Monday, January 31, 2011

Terrence Pegula: Humanizing the Savior

Maybe this has been said a bit too much by now and I'm a little late to the party, but I'm going to write about it anyways.

I'm pretty excited about the impending Terrence Pegula takeover of the Buffalo Sabres.  I thank Tom Golisano for his commitment to keeping the team in Buffalo and recognize that we owe him a large amount of gratitude for that feat.  Still, it has seemed more and more evident that he wasn't made for the business of owning a hockey team and his time has come to ride off into the sunset.

Enter: Terrence Pegula, big time hockey fan, former Orchard Park resident and future owner.  One of the reasons the fans are so excited is that he's one of us.  I have to admit that's a huge plus for a man I know almost nothing about.  The mere fact that he cares about putting banners in the rafter is an incredible thing to have.

But at the same time I almost don't want to get too excited.  I don't know anything about the guy.  I don't know what his style of ownership is going to be like.  Being a successful businessman and being a successful hockey owner are two different things, and being a fan of the team doesn't do much to bridge that gap.  There are a lot of huge Sabres fans around, and a lot of them would make piss-poor owners.  Wanting to win doesn't make you winner, and that's what worries me a little bit.

At this point I'm okay with merely saying that I like what I see so far, I like where I think things could easily head, and I'm going to wait and see to have strong feelings about everything else involved with the sale.

Female Hockey Fans: "The Name on the Front..."

I made a few additions to make it a bit more clear that this entry was not really aiming for a high level of seriousness.  I'm aware that not all that read this know me well enough to tell the difference between me hitting on a serious subject or merely jabbing roughly at a hornets nest with a stick to watch 'em buzz around.

Probably going to piss a few people off with this one.  I'd preemptively apologize, but I'm not really sorry.  It would be like apologizing to a kid who added two and two and got five for telling him his answer is wrong.  You can skip to the bottom for my begrudging doling out of respect.

Okay, I can be a little fair.  I realize that women have a different relationship with sports than guys do.  There is more of an emotional connection to the individual, and I get that.  For the most part, guys don't like a player because he is cute, because he seems like a nice guy, and only occasionally because he makes us laugh or smile.  And they don't like a team just because they have a player with those attributes.  It's something I have thought about, and come to the conclusion that while I can acknowledge the existence of that dynamic, so different from my own fandom, I cannot understand it.  *EDIT*  And in saying so, I am not at all demeaning that type of or aspect to fandom, merely pointing out that it is different and something that does not apply to me personally and thus is tough to grasp.

Seriously though, what the hell?  Some of you Ladies, how about you need to stop suspending all logic when it comes to your favorite players and to your sports fandom as a whole?  I feel like you all lacked the proper influence of an older more mature sports fan.  I am here to educate those of you that need to see the light.

Sports fans have a favorite team.  Note that the last word is singular.  If you want to have a second team to follow in the opposite conference, fine.  But there better be one that rises above all others by about a 90-10 margin.  It is so fucking annoying to see a girl talking up another team in addition to the one they primarily root for, especially when that team is in the same conference, and doubly so when it's in the same division and they're vying for playoff spots.  The Senators, Leafs, Canadiens, and Bruins are OFF FUCKING LIMITS.

We get it, some players are "hot."  Grab a laptop and a vibrator and take care of your urges.  Try not to let it color your assessment of that player's skills.  Craig Rivet is still old.  Paul Gaustad and Jason Pominville are still overpaid.  Patrick Lalime is still useless.  Derek Roy is still 100% not interested in anything with a vagina.

Sometimes guys get old and lose effectiveness and sometimes they go elsewhere.  If you want to keep tabs on them, fine, otherwise, shut up.  I hate it when female fans follow a player across the NHL like a lapdog with tits.  Look, I like Marty Biron, and Danny Briere too, I really don't give a shit how they perform on any given night (unless they're beating teams above us in the standings, and even then, I don't really care about the players so much as the teams).  Again, do not let it color your assessment of a player's value.  Letting Tallinder walk was a great move and Jordan Leopold is awesome.  Lindy Ruff may need to be fired.  Which brings me to...

The name on the front of the jersey is more important than the name on the back.  The name on the front of the jersey is more important than the name on the back.  THE NAME ON THE FRONT OF THE JERSEY IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE NAME ON THE BACK.  Two years ago my favorite player was Jaroslav Spacek, but I was happy as a clam when he left because resigning him to that money was completely not in the best interests of the team.  If Thomas Vanek leaves and the return value is good, I will wish him all the best and be more than happy to move forward.  One of the big problems with the Sabres is that it is (at times) run like a mom and pop organization.  Sometimes that aging uncle who can't tell the dog from the toilet paper is kept around because...awww, we like him, and we want to win with him.  Tough decisions need to be made, and sometimes that involves saying goodbye to a guy you really like.

Probably the most egregious violation of this was when fellow blogger (I think?) and twitterite *blank-ers blank-ie* vowed to stop buying season tickets if Lindy Ruff was fired.  That is, in a nutshell, a microcosm of what I see from far too many female fans, stunning irrational attachment to a certain part of the organization that blots out any semblance of respect for the organization as a whole (and its fans).  Seriously, if I wouldn't rather have the flesh flayed off my nutsack than sit with the malcontent bunch of degenerate assholes in section 304, I would love to buy that particular set of season tickets.  (Because hearing a bunch of forty year olds constantly heckle our own guys with their fistfuls of Blue Light is not my idea of a good time.  Why do you even buy tickets 304-ites?  Go bandwagon for the Capitals or something.  It's fans like you that make people not want to come back to the arena.)

Alright, my rant is over.  I appreciate my female friends who are into sports enough to know their shit beyond Mike Fisher being cute or whatever.  I think those female Sabres fans closest to me (I can name at least seven) are really intelligent as fans and I respect the hell out of them for it.  *Edit* I hope that their level of knowledge can become contagious and can begin to overpower the idiot female sports fan that is all too prevalent.

Coming next week... Dumb Guys: Angelina Jolie Makes Shitty Movies, Stop Going to See Them,  (Seriously, I could replace hockey with movies, Gaustad with Angelina, and various teams with Wanted, Salt, and Tomb Raider and write the exact same entry.) #menarenotinnocenteither.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Vulgar Statistics: Power Rankings at the All Star Break

Look, I understand that Power Rankings are essentially meaningless.  The teams are usually arranged on a whim by “professional” analysts who can’t possibly have an informed opinion on more than three or four teams.  That’s why, two years ago, I sought to create a Power Rankings system that at least means something.  Not surprisingly, this system is based on statistics.  Now this means it does have to be taken with a grain of salt, but at least when someone asks me why a team is in a certain slot, I have a better answer than “that’s just how I felt.”

Read More at BBG.

In Defense of the NHL All-Star Game

As the NHL All-Star festivities have come and gone for yet another season after a one year hiatus due to the Olympics and all the usual comments are being thrown out.  The game is "stupid," the players "don't care," it's "a waste of fans' time" and yet one more thing the NHL "gets wrong" on so many levels.

I actually disagree, I have to take the opposite stance on this one.  I think the NHL's All-Star format is the best of any of the major American Sports (because fuck you soccer).  I also think the NHL has taken the most drastic steps of any of the four (NHL, NFL, NBA, MLB) leagues to enhance its All-Star game.

Let's look at this from a practical standpoint and compare it to the golden child of American sports, the NFL.  Both are physical sports, and both have several players in desperate need of time to rest and heal.  Hell, in the NHL, two of the game's best and most marketable players, Sidney Crosby, and Evgeni Malkin have missed a bunch of games this season due to injury.  That's bad the the league, and much as I hate those two players, it's bad for the fans as well.

