Still In It

Just when I gave up on my Lightning, they resuscitated themselves and miraculously won the past two games.  The series (best of 7, for my non-hockey fans) is now tied at 2-2.

Last night, they may as well as have placed a crown on Andrei Vasilevskiy’s goalie mask, bowed down reverently on the ice, and sang his praises to the highest peak of the arena, because with 38 shots on goal (compared to the Lightning’s 20), the goalie was working overtime to make up for the Lightning’s absolute lack of defense.  It worked last night because Vasilevskiy was on fire.  The problem is going to be when Vasilevskiy is tired or has an off night, which is not unheard of, and suddenly all those shots on goal by the opposing team translate into a heap of unanswered points.

So, they’re still in the fight for now.  Game 5 is tomorrow, and I’m trying not to get too excited, but it’s hard.  Advancing to the Stanley Cup finals would be exciting as hell, but first…let’s take care of game 5!

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Posted in hockey, I love hockey, NHL play-offs, Tampa Bay Lightning | Leave a comment

Licking Faces and Round 3

AR-305069713I had my doubts about my Lightning even making the Stanley Cup play-offs when they apparently developed hockey amnesia near the end of the regular season and started playing like they weren’t quite sure what a puck is, or what to do with it.  When they entered round one, I figured I’d be happy they even made the play-offs this year, and anticipated a quick elimination.

Then they defeated the Devils.  I dared to let myself get a little excited, but not too much.  After all, my team is the ultimate inconsistent team.  One great game will be followed by a string of horrible embarrassments, where I end up convinced all the players were kidnapped, and impostors who never played hockey before stole their uniforms for a sick joke.

Round 2 was against the Boston Bruins, a team I don’t care for very much.  They didn’t change my mind during these games, particularly when their designated thug, Brad Marchand (“Marchand” is French for asshole, I think) LICKED a Lightning player’s face.  Yeah, you read that right: the insufferable asshat licked Ryan Callahan…and it was not the first time he made deliberate tongue contact with a hockey player’s face.  No, no, this was the second time the NHL has warned this jackass to keep his tongue in his mouth and stop licking people.  What is this, preschool?  Idiot.

Anyway, the Bruins and their lick-hound were eliminated in game 5, so see ya, morons.  Maybe spend more time practicing hockey instead of licking each other.

I was disappointed to see the Penguins eliminated by the Capitals last night.  My first hockey game ever was a Penguins game, so even though the Lightning are my #1, no matter how much they frustrate me, the Penguins will always be my first, and hold a permanent soft spot in my heart for that.

Onto round 3, against the Capitals.  I’m not sure what to expect.  I’m trying not to get too excited.  I’d love to see my Lightning bring home the Stanley Cup, after 14 long years…and, hopefully, without licking anyone along the way!

Posted in Brad Marchand is a jackass, hockey, I love hockey, NHL, NHL playoffs, Tampa Bay Lightning | 1 Comment

Which Team?

cutLast year, the Tampa Bay Lightning didn’t even make it to the Stanley Cup finals, so I guess we should be grateful that they not only made it this year, but they have survived the first round and eliminated the New Jersey Devils.  The first game of round two was a mortifying 6-2 loss to the Boston Bruins, with the Lightning hobbling about ineffectively on their skates like newborn kittens just learning to walk, uncertain, weak, feeble.

Game 2 was an improvement, largely because we won, but I’m still not exactly filled with confidence.  My team has been inconsistent for years, and nothing has changed there.  Everything depends which team decides to show up: the team that has already given up, or the team ready to take back the Stanley Cup.

Posted in hockey, I love hockey, NHL playoffs, Tampa Bay Lightning | Leave a comment

Did This Really Happen?

Screenshot 2018-03-27 15.33.57

Let’s just pretend this didn’t happen, shall we?

For those who do not follow hockey (how do you live?), allow me to explain.  My Lightning are the #2 team in the league right now, after being #1 for most of the season.  The Arizona Coyotes have been the dead-last, worst, no-hope, bottom-feeding team this entire season.

It should have been an easy win.  Hell, the arena custodians, Zamoboni drivers, and concession stand workers could have played for the Lightning, and they still should have won.  Maybe they should have that route, after all, because the Lightning players who took the ice had no idea what they were doing and had no business even dressing out for this game.

