Sunday, July 31, 2005

Sabre Hockey---- Update

Well, Miro Satan is free to go where he wants.  The Buffalo Sabre's announced today that they would not be making him a qualifying offer.  Apparently management feels they have enough offensive power and need to build on defense.  Zhitnik had stated he would like to test the free market, and not sure with the new CBA and salary cap if it will be what he thought.  Regier has stated he will be contacting Z's agent as soon as free agency begins.  I have mixed emotions about both.  On one hand I'm ready for change and to move forward, but on the other hand change is hard to accept and can be scary.  

The Sabre's did retain the rights of goaltender Martin Biron, right wings Maxim Afinogenov, J.P. Dumont, Mike Grier and Ales Kotalik, centers Daniel Briere and Tim Connolly, defensemen Brian Campbell, Jeff Jillson, Jay McKee and Henrik Tallinder, and left wings Jochen Hecht and Taylor Pyatt by making qualifying offers to each.  

   Local boys makes good.  Drafted by the Washington Capitals and then traded to Buffalo was Tim Kennedy.  Growing up in South Buffalo, Tim grew up a Sabre's fan.  In the seventh round the Sabre's picked East Amherst native Andrew Orpik.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Hockey... a few changes in the works

Satan gone?  It appears he may be.  There has been speculation about him over the past several years but this year things may actually happen.  With the new cap, it may be just to much money for the Sabres to keep him.  It's unlikely they will just let him walk, but I've seen several reports of a possible trade in the next few days.  I have mixed feelings, I've seen him float a whole lot, I've seen him skate away from plays, and I've seen him score!  I've not seen him score that much needed goal in a long time.  When the Sabres have an already commanding lead he has put the puck in the net several times, but not when they were in dire need of goal.  He has stated he will not comment, but be professional and wait and see what happens.  I think I will take that course as well.  If he is gone, I need to know what management has done to replace him before I comment. Can anyone say, Bob freakin Corkum!?!?  

The Friday deadline is fast approaching and you can visit any site that carries hockey and see changes amongst many, if not all, teams.  I need to get a notepad handy so I can keep track!  If you'd like a quick glance of what has been happening visit TSN's Transaction Log.    

Since Empire Sports Network is gone, 75 of the Sabres games will now be seen on MSG.  Rick Jeanneret and Jim Lorenz will still do the calls.  The games are said to be carried in Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse.  In Buffalo, the Sabres will have priority over the Rangers and the Mets.  It remains to be seen how it will work in Rochester & Syracuse if there is a conflict.  

Under the new CBA, only players making less than $75,000 will be able to get a call up from the minor league without having to clear waivers on the way back down.  The old 'time in the NHL' rule is still in play as well.  This rule was designed to keep teams from signing a player at millions and being able to call them up and send them down at will.  This could hurt the minor teams as players may decide to go to Europe to play so they can make a bit more money.  Ryan Miller, Derek Roy, and Thomas Vanek are exempt from this waiver because they are still on their entry-level deals.  

Larry Quinn has indicated the Sabres are seriously considering returning to their blue and gold.  NHL rules require teams to notify the league of changes a year in advance so it would not be until at least the 2006-2007 season, if at all.

This years schedule is expected to be out next Wed.

Your Monday Photo Shoot

Your Monday Photo Shoot: How Hot Is It?  

The temps here have been well into the 80's & 90's with the humidity just as high.  The air is so thick you could cut it with a knife!  One would do just about anything to get cool.  It's so hot even Papa Pal put on his life saving garb and went for a dip!   


Yes, Grumps will do just about anything to amuse the great grand kids and adults alike!  Maybe it was the heat that made him so silly? 

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Home again, home again, jiggity jig

Well, the boys are home safe and sound.  Afraid the alarms on the cell phone wouldn't wake them up they asked me to call at 4:30 this morning.  ARGH!  So I have to get up early because you do?   

"Mom, I know you have off tomorrow, but can you make sure I'm up for school?" 

"What's wrong with your alarm clock?"

"It has the wrong time because the power went out, umm what was that 3 weeks ago?"

"So fix it"

"I will, but can you just make sure?"

I swear the time has been off on the clock for years, as he never fixed it!   So, I did set my alarm and called.  He answered on like the second ring and said they'd been up.  Could it be that his internal clock has now kicked in?  I doubt I'm that lucky!  Surely it was out of fear for having the same lay overs and missed connections they had on the way down.  Worse part about the call was I couldn't fall back asleep!  

I picked them up at the airport and they looked pretty relaxed and refreshed to say nothing about being sun-kissed.  It was nice to see my son all one color!  He works at a car wash and though he is outside the majority of his work day he had a farmers tan.  The uniform from work includes a collared shirt and tie.  They had a blast and loved being on the beach all day and boardwalk all night.  He wanted to go back the minute his feet hit the NY soil.  But, alas he had to work 1-10 today.  YUCK!  That is a long day, but hey he decided to have it that way.   Me, I took a nap at noon ;)  Nothing like rubbing it in. 

Friday, July 22, 2005

Yes, more HOCKEY!

