follow-up to last post:

yes, it's ice cream with maple syrup on it, and the maple leaf cookies from Canada. I thought of this sundae yesterday but didn't want to have it before the gold medal game, so it wouldn't be a jinx. now the game is over and I guess it's to celebrate Canada's win, or as consolation, or...

I hope to have two of the following up before I do the Hockeenight Puckcast (have I mentioned it everywhere yet?) tomorrow night: Olympics wrapup (which will include things I meant to put in an Olympics PREVIEW); NHL preview (which will include things I meant to put in the NHL break WRAPUP); adventures in Rockford at my first IceHogs games for Blackhawks Night, last night...or maybe I'll even get super-caffeinated and write the story of my first hockey game. (apologies if this blog has been too much about me recently, but I figured there's enough people covering the Olympics adequately.)


news item 1: I guess I'm doing the Hockeenight Puckcast Monday night! which I've wanted to do for a while but feel unprepared for right now (given my Olympics angst, and lack of interest in NHL trade deadline stuff. well, I'll still have plenty to talk about). my first podcast! more announcements to come.

news item 2: in just a few hours we will know, once and for all...USA vs Canada, WHICH IS THE BETTER COUNTRY.* I'm not so good at trash talk, but in representing the respective countries via non-nutritious food and drink? okay...

I found these on a dollar store visit with a friend recently. he saw the maple leaves and asked if they were made in Canada and I was amused they were. I found them at another dollar store Thursday and bought some just before the gold medal women's hockey game...which the US lost. so I'm trying to stay away from them now...but they're so delicious! I don't like Oreos much except in cookies n' cream ice cream, so this is my new sandwich cookie habit...

I'd read about but not found this candy bar, then saw it in a Cracker Barrel gift shop on the road trip for the Blackhawks game in St. Louis recently. still haven't tried them. I don't know what these have to do with anything, but they're made in the US--Necco, in Revere, Mass., a factory I've actually passed by! (okay, Toronto vs Boston treats makes this more of a Maple Leafs vs Bruins thing, but anyway...)

oh, and this, your embarrassing, nonsensical Team USA fan photo:

(I've been saving those cans and bags, many from hockey road trips, for a while. for the real photo shoot I wanted to do, involving a blonde friend of mine and Team USA and Team Canada jerseys...but I never tried to borrow any jerseys, and the photographer I mentioned this to is in another state, and...well, I've probably said more than you want to hear anyway.)

rushing off to a bar now! if anyone can get me a DVR copy of the game you are my hero. Olympics wrapup tonight, hopefully... GO USA!

*at men's hockey in 2010

my first trip to a sports card store

yes, somehow in the midst of all the Olympics excitement (and rage at how much of it I can't see--guess whose 6 goals I missed Friday?) I've been doing a few other things. I saw that Sal of the excellent hockey card blog Puck Junk was looking for the card set given out at the Sharks @ Red Wings game Feb. 11, and I happened to have an extra (did I mention I went to that game? I've been posting the non-hockey shots from my trip on Flickr recently. RIP Lafayette Building). this was my excuse to finally go to Tim's Baseball Card Shop (as previously mentioned, featured in an ad that aired during the Super Bowl).

it's a very nice place; I met Tim and his mom and talked a bunch of hockey and collectibles stuff with Sal, who traded something cool from the 1990s I'll post later for the Red Wings set. he asked the prices on some boxes of hockey cards from 1990-91 and when I learned the whole boxes were $8, I had to get them. I'm not really collecting, just picking up stuff for the fun of it, so even if these cards are terribly common I was thrilled because I don't have them yet...



72 packs of cards! Score has 15 cards/pack; Upper Deck 12. I've only opened a couple dozen so far. I was happy to see North Stars in the first Score pack I opened; I got lots of Jets, Nordiques, and Whalers in the recent 1993-94 card acquisition, but no North Stars yet. (now I want Colorado Rockies and Oakland Seals cards...)

