Thursday, March 15, 2012

Blogger missing!

Hi there Faithful Reader. Notice it's singular? I'm not too sure how many of you are tuning in but I am sorry that I haven't posted anything in a month now. That's why the catchy title. I wanted to get a little trafic here and nothing will attract a reader like a misleading title. Sorry about that. I'm the missing blogger and I am not lost in the forrest or taken by the Taliban or anything the thing is the last four weeks have been pretty nasty as I've been fighting this damn sinisitis crap and dealing with some other issues and didn't really feel up to sitting at the old keyboard after a few long days. So the lost is found!!'s some new stuff for you to peruse. Enjoy.


The other day a few of us at work were discussing the pros and cons of all of the social networking avenues that are available to everyone nowadays. There is such an abundance of these things that if everyone was connected to all of them they wouldn’t have time to be sociable in any venue other than electronically. In fact, it gets to the point where you’re so connected that you’re disconnected, if you know what I mean.
Between Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, WindowsLive, Bebo etc. etc. you could be on your Smartphone or your stupid computer all of the time and never actually talk to a person face to face. And many are.
But that’s a slippery slope, too, isn’t it? Take the story of the guy in Seattle who’s two wives met on Facebook and he ended up being charged with bigamy. Apparently, this guy and his first wife split up after eight years of marriage but they were never legally divorced before he changed his surname and married his second wife. Facebook, as it is wont to do, recommended that the two women become Facebook “friends”, which they did, but I don’t know for how long, and they discovered they were both married to the same man and then the first wife alerted the authorities to the situation when she wasn’t convinced that he would rectify the situation through the proper channels. He’s been charged with a felony and it could impact his job as a Corrections Officer, (ironic isn’t it, that he couldn’t “correct” his own situation?), and the prosecutor stated that, “it’s not the crime of the century, but it’s still a crime.” Too lazy? Too busy? Too scared to lose it all? Too distracted with finding another wife? Why the guy didn’t proceed with a divorce was not disclosed in the article I read about the matter but I wonder if he’s reconsidering his actions now.
I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether you think that our elected officials should be communicating with their constituents via Tweets, like the President of the Treasury Board and the Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative of Northern Ontario, Tony Clements, who is notorious for his Tweeting. Personally I think it’d be hard to get your point across in 140 characters or less but I’m more of a “the devil’s in the details” kind of guy and I need more details than I can get in140 characters worth of information.
I am also confused with the information that many are willing to share with the world through their social media outlet. Do we really need to know what you are doing every second of the day? Seriously? Do we? But, then again, reading social media is like holding a TV remote-we have a choice to not watch, look or read it don’t we?
There’s cyber-stalking and cyber bullying and a whole litany of other social networking scammers out there but when one is dealing with human nature it’s only a matter of time before someone finds a way to use and abuse any given program or product. But on the other hand, there’s the Anchorage Twitter community which is very close-knit and their members have created some real strong friendships and the Tweeps babysit each others kids and dogs, housesit for each other and bring food and medicine to other users when they are sick and offer moral support when times are tough. So, as usual, something can be used for good or for evil. It just depends on the users’ intent.
On a personal note I like keeping in touch with family and friends and sharing photos and anecdotes about the grandkids and such but, as with all things, moderation is the key and I’ll pass along this piece of advice for you to use when contemplating a jump into the ol’ social media pool.
“Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t want plastered on a billboard with your face on it.” – Erin Bury, Sprouter community manager.