I am a bit disappointed that my boys didn't win the lottery, but at least a team in dire need did.  The Penguins will be the first to pick and no doubt will select Crosby.  I had heard much speculation about the 1st pick going to a big market team.  I'm glad that didn't happen and also glad he won't be in our division!  

Everything is set.  The lock out is officially over after an overwhelming decision by the Board of Governors.  Besides the lottery drawing many things were announced today. First, the NHL changed the logo, why?  No offense to any Raider fans out there, but what was the need for this?  I feel like it is a rip off of the NFL team.  I liked the traditional orange and black that had been around forever.  Silver and black to me is depressing.  No, I don't want hot pink, like I said I liked the orange and black :) Silver because of the cup?  'Cmon, what a joke!!  

I am looking forward to the rule changes.  But, I will be honest I am still waiting to see how things 'wash out.'  It's well documented that the league has announced a crack down on the clutching and grabbing.  Once again that is part of the rule change.  Change?  Don't they mean enforce?  The rules have been there, but after about 30 days into the season teams whine and cry over the penalties and things revert back to the clutch, the grab, the hook impeding the ability for speed, grace, or power on the ice.  It won't matter how many little or big changes are made, no red line, smaller goalie equipment, a shoot out so no game ends in a tie if the rules are not enforced, it is all for not.  We will only be watching a slightly moderated version of hockey in the past few years.  It will not bring the fans that are angry back and surely it won't be bringing new fans on board if they don't understand.  I am excited to see how Martin Brodeur reacts to having limited space to play the puck, what happens to the older slower D-men with the two line pass, or better yet what about the snipers, will the pinch as often?  Will the trap be worse with no red line?   

Now the frenzy begins. 

July 23  Compliance Buyout Period Begins                

             Period to Negotiate and Sign 2003 Draftees Begins                

             Period to Extend Qualifying Offers Begins                

             Period to Negotiate RFAs/UFAs Begins

July 28   Deadline for Exercising Club/Player Options for 05/06                 

              Deadline for Signing 2003 Draftees

July 29   Deadline for Initiating Compliance Buyouts

July 30    Entry Draft

July 31    Deadline for Qualifying Offers.

August 1  RFA/UFA Period Begins     

I'm looking forward to seeing what happens out there.  There should be so much player movement and excitement over the next few days/weeks.  How does your team look to fare?  Feel free to comment, I would love to hear some feedback!  I can't believe I am the only one excited about this.

The night from hell

First, thank you to everyone who emailed me or commented on how anxious I was over this trip.  I may actually sound like a 'nightmaremom,' but I'm not.  LOL No really, I'm not!  

The Internet is a wonderful tool.  It gives you the ability to research with just a click.  Go here, go there, find a mountain of information.  Sometimes just TOO much information!  The flight was to take off at about 8pm.  There was a 45 minute lay over in Atlanta, and then on to Florida.  There was no way in hell they wanted me to wait at the airport with them until take off.  The are young men and can handle things without 'Mommy.'  So I went home after dropping them off.  About 10ish I logged on to see how the flight had progressed.  DELAYED!!  It hadn't even taken off yet.  The expected flight and arrival time would put them in Atlanta well after their connecting flight departed.  No other flights out for the evening.  Click on to another site, there must be more information, nothing about a delay.  Click another site, flight canceled.   They both had cell phones and I couldn't imagine why they didn't call.  I dialed and both phones were shut off and went directly to voice mail.  Geeze, I hope they haven't been sitting on the plane on the runway all this time.  Click, click, click, such conflicting information.  Dial again, voice mail!  Gawd who created that anyway??    

Yes, I started to panic.  Two young guys who hadn't flown by themselves, trying to enjoy a free weekend trip and they are going to be stuck in Atlanta for the night.  I wasn't even sure they realized their connecting flight wasn't going to wait for them. I knew neither had much money, it was a free flight, free room and board, and they were just going to play.  Talk about restless!  Of course I couldn't sleep and I paced the house and tried to keep my mind off things.  My phone rang at about 12:30-1 and they had just landed in Atlanta.  They were fine, but tired and hungry.  "Mom chill, we are fine!"  They got themselves situated for the first flight out in the morningand were going toroam the 'halls' to see if they could find food.  I didn't sleep well, and wasn't relaxed until I heard from them this morning at 11, finally reaching their destination.  

I was a mess, but I know they had a blast.  They roamed the airport, fooled around.  Had great conversations with other stranded travelers.  They didn't sleep a wink and were ready for a great day on the beach today.  LOL, both probably burnt to a crisp! They decided to rent a car and get a hotel room instead of staying with the family. More money then brains I think, but they are 19 and learning on their own.  To be young and carefree. <sigh> Did I do things like this to my mother?  Ummm, probably!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

In sunny Florida

My son's plane is in the air and he will arrive in FL at about midnight.  I'm a bit anxious to say the least.  Yes, he is a big boy, a young adult, but I'm still Mom!  All the way to the airport I grilled him and his buddy.  "You're both 19, and legal, old enough to know better, be responsible."  I got a few strange looks, but if you're a Mom you know what I mean.  Maybe you even know how I felt.  I will feel better when he calls and tells me he is there.  Or will I?  All the girls on the beach in bikini's, raging hormones, oh I don't even want to think about it!!!  I'm lucky he is so good, and he knows the rules :)  

Off to sunny Florida for a few days without his mother!  LOL  He best leave that phone charged and on!  Ok, yes I am a basket case.

