A comparison

I never was a great athlete in high school or college.  Sure, I ran cross country and track, but I was never really good at it.  I did it for the physical fitness and for the team comrade of it all.  It wasn’t until after college back in 1998 when I first gave hockey a try.  That was back in 1998 when I didn’t even need to wear skates to play.  Fast forward 11 years later to today, and I am still playing now.  I got into the team sports later in life, but one thing that I learned was that anyone can win a one game playoff.  You have to take the opportunity to make your mark when you can.

There were games that I sucked hardcore and there are games where I came out on top.  There were bad bounces that went for and against me.  I have seen just about every ending that was possible, and I have been subject to the greatest of victories and the most humblest of defeats.  I have made it to the finals as a team that wasn’t supposed to win and upset a top ranked team when it counted.  I have also been that top ranked team and been upset.

Driving home from watching the MSU game tonight, I was more than a little sick to my stomach watching the game.  UNC played a awesome game thats for sure.  I just wish MSU would have played better.  Anytime you turn the ball over 16 times and the other team only has 4 turnovers, its going to be a long game.  UNC deserved this victory and MSU deserved to lose the game.

I have been in that situation before where it just seems that you can do nothing right.  The puck doesn’t bounce your way.  Your passes are all just a little off.  The deflections go your opponents way all night.  The other team seems to capitalize on every opportunity.  In the end, unless you are extremely lucky, you are going to lose those games.  MSU just couldn’t overcome shooting themselves in the foot multiple times.

I remember when the Red Wings were ousted by the Devils back in 1995 in a sweep.  I was physically ill watching that game as well.  Same with the Colorado defeat in 1996.  Still, I learned a very valuable lesson when I started playing hockey.  In subsequent years when the teams I root for just couldn’t get it done, I am a lot more accepting now.  Sure, I still get upset, but not as upset as I used to.  I know how the game is played and there are times where you just aren’t going to win that game that you so desperately want.

If anything, I am more motivated to play tomorrow.  Malys acquired a playoff spot with a big 5-1 win tonight over the #2 team in the division.  I believe in Malys being able to do some damage in the playoffs next weekend.  I also believe in Marketlab doing some damage in playoffs on Saturday next week.  Most of all, I believe in myself and my ability to win any game and achieve any goal in front of me.

Playing hockey has given me a whole new outlook on the way I cheer on the teams that I enjoy watching and accept the results even in a tough loss.

My new stick

After my last TPS Graphite stick cracked last week, I decided to go out and find a new stick.  I found one on Saturday and placed the order.  It should be here by the end of the week.

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Its a very light carbon based stick instead of graphite.  The nice thing is that its a composite.  I hate wood sticks.  These composites last me a long time in comparison to their wood counterparts.  For $175, it was a great deal online as well.  These sticks go for way over $220 each.

How do you update your blog?

Ever since I started using WordPress, I was looking for a good blogging client.  I started out using Blogdesk, and for a free blogging client, it was great.  Even blogging straight from the admin page is pretty good, but I prefer a client on my local computers.  I would prefer something free since I am on 3-4 different computers on a given day.

Recently, I tried Blogjet which proved to be quite nice.  What I didn’t like about it was the price.  Sorry, but $50 is just too much for a product that isn’t even being developed right now.  The last update was made last year.  Paying that much for a product that isn’t even being actively improved just doesn’t impress me.

A few days ago I uncovered Windows Live Writer.  At first, I was hesitant to even try it.  After all, its a Microsoft product and I just didn’t think would work with WordPress which is an open source project.  Boy, was I wrong.  Windows Live Writer interfaces with many major blogs like Blogger, Livejournal, and WordPress.  It is much more feature rich than Blogdesk.  Best of all, its free!

Strong finish to a tough week

After not playing well the last few days, I played very well tonight in two key wins.  Structural Standards got a big win by a final of 8-4 over the Aces.  I thought I played a pretty decent game overall in this game.  I played a much more confident game than I have in my previous games this week.

Marketlab improved with a big win as well over GVSU.  After dropping our first 2 games, we have won our last 6 in a row and are playing very good hockey right now.  The real test will be our last two games when we play Ellis Sales and then the first place Red Army team.  If we win out, we will lock up 2nd place and a first round bye in the playoffs.

I am pretty beat up right now and am looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend.  I am going to sleep like the dead tonight.

Its official. Getting old sucks

I used to be under the impression that getting old was not really a bad thing.  After all, you learn from your mistakes, get wiser, and just the overall quality of life really gets better because you are in a good place.  My family, friends, and job make getting older a very good thing.

At the same time though, hockey is a sport that doesn’t benefit the old.  I am just not as quick as I used to be.  I want so badly to be able to compete, but it is now starting to dawn on me that my time playing hockey is going to run out eventually.  What is going to happen when I can no longer play competitively?  Will my desire to play the game go downhill fast?  What am I going to fill my time with when I can no longer play?

On Tuesday, the Stick Heads got beat by the lowly house team.  I played an ok game, but I feel I should have had a couple of those goals in a 5-3 loss.  Then, tonight I played ice hockey in a 6-2 loss that really wasn’t totally my fault but I feel I should have played better.  While I am not struggling, it just makes me realize that my skills are in fact on the downhill ride.  It is very upsetting to come to that realization, but its something I have to come to terms with sooner or later.

At the beginning of the year, I set the goal for 25 championships and 1 ice hockey championship for this year.  While I don’t know if I will be successful this year or not for these goals, one thing is perfectly clear.  I have to start coming to the realization that I am not going to be able to compete forever and I have to come up with a transition plan for the next stage of my life.  It could be reffing.  It could be coaching.  It will be something involving hockey.