Do you think Jesus actually did a lot of jumping? You’re right, who knows? So where’d you think that saying came from anyway? “Holy Jumpin’ Jesus.” Our love of alliteration perhaps? Maybe it was the first thing that popped into someone’s mind just after hitting their thumb with a hammer? My research says that “Holy Jumpin’…” is a Canadianism and many weird sayings begin with the two words “Holy Jumpin’” as in “Holy Jumpin’ Jehosophat” or “Holy Jumpin’ Jellybeans” or “Holy Jumpin’ Weasel Fritters on a Hot Cross Bun!”??? Seriously? You’re kiddin’? People actually say that? But, anyway, the colourful phrase might be blasphemous and shocking to some but it sure gets used a lot.
One of my all-time favourite expressions came from an old Snickers Chocolate bar ad which aired a few years ago. Maybe you’ll remember it. There was this old grounds crew guy painting the home team’s name in the end zone of a football stadium when one of the team’s players walks by as the old guy was putting the last strokes of his masterpiece on the grass when the football player asks him, “Whose the Chefs!?” To which the old guy looks at his work and says, “Great Googly Moogly!” noticing that he left out the “i” in what was supposed to be “Chiefs”. As the exasperated old guy shakes his head the voice-over announcer states; “Not going anywhere for a while? Grab a Snickers.”
Another head scratcher saying is “cute as a button”. Where’d this come from? I was holding my five-month-old granddaughter Ava on my lap and I was telling her that she was so darn cute, which she is if I do say so myself, but I think she’s a lot cuter than any button I’ve ever seen. And I’ve seen a lot of buttons in my day, I’ll tell ya.
Of course there are conflicting answers to the question of the origin of the saying stating that “cute as a button” meant, "cute, charming, attractive, almost always with the connotation of being small”. Cute and keen were two of the most overused slang words of the late 1920s and 1930s. But someone else wrote that “cute as a button” actually has nothing to do with a button, as in a button on a shirt, they say that the button quail is a very small gray super, super fluffy squishy looking (or “cute” if you will) bird. People used to say “cute as a button”, meaning “cute as a button quail” because the bird was considered so adorable. Whatever. You pick one. It still doesn’t change the fact that my granddaughter is cuter than any button or bird.
There are a lot of sayings and expressions out there in the old English language. Some of them are more common than others, of course, and many of them are self explanatory while others are just, as stated earlier, head scratchers. The following are some expressions from the English language that you may or may not have heard and you may or may not know their meaning.
“Good Riddance to Bad Rubbish”; “Plain as a Pikestaff”; “According to Hoyle”; “Bats in the Belfry”; “Bees Knees”; “Shilly Shally”; “Short Shrift”; “Sweat like a Beefsteak”; “Mind your p’s and q’s”; “Navel Gazing”; “Three Sheets to the Wind”; “Not Worth a Tinker’s Damn”; “That’s a Corker”; “Happy as a Sandboy”; “Mad as a March Hare”; “Mealy Mouthed”; “Neat as Ninepence”; “Over the Moon”; “Out of the Blue”; “On a Sticky Wicket”… there’s a million of ‘em. Whenever you get a couple of moments, or maybe a couple of hours, look some of these up they just might “Pique your Interest”.
“Our language is funny—a “fat chance” and a “slim chance” are the same thing.”- J. Gustav White.

Triangle Hockey League's 60th Birthday

Legend has it that Victor E. Lee established the Triangle Hockey League, also, back in the day, known as “the biggest little hockey league in Saskatchewan”, in the fall of 1951, which makes it a full 60 years-old this year. Legend also has it that the Triangle Hockey League is one of the oldest, if no THE oldest, Senior Hockey Leagues in the province. Victor was the league’s first President and remained in that capacity until the end of the 1958 season. From the inception of the league until the end of the 1982-83 THL season the Victor Lee Trophy was presented to the Champions of the Triangle Hockey League. In 1983 the thirty-year-old well-worn trophy was retired by the league and donated to the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame. It was replaced by the Todd Memorial Trophy which is still awarded to the Champions of the Triangle Hockey League.
According to the History section of the Triangle Hockey League’s website the participating teams in that inaugural 1951-52 season were Fairlight, Wawota, Kennedy, Kipling, Windthorst, Glenavon and Montmartre along the northern railway line or Highway #16 (now #48); and Redvers, Carlyle, Arcola, Kisbey, Stoughton, Creelman, Fillmore and Sedley along the southern railway line, or #33 Highway with the north lines and the south lines creating the sides of the triangle.
The Kipling Royals were charter members of the league and the Royals also hold the record for icing a team for the most consecutive years, (1951-2002), of the many, many teams that have competed in the THL over its long history. Since its beginning the league has migrated over the south eastern part of the province and there have been over thirty different communities that have entered a team in the league at one time or another. Currently there are eight teams in the Triangle Hockey League and they are: the Bredenbury Cougars, the Churchbridge Imperials, the Esterhazy Flyers, the Moosomin Rangers, the Ochapawace Thunder, the Rocanville Tigers and the Whitewood Orioles.
The Kipling Royals competed in the league for a full thirty years before they won their first THL Championship exactly thirty years ago in the 1981-82 season. Especially at this time of year, (February-March-April), there is an acute awareness of the absence of a Senior hockey team in Kipling. Right now, all we have are memories of Glory Days long past. The Kipling Royals competed in the Triangle Hockey League for fifty consecutive years and won the championship five times and it is this writer’s opinion that a community of over a thousand population with a fine facility and a great history in sports should be icing a Senior hockey team, too.
For reasons too many to mention in this short column the Royals failed to ice a team for the last ten or so hockey seasons. As a former fan, player, executive member and manager of the team I am fully aware of the hard work, financial obstacles and sacrifices that are required to put a competitive team together. That said these obstacles can be overcome. I am encouraging any dialogue that may result in bringing a Senior Hockey Club back to Kipling. It’s long overdue.
In an effort to facilitate this discussion an Alumni Night has been booked for the evening of the 10th of March at the good ol’ Kipling Arena. There will be a hockey game at 8:00pm between the Kipling Royals Hockey Legends, (hopefully many members of the 1981-82 Championship squad), and the members of the 1992-93 Kipling Royals THL Champions with a social to follow. All proceeds will be going to the Rink Management Committee. Spread the word.
”Call them pros, call them mercenaries -- but in fact they are just grown-up kids who have learned on the frozen creek or flooded corner lot that hockey is the greatest thrill of all.” - Lester Patrick (1883-1960).