To hell with half over, it's over!!

Well, the NHLPA voted in favor of the new CBA.  It's been reported that 90% of the players voting said yes.  The numbers will change a bit, but there is not enough players that haven't voted left to change the outcome.  Many news sources are saying "it's half way done."  Well, that is bull!  It's done.  The only thing left is for the Board of Governors to vote. They locked out for a year and now folks won't report it's a done deal in case 'they' vote no?  Who in their right mind would think they would vote no??  I've heard some bits and pieces reported out of the players meetings.  Apparently some of the older guys really got on the younger guys who spoke out against the union.  Well, of course they did.  They aren't making millions and they are the ones that have been told all along don't take the cap, and after a year the union takes the cap.  They have a right to be angry.  They lost money.  Sure, I agree there is probably over paid younger guys, but all in all they gave up a year for something that could have been agreed to 300 days ago!   

Friday after the Board of Governors meeting there will be a news conference to discuss the rule changes.  There is speculation about the changes.  No red line, touch up offsides, smaller goalie equipment.  This fan would just like to see the rules enforced.  Not for the first 30 days, but the whole season.  If the clutching and grabbing doesn't stop it really doesn't matter what rules are, the game will still be 'broken' I truly hope after a year off they've learned a lesson and will do all they can to get all fans back, and possibly grow the game.  What a concept!?!  

The lottery draft will be held at 4pm.  The one thing I don't like is it will be done behind close doors.  No media or select 'outsiders' to view the event.  With everything that has happened and all the finger pointing I don't think it will matter who wins, someone will feel it is rigged.  If Crosby goes to the Rangers or any other big market team every small market team will wonder, so on so forth.  Why not just have some media there to witness?  To say nothing about a great PR move.  Ok, so folks only care about the first ball pulled.  Make it a little later in the day so folks can watch and do it.  Who cares if it takes a few minutes.  With all that is going on you can't tell me ESPN, CBC, or anything other station could not find broadcasters to discuss the rules, the lottery, the draft, as well as the time lines.  The off season has to move fast and there are small windows for things to be done.  A half hour, and hour, it's too much?  'Cmon Gary and Bob you should be doing better!  

I have to work until 4:30 tomorrow, but rest assured I will be looking on the net to see who gets the first pick!  

On another note, my sympathies go out to Jeff O'Neill of the Carolina Hurricanes and his family.  Jeff's brother Donny was killed in a car accident early today on a highway just north of Toronto. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Off to Florida

Well, it's off to Florida on Thursday night.  My son and his buddy will be flying out and staying with his grandmother.  They will be home on Sunday morning.  What an exciting trip for the two of them, even it is for just the weekend.  A good friend of mine happened by my journal and I could not get over the words he spoke (wrote) via email. I did of course ask his permission to use his words here, but am jumping the gun a bit as I don't expect a reply for a bit.  I know he won't mind :) He travels a bit with his job and doesn't always have the time to spend on the Internet.  It's a shame to as he has such a way with words.

Or perhaps it's one of those opportunities that falls together in front of you and you can't say no. Either way, travel at his age is a Right Of Passage of sort. He is in between the age of you raising him, and the time when he will have to be self sufficient. Trust me it's a great step, even just as a weekend adventure. It's like learning to swim. Remember the feeling you had when you first got the nerve to actually paddle and splash your arms erratically a few feet into the "deep end"? You know, where your toes, for the first time, were no longer clinging to that muddy river bottom that gave a sense of security. Even if only for a few seconds, it's a new beginning.  "by RH"  

I read those words and thought how true they are.  I remember so many of the steps we've taken.  Starting with the day I went into labor.  I remember being such a baby and asking the Dr.  "please, just do a C-Section."  My Dr. held nothing back, "this is not a Denny's you don't come in and order."  I laugh now, I even laughed shortly after I had him.  The pain wasn't so bad, I just wanted it over.  I've seen so many girls with broken blood vessels from pushing, sore for weeks.  I on the other hand was up and moving within an hour.  Ha!  My Dr. laughed at me so often during those times.  

I've been divorced for so many years and almost his entire life has been with just me.  The two of us moving forward, going through rough times, and we always came out on top.  In a lot of ways he has helped me to be strong and make things work.  Being Mom and Dad, and he always accepted it and never once complained.  Maybe it's because I was willing to hop that 8 foot fence to get his 99 cent ball that went over.  It didn't matter that as I landed I heard the pop, I pushed my lips tightly shut so not to use the words I wanted too.  I climbed back over and gave him his ball.  He hugged me and was thrilled.  A few hours later I was on the phone, "Cindy, can you come over and watch him I need to go to the emergency room.  My knee is the size of a basketball."  It wasn't, of course, but it might have well been.  My other friend drove me and I used one of his toys as a make shift crutch so I could get around.  Oh yeah, surgery on my knee?  GREAT!  Actually, only had to wear a brace that went from my ankle to about my hip for a month.  You know the kind of injury where the Dr. says "you'd have been better off had you.........."  

