHL Players has caused a plethora of pugilism. That fights are breaking out more than average and that the North American style & players are to blame.

OCHO contributor Mario gave us a Smoking Puck regarding Bruins legend Raymond Jean Bourque’s 19-year old son Christopher leaving the hallowed confines of Boston University to play in the QMJHL, the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League where the game is played differently if not, dare I say a bit more pure. And now I come to the Point. Fighting in Hockey. Why is fighting allowed in Hockey and not in other sports? Well, there is no easy or pandering answer. There’s not one blanket statement to satisfy and “outsiders” just cannot accept the default answer that it’s just “part of the sport”. Do or should we let children or high schoolers fight? No. But there comes a time in a man’s life, not a child but a man’s life where & when they might have to rely on their own to defend themselves. Why is fighting allowed in Hockey? Because it is a dispute resolution tool and that is the most intelligent and honest answer I can think of.

I would never say to a US College Hockey player that they are a wuss because they can’t fight. There is a huge difference in “cannot fight” and “are not allowed to fight”. Ice Hockey is a fast and physical game. It is hard and grueling. It is not for the weak or wimpy. The corners are for the brave. The goalmouth is for the Big & Brawny. The old axiom goes, “Might equals Right” rings true for the Mighty will end up with the puck on their tape while the weak end up on the Ice. US College Hockey is a different game from its Canadian brother in very small but meaningful ways.

The obverse to US College (NCAA) Hockey is Canadian Major Junior Hockey, otherwise known as the Canadian Hockey League or the CHL. The CHL contains the QMJHL, the OHL (Ontario Hockey League) and the WHL (the Western Hockey League). NCAA Hockey has 3 division of talent so the equals to CHL would be NCAA Division 1, which includes conferences such as Hockey East, CCHA, and the ECAC. The game play is basically the same but the differences are sublime. For the equipment, helmets matter. Mandatory full face shields/cages for NCAA; half-shield visors for CHL. This matters greatly because with a protected jaw, sticks in NCAA Hockey rise over the elbow level at an alarming rate and can only be controlled so much. In the CHL, knowing this injury risk is such a subconscious thing and in some ways fosters a respect not found in the US College system.

The other major difference is the attitude towards fighting or with better eloquence in the Canadian Art “fisticuffs”. Fighting is a major part of the game whether is be fighting for the puck, fighting for position in from of the net or fighting to win a faceoff. Fisticuff is the act of pugilism but I digress in the minutia and semantics. Fighting does suffice for “fisticuffs” all around. For brevity’s sake, I’ll list the CHL’s rules on Fisticuffs after the article. The NCAA’s are short enough to post here in the narrative. The short form is this; NCAA fisticuffs are not accepted, allowed or tolerated. In the CHL, used “properly”, fisticuffs are a dispute resolution tool.

2005 NCAA Hockey rules

Rule 4, Section 5, (4-5), page 37

The gist of the copy says that if you get a disqualification penalty, you’re kicked out of the game.

Disqualification Penalties and suspensions:

First Disqualification Penalty- that game plus one
Second Disqualification Penalty- that game plus two
Third Disqualification Penalty- that game plus three
Fourth Disqualification Penalty- that game plus four
(the progression shall continue after the fourth Disqualification Penalty)

Rule 6, Section 17a “Fighting”, page 60

A player shall not fight an opponent, or participate in a fight on or off the playing surface (Punching or attempting to punch is considered fighting).


Source: 2005 NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Rulebook

In NCAA Hockey, fighting is not a dispute resolution tool and has been subjugated to “thug” status. Look at the structure for suspensions following Disqualification Penalties. If one were to defend themselves or a teammate for any reason with their fists, the penalties suffered are stiff and in this opinion, quite unreasonable. There is room for fisticuffs are a dispute resolution tool for questionable cheaper and rough play, for asserting one’s physical dominance, to naturally vent frustration especially heated play between two particular player who could be “going at it” all night and yes, to intimidate the opponent (though the last example plays into why fighting is bad). Without fisticuffs, other means of dispute resolution tactics could be employed for infractions not seen or deemed penalty worthy by the Referees such as cheap hits resulting in injuries.