The fact of the matter is, that like the NFL, NHL players need a bye to rest and recuperate.  The NHL equivalent to that, considering the number of games, would be five games worth of time, or a week and a half to two weeks.  Due to the nature of schedules, and the culture of hockey, it isn't really feasible to stagger bye weeks for every team over a 2-3 month period through the NHL season, so we get what we have now, a week off with no regular season games.

That brings me to the current filler, the All Star Festivities.  Rather than have a whole lot of nothing during that time, we have the newly christened Fantasy Draft, the Skills Competition, and the All-Star game itself.  The Fantasy Draft drew some criticism because no one really knew how it would go, people raised the possibility of teammates hurting each other's feelings (preposterous since these are the same people that point out that those same players don't care about the game...can't have it both ways), and it seemed like a really boring thing to watch.

I was right there with that crowd.  I turned it on to see how it went, expecting to get bored within a few picks.  While I wasn't riveted to my television, I was genuinely entertained by the event.  The NHL's various personalities really don't get enough time to shine, and any time you can shove a microphone in front of a bunch of players, you usually get some pretty good entertainment.  I wound up watching the entire thing, laughing at Phil Kessel for being ugly and unwanted and I applaud the NHL for stepping outside the box and trying way harder and being way more intelligent about finding ways to make the game interesting.  (Cough*NFL, MLB* cough).  Better than having Patrick Elias on a horrible New Jersey team fuck his way through an ASG because there's no chance his team will be able to take advantage of home ice in the Cup Finals, or not having players from the two best teams in the league in attendance.

I think most people like the skills competitions.  It's pretty fun to watch players goof off and dangle around and interesting to learn about Matt Duchene's drinking habits.

I did think it ran a bit long, and while I did enjoy seeing Tim Thomas make an ass of himself (who doesn't?), I really didn't need to see him race Cam Ward around the rink.  I could also probably go without seeing a lot of the events done multiple times, like the relay event.

Then there's the game itself.  Hockey purists HATE the All-Star Game.  It isn't "real hockey," the players "don't care," and the game is "boring."  All of those have varying degrees of truth, but most of the blame for that can be placed on the fans themselves and on the league.

The expectations for the game are a bit unrealistic.  If I wanted to watch "real hockey" there are 20+ weeks of that during the regular season.  There are 2,460 games of it.  I can handle one without it.  I don't need to see the players try to kill each other, try to fight, or try to pull Washtroit Capitings stick infractions.  I really think in that, fans are expecting something entirely unrealistic.  The purpose of the game is really to try and get some of these players away from their canned interviews where they reiterate the same three points (working hard, winning battles, getting pucks in deep) during the regular season and expose some of their personalities.  This is where some of the onus starts to fall on the league.  I am thoroughly annoyed with the fact that the NHL seems hell bent on turning hockey into a family game by taking a stance against fighting and in trying to neuter the players.  There should be microphones everywhere during the entire weekend, and if a guy lets an f-bomb slip out, so what?  Let these guys be guys.

The truth is that as much as fans rail against the ASG, it's probably a good thing for the league and for its exposure.  If the NHL eliminated the game and instituted some sort of Bye-week system, purists would cheer (probably right after their daily puppy drowning sessions...or they'd bitch about the bye weeks instead) and the other 90% of hockey fans would bitch and moan that there was no All-Star game and no skills competition to watch.

However, that isn't to say there isn't plenty of room for improvement.

Just a few quick hits of my ideas before I get tired of writing this damn thing:
  • More microphones everywhere, less crowd shots, no panel of morons involving Pierre McGuire during the draft.
  • Get the damn thing on ESPN and use a combination of Melrose, Burnside, Lebrun, Buccigoss, and/or Barnaby.
  • Chop down the skills comp to two hours max.
  • Have two broadcasting teams, a family friendly one, and one that can air swearing on another channel.
  • Helmet cams EVERYWHERE!
  • Chop down a line of forwards to get each player more exposure.  It's not like they skate hard anyways.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 4 - A Word With Tara...

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 4 - A Word With Tara...: "Freedom of Restraint: Episode 4 A Word With Tara Saturday Halfway home, I registered my cell phone in my pocket and called Tara. 'Wan..."

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hockey FIght of the Week

Tyler Kennedy vs. Travis Hamonic

Sabres - Senators Podcast 1-25-11

The Real World in a Diagram

Bondage Quiz

I took a BDSM quiz here, curious to see what I would get.  My results are below with my explanations.  Feel free to post yours in the comments.

  • Sadist - 100% - Basically this means I enjoy inflicting pain.  The fact that's it's my highest total speaks more to the lack of questions than to my love of sadism.
  • Dominant - 96% - I do enjoy being in charge both in sexual and non-sexual situations.
  • Exhibitionist/Voyeur - 86% - Uh yeah, fairly self explanitory.
  • Switch - 82% - Because I do have some submissive tendancies in addition to my dominance.
  • Experimental - 82% - Trying new things is fun.
  • Masochist - 79% - the opposite of sadism, I enjoy pain myself.
  • Bondage - 71% - This should probably be higher.  Restraint (rope) is my number one love in BDSM.
  • Degredation - 57% - Not huge into humiliating someone, this is probably high.
  • Submissive - 32% - About right
  • Vanilla - 11% - Also pretty on point, I'm quite kinky.

Monday, January 24, 2011

NHL Should Throw Book at Nabokov

In case you missed it, former Sharks goaltender Evgeni Nabokov basically told the Islanders that they sucked too much for his talents and should go screw off.  While I find this assessment of the Islanders to be both true and hilariously honest, I want the league to come down hard on Nabokov.

I feel that allowing a player too much leeway in dictating where they want to play sets a bad precedent and is bad for the NHL.  What's to stop a player from shunning Buffalo or Edmonton because he doesn't like the cities, or Atlanta, Florida, or Carolina because their fans don't show up, or Montreal because they disagree politically with Quebecois?  Furthermore, in a league where the goal is parity, teams like the Islanders need to be able to dig themselves out of the hole they're in with players like Nabokov.  That's how the system should work.

It just doesn't do for the NHL to have an unappealing team like the Islanders continue to suck in the largest market in the country.  Considering how popular the sport is in the United States, it doesn't really benefit the NHL for any team to suck for an extended period of time like the Islanders have for the past five years.

Now I know what people are going to say.  Garth Snow is a bit of an ass for pulling this, especially with Rick Dipietro on the team (because he's reliable), and it's true.  But allowing a guy like Nabokov to run roughshod over GMs and coaches is starting down a dangerous path.  Although considering the level of honor among NHL ranks, the problem might work itself out as coaches find themselves unwilling to deal with an ego like Nabokov's.

Wait, Avery is still around.  Crap.

Vulgar Statistics: Who is Overpaid Part II: Defense

This is the second of my two part series taking the members of the Sabres and comparing them to other players in the NHL within the same salary class to see if they’re living up to their paychecks.

Read More at BBG

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 3 - The Interview

Added some of my sketches of the club

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 3 - The Interview: "Saturday I awoke from a short three hour nap at around ten in the morning. The interview wasn't until the club 'opened,' (I don't know..."

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 3 - The Interview

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 3 - The Interview: "Saturday I awoke from a short three hour nap at around ten in the morning. The interview wasn't until the club 'opened,' (I don't know..."