First day at kindergarten, after he got on the bus I got in my car and followed.  He didn't know, not then anyway.  The first day of school became "yeah day" before long.  All my sisters would take off from work, after the kids got on the bus we'd go to lunch and celebrate.  There were many times that we got home just in time to get the kids off the bus.  YEAH DAY!!  Hell he was in high school and asked, "You aren't taking off for the first day of school?"  I looked at him with eyes the size of saucers, "you want me to?"  His reply was, "it's tradition Mom."  So I took the day off.  The day came, and he actually wanted me to come outside.  I was shocked, that was until he made me sit on the porch which was across the street and behind parked cars.  The punk!  He was the only kid at the bus stop and wanted 'blind company.'  I will never forget his words, "Mom, don't let anyone see you!"  If you ask him, it never happened!  Needless to say that was the last time I took off for the first day of school!  My traditional yeah day adventures were over.   

Then his license and first car.  It was a couple summers ago.  I swear I went through the empty nest syndrome.  No longer was I needed to drive him to practices, to friends house, to work.  He went on his own and was never home!  He was quite the social butterfly.  I'd get home from work and the house was eerily quiet.  A note ready for me on the table, "Mom, went to..................., won't be home for dinner" Almost everyday it was something.  I started living on Campbell's soup, and it was summer!!  I couldn't bring myself to cook something for just me and surely I wasn't going to eat fast food!  My parents saw me more that summer than they had in years.  <grin> Stopping on the way home from work was perfect timing.  Hey, I was tired of soup! 

The emptiness stayed with me a long time.  It was the weirdest feeling, almost like I wasn't needed.  I know I was and still am, but it is another step and off to Florida he goes.  I think I will need a special blankie to comfort me while he is gone.  Hell NO, I will be going out!!  LOL

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Domestic Wildlife

Hmmmmmm ::scratching head::: what exactly is Domestic Wildlife?  

I need to make up my mind already!  Not only am I late I can't narrow it down.  

Is it your brother in law messing around with a fish he had caught years before and had stuffed looking for his wife?   


Or is it finding a bullfrog on a lily pad minding it's own business while I party goes on around him?  


Or, could it be....... one of my all time photo's from years ago.  Grump and his granddaughter taking a walk on the beach of NC with the gulls flying over head? Since I already posted the picture on my journal I will just link to it here.    

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Taking part in another.....

Thought I'd give the Saturday Six a whirl.    

1. What is the last thing you either camped out or got up unusually early to be able to buy?

Since I was brought up in the camping world, I've camped in everything from a tent, pop up trailer, cabin, RV.  But I do regress, on the 4th of July weekend 2005 I camped in a tent.  No air mattress!  I didn't sleep like a rock, but rather on several!  

Got up early to buy?  Never!  Nothing is so important that I have to get in line hours before the store opens to get.  Sorry.........

2. If you had to give up one of the following for a full year, which would be the easiest to do without?  Which would be the most difficult to give up?
    a) Your personal vehicle
    b) Your Telephone (both cellular and land line)
    c) The Internet
    d) Meat (all of it:  Beef, Poultry, Pork and Seafood)
    e) Television

Hmmmm... that is thought provoking to some extent, if I had to put in order but since I don't have to, I won't!  

I don't need 156 channels to tell me there isn't crap on TV, so I could give that up the easiest.  I pretty much only watch my hockey and I can make that up by listening to it on radio or being at the game, which I usually am :)  The other teams I can read about.  

The hardest would be the phone.  I work on the phone a great deal and without the phone I would be shit out of luck.  My car would be in there too.

3. How many items (include all bottles, boxes and containers) are in your medicine cabinet?  Which is the last one you used?

Well, I don't have a medicine cabinet per say.  But if you count my personal items in the 'powder room' whether it be in the linen closet or vanity I have way to many and I will not go count, sorry Patrick!   Last thing I used, well since it is now noon, I guess it would be the mouthwash.  Now had you said what hasn't been used in the last year............... ROFL it would probably prompt me to go clean things out.  Oh, geeeze, what have you done? 
I guess I know what I will doing sometime today!  THANKS!  Thanks a lot!

4. What is the first source you go to for news of any kind when you wake up?  How much do you trust that particular source?

Yikes!  Since I'm a jock at heart, have you seen the name of this journal?  I had been going to ESPN.COM to find out any progress on the lockout.  Generally I have the local news on as I am booting up my computer to get there, so take your pick.

5. Take the Quiz:  
What do the letters of your name stand for?

I used my username.........  

N- nice

I- innocent (they don't know me I guess)

G- glamorous (see above)

H- happy (ok that is good)

T- twisted (now you're talking!)

M- mystical

A- altruistic (pretty damn close -unselfish regard for or devotion to the welfare of others)

R- radical

E- enjoyable

M- misunderstood

O- orderly (really?)