The Major Junior CHL, having basically the same age and talent level as NCAA Hockey, uses a more “Professional” attitude respecting fisticuffs (see WHL rules below for specifics). There is a difference between a natural fight and showboating. A Natural Fight occurs because Hockey is a demanding game and tempers can and do flare. Showboating can best be illustrated by Jay Miller of the Boston Bruins and Chris Nilan of the Montreal Canadians in the 1980s when every time the two “tough guys” stepped on the ice at the same time, they dropped their gloves almost at any occasion. Gone from NHL Hockey are the days when the “Enforcer”, the resident tough guys would pair up and fight just for the spectacle of it. The Days of Basil McRae, John Kordic, and Bob Probert are long gone. Fistcuffs in the NHL have changed into a proper Dispute Resolution tool. Although the CHL rules regarding fisticuffs will undoubtedly be taken for granted by some, it still remains a bit more pure than the NCAA version because you can still stick up for yourself if need be. The CHL is a bit more pure I say because suspensions are not just the only way to enforce excessive fisticuffs and unnecessary violence, fines are also applied making the motive a bit different when it comes out of the wallet. NCAA player (for the “record”), are not paid. ^_~ ^_~ Sure.

Let’s hope the words “Ya wanna go?” will never be stricken from Pro Hockey’s vocabulary. No one wants to see senseless violence but what happens when the violence does indeed make sense.


Rev. Sully

The complete Western Hockey League’s Rule 56 on Fisticuffs. It’s a little wordy but when compared to the NCAA Hockey rules it makes me think the NCAA treats its players as children and the CHL treats their players as men and hockey players.


An instigator of an altercation shall be a player who by his actions or demeanor demonstrates any/some of the following criteria: distance traveled; gloves off first; first punch thrown; menacing attitude or posture; verbal instigation or threats; conduct in retaliation to a prior game incident.

A player who attacks or jumps his opponent and proceeds to punch, giving his opponent no chance to defend himself, shall be deemed the aggressor. A player who attacks or jumps his opponent who is unwilling to defend himself ("turtles") and if this attacking player continues to throw punches in an attempt to inflict punishment on his opponent who is in a defenseless position, he shall be deemed the aggressor. A player must be deemed the aggressor when he has clearly won the fight but he continues throwing and landing punches in a further attempt to inflict punishment and/or injury on his opponent who is no longer in a position to defend himself.

An altercation is a situation involving two players, with at least one to be penalized.

(a) A minor (roughing), major or a major and a game misconduct, at the discretion of the Referee, shall be imposed on any player involved in fisticuffs.

A player who is deemed to be the instigator of an altercation shall be assessed an instigating minor penalty, a major for fighting and a ten minute misconduct.

A player who is deemed to be the instigator of an altercation will have this recorded as an instigator of an altercation for statistical and suspension purposes.

If the same player is deemed to be the instigator of a second altercation in the same game, he shall be assessed an instigating minor penalty, a major for fighting and a game misconduct.

A player who is deemed to be the aggressor of an altercation will have this recorded as an aggressor of an altercation for statistical and suspension purposes.

(NOTE 1) When the player receives his third instigator penalty in one Regular Season, he is automatically given a game misconduct following that third violation.

A player who deliberately removes his sweater prior to participating in an altercation shall be assessed a minor penalty for Unsportsmanlike Conduct and a game misconduct. This is in addition to other penalties to be assessed to the participants of an altercation.

A player who engages in fisticuffs and whose sweater is not properly "tied-down" shall receive a misconduct.

(b) A minor penalty shall be imposed on a player who, having been struck, shall retaliate with a blow or attempted blow. However, at the discretion of the Referee, a major or a double-minor penalty or a game misconduct penalty may be imposed if such player continues the altercation.

(NOTE 2) It is the intent and purpose of this Rule that the Referee shall impose the "major and game misconduct" penalty in all cases where the instigator or retaliator of the fight is the aggressor and is plainly doing so for the purpose of intimidation or punishment.