Sabres Rise to the Playoffs - The Time is Now

I tend to agree with Corey Griswold over at The Goose's Roost.  The team is not good, is not a playoff caliber team, and will play just well enough down the stretch to keep things interesting for a little while.  The Islanders game was so telling to me.  The Sabres need to win basically every game against bad teams and a couple against good teams to make the playoffs, and they fell so disgustingly flat against the Islanders.

But if you are one of those fans who likes to look on the bright side of things and hope for the best (and I do), then the next eight games are the most important of the season.  Let's look at the standings:

With a few games in hand, the Sabres situation looks much more favorable now than it has in weeks past.  The problem of course, is that they need to win them, something they've shown an inability to do so far.  However, if they win those games, they're sitting two points back of Atlanta.  Not bad.

Additionally, those three teams have been fading for some time and look to continue to do so.  The Canadiens just suffered injuries to Halpern, Pacioretty, and Cammaleri at the hands of the Sabres to add to the losses of Markov and Gorges, the Rangers just lost their top scorer Dubinsky for 3-4 weeks, and the Thrashers are finally showing what I suspected all along, that they just aren't that good.

Meanwhile Buffalo has a fairly agreeable schedule coming up, again, provided they don't shit the bed against teams they should beat like they did against the Islanders.

Jan 20th - @ Boston
Jan 21st - vs. NYI
Jan 23rd - @NYI
Jan 25th - @Ottawa
Feb 4th - @Pittsburgh
Feb 5th - vs. Toronto
Feb 8th - @ Tampa Bay
Feb 10th - @ Florida
Feb 13th - vs. NYI
Feb 15th - @ Montreal
Feb 16th - vs. Toronto

Now if the Sabres do what they're supposed to and beat the mediocre to bad teams in that grouping, they'll got 8-3 and probably either find themselves in the eighth spot, or in the ninth spot and knocking on the door.  Big if.  If they're middling again, and go 6-5 or something similar, I think even the most optimistic fans can write the season off and join the Pegula conversations.

Sabres - Habs Podcast

Monday, January 17, 2011

Hockey Fight of the Week

Sorry for the delay, was spending Sunday with my girlfriend Abbi.

Cody McCormick v. Troy Brodie

The NHL's big Screwup of 2010-2011

Tim Connolly No-Goal 11-20-2010 at 1:10

The goal was eventually disallowed because Pominville knocked the puck out of the air with his glove over to Connolly.  I'm not debating that the goal shouldn't have counted because of the glove pass.  My issue is with the fact that the NHL deemed that aspect of the goal reviewable.  The officials need to catch that on the ice.

It sets a bad precedent, reviewing any aspect of a goal other than the action that puts it into the net.  If the NHL has said that passes for assists are reviewable (and in reviewing the above, they have), then where do you draw the line?  Do you start checking zone entries for offsides before every goal?  Do you follow the puck around for an entire sequence to see if there's a high stick?  What if the officials are watching a replay of a goal, and they see a defenseman get clobbered?  Can they take away the goal and assess a crosschecking penalty?

I guess the ends justify the means in the above case.  The call was correct, but the process to get there was awful.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Vulgar Statistics: Who is Overpaid Part I: Forwards

This will be a part of a two part series taking the members of the Sabres and comparing them to other players in the NHL within the same salary class to see if they're living up to their paychecks.  Predictably, I will talk about the defensemen next week in part two.

Read More at BBG

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Thomas Vanek Effect

I considered using this "data" in my most recent Vulgar Statistics column, but I thought better of it (and forgot).  The reason for that (to be perfectly honest) is that a lot of what I'm about to post is conjecture and somewhat subjective.

The biggest knock on Vanek is he doesn't produce on par with his pay class, players like Eric Staal, Alexander Ovechkin, and Sidney Crosby.  As I've already proven, this is wrong.  But it's actually wronger than we think.  One of the reasons that Vanek doesn't produce like those players is because the system isn't designed to allow him to play like them.  Vanek's role in the Sabres system is to plant himself in front of the net and knock home rebounds/screen point shots, it isn't to do a whole lot carrying the puck.

Thus there are a lot of goals that the Sabres score where Thomas Vanek might play an integral role, but not get credit on the scoresheet, i.e. setting screens, or being a decoy on two on one rushes (when Nathan Gerbe is not involved).  I went through every Sabres goal this season to see how many goals Vanek had a hand in, and I expected to find quite a few, and other fans should too.  Our defense is scoring at a Houslean pace, much of that can be attributed to players like Vanek.

I found that in addition to the 16 goals that he has actually scored, Vanek had a hand in another 17, most of them screens, in addition to his NHL leading perfect 4/4 shootout percentage.  That's 37 goals, and that's pretty damn good.

I know that the aforementioned stars would see their totals increase as well under a similar analysis, but I think to a far lesser extent.  Sidney Crosby is not standing in front of the net, nor is Alexander Ovechkin.  I wouldn't be surprised to see that those players have screened less than three goals combined between the two of them.

The bottom line here, whether fans want to believe it or not, is that Thomas Vanek does a pretty damn good job of earning his money.

Sabres - Canes Podcast

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 2 Tara Finishes the ...

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 2
Tara Finishes the ...
: "Freedom of Restraint: Episode 2 Tara Finishes the Job Friday 'Good heavens, you're so pathetic,' I said with a good natured grin as Tara lo..."

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Vulgar Statistics Bonus: How I Get My Ideas

Maybe this will be interesting to a few people, maybe not, but I've kind of thought about writing it for a while.  With the varied, and at times relatively in depth analysis that I do with Vulgar Statistics, I thought at least a few people might be wondering how I come up with topic ideas.

As a Sabres fan, I like when I can verify what I believe I see on the ice with actual numbers.  There is some truth in the statement that "stats don't always tell the entire story," but the flip side of that is that statistics are never completely irrelevant.  It bothers me that some fans become so set in what they believe, or want to believe that they will continually ignore significant evidence to the contrary.  I'm sure psychology has a fancy name for that, but I just call it stupidity.  I've taken to just ignoring the fans that say things like "I know what I see," or "I have eyes, I don't need stats."  No, thats ridiculous, you need some sort of measuring stick, otherwise what you're saying is just a meaningless opinion.

So as a fan, I find myself uncomfortable saying something without having some sort of statistical basis.  When I start to forumalte an opinion after watching hockey, my next inclination is to pour through or to see if there's any truth behind it.  Sometimes I'm right: "hmm, I think Thomas Vanek is a really good player," and sometimes I'm wrong, "I don't think a highly paid goaltender with a .010 higher save pct. has much of an impact," but I like that I'm finding out.  So basically most of these columns begin as the thought "I think (something)...I need to make a spreadsheet about it!"

The other side of that is seeing other fans spout off things that don't jive with what I'm seeing on the ice.  But I don't like to get into an opinion based argument, because both people will merely stick to their side and no one really learns anything.  I don't want to just say, "I think this," I want to be able to say, "I think this, and these numbers support that thought."  Also known as, "I think you're wrong, so I'm going to bludgeon you with a spreadsheet, aha!"

So basically the gist of it is I'm a huge nerd.  Now you know. :)

Lebron James is Kind of a Dick

This will be short, because I don't think the NBA deserves that much space.  Basically after watching the Cavs get thumped 112-57 by the Lakers, the team that is probably going to thump his heat in the NBA Finals, Lebron dropped this gem on twitter:

Crazy. Karma is a b****.. Gets you every time. Its not good to wish bad on anybody. God sees everything!

I knew athletes were self-centered, but thinking that God personally has your back is a little over the top.  Where's Carmelo Anthony when you need him?

Sabres - Flyers Recap


A little different from sexcapades, these stories won't have any of the juicy illicit details that the afore mentioned capades have had.