M- Masculine (humph!  Well I said I was a jock at heart)

6. What is your favorite color and why?  If you have a journal or journals, is this color the primary one on those journals?  If not, why not?

Wow!  If I have to answer, it would be blue.  I really don't want to explain the entire reason, but let me just say because of someone's eyes.  If they ever read this they will know.  <sigh> if ever......  Is it part of my journal, well ironically yes but not for that reason.  It is also the color of my boys... from the original days.

Broken links and dead journals....

Good Morning!!  

I awoke this morning to that same 'ole humidity.  Temps are in the upper 70s so it's a bit better, but the forecast is saying it will be back to the 90s in no time.  At least everything got a good healthy drink yesterday!  

As I drank my coffee this morning, I played around in journal land.  Reading entries, clicking on links, and just plain being what some might call nosey.  To my amazement there were so many dead links on journals, so many that lead to private journals.  No offense meant, but why put a link to something no one else can access?  Or leave a link up if the journal's dead, meaning doesn't even exist?  I also saw so many great journals end because folks left AOL. That was so sad.  I read some great stories, and then they just ended, nothing more, leaving the readers hanging.  Argh!  I guess I am nosey!  LOL  I wanted to see how things went, what happened next, and nothing :(  Last entry was months ago with a comment "I am leaving AOL, because __________ fill in the blank.  I've enjoyed my stay and I hope my readers will keep in touch.  What's up with that???  

For those folks that had to leave AOL, I want to say, "hey don't you know if you have an AIM name you can journal?"  If they use the same name in AIM I am pretty sure they can continue the one they started.  That has yet to be tested as far as I know, but I DO know 100% a non AOL member, but an AIM member can journal.  Surely there will be limitations, but they can go on.  Spread the word folks!!  

For those folks that stopped, just to stop, or because life changed so much they couldn't continue, I am sorry.  I found some great reading out there and hope someday you'll be back!

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Guess What!?!?

It's 74 degrees here!  I hear the ssspppllleeeiissshhhh as cars pass on the street out front.  Their tires slapping the wet pavement and spitting it out behind them as they zoom by.  I hear the wwhhheeeaaaalll of the fans as they spin in my house.  I swear I can hear each blade of grass rejoicing "Hallelujah" as they sway back and forth.  The flowers lift their faces and open their arms to embrace the moisture.  Actual moisture not just the humidity clinging in the air.  The clouds rumbled as someone bowled in the heavens.  The rolls of thunder so loud at times it would actually make us jump as though something crashed into the house.  No lightening in our area, but rest assured if it comes you will find me out under the yawning off the back.  Nothing like a great summer storm.  

Before it started raining it was about 88 degrees, it is now 74 and raining a nice steady rain.  We needed it, and it is coming down perfectly.  Not in buckets to just overflow, but rather a nice soaking rain to quench the thirst of nature.  I don't care how often you 'hose' water your lawn or garden nothing matches the actual rainfall.  It's still humid, obviously, but the temperature fall by over 10 degrees has actually made it comfy.  I get chicken skin when I pass the fan.  Chicken skin!  Oh my I haven't had that in days.  For those of you not familiar, chicken skin is goose bumps.  Ever notice how much they look like chicken skin?  Hence the name.  

Ah, you didn't know you were getting a weather update, but I couldn't resist after my rant this morning, surprise!!

Why I Journal

To be honest, I don't know why I started my journal.  I had some extra time due to changes.  I heard about them and visited a few.  One day I just decided to start one.  I haven't been doing it long, maybe a little over a month.  I had no idea what topic I wanted and if you read it now you'll see I still don't know!  I've been jumping all over just putting down what comes to mind at that moment.  Yet, that is what this is all about, correct?   

I have found a few and generally when at a journal I will look at what 'other journals' the person has on theirs.  I've weaved in out of so many peoples lives I can't begin to tell you.  I've cried at a few, laughed at a lot, and some I shook my head and thought I hope mine is better <grin> Several are saved to favorites so I can continue to visit.   

Since I've just started, I have had only a few visits by friends, but I have gotten emails from people who just happened upon my life and dribble, so I know "I'm out there."  It was exciting and refreshing to hear others comment about what I had to say or the pictures I've put up.   

I know this may sound really odd, but I like being part of the journal world.  I like the interaction of the folks out there.  I've opened up on a few and made my comments and slowly but surely I am seeing how tight the group can be.  It's so easy to be drawn in and be part of a bigger being.  Sure, I've heard the mutters that journals are boring, they are a waste of space, they do nothing for the online world, but I personally think those comments are completely wrong and off base!  In my short time, I've seen how folks in need find support, how knowledge is spread by entries, pictures, or comments.  I've read entries that were made as part of a healing process, part of a venting process, part of sharing their talents, and yes even a cry for help.  How is that boring?  How is seeing pictures of other parts of the world a waste of space?  Sure some call in nosey I guess, and maybe it is, but it surely has helped folks, filled voids in some lives, and let people express themselves in the open and yet able to keep their privacy behind the Internet wall if they like.   

