June 2004

Cup of Soup

Thu, Jun 10, 2004

Mmm... Doughnut...

With the Stanley Cup in southern Florida, the WHA trying to make a comeback after folding 30 years ago, and the Leafs not raising ticket prices for a season that may never happen, it's been a week for hockey oddities. What next? How about a shutout in ball hockey?

It may not be international news, but it's a big thing to me. I've been playing ball hockey with the West Toronto Sport and Social Club for over a year and a half, and halfway through the sixth season, I finally got a shutout. It took seven terms to get a shutout back in the UW Rec league, so I've bettered that result by one season. It's a very satisfying feeling to look up at the scoreboard and see that doughnut for the opponent's score; the mark of perfection.

Next objective: two shutouts. One's never enough.

Sun, Jun 13, 2004

Euro 2004

Yesterday the European football championships began in Lisbon. I may not be an avid football/soccer fan, but it would be folly to ignore the world's third-largest sporting event. So for the next few weeks, I will be cheering for host nation Portugal, the land of my forefathers, and hope they can put an early defeat by Greece behind them, and better their semi-final appearance of four years ago.

Mon, Jun 14, 2004

Gone Buggy

Now I know what a buffet feels like.

I spent the weekend at a friend's cottage and returned with several pains. There is the pain of stiff muscles, meaning I played lots of volleyball and spent a great deal of time in kayak. I have the pain of a sunburn, meaning I spent many hours enjoying the weather and sunshine. I also have the pain of mosquito bites, which would normally mean I spent time outdoors enjoying the sunset, but in this case, it only proves I did not lock myself inside a small, air tight cube for two days.

I could not believe how many mosquitos were around at all times of the day and night. Early in the morning they ambushed us running from cabin to car. In the afternoon they gleefully feasted upon a wide selection of human; the insect incarnation of gluttony. In the evening they got drunk off of our life blood as we huddled for protection by the camp fire.

The bugs have worked their way into my psyche. Every movement I see out of the corner of my eye I think is a bug. Every hair on my body that moves in the breeze gets instinctively slapped in fear of a gulping mosquito. I lay in bed at night wondering where the bugs are hiding, and seeing them flying all around me. The windows are never sealed tight enough; the doors never closed quickly enough. They're everwhere, and there is no fly swatter fast enough to get them.

I think I just lost too much blood, and now it's doing funny things to my brain.

Tue, Jun 22, 2004

Vive o Portugal

It's soccer mania over the European championships, and we're not even in Europe. Portugal has gotten increasingly better in each game and will now face mighty England in the quarter finals on Thursday. Success will unleash a party throughout all of Portugal (and on Dundas St here in Toronto), but failure will spur the melancholy tunes of fado throughout the halls of Lisbon, and the distant cheers of "En-ger-land, En-ger-land, En-ger-land!"

Thu, Jun 24, 2004

Man's Best Friend

Wow. I need to get myself a dog.

Fri, Jun 25, 2004

Tale of Two Teams

There's drama, there's suspense, and then there's last night's match between Portugal and England.

An early English goal, a late Portuguese goal, a goal for each in extra time, and seven rounds of penalty kicks including misses by veterans on both teams, a bare-handed save by the Portuguese keeper, and then the winning goal by the keeper himself to send all of Portugal into hysterics.

The stock on pharmaceutical companies that manufacture medication to treat heart attack victims just rose sharply.

Mon, Jun 28, 2004

Election Night

It's election night in Canada, and I'm writing this before the polls close and results start flooding in indicating who our next Prime Minister will be. This election more than any other previously in which I've participated I've been apprehensive about for whom to vote. I made my decision like many others, selecting the party I thought was the least undesirable. I've voted in every election for which I've been eligible because I know it's my duty, it's my right, and it's my valuable contribution to my country. However, there's always the thought in the back of my mind that wonders, "If none of these choices are desirable, then what's the point of voting? Couldn't my way of 'speaking out' and 'making my voice heard' be to declare that none of the choices are worth while, and I choose no one?"

I entertained this idea and thought about it's possible merits, and I listened to the rebuttals. While Lloyd's "stupid-head" argument is a very valid and powerful apology, I think it's Rick Mercer that finally stomped the idea down for good:

"[Some people abstain from voting] because it's like voting for the lesser of three evils. If you're in that camp right now, listen up: When selecting a government, it's very very important that the lesser of three evils wins. If the most evil wins, that's bad."

Sometimes you just need to be perfectly clear and perfectly blunt to get a point across. Point taken.

From Alberta to Quebec, there are now only 20 minutes left to vote. Get your ass off the couch and get to the polling station now. While we are fortunate enough that we won't end up with a George W Bush, the most of three evils might still win.

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