Holidaze in the Fanzone – Canucks Outsider #69

At the Canucks Fan Zone kiosk on the concourse at the game versus the Duck, Dave talks to a variety of fans, pundits, and passers-by including J.J. of the Canucks Hockey blog, Andy from Anaheim (don’t worry, he’s a Canucks fan), Roland the technologist, young Chris talking drafts, world juniors and college vs. junior career path, and finally the newest member of Canucks nation from England via Australia with a bag full of souvenirs celebrating the win en route to a pub.

Topics include Kings vs Ducks fans, draft history, Cody Hodgson, goalies, salary cap, Brian Burke, and the passion of Canadian fans and the economics of going to games. Cheers to Miss 604, Jamie and Bruce representing the Fanzone, Richard Loat and pals (Canucks Facebook app), and all the folks in the live blog especially Steve UK.

Download/Listen to: Holidaze in the Fanzone – Canucks Outsider #69 (.mp3, 40:30, 37MB)

Canucks Outsider - Holidaze in the fanzone

Music and Poetry by:

The Black Tories “Ghost in the Machine”

C Average various

Randall Maggs from Night Work “The Sawchuk Poems

Album art: photo by Dave’s iPhone, art’ed up in Picnik

Subscribe: Canucks Outsider podcast Feed and/or iTunes

See also: The Crazy Canucks – a fan/blogger roundtable podcast

 

Festive Musings from Wreck Beach – Choogle On! #76

Festive Musings from Wreck Beach – Choogle On! #76
Festive Musings from Wreck Beach – Choogle On! #76

From Wreck Beach on University of BC campus Uncle Weed offers international, festive greetings with tales of journies to come, the feeling of the edge of the world, reflections of NYEs in Japan, cougars on the Baden Powell trail, float planes, ferries and barges, and mostly asking the universe what to do next?

Plus special holiday greetings from Herby, now a free man. Music by Chris Jacobsen, from Filterland, Spilt Milk cassettes, circa 1994, Guam, Pacific. 

Pants optional for Festive Musings from Wreck Beach – Choogle on #76 (.mp3, 18MB, 18:45)

Continue reading Festive Musings from Wreck Beach – Choogle On! #76

Black Ice Issue #30 — Captain Canuck

“…[T]here is going to be that seventh game; we’ll hope they can patch Linden up and get him in that one. He will play — you know he’ll play; he’d play on crutches! He will play, and he’ll play at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night! The game is over!”


–Jim Robson, after Trevor Linden got hit my Mark Messier while crawling to the bench at the end of Game 6