So why do I journal?  I still don't know, and you know what, I don't care.  Nothing I say is earth shattering, it won't cure disease, it won't stop the violence found all over the world, even in our own backyard (not just the terrorism), but if it makes one person smile, one person look at life in a different manner then it's worth it.  I'm enjoying myself and loving the new friends I find even if only on my monitor at this point.  So why did I enter this little essay?  I don't know that either.  To win?  I highly doubt it.  Maybe just for the hell of it, maybe to be a part of that bigger being, or maybe it's completely selfish and it's to get my journal out there for all to see.  Either way, I'm here and I see myself sticking around for a bit even if I only have a few visitors stop by :)  

In my travels I found JudithHeartSong and her "July's Very Special Artsy Essay."  I thought, 'can I do that? do I want to?"  Well, you see I decided to go for it!  

Just dribble

First, I didn't put a mood, because there was nothing there to say to hot to feel anything!!

Sitting here I am sweating my ass off.  No other way to put it!  Plain and simple it has been unusually hot and muggy and it has been making some if not most of the locals miserable.  Ok, so 9 days of 90 degree temps may not mean much to some, but in the WNY area that is not normal!  At 9am today it was already 80.  The humidity has been over 50% for days, and dew point well over 60% making the heat index well into the 90s.  Normally, we may see 1 or 2 days in the 90s during the summer, not this constant HOT & STICKY!  I don't have air because we don't normally need it.  Today I would kill for AC in this house.  My sinus' have been absolutely wacky, my head feels like it is full of cotton and my ears are so plugged I can't hear shit.  Nothing helps!  There have been sporadic thunderstorms around the area because of the humidity, but they don't last long and do nothing to cool things down.  Some areas have even seen the unusual flash floods because the ground is so hard the water can't absorb.  I feel like I'm back in Dallas!!  I try my damnedest to think back to January and remember the chill, but it doesn't cool me off, it doesn't even make me wish for that, it just causes me to sweat more, can you believe it??  

<sigh> so maybe I should stop venting.   

On a lighter note:  

I went searching for some information on Niagara Falls for a friend who will be visiting soon.  I found a neat webcam of the falls and thought I'd share it, be sure to click on the different options/views on the left.  This is showing the Maid of the Mist.  Aaaahhhh the cool spray, to hell with the rain gear I bet that would feel great about now!  I've been on the 'maid' several times during my life and it never ceases to amaze me.  The power of the water coming over the brink is something to experience from the bottom.  The American side drops about 150,000 US gallons per second.  Depending on the time of year and time of day it may vary.  The Canadian side, about 600,000 US gallons per second.  The water flow on the American side of the falls is much less in strength because of Goat Island, the Horseshoe Falls has no obstruction to divert it. Believe it or not, the flow over the American Falls was stopped completely for several months in 1969.  The idea was to determine if it was feasible to remove the large amount of loose rock from the base to enhance the appearance.  In the end it was determined the expense would be too great.                   


WoW!  I surely jumped around here, I will blame in on the heat! 

PS I'd like to apologize for the language.  I was going to edit it, but that is how I was feeling when I wrote and felt it added to the 'mood.'  I hope I did not offend anyone :)

Friday, July 15, 2005

Routines are boring!

Where has the time gone?  Can you believe it is July 15 already?  Bringing 2005 doesn't seem be that long ago, friends and family joining together to celebrate good health, wealth, and joy.  The long dreaded months of winters end-Feb & March seemed to hang on like a bad cold.  Birthdays came and went, school let out, and here we are mid July.  I look back and see what those close to me have accomplished yet it feels like yesterday, not months ago.   

Minutes turn to hours, hours to days, days to weeks, weeks to months and it feels like each day brings the same thing.  Is it written some where that once you turn a certain age you have a routine that must be followed?  Years ago when I got sick I changed my priorities.  Material things weren't important.  Time was!  I made it a point to stop and smell the roses to speak.  Now it appears I'm back in the same routine looking for something, anything.  Don't get me wrong, I am happy!  Very happy!!  I have fun and I enjoy myself and the things I do.  I do, however, remember the reckless days.  I suppose it's called maturity and responsibility, but it does get boring!  LOL  

My son came home from work last night and asked if he could go to Florida.  He's 19 and I guess really doesn't have to ask, but he is a good kid.  "When and with who?" was my reply.  "Thursday next week and with Mark."   "Next week? You have summer classes you are taking, you have work, how are you going to get there?"   

I about fell off my chair.  My jaw definitely had to be hanging and my eyes about bugged out of my head.  He laughed.  

"Mom, Mark had a credit, the flight is free.  We are going Thursday night and will be home Sunday morning.  We can stay with his grandmother.  I won't even miss school." I could feel my headspinning, "you can't rent a car you know, neither of you are old enough."    