I also stopped back at the dollar store I got the Valentine's football-shaped candy at the other week, and bought what must have been the last two packs of hockey cards there, since I had to dig them out of containers of football cards. I opened a pack (2008-09 Upper Deck Victory) to see Phil Kessel as a Bruin, Cristobal Huet as a Capital, and Dany Heatley as a Senator, which amused me on the bus home.

meanwhile, in the minor leagues...

the Olympics have been exciting and inspirational and glorious and all (and providing me with a giant backlog of material that I hope to start posting before I find a place to watch the US vs Finland game Friday), but in other news OH MY GOD LOOK AT THIS. thanks to some retweets on the Twitter feed of @hawknut, I learned about a minor league (Southern Professional Hockey League) game Thursday that had some...difficulties. I went to the original source (definitely click on these):


again, that's 4 penalty minutes vs 150. a 9-minute power play. a coach and a trainer getting kicked out. "security called to players locker area." I'm not sure if this explains anything:

it's a few hours later and I don't see a report on the Knoxville Ice Bears website about this game, but the Louisiana (Lafayette) Ice Gators have the story up, or at least a sanitized version:

so they'd beat Knoxville at home Tuesday night, and Knoxville came to Louisiana looking for revenge, and got it the good way, a 10-4 win with TWO players getting hat tricks. Louisiana, on the other hand...well, I'd love to see the box score breaking down all the penalties.

somewhat "Miracle"-related post

well, it's a scan of a cookbook I own, copyright 1979, so it came out before the Olympic Games and the Miracle game of February 22, 1980. it has chapters devoted to different sports and recipes contributed by athletes in each.'s only summer sports (kids, this is back in the days when the Summer and Winter Games were held in the same year...that feels like a long time ago now), so no hockey-related recipes.

I've posted a few pages from this and a 1984 Olympics-related cookbook I found, at this Flickr account (I just set it tonight so both my Flickr accounts can post to both my blogs). I should post a lot more, it's entertaining. turned to a random two pages and the recipes include (all from different contributors, all weightlifters) Skillet Chops and Beans, Prune Cake, Corn Saute, and Bean Sprout Salad. quite a variety there. I love random sports memorabilia and I love vintage (well, 1980 isn't "vintage," unless I want to make some of this blog's readers feel really old) recipes...

there are many pieces about the actual Miracle hockey game out there: Third String Goalie and Puck Junk both had fine posts today. (apologies, I don't know how to put in links when I blog directly from Flickr.)

personally, the game was before my time, but I am old enough to remember the Cold War, I'll say that much...

USA vs Canada 2/21...

...DO YOU BELIEVE IN...uh, wildly overblown comparisons between this hockey game and a certain Olympics one that happened 30 years ago? (30 yrs minus a day when the game took place, 30 yrs ago when I'm posting this). no, certain sports reporters and some of the excited hordes on Twitter, this wasn't a "Miracle." but the US winning 5-3 over Canada, in Canada, was damn exciting. definitely an upset (I found it as thrilling and significant as the Super Bowl two weeks ago, except for the fact that it wasn't an actual championship game of course): the first US win over Canada in men's hockey in 50 years! (I know US hasn't actually faced Canada in every Olympics since then, but it's still impressive)

ok, more of a game recap/links to good articles later; for now I can sum it up with my two favorite photos of the game, as in, the two moments I saw live and was anxious to see replayed and as a still photo. Team USA near the end:

frankly I like that photo just a bit too much...

...and, as a contrast, the accidental Team Canada pile-up. it quickly became available as a gif (which I love, but I didn't want to put a constantly blinking thing on the page)

oh, and US IS THE #1 SEED. I was up late waiting for the update on (they're much faster at getting NHL game results up in the standings, not that I'm in the habit of obsessively checking soon after every Blackhawks and/or Bruins game or anything) and here it is:


Americans seem kind of happy. meanwhile, laaaate, before I finally sign out of everything for the night, here's what's trending in Canada (I was at a bar watching the game, because I still don't have cable [or NBC reception--totally missed Russia-Czech game earlier], and since I don't have a portable internet device either, I couldn't check Twitter or live blogs till I got back home, but I know many hockey topics were trending):

there's no break from goalie debates...

