Common sense would dictate that I would be in bed right now, hoping for sleep to come, but then again, when did anything I ever did resemble common sense? So instead, while the East Coast is rising out of its peaceful slumber, having breakfast, I am just getting settled in on the home front after another overnight shift sitting down to a less than nutritious dinner of half of a tuna sub from Subway, complete with all of the fixins, if the fixins are lettuce, pickles and spicy brown mustard. Sure you laugh at that concoction, but the one other person to try it was hooked when I suggested it. Oh, and before I forget, go with the Italian herb and cheese bread, just because. For dessert it is pretzel nuggets packed with peanut butter. Dinner is served.
Okay, lots to talk about so I best get yammering if I want to be done in time for faceoff of the Penguins Capitals contest at 12:30. Sure that is 3 hours away, but I am loquacious, and that means I might not be able to get everything in.
First I would regale you about the awesome music I am listening to while I work on this post, but I have been Yahoo-ed since we last chatted. Yes, I bragged about my Launchcast station over at Yahoo, and how much work I had put into it and blah, blah, freaking blah, but of course the day after I mentioned it, Yahoo shut it down. Well technically they still have music, but now it is a partnership with CBS Radio, which means all of the individualized stations, such as my own, were done away with. As an added bonus, because I wasn't just a Launchcast user, but a Launchcast Plus user, meaning I had unlimited skipping of shitty music and the ability to listen without commercial interruption, I am doubly ass pounded as those features are gone as well. Wake me when Yahoo does something right. The only plus I can take from this is that I am not Chinese, otherwise I am sure Yahoo would have turned me over to the government, as they are sometimes wont to do with dissidents.
So let's get a quick change meter out of the way before delving into the meat and potatoes of yet another blog. Another $2.49 cents to the kitty and the economic downturn continues to be the meters upturn, as the new total is $56.14. This is going to be my best year by far, but I am not making any projections, because the last time I did that, saying I might crack $40.00 by the end of December, I fell short. Rather I will just ride the wave of my new fortunes for as long as they are willing to hold out.
I did bag myself a little extra job security on Friday afternoon. Seems we had this man come in the store, he went around grabbing a few items here and there and came up to the register to check out. He didn't come to my register, rather he went to the girl next to me, Laura, and proceeded to give her a hard time. First he was questioning how much everything was and what his total was. Then he started asking to see his total without paying for anything, which we can't do, as the register will not print a receipt without payment. When she tells him that, he starts swearing at her, at which point I step in and tell him he isn't going to talk to anyone in the store that way. So what does he do? He picks up his bag, without paying for it and leaves the store. And what do I do? I dart out from behind the counter in pursuit. Because we are the corner of Smithfield Street and Blvd of the Allies, when I get outside, I am not sure which direction he went. I opt for the logical course I would take, which would be toward the center of town to get lost in the masses if possible, which means, head down Smithfield Street. So I run down Smithfield for about a block and I don't see him. I look around, no sign of him, so I start to walk back to the store, thinking I may get chewed out for leaving in the first place. Just as I am about to cross the Blvd and go back to work, I see him, walking up the Blvd on the opposite side of the street. Of course when you need a traffic light to be in your favor it isn't, so I pursue form the other side of the street with him unaware of my presence. I get to the next traffic light, scanter across the street and I am now less than a block behind him, when the Swift Feet of Justice kick into high gear. By swift feet, I mean as fast as a slow white guy who smokes a pack a day and believes that exercise should be outlawed, will carry him. Still he wasn't running, so I was gaining significant ground on him, so the plan was going to be a quick run by, where I just yank the bag right out of his hands. Of course then I was spotted and all of the hard work was done for me as he dropped not just the bag and but his duffel bag as well and fled in terror of the might that is me. I comeback to the store the conquering hero, fresh with the plunder that is the spoils of war, or at least the spoils that weren't paid for. When asked for a description of said perpetrator in case he came back to the store, I gave the best one I could, he was a dirt bag, or better yet, a Rusted Root reject. Sorry all of you Rusted Root fans out there, I have never cared for them, and having dealt with them at a previous job, back when I was host at the Church Brew Works, I liked them even less after the encounter face to face.