(NOTE 3) The Referee is provided very wide latitude in the penalties which he may impose under this Rule. This is done intentionally to enable him to differentiate between the obvious degrees of responsibility of the participants either for starting the fighting or persisting in continuing the fighting. The discretion provided should be exercised realistically.

(NOTE 4) Referees are directed to employ every means provided by these rules to stop "brawling" and should use this Rule and Rules 41(e) and (f) - Abuse of Officials and other Misconduct.

(NOTE 5) Any player wearing tape or any other material on his hands (below the wrist) who cuts or injures an opponent during an altercation will receive a match penalty under Rule 52 - Deliberate Injury of Opponents.

(c) A game misconduct penalty shall be imposed on any player involved in fisticuffs off the playing surface or with another player who is off the playing surface. These penalties are in addition to any other time penalties assessed.

(d) A game misconduct penalty, at the discretion of the Referee, shall be imposed on any player or goalkeeper who is the first to intervene in a fight already in progress except when a match penalty is being imposed in the original altercation. This penalty is in addition to any other penalty incurred in the same incident.

(e) A game misconduct penalty shall be imposed on any player who is assessed a major penalty for fighting after the original altercation.

Notwithstanding this Rule, at the discretion of the Referee, the automatic game misconduct penalty will be waived for a player in the altercation if the opposing player was clearly the instigator of the altercation.

(NOTE) In the case of altercations taking place after the period or game the fine under this Rule shall be assessed only in the event that an altercation is commenced after the period or game has terminated.


Ya snooze, ya lose is how the cliche goes. Well, I checked Cartoon Network Dot Com yesterday to re-watch Star Wars: Clone Wars Vol. 2 and it's already gone!

The only place to view Clone Wars Chapters 21-25 leading up to the Episode III scroll is...STAR WARS DOT COM!!!

You would have to join the Star Wars Fan Club in order to view these online at Star Wars Dot Com.
It costs $39.95 though!!! It costs $19.95 International though (hint hint, Leah ^_~).

You can view all 25 Chapters of the animated Clone Wars at Star Wars Dot Com as a Hyperspace member. Also exclusive trailers for Hyperspace members only (like I'd watch ^_~). Animation is a very excellent format for non-movie Star Wars and Clone Wars is an ACME product from the Samurai Jack production team.
THE SMOKING PUCK: Baby Bourque Leaving College

Bourque to leave BU
Monday, April 4, 2005

According to a Boston newspaper report, Chris Bourque, son of former Boston Bruins legend Ray Bourque, told Boston University hockey coach Jack Parker on Friday that he was withdrawing from school.
Bourque, a forward who was taken in the second round of the 2004 NHL draft by the Washington Capitals, said he will play for the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's Moncton Wildcats next season. Moncton picked Bourque in the 2003-04 QMJHL Draft.
"College was a good time, but it wasn't for me," Bourque told the Boston Globe. "I wasn't a big fan of going to school and going to class. It's not the place for me. But I had a great time."
Bourque, a Cushing Academy graduate and Topsfield resident, scored 10 goals and 13 assists in 35 games with the Terriers and was the Beanpot MVP.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Let's Play...


actually...the Pope is chosen by a heated match of "Rock, Paper. Scissors". Betcha didn't know that one.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Who wants to watch Star Wars: Clone Wars, Volume 2... for FREE?


Go to Cartoon Network and see Clone Wars, Chapters 21-25. Go now before they go back to Lucas and Star Wars Dot Com where you will have to purchase viewing rights (or at least become a "Hypertime" member which I dunno if that has a fee to it but you are able to watch all 25 episodes there).

The end of Clone Wars, Chapter 25 sure does look like it leads up to the Episode III scroll...if I knew what that was (and I still don't!). ^_^ Tee hee!!!


Friday, April 01, 2005

I just saw a trailer for the new Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy movie, and it looks like somebody FINALLY got it right. Lord knows the BBC's made-for-tv treatment of it was ham handed.

Preacher Matt Sez:
That said, Hidden Fortress bored me to tears. I didn't even finish watching it.
I liked Seven Samuari a lot though.