(I'm way, way, way behind on posting stuff now, I know. the combination of the Olympics being more fun than I expected, and having frustratingly little access to see them, means I've been in a lot of bad moods and away from the blog...also, since the AHL is going strong, I've been to one fantastic game and am planning on a couple next weekend.)

FIN and CZE again: more 1993 cards!

this post will look awfully familiar. for various reasons, kind of phoning it in here. hope to do a giant Olympic post and more this weekend, before the giant USA vs Canada showdown Sunday night. watching USA, Canada, and Slovakia, all teams with Blackhawks and Bruins, win Thursday was pretty exciting. I've even managed to catch a little of the Games besides hockey, though I still have the same NBC/cable trouble described earlier.

with an assist tonight in Finland's 5-0 win over Germany, Teemu Selanne set the all-time Olympic scoring record (37 points, from 20 goals and 17 assists in 5 Winter Olympics). so...MORE 1993-94 hockey cards....I have more Fleer Ultra cards than any other brand, which is nice because they have photos on the back too:


and Jaromir Jagr got a lot of attention again, with a goal in Czech Republic's 5-2 defeat of Latvia:


see the headlines in the previous is phoning it in too:

bonus: before the standings were updated early 2/20 with Finland's win, look who was tops: 
(note: Blogger would not let me tag this post USA!USA!USA!)

today's stars, 1993's hockey cards

since my access to Olympic coverage is as lousy as the day before (see the cranky comment I put on the previous post) with no hope of improving any time soon, I am forced to just put up old hockey cards and screenshots from oh, who are we kidding, that's absolutely what I wanted to post anyway! I couldn't see any of the Finland-Belarus or Sweden-Germany men's games today (or the women's game that was actually a close one), nor curling (which is a surprisingly popular Twitter topic), nor all the stuff Americans were winning a lot of gold medals in. I did see the Czech Republic-Slovakia game. good game, even if Slovakia lost. Teemu Selanne set an Olympic record in the Finland game, and Jaromir Jagr did quite well for the Czechs. so here they are from my recent purchase of 100s of 1993-94 cards for $6 from an antique mall in downstate Illinois (I had several for each player but these were my favorites):


and here's your headlines, which needless to say couldn't miss out on fun with the countries' names. (this shot of the Belarus goalie is making me sad...)

not an uplifting Olympic story

you know what would be a heart-tugging, tear-jerking human interest story for the Olympics? a spirited young blogger full of excitement at actually paying a bit of attention to the Olympics for the first time since, oh, early adolescence (back when she followed figure skating, but not hockey, alas. or any other sport), who was ready to...well, not write a whole lot about the Olympics, but a reasonable amount, at least about the teams her favorite NHL players are on, and about watching women's hockey for the first time, and finally learning what curling is, and so forth, and getting lots of screenshots to post randomly, and participating in the nonstop, amusing Twitter discussions of the games, and trying to intelligently comment on whatever controversies there are during the games...and then, tragically, our scrappy heroine (okay, okay, this is as hard for me to write as it is for you to read) discovers...


oh, I've seen a little bit since the opening ceremonies. above is a shot from what sounded like an Australian broadcast I found online. BUT, here's the problem:

1) Most Olympic coverage is on cable TV. I haven't had cable since 2008. It was $100/month here and that didn't include the premium channels! No thanks.

2) Online feeds of the sort I use for watching NHL games are hard to find and if you do find them they will likely vanish when you're watching. NBC's being a bit strict (that wasn't a surprise)

3) NBC online feeds require a software download and, oh, you have to be a cable subscriber. To get NBC. In this economy, everyone has $1000+/yr for cable/satellite service? Really?

4) online feeds require a software download that doesn't do anything no matter how many times I try to open it.

okay, at least some of it's on plain old NBC, right? some point Monday afternoon...

5) the NBC channels completely vanished from my TV, and have not come back. maybe it's the stupid converter box; not long after I got it in June, the CBS station here disappeared for good. yes, the "improved" digital TV means I no longer get major networks.

buying a new digital TV, or even a used one unless it's very cheap, or getting cable, aren't an option right now. I really wish you could subscribe to unlimited online Olympic access; I'd gladly pay...well, less than $50 for that. but no, if you don't pay for cable, you don't get most of the Olympics (such as, nearly all the hockey games). and if you're me (just me, I guess--I posted a lot of frantic messages about my NBC vanishing and it doesn't seem to have suddenly hit anyone else), you don't get NBC AT ALL.