We got a phone call from another telemarketer the other night, which isn’t unusual, what would be unusual, though, would be to NOT get a call from a telemarketer at all, but anyway, I digress, so the guy says, “Ah, is Mrs. Hooobaard there?” Huh? Even if Mrs. HUBBARD was at home, which she was, I wouldn’t have called her to the phone because I knew it was a telemarketer but I definitely wasn’t calling Mrs. HOOOBAARD to the phone because nobody by that name lives here.
Seriously? Mrs. HOOBAARD?! Where’d this guy grow up anyway? And no, judging by his very Canadian accent, he wasn’t an outsourced out of the country type guy who wouldn’t have heard a nursery rhyme or two growing up any place where they speak English. You’d have thought that someone with even the most rudimentary knowledge of nursery rhymes would have heard of “Old Mother Hubbard”, wouldn’t you?
Do you know how many times in my life I have been bugged by the “Old Mother Hubbard” routine when people have seen or heard my last name? Probably not, but take a guess. Okay? Have you thought of a number? Now double it and you might be close.
“Hey Hubbard…where’s your old mother?” Haw Haw.
“Hey Hubbard…where’s your poor dog?” Haw Haw. “Did he get his bone, yet?”
“Hey Hubbard…is your cupboard bare?” Haw Haw. Hee Hee.
Yup, that’s a good one there, buddy. Yuk, yuk. Very original, too. Mm hmm. Yes, I’ve probably heard them all.
I mean, really, c’mon, it’s only two syllables…Hubb…that’s one…ard…that’s two. Put them together now…Hubbard. Simple enough? Yes? I guess…no.
It’s not like it’s Logiudici or Scieszka or Tchoupitoulas or anything. Now, those names I would believe that you could butcher… but Hubbard? Sheesh!
Just out of curiosity I checked to see how long the Old Mother Hubbard nursery rhyme had been kicking around and I found out that its roots go back to the 16th Century as an old English folk song and that the verses were passed down through the generations until a version by Sarah Catherine Martin (1768–1826) recited it while staying with her sister at Kitley House, Yealmpton in Devon which was then published as The Comic Adventures of Old Mother Hubbard and Her Dog by J. Harris in June of 1805. It became one of the most popular publications of the 19th Century. The original publication had fifteen verses and I can’t recall ever hearing or seeing them all until I looked it up today.
Yes, we Hubbard’s have taken some ribbing over our name and, in fact, for years and years my oldest brother Jack’s nickname was “Mom” as in “Mother Hubbard”. He even had it embroidered on his hockey jacket for crying out loud. Now that’s laughing in the face of teasing, isn’t it?
But, you know, you can’t choose your surname…well, you can, I guess, but you are just altering the original unless you’re a parentless child, or something, so unless you’re a celebrity and you’ve changed your name from Marion Morrison to John Wayne or from Norma Jean Mortenson to Marilyn Monroe or from Chad Johnson to Chad Ochocinco (why?) then most of us will just stick to what we were born with. In the end, and regardless of the teasing, I am very proud of my surname. Just get it right, please.
“Tigers die and leave their skins; people die and leave their names.”-Japanese Proverb.Hub


Here's a reprise of a little Christmas poem I threw together for you. Three Kings, shepherds and a babe in the manger. The E...