Apparently plans were made, he was asking as a 'good measure.'  He seemed to have things pretty much planned.  I know if I said no he would abide, but how can I.  He's old enough, responsible (for being a 19 year old), and he is a good kid.  The more I thought about it the more I decided, yes I was bit nervous about his trip away, but I was jealous.  That carefree attitude, full of fun and excitement is something I miss.  Maybe I should join them?  LMAO!  Can you imagine the look on his face if I said, "sure you can go, I am going with you."


Thursday, July 14, 2005

Trying to get my hockey thoughts together

I was so excited yesterday with the hockey news I could barely contain myself.  I posted some general information of what was already published, but today I think maybe I'll try to get my thoughts together.  

Starting with the lockout more than likely being over.  The NHL and the players will meet early next week for ratification.  From all reports I've heard it appears it is a done deal.  Some of the higher paid players may bawk a bit, and be a bit unhappy, but that shouldn't hold things up.  Many players have voiced their displeasure with the Union and Bob Goodenow.  Rob Ray is one of the most recent to make public comments. I believe the league needed to be fixed and won't take sides now, as many players have stated, "lets not point fingers, but just get back on the ice." 

With the cap in place I have high hopes for the Sabres.  They've always been run with a salary cap because of the financial situation.  Darcy has been chastised as well as praised for his managing of the team.  Right not they have 9 players under contract totaling a little over $9 million leaving them in good shape to stay under the cap of $39 million.  Teams like Detroit- 16 players for over $38 million, Dallas-8 players for almost $23 million, and the list goes on.  Remember, its a 23 man roster.  There is very little wiggle room for some of these teams and it is almost a guarantee players will be bought out for 75% of their expected salary and be on the open market.  The buy out will not count towards the cap and the team cannot resign the player.  Now, if you're a fan, that has to be as exciting to you as it is to me.  Even if the Sabres don't get the player just the fact that they have the ability to 'talk' about it and look into it for a change is awesome!  Instead of the same 4-6 teams bidding for a player it will more likely be 20.  

The lottery for the picking order in the draft is bringing some excitement too.  There are 30 teams in the league, fourteams have three balls and the other 26 have either one or two.  Buffalo has three balls and the prize for having your ball picked first- Sidney Crosby.  Do I dare dream? hope?

 Damn straight I do!!!  How exciting would it be to have him on our team with Max!  Seeing the speed going end to end!  Oh my G O D!  GAME ON DUDE  Lets hope the clutching and grabbing is called more often so these guys can play!  

Well, once again I've gotten so excited I can't contain myself.  Just can't wait for the action.  I for one am looking forward to the open market frenzy that will take place.  I don't care that I will need a cheat sheet to know who is on what team.  I want the boys on the ice.  Training camp starts in a little over 2 months, are you ready?  I AM

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Who Gets Crosby?

The Entry Draft will be held next Thursday.  The decision was made to do a weighted lottery.  Each team will start with 3 balls.  For each appearance in the playoffs over the past 3 years a team will lose 1 ball.  Any number 1 picks in the last 4 years a ball is lost.  Each team is guaranteed at least 1 ball.  

 Balls        Team

3            Buffalo

3            Columbus

3            NY Rangers

3            Pittsburgh    

2            Anaheim

2            Atlanta

2            Calgary

2            Carolina

2            Chicago

2            Edmonton

2            LA

2            Minnesota

2            Nashville

2            Phoenix

1            Boston

1            Colorado

1            Dallas

1            Detroit

1            Florida

1            Montreal

1            New Jersey

1            NY Islanders

1            Ottawa

1            Philadelphia

1            St. Louis

1            San Jose

1            Tampa Bay

1            Toronto

 1            Vancouver

1            Washington


Do we even dream??  I remember when Buffalo won the lottery draft against Vancouver in 1970.  Gil Perreault was selected, can luck strike twice?




It's a done deal.  Notification came out from both sides today that an agreement has been reached, pending ratification for a six year deal.  The CBS document is said to number more than 600 pages.  Apparently very complex.    Among the most significant features are:

- a hard team-by-team salary cap with a payroll of range of $21 million to $39 million (in the first year), which excludes all player costs (benefits, insurance etc).

- the league's total expenditure on player costs (salaries, bonuses, benefits and insurance) is not permitted to exceed 54 per cent of defined hockey-related revenue and the salary cap and payroll range will move up or down as revenues increase or decrease each year of the deal.

- a 24 per-cent salary rollback for any NHL player who has time remaining on an existing contract, keeping in mind that the players will receive none of the monies they were slated to earn in the lost season of 2004-05.

- liberalized free agency: age eligibility for unrestricted free agency at age 31 in 2005, 29 in 2006, 28 in 2007. In 2008, it's 27 or seven years of NHL tenure.

- a more restrictive entry level system, totally revamped salary arbitration, improved pension benefits and a revenue-sharing plan.

- A percentage of salaries put into escrow until the new salary cap can be calculated at the end of each season.

- No player can earn more than 20 per cent of the team cap, which for 2005-06 means no player can earn more than $7.8 million.

- Revenue-sharing where the top 10 money-making clubs donate to a fund shared by the bottom 10 teams.

- Theentry-level system will limit those players to $850,000 a year in salary (which it was 10 years ago) with bonuses not as easily reachable as the previous deal.

