Friday, February 10, 2006

News Around Town, January, '06

While I would love to comment on the Olympics, which I think are one of the five best things to happen in sports, along with the Super Bowl, World Cup. NCAA tournament, and unblurred female streakers, I know that I am unfortunately in the minority. Not many people want to here about my thoughts on Croatia or their ski team. And honestly, though I think bobsledding is totally sweet, I can't tell you the first thing about it.

On the other hand, I do know a lot about the city of Victoria. I can give you my take on the local news! Of course, if you don't like my totally biased version of what's happening in town, perhaps you can look at for someone elses totally biased version of whats going on in Victoria. Let's leaf through the Victoria news together, shall we?
  • The Gazette has it's feature on Valentine's Day, and specifically, a family in town, that I won't name, because other than the Gazette, they aren't public figures, and I'm not in the business of naming anyone from that paper, unless they are. In that vein, let's leave the columnists alone too. But anyways, the lead story is about Valentine's Day. Hard hitting stuff.
  • The Carver Country Sheriff has introduced some new officers to the city of Victoria. The most notable crimes are speeding and running the stop sign at 81st and Trillium. (I made the second one up. But seriously guys, do something about it, eh?) Thankfully, we're no Waconia, with it's vandalism, or Chaska with it's murder.
  • There was something about a new fee for adding turn lanes and stop signs. How much does a stop sign cost, exactly, that an entire city needs to be billed for it? Also, if you are printing articles online that have previously beein in print, do us all a favor and get rid of the hyphens.
  • There is an entire webpage devoted to the construction of a water treatment plant. The city council was photographed waving for the camera. Holy moly. Can you imagine if the town was actually large and these people had things to do?
  • Most of the paper was pretty dull this month. New tax bylaws. New plans for the city that will never reach fuition. A new finance clerk. Oh, and Victorians are, in fact, in favor of water and roads. What is this, Sim City?
  • The most important thing to me, and probably anyone I know that reads this is that there is a new ban on snowmobiles brought down from the Hennepin County Regional Railroad Authority on a trail that runs through town. This trail was known as "The Trail" all my life, as it terminates within blocks of my house. It's awesome. Personally, I'm delighted that there won't be snowmobiles on the trail anymore, because at the end of the trail, the sleds don't just turn around, they buzz my neighborhood like idiots. Of course, the realistic part of me says if they aren't on the trail, they will be riding along highways like idiots. That's how people get hurt.
So that's it, the January news from Victoria. The sad thing is, this wasn't a slow month. - Ryan

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

The Play that Changed the Super Bowl

There's no doubt in my mind that Americans have become impatient, annoying perfectionists. I arrived at my buddy's house about a half an hour before the game only to discover that something had happened to his antenna (which he just bought the day before) and he couldn't get reception. He went on the roof, messed around with it and got some reception. It wasn't crystal clear, but it was just coming from an antenna, so what can you expect, really? Well, his fiancee and future parents in law expected more. "Its horrible!" they all said. I disagreed, but I was overwhelmed. Needless to say, Dave kept working on it for another half an hour, knocking reception out for at least half that time. In the end, the picture was exactly the same as it had been and I missed a lot of really cool pregame stuff.
In addition, I heard complaints all night about what a boring game it had been. How poorly played it had been. You know what? I don't want to hear it! Prior Super Bowls didn't have the same kind of expectations, the same weight on someone's shoulders as the game does now, and the teams are going to be much more evenly matched. Combine the frazzled nerves and the more equitable competition, and you get a sloppier looking game. But I'm fine with that. It's our fault the game has turned to that, so we shouldn't complain when we see it happen.
This game in particular was more nerve racking for the players, what with all the old MVPs there. You had 39 years of history staring you in the face. It's hard to measure up to that. And for the record, I did NOT get to see the MVP introductions or the player introductions. I wasn't happy about the night, on the whole.
As for the game itself, there was only one play you needed to know about to get the entire scope of the game. The Seahawks were driving in the fourth quarter, momentum is mostly on their side, although after a sack and penalty it was 3rd and 18. Matt Hasselbeck dropped back to throw and found... Ike Taylor. He had been looking for Darrell Jackson streaking for the end zone, but Taylor picked it off.
And that would be storyline number one. The Seahawks didn't finish a single drive all game, save for one, even though they dominated statistically. The Steelers made only about four big plays all game, and they all affected the game, whereas the Seahawks made a few big plays, but they never really led to anything, because when they got close to scoring, they would fall apart.
Back to the game. Taylor has the ball and is peeling up the sidelines, and he has some blocking out in front of him. Hasselbeck, valiant as he is, comes across the field and goes for Taylor's legs, bringing him down, and saving a touchdown. A flag comes in, and Hasselbeck is called for an illegal block.
And that would be story number two. The officiating in this game, while not as atrocious as some people may lead you to believe (the offensive pass interference and Roethlisberger's touchdown were both absolutely correct calls) it was far too noticeable in a game of this magnitude. As an official, you never want to give a team a reason to call you out, and that's what happened. All of America believes this was a bad game of officiating.
The last story line this play introduced was the Pittsburgh momentum. The momentum ebbed and flowed all game long, and this was the nail in the coffin for the 'Hawks. It set up the last Steelers touchdown, and that was essentially it. The Steelers won. And this play changed the Super Bowl.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Is It a Blog?: Quick Hits #6