Funny I should be talking about work right now, they just called. They want to know if I would be willing to work 3pm-11pm tonight and be off on Monday. I can't see that happening, it would mean even if I went to bed this very instant, I would get maybe three hours of sleep and then have to be back up and my first day off would be making up for not sleeping today. That just will not happen. I'll stick with the hours I have. Besides, I don't want to miss a hockey game on my day off and I would miss one if I worked today. I am thinking that I will hit the bar around 11:30am, have a couple of morning beers, come home and glog the game and then hit the sack around 4 or 5pm. The Pens have been playing better of late, since firing their head coach, they have picked up 5 of a possible 6 points in the standings and I want to see if they can keep it up. After all, while they have won their last two games, they were both by 5-4 scores, so it isn't like they are playing flawless hockey, just good enough hockey.
Now the Pitt men's basketball team is another story. When last I mentioned them they became the first team in school history to ever reach the #1 ranking in the country while being undefeated. I said then that I didn't expect them to remain unbeaten and was proven right, they have dropped a couple of games since then, both on the road to teams ranked in the top 25 (Villanova and Louisville) but this past week, after starting the week ranked #4, they beat the #1 team, the University of Connecticut at UConn and blew out Depaul here in Pittsburgh, meanwhile both North Carolina (#3) and Oklahoma (#2) lost on Saturday, so when the new poll comes out Monday, Pitt should again be ranked #1 with a 25-2 record and more wins against top 25 teams (5) than anyone else in the country. Anything to delay the start of baseball season is fine with me. I would watch the curling team (if we had one) before I would punish myself by watching Pirate baseball.
Okay, I am back from my beer break. I stopped by for a quick two beers, dropped $10 in the poker machine, took out $80. Not that I always win on the machines, but when I lose I am usually not in the mood to talk about it. That being said, time was a factor, I wanted to be home for the faceoff of the game, so I could bring the action to you the only way a glog can. Yes kids, it is another blog feature, the glog, an idea I stole from Sportsline where someone blogs the game. the differences are, they blog live, whereas I post my blog after the game, and after I am done yammering post game and unlike a normal glog, I will sometimes commentate on the commercial break, or whatever comes across my mind. These aren't everyone's cup of tea, truth be told, I only ever got one positive comment on my glogging ability, but this is still my page to do with as I see fit, and I see fit to glog, so glog we shall.
So a little pregame background to today's contest. The Pittsburgh Penguins are in Washington to take on the Capitals. Pittsburgh is in 4th place in the Atlantic Division with a record of 29-25-6 while Washington leads the Southeast Division with a record of 37-17-5. Both teams play in the Eastern Conference, and the top 8 teams qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. If the season ended today Washington would be the #2 seed in the East, while Pittsburgh would be on the outside looking in, 4 points back of the 8th and final playoff spot. For those not in the know, a team gets 2 points for a win and one for a shootout or overtime loss.
Also of note is the offensive firepower both teams possess. Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby are 1 and 2 in the scoring race, with 86 and 78 points respectively. In third is Washington's Alexander Ovechkin with 75 points, but Ovechkin leads the league in goals with 42. Also of note is Washington's Mike Green, who leads all NHL defensemen with 22 goals and 51 points.
The teams have met twice this year with Washington winning both meetings, 4-3 and 6-3.
Okay, enough of my babbling, I have microwave burritos to fetch. Thankfully we are in a commercial break so I can do that.
And we are underway from the nation's capital.
Pittsburgh's Tyler Kennedy registers the first shot of the game, but it was very much a weak one and Jose Theodore easily makes the save and pushes the puck aside for Washington to take possession.
Donald Brashear, known more for his fists than his hands, has the first quality scoring chance of the game, redirecting a shot in front of the Penguins goal, but Marc Andre Fleury makes the save and the game remains scoreless.
Washington gets called for the first penalty, Boyd Gordon gets two minutes for tripping Pascal Dupruis and Pittsburgh will have the first power play of the contest. Not that that is necessarily a good thing for Pittsburgh, their power play has been mediocre this season and they have given up a decent number of short handed goals.