The Tampa Bay Times described this game as a “nightmare”.  Back-up goalie Louis Domingue said, “…we’ve been struggling the last couple of weeks, but I’m not worried about anything.”

He should be worried.  The Lightning are the kings of inconsistency, of developing sudden amnesia as to the ways of all things hockey.  Once they start down this spiral, it’s pretty damn hard to get them out.

Stanley Cup playoffs kick off in just a few weeks.  This isn’t the time to start sucking like no hockey team has ever sucked before.  At this point, I don’t predict the Lightning making it out of the first round.  I hope they prove me wrong.

Posted in frustration, hockey, I love hockey, NHL play-offs, Tampa Bay Lightning | Leave a comment

Live, Love, Laugh…Gag!

If you have ever casually perused a home decorating site or catalog, or visited the facebook page of a complacent, floral-wearing, LOL-typing,  Minions-quote-posting, middle-aged woman, then inevitably you have come across this particular quote in some fashion:

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Gag.

Typically, this overused and trite trio of empty platitudes is in the form of some oversized wall decal, sign, or other hanging in huge, swirly script, apparently to ensure you can’t possibly miss it, no matter how much you would like to.  (And, oh, how I would like to.)

I didn’t realize I was not alone in my hatred of this hackneyed, vapid quote until my stepson, Bear, made a fiery and scathing comment about it.  I don’t even remember what set him off.  Maybe it was a picture in a catalog.  Let’s just say it is readily apparent that he despises the phrase with the same ferocity as I do.  (Wise young man.)  No one in the room disagreed with him, either.

It’s a cliche, a pathetic attempt to be deep and inspirational, a waving flag of banal pseudo-intellectualism, failing dismally by regurgitating the same three hollow words as every other mindless nitwit who beams with pride at their imagined originality and fanciful cerebral depths.

I can’t say it any better than AWildSketchIsBurned, who wrote this about people who like “live, love, laugh”:

It’s the same people that “went to the school of hard knocks”, work at “CEO at full time mommy” and “if you can’t handle them at their worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve them at their best”. They also SING like no one is listening, LOVE like they’ve never been hurt, and DANCE like no one is watching. They’re walking cliche machines.

Exactly!

If you hate “live, love, laugh” as much I do, then I graciously leave you with these as my parting gift:

Die Cry Hate

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Posted in dumb quotes, stupid bullshit, things I hate | Leave a comment

Spare Me

Facebook and several other websites have reminded me multiple times that today is International Women’s Day.  I consider myself proudly and unabashedly feminist, but I just can’t get into hoorah-girl-power days like this one.  Maybe the vagina-hat-wearing jackasses ruined it for me (damnit, they’re the reason we can’t have nice things).  Nah, that’s not it.  I never liked things like International Women’s Day.

I know a few women who strutted their emblazoned shirts and female-reproductive-organ outfits for the Women’s March last year, and they force-fed us their minute-by-minute updates via Facebook as if they were goodwill ambassadors on a life-saving world tour.  It just made me sad.  What a humongous clog of women who just don’t get it.

I don’t reserve one day per year to stand up for myself.  Something I noticed about the women I personally know who devour crap like the Women’s March and International Women’s Day and the god-awful #metoo bullshit: they tend to be the type of people who talk a lot of smack but don’t deliver much, if any, action.  They tend to be the women constantly posting links, articles, expressing their outrage over something, but if confronted with injustice directly, will meekly cow down, then explode later to their friends, who coo about how sorry they are that she had to endure that, I’m always here to listen, and other mostly meaningless, trite words.  They also tend to be self-proclaimed wounded animals who publicly howl every slight inflicted upon them by society, by this vicious, cruel world, even when no one asked (or cares).

Every day is the day to make the world a better place.  You will have greater impact on this world by the actions and choices you make each day than you will by parading about in an asinine hat, shouting as you march, or posing with a sign scribbled in black Sharpie.  I hate worthless gestures.  Do, damnit, don’t just posture.

What do I mean by that?  I mean that when I was sexually harassed at work, I told the obnoxious pig to back off, never speak to me that way again, and detailed exactly what would happen to him if he did.  I didn’t put up with it like a shrinking, delicate flower, then wait 20 years to “bravely” reveal what happened to helpless little ol’ me.  I mean that when I found out I was being paid less than co-workers with equal training and experience, I immediately talked directly to a supervisor.  I mean that when another company tried to institute a sexist dress code that required pantyhose and skirts for women while men strolled casually about in hoodies and khakis, I was the only woman to march that day, straight into Human Resource’s office to deliver my speech on why the new policy was pure crap.  No other woman I asked, in a huge company of mostly female employees, was willing to accompany me to that meeting, but every woman there benefited when the policy was ultimately struck down.