The date was 2004 and I was dating a girl we will refer to as Ann.  I was seventeen at the time and had just gotten my license, so the concept of dating had transformed for me.  For our first date, I went to pick Ann up at her house to take her to a movie.  It was (obviously) my first time going to her house so my mom wanted me to call when I got there to ensure I wasn't hopelessly lost.  I didn't remember until I was inside talking with Ann and her father.  This produced an interesting revelation.  Her father was confused.

"Where is his mother?" Dad asked.
"At home," Ann responded.
"So how are you getting to the movie?"
"He's driving me..."

"Oh..." he replied.

I have to give him a lot of credit.  Having the fact that your daughter is going to be riding off with an idiot seventeen year old suddenly revealed has to be both shocking and worrying.  But he didn't freak out, or insist on driving us, or make her stay home, he just let us go.  Of course he watched us drive off from the front porch with binoculars and lojacked my car with GPS tracking, but he was calm about it.  (Note: some of that may be a fabrication.)

Whatever, he was a mild mannered little Norweigan man and he wasn't going to do anything to me.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Incompatible Weird

I don't think I need to tell many of the people that read this that I am a strange individual.  I pride myself on being unique, on thinking outside the box, and at times, being too much to handle for some people.  Predictably, I tend to be attracted to similar people, those that most of society might label as "weird."

It's almost like a secret code.  You are nuts!  We speak the same language.  I expect to get along with other unique and eccentric people since we tend to share a similar inability (or lack of desire) to fit into common settings.  We do tend to have a lot in common, introversion, a predilection towards nerdy things, intelligence, and a curiosity about the world and those things lead to getting along.

It's always annoying to be when I meet someone who is against the norm.  Like, 'we speak the same language, why are you so irritating?'  I have a friend (no one that reads this blog) who is very strange.  And I tend to like strange...but I do not like her.  I find her to be illogical (major turn off) and obnoxious.  It's puzzling to me because in a way she is cute and quirky and weird in a lot of the ways I like...but I definitely do not like her.  Basically, she's kind of like Bjork.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Vulgar Statistics: Thomas Hat trick Vanek

Ah the much maligned Sabre, Thomas Hat trick Vanek, the Austrian Wonder child who will hurt you. It's not much of a stretch to say that Vanek is probably the least liked Sabre since the lockout, depending on how Jochen Hecht and Tim Connolly are doing on any given night. The main reason for that is his massive contract ($7.1M cap hit), and underwhelming goal totals, a statistic that has already been explored in more depth.

Read more at Black and Blue and Gold.

Sabres - Coyotes 1-8-11 Reaction

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Mouse Picked the Wrong Basement (Warning: Extremely Graphic)

So I came out of my room to the following scene.  When they start to team up, it means shit is going down.

The Game that Got Me Dumped

I have tickets to next week's Sabres - Hurricanes game on January 13th, which brings back memories of the first time I saw the Carolina Hurricanes.  The game that got me dumped.

The year was 2009, and the date of the game in question was February 15th, one week before Miller would sustain a devastating injury that effectively eliminated the Sabres from playoff contention.  I was one week removed from having taken my then girlfriend Samantha on a trip to NYC for our three-year anniversary (which was Feb. 12th).  It had cost around $1,000 altogether between the $300 a night luxury hotel room to cab fare, train fare, meals, and a few choice outfits I bought her for my entertainment.

Samantha was a freshman at RPI at the time, so seeing each other and taking a trip was kind of a big deal since we rarely got to see each other.  Perfectly okay with me since I was six months into my first real job and worried about paying off my ridiculous college loans.  Now, you might notices that those particular dates fall close to a certain male maligned holiday.  Surprisingly, Valentines Day wasn't the issue with what unfolded.  I ordered some bouquet of fruit from Edible Arrangements, got some flowers and had it shipped to her dorm, whatever.  As a guy, I'm torn on the concept of Valentines day.  On one hand, I think it's stupid, but on the other, my girlfriend and I always got each other pretty nice gifts, and present giving holidays are awesome.  Win some, lose some.

Anyways, like I said, that wasn't the issue.  About three days before said February 15th, Samantha asked me if I would come to her sorority formal on...February 9 PM.  Now you may not be a geography expert...or a hockey expert, but I don't think I need to tell you how impossible it is to make a 9 PM formal in Albany, and a 7PM hockey game in Buffalo on the same night.  (Hint: completely impossible.)  Three days might be a mis-memory, but it was definitely less than a week of notice for me to flush/give away $70 tickets, travel 3 hours to see her, and handle plans for eating, lodging, blah, blah, blah.

I have no idea what the hell she was trying to pull in giving me such short notice.  I think it was one of those bullshit games women play where she was hoping the lack of ready time would make it easier for her to get me to cave into a bad decision, i.e. going to the lame ass sorority formal with a bunch of skanks and moronic college kids to partake in an activity (dancing) that I loathe.  (Note: WORST STRATEGY EVER to try on someone who likes to plan things out.  Way to make use of that three years getting to know me, bitch.  You could have at least tried a smart tactic.)  It was a conundrum.  What did I do?

What the hell do you think I did?

I went to the game with my sister.  It was a horrible game, Cam Ward shut us out 3-0, my sister's second shutout in her first three games, and I wound up apologizing to her for the Sabres after the game.  And yet it was still between nine and ∞ (ASCII codes ftw) times more fun than a stupid sorority formal.

One week later the Sabres were out of a goaltender, and I was out of a girlfriend.  Good riddance.  Now I know that the game wasn't the sole reason she dumped me.  Even she was not enough of a crazy bitch to destroy three years of relationship because of one day.  We hadn't been getting along for a while, we didn't mesh together as people, she was too dumb and boring for me, she became an alcoholic, and if I were to describe her picture of mental sanity, it would be a Picasso sent through a wood chipper.  But for every breakup there is a tipping point when you decide that it is no longer worth it to be with your partner, and I am positive that this game was that point for her.  Awesome.

Thank you Sabres for ridding me of a human being that is now a walking herpes sore!  (And people wonder why I cut the team and the front office a lot of slack.)

Friday, January 7, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: About the Author

Freedom of Restraint: About the Author: "I am a twenty-four year old unemployed engineering major currently living at home in upstate New York. But no one cares about that. I..."

Freedom of Restraint: About Freedom of Restraint

Freedom of Restraint: About Freedom of Restraint: "Freedom of Restraint is a fantasy story set in modern day New York City with strong themes of sex and bondage. The story largely follo..."

Bruvalarks - Sabres Reaction

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 1 - Lena Marov

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Episode 1 - Lena Marov: "Freedom of Restraint: Episode 1 Lena Marov 'Ugh get off...and leave too,' I said, pushing my somewhat paunchy companion away from me, and n..."

Euthanasia vs. Natural Death

About a week and a half ago, I posed the question, "Is it better to have someone die suddenly, or to waste away?"  I got two responses, both in favor of the sudden passing.  It's really the age old question of whether ripping off a bandage is preferable to slowly pulling it off.  Behavioral Economist Dan Ariely sought to answer this question and presents his findings.

The lecture continues beyond that point to describe how people justify cheating, and in the end, how our intuition can often fail us.  It provides good insight into why people cheat, and how they can become attatched to misguided ideals and sketchy logic.

A Brief History of Me in College, aka I Don't Know How I Did Not Die or get Arrested

Ah college.  It's kind of funny because a lot of people don't expect me to be the daredevil type.  My inline hockey commissioner was surprised to know that I had first learned how to skate on aggressive skates by jumping down staircases and grinding ledges (which explains why crashing into shit and blocking shots isn't a big deal for me).  Even though I didn't drink, I had a fairly wild, and often stupid, college existence.