The sides have evened up, Ryan Whitney is called for holding, so for 30 seconds we skate 4 on 4 then Washington will get an abbreviated power play. During Pittsburgh's time with the man advantage they could not even register a shot.
Turns out Washington didn't need a full power play, as Ovechkin scores the first goal of the game, and his 43rd of the season and Washington has the early lead 1-0.
Commercial break and time for me to snack. Mmm, burrito.
Roughly halfway through the first period the teams are relatively even in shots, but Washington has a 1-0 lead. Pittsburgh will be getting another power play, Alexander Semin is called for a trip and for the second time Pittsburgh will try their hand with the man advantage.
Again Pittsburgh manages to not only come up empty on the power play, but commit a penalty themselves to kill the advantage, Jordan Staal gets called for trippinng and we skate 4 on 4.
4 on 4 pays off for Pittsburgh, Maxim Talbot scores his 8th of the year for Pittsburgh and we are tied at 1. Of course, Washington will still have a power play here once Semin gets out of the box. And get out of the box he comes, Semin scores his 22nd of the year, the Washington power play is now 2 for 2 and the Capitals take a 2-1 lead in the first period.
Maxim Talbot takes a penalty, 2 minutes for boarding and we get our third look at the Capitals power play.
Hey, Pittsburgh killed a penalty, that's a first. No really, it is.
Pittsburgh will get their third power play of the first period, Donald Brashear will serve two minutes for hooking, and Pittsburgh will have a power play for the remainder of the first period, and if needed, starting the second.
Pittsburgh does nothing with the power play, at least this portion of it and the score remains Washington 2 Pittsburgh 1 after one period of play.
So, while we go through our first intermission, I have a question. Much has been made of Kate Winslett saying she will never do a nude scene in a movie again. I assume this is partially because she is up for an Oscar nod for "The Reader". Now, when I was at work last night they showed a clip of the movie, and it looked as boring as the title suggests. Winslett is in a tub with a man who is reading to her. Okay, have we fallen so far down the list of movie ideas that we now make movies out of simple things like reading? What's next, "The Breather" where for two hours we watch people respirate and then pat them on the back for what a good job they have done breathing? Mind you the movie would be better if they didn't breathe and just keeled over, but really, this Oscar crap is the most over hyped tripe I can think of. Everyone gets together to celebrate movies that for the most part, people don't go to see. Okay, Heath Ledger is up for an Oscar for portraying the Joker in Batman, but let's not kid ourselves, he is up for the Oscar because he is dead. That movie isn't rolling in Oscar nominations and if Ledger were still among the breathing, chances are it would have one less nomination than it currently has.
Okay second period is underway, and I managed to blather here there and everywhere during the intermission.
Well that didn't take long, Sergei Fedorov scores right after Washington kills off Pittsburgh's power play and Washington now leads 3-1.
Pittsburgh gets another power play early in the second period, John Erskine gets called for interference, and the anemic Pittsburgh power play will get crack # 4 of figuring out the riddle that is known as scoring.
How much more can Pittsburgh ask for, Washington takes another penalty, too many men on the ice, and we see a 5 on 3 advantage for Pittsburgh for 45 seconds or so.
Pittsburgh finally takes advantage of having a power play, Sergei Gonchar nets his 2nd of the season and Pittsburgh cuts it to a 3-2 deficit.
I'll say this, Pittsburgh should be happy it is only 3-2, as Washington has missed the chance to cash in on a few good scoring chances here that could have blown this game open, coming up empty when Erskine got loose on a breakaway after coming out of the penalty box, and Ovechkin was stoned when he intercepted an errant pass and ripped a shot that Fleury managed to make a glove save on.
Ovechkin again makes a move around a defenseman and gets in front of the net but can't get the puck past Fleury. The shots this game have been relatively even from a statistical point of view (17-16), but the quality of the shots Washington is putting on net leaves the impression that they are dominating this game.
And let me say this for the Washington crowd, it is about time they get behind this franchise. It wasn't that long ago that Pittsburgh fans would make the raod trip to Washington in such numbers that they would outnumber the Capitals fans in their own building, so it is good to see that the building today is sold out with fans for the home team as opposed to the visiting Penguins.