It was the finest performance by the finest Canuck to ever don the “C” (not to mention every single Canucks crest and color) in the history of hockey in the City of Vancouver.
And I once made him soup and I once had a crush on his wife, although I didn’t know it at the time. I used to work at a restaurant in Yaletown as a line cook. It was located right beside the store Linden’s wife ran at the time. A clothing boutique called Basquiat. The other cooks and myself would often stand outside ofBasquiat smoking cigarettes on break and generally talking shit about whatever topic available. I made a comment about Linden’s wife (which I did not know at the time) which Toot’s, our Sois Chef, has never let me live down. It was something along the lines of, “damn she’s hot,” and it may or may not have been made within earshot. Everyone laughed, flicked their cigarettes, and walked back toward the kitchen. Later on, Jordan the Chef, told me that the girl I had a crush on was none other then Christine Linden, Trevor’s wife, and that the couple was — in fact — in the restaurant at that very moment.
Starfucking has always been a funny thing for me. People go ape-shit over celebrities all the time but it’s never been my bag. It’s an interesting phenomenon to watch, as people loss all sense of composure and personal class at the presence of another human being — who happens to be famous. Which isn’t to say I’m not immune to the surreal force of celebrities (I’m particularly vulnerable to local celebrities, see — Tamera Tagert), but, when the Linden’s order came in, I caved, I insisted on making the soup. Why? I’ll never know. Perhaps so that one day, when I’m writing a hockey blog on the day-in-day-out ramblings of an obsessive Canucks fan I could mention with pride and bravado that I made Trevor Linden soup.
That’s right, I made Trevor Linden soup!
And now here we are on the cusp of another dynasty — you will be happy to note the small ‘d’ used in the spelling of dynasty. This week, with the raising of #16 to the rafters at the Garage and the signing of Mats Sundin, has be one of the most exciting weeks in Canucks history (to quote Don Taylor). And the winds of change are raging in full force.
But what, here in Vancouverdom, will this squad offer in the realm of real change and real hope apart from a full roster about-face? What, besides an inventory permutation, will this new face of the Canucks signal?
Most pundits argue the Canucks will now place a distant third in the conference and wonder if Sundin (and a healthy Luongo) are strong enough to topple through the battery of San Jose and Detroit. And let’s not forget Chicago. Vancouver’s surging power-play picked an awful time do go flaccid on Saturday night against the young gunning ‘Hawks. Kane and Toews feasted on Canuck mistakes, despite being outplayed by Vancouver. Was that just a market aberration, or will our winning percentage correct itself the next time out? Vancouver has notoriously stepped up their game against a smaller Detroit team; they are also notorious for losing to San Jose, generously handing all four meetings last year to the Sharks. Going into HP Pavilion tonight, where the Sharks are a whopping 17-0-2, is going to be the real litmus test.
Let’s face it, the Canucks cannot get swept in any season series this year by Western Conference opponents. Every year we do, we miss the playoffs by inches. Remember 2006 when Curtis Sanford and the Blues swept the season series and we missed the playoffs by three points? And last year versus San Jose, same thing. Ostensibly Vancouver needs to go .500 against San Jose to have a reasonable shot in the playoffs. Sundin aside, if they can pull a measure of confidence together when it comes to the Sharks then the Canucks will have no problem making to the playoffs.
Because let’s face it, at this point nobody should be drafting a Stanley Cup parade route on GoogleMaps yet. With this notoriously fickle squad (see — 1996 and the arrival of Alex Mogilny or 1997 and the arrival of Mark Messier) the arrival of a proven player does not necessarily herald a championship ring. What the Canucks need first and foremost is a leader. A Captain of Captains, to lead this team to the promise land on his shoulders. There has been cohesion in this group at times this season, but a lack of the force necessary to carry a team is still missing. Steve Yzermen in 2002 won the cup for the Detroit Red Wings on one leg, literally. After the 2002 Olympics, Yzermen underwent an MRI which revealed he had virtually no cartiledge left in his right knee. Knowing that surgury would likely finish him for the season, Yzermen soldiered on in one his best post-season performances to date, potting 6 goals and 17 helpers to lead the team with 23 points to a third cup in six years.
It was a legendary performance. Something each Canuck and potential leader can stand to learn from.
Luongo has been out nearly a month and there has been little in the way of consistent leadership for the Canucks in his absence. Certain players have answered the call for periods, but then the aperture widens and the absence of leadership once again opens. Daniel Sedin has put his head down and gone to work, netting 12 goals in his last 17 games. There is much to his game that has improved over the years including killing penalties and going to the net to score the dirty — crashing the goaltender — type goals. There is no doubt Daniel (and Henrik) have a desire to win, they simply lack that je ne sais qois that past captains have immortalized. Ryan Kesler is the most improved of all Canucks, and his crash-and-bang style of play, with heart to boot, is exactly the type of play invented for playoff hockey. If we get to the playoffs, look for Kesler to step-up, but will this be enough enough to thwart the enemy?

 

Trevor Linden captained the Canucks to within a goal-post of the Stanley Cup. He wore his heart (and play) on his sleeve and desire to give (both to his team and to the fans) was congenital, inveterate and authentic. In a era where the payoff is measure by dollar amounts, it is the incalculable effort of leaders such as Linden and Yzermen and so many others in the history of the game which has propelled pretenders into contenders and contenders into winners. There is a small margin in this day-and-age and this “new” NHL, between these three characteristics and it is only a true captain that is able to close the gap.
Will Mats Sundin provide the needed adhesive for this unit that possesses promise, but is not necessarily promising? Will Roberto Luongo, upon his return, launch his career (and his team) into the contenders columns and, come playoff time, lead the the procession, Cup in hand? Win or lose, this team needs an identity that is sadly missing to date. Perhaps with the addition of these two all-stars the team that will the gains necessary to win. The gains are identity, consistency and leadership, three traits that Detroit is still commanding even after the departure of Yzermen. Traits that San Jose has spent the past three year learning, albeit byzantine in its approach, which has brought the team closer and looking more and more legitimate everyday. Traits that have Chicago on the fast-track to reshaping a crumbling hockey empire, with youngsters such as Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews taking the reigns earlier then expected, they are making a strong argument this campaign for NHL domination.
But winning in Vancouver will only come when a true captain comes forward. Someone who can own this town once again.
Someone who I can make soup for.