And So it Begins, The First Injury:
Spoiler alert, I didn't almost die, or get arrested on this one, but it was my first introduction to the Canton-Potsdam Hospital.  I played intramural football which was eight on eight, full contact, and without pads.  Now I am 5'10" and 145 pounds, not exactly the ideal build for rugby-type contact.  Surprisingly, my injury did not occurred while I was being hit, but rather while I was making a tackle.

It was kind of stupid because it happened right near the goal line, and it wasn't fourth down so there wasn't a whole lot to be gained by stopping him.  I did what little people do when they have to make a tackle, tried to wrap the legs, but I only succeeded in getting my thumb caught under his foot, bent around backwards, and stepped on.  Instant sprain.  I played the rest of the game until we called it early because another kid on our team hurt his back.  Pussy.  I didn't think anything of the fact that I couldn't grip a football until a few hours later when it swelled up to the size of a pear.

I drove myself to the hospital sometime at night, but the fun thing is, I was only seventeen at the time.  So the hospital needed to call my parents to be allowed to treat me.  The nurse/receptionist chose her words very carefully.  "He's okay...but we have your son here at CP Hospital..."  I think she was somewhat surprised by my mother's response, a tired "what did he do now?"  (That may have been my 7th or so hospital visit in my life.)  They informed me that I sprained it, gave me a temporary wrap-cast that I needed to keep on for a week and a prescription for bullshit pain meds, aka 600mg acetominophen.  Um, why not tell me to take three ibuprofen?

The real fun came during the week.  I had two exams that week, and I couldn't so much as lift a pencil if it required my right thumb, so Student Special Services (note: not Nazis) set me up with a scribe and a location in which to take my exams.  No big deal if they're multiple choice or something, but they were chemistry and calculus.  "Um yeah...draw the little squiggly line thing..."  It actually worked to my advantage because there was a typo on the calc exam that turned some weirdo integration into integrating something like 4x so I basically got ten free points.  I also got the sympathy of the professor since I took the exam on time instead of trying to reschedule.  Score.

The Hamlin-Powers Roof
Has there ever been a time when man has looked at a roof and not said, "I want to be on that roof?"  I do not think so.  When my friend Billings and I met Peter and Michelle, one of the first things we had in common was a desire to get on the roof of our dorm.  the dorm was comprised of twin three story buildings connected by a one and a half story (height-wise) common room in between.  Atop the common room were ladders leading up the side of the dorms.  I should point out that this building was in no way secluded being downhill from the rest of the campus and across a semi-busy street from town.

The way to get on these buildings was by using the overhangs above the two entrances to the center building.  Getting onto those overhangs involved getting a boost from the adjacent windowsill, one of which belonged to the Resident Director, who can only be described as a large angry black woman on a campus that was 90% skinny nerdy white people.  I'm glad I was there to point out how stupid it was to use her window.  Once onto the ledge that hung about ten feet off the ground, it was a relatively easy jump to grab hold of the lip on the top of the center building.  Relatively easy for an athletic guy like myself anyways.

At some point we decided that Peter's girlfriend Michelle should join us.  Michelle was an exceedingly nice girl that, for some reason, was willing to assist us in all our escapades.  Mostly likely out of a desire to make sure we didn't get arrested or die.  Now Michelle is a pretty skinny girl, so we didn't think it would be a huge deal to help her onto the ledge, and then the center building.  Boy was that not true.  The movies make it look so easy, the damsel is hanging off a cliff and then the hero grabs her arm and pulls her up like she's a bag of marshmallows.

 She made a good penis-drawing spotter too

We eventually got Michelle onto the center building where she was only a ladder away, but it took all three of us, and several hands on her butt to get her up there.  Once on the roof, there was a large chimney coming up from the basement laundry room that kept us out of sight.  Sitting against it, and looking out into the lights of downtown Potsdam at night was incredibly peaceful.  I regret not going up there more often as the University has since added a fourth floor and a peaked roof.

Tossing a TV off the Hamlin-Powers Roof
Two of the guys on the floor had their TV die, so we decided that the best course of action was to toss it off the roof.  There is actually video of this, and if you're friends with me on facebook, you can watch it here.  I won't tell you which one I am, just that I'm not engaging in trespassing.  :)

The Plywood Incident
I actually lucked out on this one and avoided the incident, but it's kind of amusing.  Peter, Billings, Michelle, Crawford, our friend Jacob, and Myself had wandered into town to get ice cream or something.  Peter and Jacob, both avid skaters, wanted material to build a ramp out of.  This was when we parted ways since it was cold, I was tired, and I think I still had my cast on.

So Peter and Jacob led the group to a construction site where they just grabbed one of the pieces of plywood and started walking it back to the dorms.  Now Potsdam is a pretty centralized town, so they were walking this giant piece of plywood basically through the busiest street within thirty miles in a town populated by 7,000 residents and another 7,000 college students.  The word "covert" was never in the picture.  Predictably they were stopped by the cops and asked why they were carrying a huge ass piece of plywood through town for no reason.  Apparently "we just found it," wasn't terribly believable, and the cops made them walk it back to the construction site.

Nearly Getting Caught
One night, Billings and I decided to "go roofing" because we could, and because it was actually a pretty sweet place to be.  After sitting up there for a while and taking pictures of town, Billings turned around the chimney to see if the coast was clear.  It was not.  A couple students saw what must have appeared to be a black-clad sketchy-ass figure on the roof and within a minute the RD was outside.  Shit.

Seeing where this was headed, we decided to chance climbing down the ladder, which put us in full view of basically everyone.  We figured we could jump down the ledge side of the building and be off before anyone could make their way through the building to apprehend us.  Not wasting any time, we high tailed it back to my room to hide out for a little while.

A few minutes later my roommate came in.  "Hey, campus safety is outside with the RD, apparently there were some kids on the roof."  Now my roommate was a cool kid, and had been involved with the roofing escapades pretty much since we figured out it was possible to get on the roof.  (He may have assisted with the TV.)  So he already knew what had happened and found it pretty funny.  Billings hung around my room for an hour before going back to his own room, safely.  And there ended getting on the roof.

Or not!  Either later that year, or the following year, we read in the campus police blotter about two students who had gotten caught on the roof, been arrested, and fined.  Glad to have dodged that bullet.

The Sledding Jump of Death and Ass Pain
Remember the penis on the hill pic?  Okay, you're looking at the short and shallow part of the hill.  Further to the right it's about five feet higher and twice as steep.  One wintry evening, we decided to build a ramp at the top of this fifteen foot hill-cliff.  It was about a foot high, and when finished, it was decided I would test it out, being the lightest, and therefore the one who would fly the farthest.  This story can best be told through photos.

Yes that is a pillow, because by the time we were finished I felt like I had been dry humped from behind by the grand canyon.

Bungee Sledding
Being engineers and having unspectacular terrain, there were a few kids that Peter knew that had rigged up a series of bungee cords for added sledding speed.  We used these on the moderate, but relatively unimpressive hill heading down to our dorm.  It wasn't horribly dangerous, aside from the need to bail out before you reached the bottom of the hill and crashed into the building.

Down by the River
Clarkson University is located in Potsdam New York.  You probably haven't heard of the town because it is only about 7,000 people strong.  Even with the two colleges in the area (Clarkson and SUNY Potsdam), the population barely passes 15,000.  Up until 2009, there wasn't even a wal-mart within 30 miles.  Suffice it to say, there isn't much to kind of have to make your own entertainment.