Originally posted on "Is It Sports?" This is the last of the Quick Hits posts, and the 2nd to last post ever on the old site. I found out I would probably have to move away for work (it wound up being Indianapolis) and that was pretty much the end of updating the old site, especially with Ryan building up momentum here on the times. At least the last post (Check March 5 in the archives

Ryan: you know who i think should have been MVP?
Steve: who?
Ryan: Randle El
Ryan: he was involved in the two plays that secured the win for the Steelers
Steve: yeah I could agree with that
Ryan: nobody else has even mentioned him
Steve: Thornton High School #11 3 sport star
Steve: Sports Guy Super Bowl diary is pretty damn funny
Ryan: I should read it...
Ryan: so did i tell you about my experience?
Steve: uh I don't think so
Steve: first, why are you going to be on that hometime show?
Ryan: well, they film in chaska and they are sponsored by the Depot, so they come in and film every once in a while
Ryan: the other day they were in the store filming a piece on faux finishes, and they needed me to pretend like i was helping them
Ryan: they made me ad lib and stuff... it was awful
Steve: haha cool
Steve: I'll have to try to watch it
Steve: ...if its on here
Ryan: PBS
Steve: ahh I see
Steve: good to see you like turtles
Ryan: turtles are sweet
Steve: damn straight
Ryan: so, the game
Ryan: I went to my coworkers house, and he had just bought an antenna so he could get the game
Ryan: well, when i got there it wasnt working.
Ryan: so they messed with it a little bit and it came in, but it was fuzzy
Ryan: Daves GF bitched, but it was fine by my standards, and Dave kept fumbling with it
Ryan: because he was messing with it, I missed all the cool pregame stuff AND the first drive of the game
Ryan: I was exceptionally pissed
Steve: wow
Ryan: not only that, I was the only one there who actually appreciated the game
Steve: I was interested in the game, but I think the actual game pretty much sucked
Ryan: like, nobody understood it... Dave was drunk and when he wasnt talking about stupid shit he was eating his Tostitos waaaaay to loud
Ryan: well, from now on, I'm watching the game alone, inless its with someone like you
Steve: ahh I see
Steve: yeah that's always annoying
Steve: I watched it by myself, but I had Elizabeth on my speaker phone during the entire game....she was actually interested
Ryan: ouch for the phone bill
Steve: ahh it was my cell phone
Steve: free nights and weekends
Ryan: i see
Steve: did you see the Hummer commercial with the 2 monsters?
Ryan: yeah
Steve: very effective
Steve: Elizabeth HATES the Hummer H3 and is horrified by the thought that I thought about getting one, but since it was like a pregnancy/baby type commercial that appeals to women, she thinks its ok now
Ryan: haha.... are you really thinking about getting one?
Steve: its on my list
Ryan: cars arent high on my list
Ryan: I would rather overpay for a house or apartment
Steve: I already do that
Steve: so overpaying for a car is next
Steve: well underpaying actually with the employee discount
Ryan: well, I don't really have any aspirations for a fancy car... I can't see myself spending over 10K for a car at any point in my life, really

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Sunday, February 05, 2006

Is It Sports? would like to Congratulate Ben Roetheslseibegeraeraegeerber and the World Champion Pittsburgh Steelers!

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