 

Mobile Non-Profit Campaigns and Projects – Raincity Radio, 2008

Mobile Non-Profit Campaigns and Projects
Mobile Non-Profit Campaigns and Projects with Dave Olson and Roland Tanglao at Workspace in Gastown, Vancouver (photo credit = unknown)

Mobile technology can change the world – or help people express themselves with art and community. Roland Tanglao discusses an assortment of mobile-themed projects and  open-source technology initiatives undertaken by Raincity Studios and partners – primarily in context of enriching Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside neighbourhood, engaging Whistler’s transitory residents, and enlivening Vancouver Art Gallery’s FUSE program, plus providing tools to cultural animators in divergent communities.

The future is present: Mobile Non-Profit Campaigns and Projects (15MB, 128K mp3, 16:01)

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Mobile technology can change the world – or at least help people express themselves with art and improve safety too. Raincity Studios’ Support Services Coordinator and digital experimentalist, Roland Tanglao discuss an assortment of mobile-themed projects and initiatives with host DaveO including:

Originally released by Dave O for Raincity Studios, Dec. 24, 2008.

His Holiness Dalai Lama 14 is Canadian! – Choogle On! #75

His Holiness Dalai Lama 14 is Canadian! – Choogle on #75
His Holiness Dalai Lama 14 is Canadian! – Choogle on #75

From the vault comes the story of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama’s honorary Canadian citizenship ceremony at the Canucks rink in Vancouver.

Along with a rousing Oh Canada!, and the official ceremony, comes a few words of humour and counsel from HHDL14 and his eloquent assistant and discussion of the Dalai Lama Centre for Peace in Vancouver

Get out your prayer flags because His Holiness Dalai Lama 14 is Canadian! – Choogle on #75 (.mp3, 15MB, 16:01)

Continue reading His Holiness Dalai Lama 14 is Canadian! – Choogle On! #75

Black Ice Issue #26 — Millimeters Away From Win In Mile High

The first period was all Canucks. They out shot, out drew and out played the Aves by a wide margin. Darcy Hordichuk opened the scoring early, chipping a pass from Jason Jaffery over the left shoulder of Peter Budaj. Most of the play happened in Colorado’s zone. The third-line grinders continue their scoring woes, Kesler having one point in ten games. After a short handed two-on-one opportunity that left Burrows passing late and Kesler not getting much of a shot off, you could tell that the confidence level in the pair is at a season-high low. The Raymond, Wellwood, Pyatt line looked solid with the most scoring chances of the period. The PHD line held the zone well, but there was little to write home about in terms of chances. Schnieder was great when it mattered, challenging the shooter and keeping rebounds to the outside. Even a disallowed goal, knocked in off Ryan Smyth’s glove, didn’t rattle the cool-as-a-cucumber rookie tender.

The second period started out slowly. The rhythm of the game was prosaic, with each side bumbling up and down the ice giving-up little but giving even less. The Aves jumped on the board first when, North Van native, David Jones made a rush up ice and Willie Mitchell knocked the rebound into his own net. A few minutes later Ryan Smyth, making up for his disallowed goal in the first, wired a shot from the point through the pads of Schnieder to to make it 2-1. The boring and frustrating second period got interesting after a vicious boarding incident occurred. Ian Mcleod drove Kevin Bieka’s head into the boards (a suspendable play if you ask me) and all the Canucks on the ice jumped Mcleod. Unbelievably, after the penalties were handed out for the post-whistle scrum, both teams remained five-on-five. This seemed to spark the Vancouver players however, still reeling from the Bieksa hit. First, Daniel Sedin takes three whacks at a loose puck (after Kesler missed two whacks a minute earlier) and evens things up for the Nucks. This was a full team effort after Darcy Hordichuk tried to spark his team with a fight, taking on Cody Macorkmack in a quick bout. It was hard work that paid off, it’s nice seeing Daniel score these gritty goals, we’ve seen more and more of them lately. And the Canucks didn’t quit, with Ryan Smyth in the box for a light-holding call (perhaps a gift from the refs for the Bieksa hit) Steve Bernier put his team ahead slapping a nice rebound from Mason Raymond past Peter Budaj. The last few minutes of the period was exciting end-to-end hockey that looked nothing like the beginning of the period.