Winding through Potsdam is the Raquette River.  Unimpressive at maybe a hundred feet wide at the most, it nevertheless provided much entertainment for my friends and I.  Beginning in the fall of our freshman year, Billings, Crawford, Jacob, Peter, Michelle, Timmy, and myself would typically head down to the river every Sunday evening. There was a dirt access off one of the country roads that we could maneuver Billings' Jeep pretty far down, and some loosely defined "trails" leading down to a large (think 60' x 20') rock that jutted out over the water, which we called "the burning rock."  We called it that because that's primarily what we did down there, burned things.  Well, that's not entirely true.  We also set off fireworks inside of pudding filled condoms and tried to make draino bombs with bottles of soda.

Probably the most frightening experience was when we had left all our stuff on the burning rock and had gone to explore the nearby woods.  We were probably a few hundred yards upstream when we heard a siren.  We took the siren to mean that the dam was being opened, and we were several hundred feet away from our stuff.  Peter and myself, the fastest of everyone took off down the trail towards the burning rock that was at beast three feet above water level, expecting to be racing torrents of water.  Well anti-climatically nothing happened, but it was scary.  So fuck you.

One day, Billings and I drove down there alone in the middle of the afternoon.  I have no idea why, we were probably just bored.  Well, the water level was fairly low, revealing a bunch of rocks scattered across the river.  I was always curious as to what was on the unexplored far bank, so we decided to rock-hop across.  Well, I'm fairly athletic, and it was tough for me.  Billings, less so, and at one point he ended up coming up short on a jump and dunked himself in the surprisingly swift river.  The water was only abour three feet deep, but with that volume, moving at that's quite a tug.  Add to that the fact that the bottom of the river was slippery mold-slime-whatever and getting back across became a harrowing trek.  The water made everything more slippery for Mr. Billings, and he ended up dunking himself in the water and nearly getting swept away by the current several more times.  Still, we made it out, and were able to enjoy a wet ride home.  (Ooh baby.)

The Rope Swing
"Hey want to go to the rope swing?!"  "Sure!"  Nevermind that there was still snow on the ground in the shade, and ice on some parts of the river.  The rope swing itself was not that dangerous, even though it was a tattered brown thing with one knot on a pier that was held up by a cinderblock and a pile of rocks beneath one of the supports.  (If I can find the video of this experience, I will post it.)  No the dangerous part was the fact that it was about seventy degrees out and the water was what?  Maybe 45 degrees at best (I really have no idea).

So we rock-paper-scissors decided that Timmy would go first.  Since the water was cold and gross, everyone opted to keep their clothes on.  Because that's a good idea.  I had the good fortune of going last after watching everyone take a tip and subsequently attempt to coax their balls out of hibernation.

Swinging out was fun.  Dropping from fifteen feet was fun.  Going from the warm water to the cold air was like having a corset wrapped around your upper body and instantly shrunk to half size.  The air gets knocked out of your lungs like you've been punched.  It scared the shit out of me, and the fact that it became instantly apparent how horrible of an idea keeping my shoes on had been didn't help either.  I got the fuck out of the water as fast as could and the four of us were done for the day.

Crane Mountain
Going to Crane Mountain in the Adirondack State Park freshman year is one of my fondest memories from college, even though I probably almost got eaten by at least eighteen bears.  I drove Peter, Billings, Michelle, Jacob, and myself (duh), and we met up with Timmy.

Roughly four seconds into the trail, we veered off into the woods to use Billings' grappling hook on some rock faces.  Because that's a good idea.  As we were attempting to scale a ten foot boulder ledge from a vantage point already a good thirty feet above what could be called ground, I decided to wander around for an easier way up.  The goal was to impress everyone by appearing on top of said rock face.  The result was me getting lost on the side of Crane Mountain.

Yelling did nothing, nor did my cell phone because on foot, the Adirondack State Park might as well be Siberia.  So I did what made sense.  I headed up.  I figured we were all heading towards the same place so instead of fucking around trying to find the trail again, I would head towards that place.  So for about a half hour, I wandered through the woods, alone, up Crane mountain until I found the trail a few hundred feet from the top.  I actually managed to beat my friends there without getting eaten by any bears.

Running On Ice
Sometime during my sophomore year, between winter and spring, Peter and I decided to go for a run.  We headed towards the ROTC trails in the woods near campus, but quickly wandered off into the woods.  We had fun splashing though balls freezing cold puddles until we camed over an iced over and marshy part of the Raquette River.  You can see where this is going.

For some reason, running out onto the ice didn't strike either of us as a terrible idea.  At least not until Peter fell in.  It was sudden and comical.  First he was running, then he was wasit deep in water intent on neutering him.  I have no idea how I too did not fall in as I was right behind him and stopped less an a foot short of the edge of the ice.  Luckily before I could figure out how to get him out, he'd pulled himself up onto the ice.  We decided that going inside was probably a good idea.

Wind Skating
Occasionally in New York, you get days where the wind gusts at 40-60 miles per hour.  As many runners can attest, that kind of wind sucks.  It is also awesome.  Peter, Jacob and Myself came up with the idea of using our bedsheets as sails, with two corners tied to our skates, and two held in our hands.

Maybe not the most dangerous activity, until you consider that we were humming around a parking lot at pretty significant speeds with navy blue sheets obscuring our vision.  And, should any part of that sheet get caught in a skate...well...face, meet pavement.

I've broken at least a half a dozen bones in my life, so by now, I know how to fall pretty well.  So instead of being surprised by a sudden plummet, I did it on my own terms...every single run.  Skate, let go, tuck, roll, rub elbows and knees, repeat.  Awesome.

Cheel Ski Jump

I wish I had photos of this, but photographic evidence is damning.  This is a live webcam that looks out into the Cheel parking lot.  That row in the center of the screen?  That's what's important.  At the end of that row there is a grassy mound about six feet high that separated the lot from the road that runs parallel to the dorms you can barely see in the background.  The access to the lot from that road is basically straight down the row to the far right.

So one winter afternoon, Peter, Jacob, and Myself decided to build a ski-jump on that grassy mound.  I don't ski, but I'm pretty much always up for stupid shit, and this was pretty damn stupid.  Now you might notice that the terrain is relatively flat.  Who needs hills when you have a jeep?

It was a multi-person operation.  Two people would stand atop the jump on either side, checking for traffic both ways down the road.  One person would be scouring the parking lot, and another would be driving the jeep, pulling the skier down that center row.  Now in order to avoid crashing into the jump, the jeep had to cut a hard right at the end of the run, then a hard left back down to the road.  In snowy weather...yeah.

And we did this in the middle of the afternoon on a weekday for over an hour.  I have no idea how no one reported us, or how campus safety didn't randomly drive by and catch us in the act.  Furthermore, as you maye have noticed...THERE'S A FUCKING WEBCAM WATCHING THE WHOLE THING.  Unbelievable.

All of these happened my first two years of college.  My later years I didn't live near Peter, Jacob, and Timmy, and ended up playing more football than doing daredevil stuff.  Peter and Michelle also broke up and I had always been closer to her than to Peter so I hung out with her a lot.  And I would still do every single one of those again.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: Update

The first installment of Freedom of Restraint will be posted tomorrow at around 6:00 PM.  I'm going to start posting once every two weeks.  It doesn't seem like a lot, but I'd rather start small and find I can gradually increase in frequency than the other way around.  A preview:

Freedom of Restraint: Episode 1
Lena Marov

"Ugh get off...and leave too," I said, pushing my somewhat paunchy companion away from me, and nearly off the other side of the bed.  He was a pale skinny college boy in his late teens, probably an attendee of nearby NYU, but it didn't matter.  As a nighttime companion he'd been adequate, but unspectacular like too many his age.  I thought about showing off my wings just to scare him into departing with a bit more urgency, but that might provoke some unwanted questions, and even less wanted attention.

