Tuesday, February 9, 2010

What a Game!

Wow! Wasn't that a great game on Sunday?!

And no, I don't mean the Super Bowl (even though that interception & TD by New Orleans was pretty cool, and the Colts' screw up on the one yard line cost me $30 in the pool).

No, I'm talking about the final game in the Tournament of Hearts before the football game. Now that was a game, PEI coming up from nowhere, giving Jennifer Jones a run for her money.

Armchair coaches all agree that PEI lost the game when they decided against peeling the guard in the eighth end. From there, Team Canada managed steals and benefited from PEI's inexperience at that level of competition. Or at least that's how I think it went.

No matter. They'll be back next year and on home turf as the tournament moves to the Island. How much sweeter when they win the title on home ice.

Back here in the southern interior, another battle on the ice took place, our curling club's annual Tuff Spiel. And what an event it was. There were 42 curlers entered, up considerably from last year. Play began at around 4pm Friday, continuing well past midnight and then resuming at 7am Saturday with another midnight finish.

If you haven't read previous emails or blogs, I'll explain that the Tuff Spiel is a one-on-one curling event. No skip, no sweepers, six rocks per end, four ends per game, minimum three games. So that works out to a minimum 72 rocks thrown. Or as Nancy more precisely put it, a minimum 72 squats (unless you're one of those *&#*^*!# stick curlers).

I tied two games, which meant extra ends, and won two of the three. I was properly thrashed in my fourth game but that's ok because my hips and left knee wouldn't have lasted another game! I threw 102 rocks. Small game compared to Chris and Tom in the final (and eighth!) game, which had them throw 200 or so rocks in a 36 hour period. Brutal.

I was subjected to considerable ribbing when I lost the fourth game, but when I was lying in bed later that night I thought: wait a minute. None of them got that far, and the local curlers who did play lead, second and third. Where were the high-flying skips?

And another observation. While playing my second game, against a curler whom I have a healthy respect for, he looked down the ice at the beginning of the second end and said, "Wow. That empty house is an intimidating sight." I considered that for a minute and then laughed. That's what every end looks like for leads like me.

*******

Strange mood at work today, and I haven't quite figured it out. I keep feeling like I've said or done something (oh, like I'm the centre of the universe). Could be just a weird juxtaposition of a lot of things, not the least of which the anxiety over the new server system, as well as the upcoming budget. This is one time I'm not completely upset about losing my Wednesdays. Possibly it will be a happier place on Thursday.

Well, I was looking for a job when I got this one, so if things go tits up....

Tomorrow I meet with my publishing partner to review a (finally!!) completed MS. I'm designing and laying out the book. Val's just happy to be through this stage with the client. We still have a ways to go - I don't think the final verdict is in on the photos to be included, but at least I can get started in the layout and she can turn her attention to other sadly-neglected projects. We're way behind schedule on one of them but the client is (so far) quite patient.

Thursday is my birthday. I'm a blizzard baby - so was my mother, born on Valentine's Day in the farmhouse with her father getting instructions from the doctor over the party-line telephone (remember party lines? We still had one at our homestead up north until the early 1990s) because the weather was too frightful for them to get to the small town hospital. I was born in Calgary General, I think just barely. My memories of the event are a bit fuzzy.

Lots of February birthdays in our circle of acquaintances: mom, Oma Plontke, drinking buddies Roland Cailliau and JoAnne Gardner (on the same day, one week to mine), Christian the Dane, Uncle Richard, Candace Harnack (who will always be 9 days older than me), sister-in-law Dianna, former boss Joan. I'm sure there are others who don't immediately come to mind.

To all of you, and to other fellow Aquariuses, Happy Birthday and best wishes for the coming year!

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