The third period needed to be the make or break stanza for the Canucks, but there wasn’t enough goalkeeping to keep the lead entrenched. Milan Hejduk tied the game 3 minutes into the third when he threw the puck on net and it went in off Shane O’Briens stick. The second goal-against off a Canucks D-man of the night. Regardless, Vancouver swung back when Steve Bernier potted his second of the night, snapping a sweet feed, courtesy of Burrows from the slot. He didn’t even look at the vulcanized rubber, he just shot a seeing-eye-puck past Budaj with what should have been the winner. It was sadly not the case. Clear evidence that Cory Schnieder is not quite ready for a full-time NHL job, he let in a weak shot from Daniel Tjarnqvist through the 14-hole under his right arm. Demitra could have cleared the puck to maintain the lead with three minutes left, but he failed this task, leaving a clear lane for Tjarnqvist open. It was a simple case of — where the fuck is Luongo tonight? So off we go to overtime which solved nothing and then a shootout where Colorado scored on every shot. Yes, every shot.

In terms of Cory Schnieder, it was a blow to the young net-minders short shift in the NHL. When Blue gets back, the rookie will obviously continue his development in Manitoba. He showed poise early on (particular the win Friday in Minnesota) but manifest his clear need for confidence, something that is gained only from experience. What the Canucks need more than letting a rookie goalie have a crack at the majors is a wins. One point is not good enough. On a road game that continues in its malignancy, it was up to the veterans of the team to come up with a bit more effort. Sadly it’s Steve Bernier who was the best Canucks on the ice, right behind him was Alexander Edler. To win, you need to play 60 minutes of hockey. The Canucks played 57 and it cost them the game. While the young guns put in a worthy effort, blame lay in the poor play of the leaders in the last 3 minutes. This made all the difference.

Next Up — Nashville

Black Ice Issue #29 — Canucks Mauls Panthers In 2nd Period For Victory

This was a nice little win for the home team. While they started off slow and flat-footed — with Florida scoring two soft goals early — the Canucks found their wheels in the 2nd frames, scoring 5 unanswered goals for the win.

The game started badly, with Corey Schneider looking very shaky and handling the puck with minimal confidence. Every time the Panthers had a shot in the 1st period it qualified as a legitimate scoring chance as the rookie tender struggled to find his game. However, he came through on a key save off a Shawn Matthias breakaway, that could have bumped Florida up 3-1, instead the Canucks used it as a turning point to scale a full offensive  assault.

Darcy Hordichuk put the Canucks on the board with a laser from the point. The tough-guy from Kamsack, Saskatchewan continues to excel on the fourth line with his 3rd of the season. Key goals like this, from roll-players, really adds a spark to a team gaining momentum. This was no different, turning a difficult Vancouver start into a paradigm shift for the whole squad.

With Pavol Demitra chipping in two goals (one on the PP) and Kyle Wellwood continuing his PP success with a marker, the special teams looked fierce. When Ryan Kesler cut hard to the net on a short-handed breakaway and crashed goalie Craig Anderson, the gritty forward sealed the fate of the surging Panthers.

It was a very fun game to watch. Lots of actions, good hits and end-to-end rushes. While at times each team did not play well in front of their respective goalies, the home team struck with the iron hot and it paid off for the home crowd.

If you are watching Mats, just think what Vancouver will look like with you and Louie sharing the same ice. Scary.

Next Up — Edmonton

Black Ice Issue #28 — Oil Blank-it

This had to have been the worst game of the season for our beloved Canvouver hockey squad. There were bodies on the ice, but there was no soul. If the boys in blue, green and white where thinking of making a selling point for Mats Sundin, should he decide to take the money (and the travel) and head west, they failed with heart augmented by zero goals.

Now as a long time follower of the Canucks, I have to say it hurts slightly more losing to Edmonton then losing to Calgary, but Jesus if tonight did not feel like a kick in groin with a frozen Bauer blade. Every single one of Sanford’s failures (3 to be exact) was the failure of the entire team. The was no speed, no skill and no upside (Coach Vee’s favorite word when assessing talent). Sure this loss came at the tail end of a long, stupid road trip that saw Canucks playing 7 games straight on the road.

It was one of those typical (or is that stereotypical?) Vancouvers losses. The type of loss that makes you want to hurl your beer can at the television screen and scream invective at the fading signal until the police arrive and they commit you to the pysche ward at St. Paul’s. For six days they have you on suicide watch, heavily medicated to the point of sedation, you slur various forms of scatological rambling at the nurses that come and go, but in the end they release you just days before Christmas.