If you are like the women who hid in their cubicles and let someone else fight their battle while I single-handedly confronted an entire corporate HR department, then we are unlikely to get along.  If you would have walked with me, carrying your own notes, and refused to not be a dog in that fight, I imagine we’d find a lot in common.

Wearing slogan t-shirts is worthless.  Marches, hats, holidays, Facebook posts, Twitter chatter, ribbons, hashtags, all of that is nothing but empty gestures in place of definitive action.  Want to make a change?  Pay attention to what you do every day.  What do you put up with?  What kind of example are you setting for your children about how to handle themselves, and what kind of example are you setting for your sons and daughters about how to treat others?

I have no patience for the wannabe warriors who won’t speak up, won’t stand up, in day-to-day life, but fancy that marching with a horde of like-minded and misguided individuals makes up for it.  I don’t delude myself that sexism doesn’t exist, but I don’t believe for one second that the solution is presenting myself as a daft and idiotic featherbrain parading about in public with a vagina hat, or that hashtagging is anything but irritating.

With three brothers, two stepsons, and a husband, I also don’t pretend that sexism is not alive and well when it comes to men, particularly regarding raising children and the illustrious so-called family court.  If so many people supposedly believe devoutly in equality, why are our family courts still operating with Victorian, one-sided standards?

So spare me the parades, marches, and international days of anything.  Nothing changes with token gestures that ultimately don’t mean a damn thing.  Show the world what you want and what you stand for; don’t just talk and post about it.  How you conduct yourself each day, how you handle yourself, how you interact with others, and what you teach your children by your example will leave a much deeper and much longer lasting impression.

Posted in action, feminism, women, women's rights | 1 Comment

What I Am Thinking

The other day, a notification popped up on my blog that I was celebrating an anniversary: 10 years on WordPress!  I’m not quite sure where their starting date comes from, because my first Smirking Cat post was October 26, 2007.  Maybe it’s the day I moved over here from Blogger.  Maybe they randomly pulled it from a hat.  Who knows.

Either way, it got me to thinking.  I actually remember the day I got the notion to start a blog.  A co-worker at the time was talking about hers, and she told me I should start one.  I didn’t even know how.  She had to show me how to set one up.

My very first blog was actually not Smirking Cat. I can’t remember the exact title.  It was a hodge-podge of thoughts, rambles, rants, opinions, corny jokes (not much has changed, as you can see).  If you’ve been here a while, or if you’ve read my history page, then you already know that Crow helped spawn Smirking Cat by endlessly bitching and moaning about my old blog.  Again, not much has changed: now she just bitches and moans about this one.

Gary and I have been together so long, it’s funny to think that I started my first blog before I even knew he existed.  What on earth did I write about before I had him and the kids for comedic material?

Maybe I’m just feeling sentimental today.  It was hard getting out of bed this morning, wrapped up comfortably in his arms, impatient and hungry cats stomping all over my head (they know how to ruin a romantic scene, don’t they?)  When I left for work, he was already plugging away in the office, glasses perched on his face, and I turned and glanced at him one more time after kissing him good-bye.  Bear pointed out once that Gary resembles a baby wearing glasses when he wears his glasses, and ever since then, I get an image like this in my head when he has them on:

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It’s like Gary tries to look over and through the glasses at the same time, like he doesn’t really want them on his face and is just barely enduring their presence.  It makes me bite my lip, trying not to laugh, every time he peers at me so seriously over the rim of his glasses.

I was sitting here at work, thinking about him, so he is what I wrote about today.  For over a decade, that is what I have done: write about what I am thinking about.

Today it is Gary.  I miss him today.  I just want to be at his side right now, sharing our ridiculous inside jokes, swapping idiotic nicknames we make up for each other, picking on each other, making the kids shake their heads but smile anyway, because every now and then, we are actually humorous.

A few more hours of work, then I will head home to my baby wearing glasses…no, wait, I mean to my Gary!

Posted in blogoversary, Gary, history, love, my blog | Leave a comment