I found this rant via Twitter yesterday, from the blog Fools and Sages, Declaration of Incompetence. it takes on NBC for their Olympic coverage so far, and also gets into issues of their hockey coverage in general, the Conan O'Brien situation, etc. (the Declaration format is a bit over the top, but she did research it well.) I retweeted it...and my NBC vanished a few hours later. so I was even more angry at NBC and tweeted it again. and now I've linked it.

I have plenty of problems with Olympic coverage. and I wasn't expecting to watch that much of it, and I'm not as excited about the hockey as some people are. but still, I wanted to be able to have the CHOICE to see it. (and know what the hell people are talking about elsewhere on the Internet!) and I don't. I got to watch most of the second two men's hockey games today, and I know for the biggest ones I could go watch at a bar (which I was planning to do anyway). but it's a shame fans have so few options.

and now, break time

the last live screenshot I got while watching NHL hockey before the Olympic break, after a kind of depressing 7-3 win by the Ducks vs the Oilers (the home team). a lot of fights and nastiness, in the limited amount I saw...

and now, some weird stuff appears in the upcoming games section of

I'll wrap up the Blackhawks and non-Blackhawks games tomorrow, just wanted to get this up quickly (so that Valentine isn't at the top of the page)--I'm still feeling kind of sick so I need sleep. I could use the Olympic break to finally catch up on the many recaps/photos of games I attended...of course I want to write about Olympic hockey too but so far I've had no way to watch it--I don't have cable, you can't find these illicitly broadcast online, and I don't know what I'd have to subscribe to to legitimately watch online. I'm sure there'll at least be watch parties for the USA-Canada games...

happy sports-themed Valentine's!


courtesy of a dollar store in Oak Park (where it borders Chicago's west side). as you can see below they had football, baseball, soccer, and basketball. anytime I see something generically representing "sports" it seems to have those four sports on it. obviously it'd be nice to have a hockey one (with puck-shaped candies?), especially since it's a winter sport...but the little candy footballs are cute and "no penalty for holding" would work for a hockey Valentine too...

I was running errands and stopped in this store to look for hockey cards. I finally found all the sports card boxes in a big mess on the floor (due to camera battery issues, the photo I thought I took of that didn't turn out--yes, I like taking photos of of lousy store displays) and bought 4 packs of 2008-09 hockey cards, different brand than my last dollar store visit (these were at different chains). some decent stuff, lots of goalies. almost too many, even for me (3 of a 6-card pack?). as long as I'm going on about dollar stores, I could add: I found a dollar at the store. this has never happened to me at a dollar store before!

I've been sick this weekend and want to lie down to watch the last few NHL games today. this will keep me from 1) rambling about Valentine's Day/getting too personal 2) giving in the evil urge to use the special holiday options in Picnik on Flickr to put hearts all over sports photos...

2010 Olympics opening ceremony in screenshots (of course)

I recorded the opening ceremonies off NBC last night, but since my TV's in a different room than the computer, I tried finding online feeds so I could watch along with the very entertaining live-Twittering of this (and then, since, absurdly enough, NBC didn't broadcast it live in the Western time zones, you know, where Vancouver actually is, I saw the play-by-play start over on Twitter a couple hours later). feeds were very sporadic so I only captured a bit of the ceremonies--none of the parade of athletes from each country, nor the torch lighting (and its difficulties) at the end. I imagine it's easy enough to find elsewhere (I couldn't easily find a shot of Bobby Orr in the white? silver? suit, though.) Gawker has a gallery of the best moments with a very high number of comments...





that's all I's what was on a little later:

as for day one of the Olympics? I didn't see any. had trouble finding online feeds (all I could get was speed skating) and besides I had a lot of NHL I wanted to watch tonight. I hope to see women's hockey soon...