Some fucking Christmas. Now you have all the time in the world (since you have now been fired from your job) to spend obsessing over Vancouver’s favorite cock tease — our local professional hockey franchise.

Send me back to St. Paul’s. Maybe I’ll have more time to spend reading The Russians and suffering over my various metaphysical barriers that can no longer be channelled through the insipid brutality of grown men on skates, beating the shit out of each other for the right to smack a tiny vulcanized-rubber disc into a 6×4 net. Yes, I find many of life’s lessons in the pursuit of the game of hockey, vis-à-vis the Vancouver Canucks, and someitmes I think it will drive me insane. What came first? They might ask. Was it the insanity or the game? Maybe hockey is merely a trigger for a pre-existing condition. Well I can say this, hockey may be the single greatest joy and the single greatest disappointment in my life.

Perhaps my life needs a drastic overhall. Perhaps, so too do the Canucks. And medication for the pain?

Hint: rythmes with Fats Mundin.

Next Up — Florida

 

Black Ice Issue #27 — Griffith Way Gladiators

Did Alex Burrows leave his feet? Was that a hit from behind by Ryan Kesler? Will Rob Davison’s hit be featured on Don Cherry’s next Rock ’em, Sock ’em release? The answer to all three questions is a resounding Yes. Is this affirmation the impetus for Tuesday nights 3-1 victory over Nashville? Affirmative.

Is Mats Sundin ever going to make up his mind?
Jesus I don’t know. But if ever there was an argument for grit + determination = wins, this game was a candidate for logical propositions 101. If Sundin is a fan of winning with the Canadian game (with a detour through 70’s era Philadelphia) the Canadian way, then the Vancouver squad that showed up against the Predators is the best candidate for the hulking Swede.
The fact that there were some questionable hits, to this degree, is moot. The league will not look into it any further and the Preds will have to seek vindication during their next meeting (which happens January 1st, well after Sundin makes his decision). What was important, and I have been railing on this all season, was the team game. Kesler and Burrows are not dirty players, but they play the game on the edge and it’s inevitable that a foot is gonna slip every once and a while. The footage speaks for itself. The points, if there is one besides the 35 that now situates itself under the PTS column in the standings, is the stronger, grittier paradigm originally envisioned by Gilles seems to have found it’s stride. This makes a potentially boring road game, versus a non-divisional team, very exciting to watch and two points well deserved. This makes Canucks fans very happy. It also makes Vancouver appear to the be front-runner — if you include cap-space issues — in the Sundin Sweepstakes.
Okay, is that too much credit too soon. Deserved? The Canucks power-play could use an official name change — leading candidate would have to be: flaccid-play — due to seven uninterrupted minutes of man-advantage time squandered. If Alex Edler had not finally chomped at the bit in the third, with a PP marker to put the Nucks up one, the game would have/could have been lost. So again, the Canucks escape unscathed with a paltry attempt at special teams (special teams, more like special “olympic” teams). I digress.
The purpose of the Mats Sundin signing is to turn a pretender into a contender. Let’s face it folks, what we got ain’t enough. But if I’m a scrawny loser, then how do I seduce the buxom 36-24-36 into my bed? Show her my record collection? Convince her my GPA is high enough for Law School considerations? Is this a love or money question? Or a love of money question? Does Sundin want a team with loads of upside (Coach Vee’s favorite word), but still needs a babe on his arm to walk into the dance with? Or is he a superficial bitch looking to lift the silver chalice of Lord Stanley, forsaking mammon to get there?
At this point, the Canucks have a great record collection and they are smart enough for Law School consideration, all they need is a little direction and acquisition of that elusive trait known as identity. Will this come from a woman or will it come from within?
Next Up — Edmonton

Taos Hi-Jacking Incident from snowy Mayne Island – Choogle On! #74

Taos Hi-Jacking Incident from snowy Mayne Island – Choogle On #74
Taos Hi-Jacking Incident from snowy Mayne Island – Choogle On #74

From a snowy Gulf island, Uncle Weed recounts an incident from a lost summer involving a hi-jacked VW bus and a surreal evening of trout, tribal chants, involuntary confinement, gun shots, and rabbit stew. 

Gonna be a long night: Taos Hi-Jacking Incident ~ from snowy Mayne Island – Choogle on #74 (.mp3, 36MB, 38:54)

Continue reading Taos Hi-Jacking Incident from snowy Mayne Island – Choogle On! #74

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