A Criminally Vulgar Year in Review

Even though this blog doesn't turn a year old in February, everyone else is doing something like this, so I thought for once I would cave in and go with the flow instead of being a complete weirdo.  There may be breasts and vaginas and penises.

Will never not be funny

First, a song:

I am the son, and the heir
Of a shyness that is criminally vulgar.
I'm the son and heir
Of nothing in particular

To be perfectly frank, a recurring theme on this blog is sex.  The above words, to me, have always made me think of the taboo nature of much of the sexual world.  The shyness that is criminally vulgar is the perverse campaign by the conservative entities in this country that belief a lack of knowledge on the topic of sex, that a willful stupidity is the best method to handle such a complex topic.  Over time, through the efforts of pioneers in a variety of fields, such as Kinsey, Masters, and Johnson in clinical research, and Carlin in pop culture, that feeling has started to evanesce.  That discomfort we inherit when it comes to things of a sexual nature is fast becoming nothing in particular.  And I want to be one of those people that encourages that transition out of the dark ages of the hush-hush nature of sex and into a world where we're not afraid to have adult discussions about a perfectly normal aspect of our humanity.

That's how I try and live my life.  Those that know me are well aware of my willingness to converse about any topic from hockey to double penetration.  It's that casual integration of a variety of fields that makes this blog so fun to write.  I can talk about sex, or porn, or bondage, or hockey, or religion, or television, or pets, or my own life and it all has as much a place here as anything else.  There is a danger, I think, in spreading yourself too wide.  The term "jack of all trades, master of none," comes to mind.  (There has to be a self-pleasuring joke in there somewhere, it has both 'jack' and 'master' in it...)  But I always get comments from people telling me that they enjoy the variety, so I suppose whatever it is that I'm trying to do, I'm doing it with a measure of success.

One of the things that I realize I should have asked myself in my interviews (and maybe I did and have forgotten) is with so many risque topics, is there anything I've written that I have come to regret.  My answer is no for a couple of reasons.  The first is that I strive to be honest, and I believe that while occasionally unpleasant, honesty is never a bad thing in the long run.  The second is quite simply that I don't have much stock, if any, in what people think of me. Sure, I respect the feelings of those close to me, but the reason that we're close is because we understand each other beyond the need to judge each others' actions.  My friends and I trust that we're making the best decisions with the information we have available, and if we're making poor decisions, then they're probably either really fun, or will produce a really entertaining story later.  Either way, everybody wins.

But I do wonder.  Perception is a funny thing in that the same act can mean a thousand different things to a thousand different people.  I wonder how I'm viewed by those that read this, especially those that write themselves.  I harbor no illusions, I know that I am intelligent, but occasionally arrogant in that fact.  I know that I am very, very strange, but genuinely nice.  I know that I tend to talk about things that make people uncomfortable, in a way that makes them uncomfortable (and truthfully, I usually do it on purpose), and that it gives people pause in regarding me.  I'm probably the oddball of the Buffalo blogging community, and maybe the club asshole too.  But those facts make me smile, because if they're true, then they mean that I'm doing something right.  I'd rather be a weirdo and abrasive than forgettable.

I tend to occasionally spout a "read at your own risk" clause every once in a while because I know my content is not for everyone.  I don't really believe in censorship, and self-censorship even less than that, and I make that pretty clear.  So I'm not really bothered when someone has a disagreement with something I wrote, or my mom comes up to me and says "you have no shame, do you?", especially since I've found that the juicy stuff is the stuff that people like reading.  My Sexcapades entries, as relatively mundane as they are, have been among my more popular entries.  (Along with my Survivor posts.  Holy shit, EVERYONE wants to see Kelly Shinn's tits.  Hell, I probably increased my traffic tenfold for this entry just by mentioning her name.)  

Most of the reason I try to write with no shame is because I want to eliminate that shame.  I think it is stupid that people blush and get these stupid little grins when they start to talk about sex.  Come on people, this is a normal act, and everybody does it.  Even the priests are doing it!  Even more, everyone has questions about it, everyone is curious.  People need people like me, and other writers who aren't afraid to broach the subject, to do things like talk about blowjobs, and give a detailed introduction to bondage.  If there is anything I've learned, it is astounding how much people like to talk about sex, how many questions they have, and how much more useful it is to talk to even a marginally experienced human being than fuck around google for an hour.

So I guess that brings me to my resolution for the new year, to keep working towards that goal.  To talk about sex just as easily as I talk about football, or my personal life, or the Sabres, because there is no reason any of those things should be any more taboo than the others.  And if you don't like it...

You shut your mouth, how can you say 
I go about things the wrong way?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Introduction

Freedom of Restraint: Freedom of Restraint: Introduction: "This is going to be the home to what is to be called Freedom of Restraint from now until I stop writing it, whenever that should happen...

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Episodic Story Update

Alright, so I've been putting together several pages worth of notes for this, and I think I'm getting pretty close to the point where I can actually begin writing.  A few quick hits as to what the series will be about:

  • The setting will be in present day New York City.  At first I thought that the juxtaposition of fantasy and the modern world would be too weird, but the society didn't really fit in an older time period.  Plus I like some of the ideas I have for fitting this society into a modern world.
  • Lena Marov, a bisexual succubus will be the main character, but I do not think the story will follow her exclusively.
  • I'm going to have seven races, Humans, Vampires, Lycans, Dark Elves, Succubi/Incubi, Elemental Nymphs, and Shapeshifters.
  • There will also be a caste system, Power Doms, Doms, Switches, Power Subs, Subs, and Slaves.
  • There will be a sort of underworld government/leadership with rules and obligations that relate to each of the races and the caste that each individual fits into.  Many of the rules will tie in cloesly to those found in real life BDSM relationships.
  • I still do not have a title.  Should probably get on that.
There is more, of course, but I'm going to let the rest be revealed through the story.  I don't have a timeline as to when the first episode will be posted, or regarding the frequency of posts.  All I can say at this point is, soon.

Hockey Fight of the Week

I don't know why Adam McQuaid wanted to fight if he wasn't going to try and throw a punch...

Vulgar Statistics: Goalie Value

Earlier this week, a friend and I were discussing NHL goaltenders.  After some back and forth, the question became, ‘what do you really get with a $5 million + guy that you’re not getting with, say, a $2 million guy, and is it worth it?’  The Sabres do have one of those afore mentioned expensive goalies, but this entry is not meant to say anything about Ryan Miller, other than comment on the effectiveness of his and similar contracts.  So let’s begin.

Read More at BBG

Sabres - Bruins 1-1-11 Recap

I don't often do this, but last night's game was so awesome, I couldn't resist.  This will probably be a bunch of quick hits, Two Minutes for Roughing style, so here we go.

Before we went to the game, I got wings and French onion soup at Gabriel's Gate in Buffalo.  Eating their wings is on par with what I imagine skull-fucking Angel Cummings to be like.  (WARNING: BDSM PORN)

We had tickets in row 14 of section 312, right where the Pominville Population sign would have been had the dudes next to us brought it.  They were my Christmas presents to my sisters and dad, and myself of course.