The Hidden Fortress does feel that way, I agree. It took me several viewings to watch the whole thing. Like when I read Nabokov’s “Lolita”, I started that book at least FIVE times but never finished it. Plodding, boring. I tuned into Hidden Fortress enough to get the Star Wars inspirations; the druids, the basic story, the character templates but yes, it was a bit boring. Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope has this same effect on DeeDee. She falls asleep in the first 10 minutes EVERY time we view it.

Seven Samurai although really long at 3 ½ hours is one entertaining piece of cinema. Kurasawa is really Hit or Miss. Take “High and Low” for instance. It is the original Mel Gibson’s “Ransom” and Mifune is excellent but again…I was bored to snooze.
Happy Anniversary to ME!

Kiwi was there 10 minutes before April Fools Day to WITNESS when I became an Ordained Minister. Of course I got the idea from Matt, who over the years has given me more good ideas than Thomas Alva Edison.

FOR LEAH! My LiveJournal Icon. It comes up next to my name. Husk made it for me. Appropriate, huh? Striking resembelance too. I was walking down the street a few weeks ago, freshly shorn too with Emily on one side and DeeDee on the other and DAMN if I didn't feel like Spider Jerusalem.

Rev. Sully, now 7 years old.

Actual EPISODE III Footage!

Oh yeah! Get some!!! GET SOME!!!

Happy April Fool's DAY!!!
Kiwi Said:
I also picked up Batman ~ Hush. I'm not sure what to make of this yet. I did find it very cool seeing the Catwoman take the forefront again in 'Bats" evolution. I kind of felt a bit offended though that they chose to pull in some of the lesser spin-off characters. Frankly, it was just weird but in another way very humorous. I could imagine Sully laughing his arse off at that actually. Need to pick up TPB #2 on that next month.

Well, the Batman is evolving ever more and more. Check out the new "DC Countdown to Infinte Crisis". But before that you'd need to understand what happened to him in the "Idenity Crisis". All these "Crises" giving you a Crisis? It would be unfair to reveal to you what happened to Batman in the ID Crisis so I will tell you as soon as the Trade Paperback comes out...or hustle it down yourself!

The 80-Page Giant that cost ONE DOLLAR is the stepping stone to the Sales Driven Event on the Horizon of the DC Universe. The Second Printing will cost $1.99 USD. From this will spin into FOUR 6-issue limited series, each focused on an evolving "Crisis", the "Infinite Crisis" which DC editor Dan DiDio calls the sequel to 1985's "Crisis on Infinite Earths".

OCHO's "Crisis to Crisis" in January 2005 can get you up to speed if this is too esoteric fanboy for the casual reader.

"Batman: HUSH" though...get Volume 2 and reread the whole thing.

HUSH Trade softcover, Volume 2

It is a very well crafted suspense story and the art is breath-taking by Jim "Insert Angelic Choir Here" Lee. The writer Jeph Loeb you'll remember from "Batman: The Long Hallowe'en" and other Retro/Retcon tales like the excellent Batman & Robin story "Batman: Dark Victory", the sequel to "The Long Hallowe'en" and also spun from that story "Catwoman: When In Rome".

"Superman for All Seasons",
"Daredevil: Yellow" and "Spider-Man: Blue" are all written by Jeph Loeb, all with his "retro" battery partner Tim Sale. Jeph Loeb is also the scribe at the current DCU fave Superman/Batman, the World's Finest magazine. "Public Enemies", the first Trade Paperback makes a fine companion to HUSH. The second World's Finest TPB, "Supergirl" brings back the beloved, true Supergirl; Kara Zor-El, the cousin of Superman with soaring art by Michael Turner.

Superman/Batman "Supergirl" Trade Hardcover

I love how Loeb brings up Krypto the Super Dog. HUSH brings together all the best parts of Batman, a calvacade of characters. The reunion of the Bat-Family (which takes a sledge hammer in the "Batman: War Games" event). And the suprise ending...HUSH!!! Don't give it away!!! ^_~ Reading the introduction and Vol. 2 afterword is great too.

Since Kiwi finished TRANSMET, you read this old OCHO blurb:
Scroll down to Tuesday, December 2, 2003 for TRANSMETROPOLITAN: THE END.