- Two-way salary arbitration. Both players and owners can select to go to arbitration, whereas only players had those rights in the previous deal. This will allow owners to downgrade underperforming players.

- The ability for teams to buy players out of their contracts at two thirds of their value. This is meant to help teams fit under the cap but the clubs won't be able to re-sign those players.

- Participation in the February 2006 Olympics in Turin, Italy.

The players will meet next Wed & Thurs in Toronto, while the owners will meet next Thurs in NYC and hopefully this long lock out will be over completely!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Monday Photo Shoot: Winter's Gone By

This is the first time I'm joining in here (Your Monday Photo Shoot: Memories of Winter) and really had a hard time coming up with a favorite.   

The storm of 2001 when we got over 7 feet of snow in 3 days.  Oh what fun?!?!?  Note the decorative snowman buried!


Or when my friend from Southern California came to visit and we went to Niagara Falls. Does she look cold?  :)  The stone below the railing is solid ice from the mist.


Sunday, July 10, 2005

I miss the sound of my boys!

It's been said that the NHL will announce the end of the lock out shortly.  I've been hearing these rumors for weeks and just wish they'd do it already!  I've read article after article about players stating they should have just got the deal done months ago.  They fought for no salary cap and now it appears there will be one.  They feel the lost season was a waste.  So do I!  I know thing needed to be fixed, but enough already get things in order and get on the ice!  I miss the sound of my boys!!!


When I got my new computer a couple of months ago I decided I needed a new digital camera too.  My original camera was bought about 7 years ago.  It was nothing fancy, no zoom, just a plain jane camera.  I loved it though!  It was so much fun taking pictures and putting them on the computer to mail back and forth.  Well, now I wanted a new one, one that had a zoom.  New computer, new accessories!    

My niece has two small children and most pictures ended up being of them.  I decided to give her the old camera.  She is now snapping pictures all the time.  I regularly open mail to numerous pictures from her.  Recently she captured this rainbow over the trees in her backyard.  I scratch my head, wow, that camera wasn't too bad!  I know she is enjoying her 'new toy' and you know I'm enjoying mine!  Thanks 'Ne for sharing!!!

Friday, July 8, 2005


Ever just feel blah?  Not sure why, but feel like, can't come up with another word.. but blah.   Last couple of days have been 'blah' for me.  Not real sure why. 

Tired after a long weekend?  Anticipating the completion of the CBA for hockey and nothing happening?  The gut feeling of changes at work, that have somewhat been confirmed but no announcement which drives me nuts?  Waiting on a reply to an email from a new friend? I'm not real sure what or why but I'm blah!   Nothing on TV to take my mind off it.  Weather has cooled off so it's not good to 'float' unless you want to freeze.   It's not sad, it's just BLAH!  

I will snap out of it, always do, but in the meantime nothing seems to grab my interest.   Bored and nothing really to write about, but I'm trying.  :)  Sorry for the bummer of a message. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2005

Feeling My Age....

Well, I'm back from a great weekend at the Lake.  My brother in laws brother has a house right on Lake Erie, or a Bay off the Lake.  His home is absolutely beautiful and the 4th is generally spent there.  Because of the ride, many of us bring tents and trailers and make camp right in his yard.  No driving for us!  This year he also threw in a surprise retirement party for his wife.  Of course she thought nothing of it until her son and his family arrived from Syracuse.  Then it was SURPRISE time.  There was about 100 people there, and it was a great time for all, especially the kids!  So much to do on the water and the 'yungins had a blast.  No way can I put all the pictures here, but have added a small album of some of the sights from his yard.  Hope you enjoy them :)  

Why am I feeling my age?  Well, no air mattress and sleeping in a tent!  Someone was asked "did you sleep like a rock?", answer "no, slept on a few though"  How true!  I wouldn't trade it in though.  My body will recover.  I am still feeling the effects of all the fresh air and long days and nights so I am making this a bit short.  Hope everyone else enjoyed their holiday as much as we did!!

Saturday, July 2, 2005

Happy 4th


 First, I'd like to wish you all a happy and safe 4th!  Enjoy whatever it is you plan to do, but be careful!  

I will be spending Sunday at the Lake.  That would be good 'ole Lake Erie.  Extended family has their home right on the lake.  A beautiful setting for a backyard!  Down about 15 steps and you're at the beach.  We've spent many a day there and it's become tradition to spend the 4th there.  Good friends, good food, and good drink.  Without question tons to do.  Volleyball in the yard or water, hot tub, water sports including swimming, boating, and going on the jet ski's.  Who could ask for more?  I'm ready for a fun day!  

Today, well I spend my day doing the domestic duties and getting ready. 

Friday, July 1, 2005

Fun in the Sun

Well, the temps have dropped a bit.  It's about 75 degrees today, high humidity, but a beautiful breeze.  After several days in the 90s it feels great!  Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining but glad for the break.   

Not too long ago there was a visit to Darien Lake, now known as Six Flags Darien Lake  It had to be one of the hottest days of the year, but the kids had a blast.  Look through the pictures to see the smiles.