Washignton makes it a two goal lead again, Shaone Morrison gets his third of the year when Fleury gives up a long rebound on an Ovechkin shot. And not to be outdone 25 seconds later Brooks Laitch scores for Washington and it's 5-2 Capitals and to say the last two goals were weak on Fleury's part would be being kind to the word weak. They were bad enough that Pittsburgh made a goaltending change, in net now for Pittsburgh is Mathieu Garon. For those keeping score at home, Fleury has now given up 13 goals in less than 7 and a half periods played. Those aren't good numbers kids.
Washington is starting to really dominate play now, not just on the scoreboard but all over the rink. The Penguins have been having trouble even getting the puck out of their own end.
We have coincidential roughing minors, so we skate 4 on 4 for 2 minutes. as both Brooks Orpik and Alexander Semin will spend time in the penalty box.
Not much happens on the 4 on 4, save for Mike Green leveling Ruslan Fedentenko at center ice on a highlight reel hit. Still the second period comes to a close with no more scoring and after 2 periods Washington has a substantial 3 goal lead, 5-2.
Third period underway and starts with some pressure by Pittsburgh but nothing to show for it and now the Capitals are back up to game speed and that momentary advantage the Penguins had is gone.
Pittsburgh will get the first power play of the third period, as Tom Poti goes to the box for elbowing. Pittsburgh has now had 6 power plays to just three for Washington, but Pittsburgh has had little success to this point, going just 1 of 5 as opposed to 2 of 3 for the Capitals.
Another penalty kill by the Capitals and it remains 5-2.
Here we go again, Pittsburgh will get their 7th power play of the game, as Sergei Fedorov goes to the penalty box for holding. While Washington holds a three goal lead, taking stupid penaties is the surest way to let a team back in the game, when they really have been the better team on the ice to this point.
I should mention I did little blogging during the second intermission as I was busy checking out some posts over at Voy Forums and starting another boss fight on Dark Ages. It is about the only thing I have really been doing with Facebook. I spend most of my time just rejecting requests to play half a dozen games in there. Other than Dark Ages and some Tennis, I just don't have a lot of desire to get caught up in games. I have enough here to bide my time.
Washington killed off another power play, and barring a miracle comeback by Pittsburgh, this game is all but over, with half of the third period gone now.
A stoppage of play as Ryan Whitney takes a puck off of his face.
Down to less than 6 minutes remnaing and the score remains 5-2. About the only good thing Pittsburgh can take out of this is that after switching goaltenders, Garon has made 11 saves on 11 shots, other than that, I can't see many positives from this game for the Penguins.
Pittsburgh gets but yet another power play, Shoane Morrison serves two minutes for tripping. That is power play number 8 and for the 7th time in 8 chances the power play can be described with one word, "Fail !"
Now we are down to 2:18 remaining and all we can expect from this point on is whether or not a fight will break out.
And it's a final, Washington wins 5-2.
Now you know what a glog is all about.
Okay, with that out of the way, many, okay some, okay mabe one of you is probably wondering just where the Asshat was last week. Rest assured, I do have one and unlike some weeks, it isn't the funny kind of Asshat that we can get a little chuckle out of and continue on our merry way. Rather this week's Asshats (there are two of them), were I a religious person, are the type of people for which I would hope be reserved a very special place in hell for the harm they have done. Judges Mark A Ciavarella and Michael T Conahan ran courts, but they were courts where rulings were already made before defendants ever showed up. These two were serving on the bench hearing cases in juvenile court, but here is the rub, they were getting kickbacks from two juvenile detention facilities in which they were sending minors. The facilities get funding based on the number of juveniles they house, our friendly neighborhood judges here would hear cases, sometimes without the defendant even having the benefit of counsel, sentence the alleged offenders to these two facilities, then get a kickback when the facilities were granted funding for the number of juveniles they were housing. Yes, that my friends is Asshat worthy and then some. More details can be found here for those that want to read about the evil an Asshat or two can do.
As for me, I am going to try my damnedest to do a spell check and post this thing.