04.28.10 – A Wednesday

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word

harangue [huhrang] n. 1. a scolding or a long or intense verbal attack; diatribe 2. a long, passionate, and vehement speech, esp. one delivered before a public gathering 3. any long, pompous speech or writing of a tediously hortatory or didactic nature; sermonizing lecture or discourse v. used w/ obj. 4. to address in a harangue v. used w/o obj. 5. to deliver a harangue

birthday

James Monroe (1758), Lionel Barrymore (1878), Heinrich Müller (1900), Oskar Schindler (1908), Ferruccio Lamborghini (1916), Harper Lee (1926), James Baker (1930), Saddam Hussein (1937), Ann-Margret (1941), Bruno Kirby (1949), Jay Leno (1950), Paul Guilfoyle (1955), Too Short (1966), Kari Wührer (1967), Bridget Moynahan (1971), Elisabeth Röhm (1973), Penélope Cruz (1974), Jessica Alba (1981)

standpoint

So last night I’m bartending and one of my customers strikes up a conversation with me about hockey. I’m perpetually wary to get into any kind of hockey talk because, truth be told, there’s very few out there who can maintain it on the level I can.

But I was in a good mood last night so, after issuing a lighthearted warning about he should proceed with caution, I obliged the gentleman. Here’s how our exchange went.

Customer: So, who’s your favorite Flyer of all-time?

Me: Ah, I don’t want to answer that. You’re going to hate the answer.

Customer: Oh, Christ, please don’t tell me it’s fucking Lindros.

Me: See? I told you that you weren’t going to like it. Yes, it’s Lindros.

Customer: So, you’re telling me you think Lindros was a great player.

Me: No. I didn’t say that. He’s my favorite player but if you’re asking me if he was a great player, then I’d have to say yes.

Customer: You’re trying to convince me you know a lot about hockey and you’re favorite all-time player is Eric Lindros? Sorry, but I can’t take you seriously now. There’s no way his name should be considered among Flyers’ greats.

And such is the plight of the status of Eric Lindros in the collective mindset of Philadelphia Flyers fans. Arguably, it’s unfair. And, this being the last week of this blog, I want to finally put my thoughts on this to rest.

Despite the troublesome history of “The Big E” in this town, there’s no basis for not including him among Flyers’ greats.

Eric Lindros played 486 regular season games for the Flyers. In that span he amassed 659 points (290 goals, 369 assists). That’s a hefty 1.35 points-per-game. In comparison, Flyers’ legend Bobby Clarke averaged only 1.05 ppg.

Despite playing only 486 games, he’s still 5th on the team’s all-time scoring list. Of the top-20 on that list, Dave Poulin is the only other player with less than 500 games (467). His point total? 394 (161 g, 233 a).

Of the all-time playoff leader for the Flyers, Lindros is ranked 9th with 57 points (24 g, 33 a) in 50 games played. That’s 1.14 ppg. Flyers hero Brian Propp is 2nd on the same list with 112 points (52 g, 60 a) in 116 games played. That’s 0.96 ppg.

So, if you’re going by the stats, it’s fairly reasonable to say that, if you’re fielding a squad of all-time Flyers in some imaginary game, you’d most likely want Lindros in your lineup.

Even though the stats back up my argument, I’ve always hated going by them. Hockey is a game of intangibles. And “Number 88” was huge intangible. He was an immense presence on the ice. He could skate with most anyone. His wrist shot was borderline unstoppable. He had the ability to pass on a dime. And, oh yeah, he could drop the gloves with the best of them.

Bottom line, Eric Lindros wasn’t the best player that ever played in the NHL, but he deserves to be mentioned in the game’s greats. Hell, even Bobby Clarke thinks so.

