Before we step into the SkinnyFish Era, let's take a moment to thank blurr1974 for his most excellent job at providing the daily dose of Maple Leaf Linkage these past 7 months. Why I remember blurr's very first FTB, mostly because of the nightmare inducing picture of Grant Hughes though. I hope that I can become half of the linker that blurr was. Wherever you are blurr, this is for you:
(Note: I may or may not have the physique of Chris Masters)
Unlike my new partner in crime Karina, I'm a relative new comer to the Barilkosphere and probably still unknown to most PPP users outside of those I've had the pleasure of drinking with. So I thought that my first day on the job should be spent giving you, the reader, an insight into the man they call SkinnyFish and just how important the game of hockey has been to me.
The first hockey team I ever played for, the Toledo Cyclones Mite team, may have been the worst hockey team in history. Our record was an appalling 0-18-4. So when I see people like General Borchevsky get angry over the dismal season the Leafs are having, I let them know it could be a lot worse no matter how dark Jared from Die Hard Blue and White thinks it is at the bottom of the barrel, or how bad Steve from Hockey Analysis or Toronto Sports Media thinks the Leafs are. Trust me, I've had worse.
That first year we didn't have a regular goalie, so we rotated amongst all of the players. Apparently I was the best at it, even though I never won a game, and the team moms nicknamed me Colin The Cat after Felix Potvin. I never followed in Felix' footprints to become a great goaltender like Curtis Joesph did. That's too bad because then maybe one day I would be defended as a HHoF candidate by Stalking Steve Philips; or had my career applauded by the likes of Maple Leaf Hot Stove, Vintage Leaf Memories; or immortalized in pictures like those at Vintage Leafs.
If I wasn't playing hockey as a kid I was probably playing video games. Super Mario Brothers, Super Mario Land, Legend of Zelda, the list goes on and on. I really wish the NHL's new plan to win back young viewers from video games posted on Down Goes Brown had been implemented back then so I could have simultaneously enjoyed my two loves in life in addition to NHLPA Hockey '93.
What made growing up in North-Western Ohio great, despite everything there sucking, was that we got CBC on local cable. This meant that I was among the fortunate few American kids who got to watch Hockey Night in Canada on a weekly basis. To this day my dad still gets CBC back home in Rossford, but no Versus, and doesn't understand what all this talk is about Versus not showing West Coast games on Puck the Media.
Aside from playing the game, I also refereed hockey from the age of 13 all through high school. It was tons of fun as I was generally reffing with my dad or younger brother, and was something that I still enjoy doing. Fortunately I never had a player accuse me of being on a vendetta to get them like this whole Alex Burrows/Stephane Auger thing as talked about on Puck Daddy. And that's probably a good thing as with my luck, I'd probably get fined just like Burrows did as TSN is reporting.
I ended up playing hockey through high school, joined a few beer leagues after college, and now coach a local Squirt team, The New Canaan Wildcats. Hockey has been a big part of my life, and like Kavel Pubina says, has really helped create my own Perfect World.
Edit #1: My best friend in college was a guy named Joe Gallagher IV. Cool guy. Him and I are no long best buds, but we'll still keep in touch. Hopefully Bone's Corner will still do the same with his former Best Buds.
Edit #2: Mirtle lets us know that the Leafs have to go 25-9-1 from here on out to reach 90 points. So you're telling me there's a chance!
(Karina and I are alternating FTB writing duties; she has Tuesdays and Thursdays, while I have Wednesdays and Fridays. We're using divorced parent child custody laws on Mondays, and alternating week to week. So stay tuned for Friday's FTB when I institute the new, exciting, and much more convenient list format for links!
If I left out your post, drop a link in the comments, or email me using the address below so I can get it into my Google Reader.)