Thirty minutes before the game, the token opposing fans that HAVE to sit near me walked up, a father and his son, who looked to be about nine years old, and sat two seats away from me.  This presents a problem, while I am 100% in favor of being an asshole around opposing adult fans, I am only about 60% in favor of being an asshole around kids.  Because of this, I decided to switch seats with my dad putting myself about three feet and 250 pounds of parent further away.

The pregame ceremony was pretty awesome, and I got the entire thing minus maybe ten seconds or so on film.  Jim Kelley's family got at least three standing ovations, and my namesake, Alexander Mogilny got a couple himself.  I thought Gerry Meehan's recounting of Mogilny's first question when he arrived in America, "am I free?" was really touching.

I love the flag pass so much.  I love Tooth rappelling in from the rafters just as much.

Doug Allen was immaculate, as usual.  As my sister put it, "it's like he's pointing into my soul."

Then the game started and hockey happened.  Me and my sisters were probably the most annoying people in the building.  First of all, one of the random things we do is just repeat random words we see/hear and yell them with 'WOO!' afterward.  AFTERWARD!!!  WOOO!!!

To make matters even more entertaining, we decided that booing Chara was not enough.  "Alright, we're booing Chara (33), Boychuk (55), Lucic (17), and Savard (91).  What's that?  Dan Paille's on the team?  Fuck him.  No one cares.  Also, any Bruins fans with Savard jerseys on must immediately be asked either where their protective helmet is, or if they're legally retarded now."  (In the third period, this turned into booing every Boston player that touched the puck.  Yeah...)

The first period was absolutely insane.  Boston scored first on a point shot that Miller probably never saw.  Then Jason Pominville tied it up with a Vanek-like move in front of the net and we immediately started in on the Tuukka chanting.  Because fuck Tuukka Rask.  After the goal, Savard got his panties in a wad and his retarded swelled brain all riled up about something and knocked Pominville over.  Not the best idea when A). Mike Weber is standing right there and has proven that he doesn't give a shit who he fucks with, and B). you're one good punch away from going full retard.  Then Boston scored on a weird angle shot that probably went in off Rob Niedermayer.  Proof that he exists in at least the tangible sense.  Boston would go up 3-1 on a pretty good deflection in the slot, and I started to regret bringing my sister Sara.  Sara was 0-3-2 in Sabres games at that point and it wasn't looking good at the trap-happy Bruins who like to get a lead and then refuse to play anything that resembles hockey.  Adam McQuaid decided that he wanted to headbutt Cody McCormick's fists several times and then rest for five minutes.  And so he did.  Then Thomas Vanek made Andrew Ferrence look like Dmitri Kalinin completely owning him on a two on one with Tim Connolly to make the score 3-2 Boston.  After that Boston struck back by getting the Sabres defense to shit the bed, and convincing Ryan Miller that the blue ice was lava and scored a short handed goal.  And then, Drew Stafford happened.  He took a poor angle shot on Rask that rattled around the post and managed to skate in and poke in the rebound with less than a minute to go in the first.  Rask immediately went to bitch to the ref about his vagina being a-flutter or something, but the goal stood and the period ended at 4-3 in favor of Boston.

During the intermission, Bruins fatbag Claude Julien decided to pull Rask.  It could have something to do with the fact that Rask allowed 3 goals in 16 shots, but I think it was based on Rask's reaction to the Stafford goal late in the period.  Rask has been a Robert Esche-ian model of sanity in his career...

Whew, lots of first period there.  During the intermission I took a piss and contemplated for the millionth time, hurling my phone at the Butterwood (lol butterwood) Blimp just to see the amusing bounce.  Not worth it...barely.

Stafford had only just begun.  Six minutes and seventeen seconds into the second he found himself on a two on one.  He looked to his left and I could see the decision making process take place.  "Pass to Mike Grier...nahhhh..."  And the rest is history.  Note to Nathan Gerbe, THAT is when it is okay to dangle in like a fucktard and lose the puck.  25, 28, 20, 52, 6, 34, yes, deke like the tiny little moron you are.  26, 19, 29, 55, 21, 63 pass the puck to the real hockey players please.  Thanks.  I hope Tyler Myers spits his flu into your mouth.  Then Dennis Seidenberg's leg scored a goal for the Buffalo Sabres with an assist to Jason Pominville and the Sabres headed to the dressing room up 5-4.

I'm not entirely positive what happened in the intermission, but I'm pretty sure Claude Julien pulled out his man-tits and threatened to coach the rest of the season in nothing but a thong if the Bruins didn't start playing better.  Motivated by that horrifying possibility, the Bruins came out and spent pretty much the entire first ten minutes of the third in the Sabres end.  Seguin scored a goal that a superstar goalie should save most of the time, and the Sabres punished him by giving him a two on one to deal with.  At this point my sister Stephanie turn to me and asked why we brought the 0-3-2 Sara.  "Hey, there's still 47.3 seconds left," I replied.  I had always wanted to be at one of those games where the Sabres tie the game with less than a minute to go, but I recognize the flaw in that.  It involves sitting around for much of the third hating your life while the Sabres are losing.  Anyways, Pominville put a point shot on net with about thirty seconds to go that landed on Stafford's stick and he put a bloop single over the glove of Tim Thomas to tie the game as Thomas Vanek got half plastered, half dove into the net.  Poor Vanek.  (Watch Paul Gaustad tackle approximately six people on the bench in the highlights.)

There was an overtime, but there isn't much to talk about aside from the puck ping ponging around about nine Bruins on the bench while the officials refused to call a too many men on the ice penalty.  (Note to officials: let's stop with this "letting them play" bullshit and just get things right.)

Then we went to the shootout and the shooters were Stafford, Vanek, and Ennis (I predicted Pominville instead of Ennis) for Buffalo and three assholes for Boston.  Stafford came in and I called the backhand-top shelf move.  Fortunately Rask was spread like a Thai hooker and Stafford wired the puck five hole.  Then Boston scored.  Thomas Vanek came in and let loose what I like to call the "fuck you slapshot."  Who takes a slapshot in the shootout?  Thomas Fucking Vanek does, that's who.  Vanek is now first in shootout goals (4) and first in shootout percentage (100%) in the league this season.  Then Tylyer Seguin put the afore mentioned backhand move past Miller.  I think that Tyler Ennis could have scored normally, but he decided to make Tim Thomas look really fucking stupid in the process.  I support this.  I'm not entirely sure what happened, but I think that Ennis warped the laws of physics that involved Thomas facing the end boards as he flailed his hand and foot in the air like a greased Drew Carey.  And then Chara set out to prove that he really is less evolved than the rest of us.  Okay, first of all, you're nine feet tall.  Why are you deking?  Any puck movement with your redwood of a stick involves it traveling approximately thirty miles.  Secondly, if you are going to deke, and you are a big guy, why not try either the bread and butter backhand move, or the Forsberg where you just leave it on the end of your stick and scoot it in with one hand?  Instead of trying some stupid ass forehand move that had no hope of working and never works on an NHL calibur goalie unless you're Danny Briere or Maxim Afinogenov.

Some prick, Jason Pominville, and Drew Stafford were the three stars.

Several milestones were reached in this game:

  • It was the first Sabres victory Sara has seen in person in her sixth try.
  • It was the third Sabres victory I have seen from the 300s, and the first that did not involve the Tampa Bay Lightning.
  • Every Sabres victory I've seen from the 300s has had them score 7 goals.  (7-4 against the Lightning on 3-19-18, 7-2 against the Lightning on 3-27-10, and 7-6 against Boston on 1-1-11)
  • I continue to have seen more goals and more points from Thomas Vanek (25 gp, 19g, 10a, 29 pts).