I understand this argument is a bit cursory but I could probably right a 20-page on this subject. And, besides, I think I’ve made my point.

quotation

I’d rather have a hundred thousand or a million people saying I’m nuts and I’m crazy for my musical choices and what I’ve said lyrically, than a million people all raising their hand on the first day. Chuck D

tune

From time to time, I’m annoyed with indie music. There’s a lot of buzz bands, supposed to be the next big thing. I’m a sucker for that kind of talk. Often, I believe the hype (despite being told many times to no do that exact thing.) In my estimation, I’m disappointed at least half the time. And such was the case a few years back with English brother-sister tandem act, The Magic Numbers. I’m a big fan of good pop music (Matthew Sweet, Rogue Wave, etc.) but these guys and gals were just too much pop, not enough substance. However, I did always like “Forever Lost.”

gallimaufry

→ Honestly, I thought this guy only ran over pigeons. If you get the reference, I automatically like you.

This would be a pretty great historical find if the story it’s based on wasn’t a complete fabrication.

→ Since joining Facebook, one of the beefs I’ve had with the social networking site was that, unlike MySpace, it failed to capitalize on much anything having to do with music. Looks like they’re about to remedy the situation.

05.08.09 – Friday

Word: nomenclature [noh-muhn-kley-cher, noh-men-kluh-cher, -choor] n. 1. a set or system of names or terms, as those used in a particular science or art, by an individual or community, etc. 2. the names or terms comprising a set or system

Birthday: Oscar Hammerstein (1847), Harry S. Truman (1884), Roberto Rossellini (1906), Don Rickles (1926), Gary Snyder (1930), Sonny Liston (1932), Ricky Nelson (1940), Gary Glitter (1944), Alex Van Halen (1953), Stephen Furst (1954), David Keith (1954), Bill Cowher (1957), Melissa Gilbert (1964), Enrique Iglesias (1975)

Standpoint: It’s been a soaking-wet, rainy week here in Philadelphia and I’m really looking forward to a little sunshine this weekend. Just to help things along, I thought I do my version of a rain-dance and share some upbeat music to help you through these, and any future, rainy days. I give you 7 Sunny Rainy Day Songs:

Got better sunny rainy day songs? Tell us about it.

Weekend: Each Friday, I’ll provide you with 3 Things To Do In Philly When You’re Dead – my list of activities for spending this weekend in Philadelphia as if it’s your last.

Have some fun out there this weekend and make sure to do something nice for your mom on Sunday – it’s Mother’s Day.

Quotation: The trouble with weather forecasting is that it’s right too often for us to ignore it and wrong too often for us to rely on it. – Patrick Young

Tune: They’ve been called “the new Smashing Pumpkins.” Personally, in some ways, I think Silversun Pickups might be better. Listen to “Well Thought Out Twinkles” – one of the best driving-fast songs in the history of music and cars. “Come join in the last hurrah!”

Gallimaufry: Manny Ramirez of MLB‘s Los Angeles Dodgers has been suspended 50 games for violating the league’s drug policy. The star outfielder claims he was given medication that, unbeknownst to him, was on the list of banned substances. He’ll lose over $8 million over the course of his suspension. This reminded me of a piece that Chuck Klosterman wrote for ESPN.com’s Page 2 concerning  Barry Bonds that I’ve been meaning to share. ∞ My friend Donika sent me a link to a cool new blog that seems to be more and more relevant as we trudge through this economic mess. Working for the Government describes itself as “a depot for funny, outlandish, touching (though NOT depressing) stories unique to the current unemployment and economic environment.” My favorite post so far is “Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow” but they’re all great. ∞ It’s getting pretty dicey out there in the world of music. Now that the Wayne Coyne-Win Butler Feud is history, it seems that Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor wants in on the action. While answering some fan questions online, he took shots at Prince and Weezer‘s Rivers Cuomo. Here’s a sample of what he had to offer: “I’m not Prince or Rivers Cuomo, who brags about having hundreds of great songs,” Reznor replied. “And to that I would say, ‘Prince, if you have a hundred great songs or a thousand, how about picking a few and putting them on your record that you’ve put out, because your last several have sucked.’ Same for you, Rivers. I say that constructively, you know.” I’m siding with Reznor on this one.

Incoming: Next week will have lots of twists (and just possibly a few turns) as I’ll be attempting some new tricks, including my first-ever interview. Thanks for reading this week. Come back Monday for some more.