Because the Pens use an effigy of Brooks Orpik in some bizarre religious ritual that takes place at practice.
By circling around the Effigy Orpik, the final fall harvest of vegetables purportedly increases in its bounty and makes the women of the village more fertile.
Not that we needed more fertility, what with all these pregnancies, but whatever.
We have to play Chicago tomorrow, which is always less okay than it was the last time. It's like some big, annoying study on violence and The Male Gaze and a day-old plate of nachos all rolled into one.
The Pens site has suddenly switched to the European/rest-of-the-world format for dates, causing massive confusion across the lands.
BUT THERE AREN'T 30 MONTHS
WHAT IS THIS NEW DEVILRY
No really who cares.
When the fuck is Vancouver?
WHAT IS THIS
Oh, you mean this:
Basically all you need to know.
This game isn't on TV.
Third period coming up.
That's just a visual assist for all of you who have been unable to logically connect the details of the evening using words.
Words are hard, amirite? What is literacy?
Why is Bernier's forehead as shiny as his tacky watch?
Two of us at PH are young adults in the throes of college and post-college poverty. Mary is, of course, a perfect human with a real house and even a yard and a dog, so you don't have to worry about her. Anyway, if you, have some pocket money, and you're living under a rock, you may not have yet heard about the new Rinkotology game from the Pensblog:
As NHL fantasy games go, we'd always rather play this one, because it's less bloated than Yahoo! or ESPN or whatever the fuck else you play and affords you the opportunity to play within the closer-knit community of NHL bloggers and dedicated fans, without being all lame and trying to set up some kind of email chain with your friends and feeling all overcommitted.
So anyway, that's our shameless plug for the day.
In what was widely recognized as a great show of irony, Shero acknowledged at the Town Hall Meeting that this week the Pens will be going to play in Kansas City. And then coming back after dick-whipping the arena, supposedly.
The whole write-up is here on the Pens site. There are some choice quotes. Sid's favorite song is "Barefoot Blue Jean Night" and Fleury doesn't even care about music. Please indulge all your fantasies about song meanings starting now.
Red carpet analysis for casual wear:
We are not sure about any of this, actually, but Jordan looks happy, so w/e.
Appropriate jeans fit, MAF. And good shirt color. Appropriate. Flip-flops are such a gray area, though. But it's probably hot as balls outside, so whatever.
Geno is perfect. Russians can get away with those jeans.
An ominous photo, but no flip flips present.
General joy and hilarity.
We didn't get to red carpet analyze Ktang but that's probably for the better.
Girls' complaints and fussing and fawning about his hair starting in 3. . .2. . .1. . .
In conclusion, we're just gonna leave this here.
Shippin' out to Kansas soon, eh?
What a long, awful summer it’s been. I mean, I hate summer anyway; something about my own personal chemistry makes me susceptible to things like heat and humidity. Which are things that we have no shortage of, here in Pittsburgh. I'm so glad I don't live in the Star Wars universe, because if I ended up on Tatooine, I would straight-up kill myself.
My own personal hell
I say “long” because it truly feels like it’s been forever, and “awful” because of all the hockey-related tragedies that occurred. The worst of which was the Lokomotiv plane crash. I can’t even think about it without getting really, really sad.
If you want to do something to help the families of the victims of the crash, the Coyotes wives’ association has set up a charity effort. You can find more information at the Love for Lokomotiv website.
(No picture here; none can convey the feeling that this gives me.)
(And yes, I totally spent my birthday money from my husband’s grandmothers on a Lokomotiv bracelet.)
Anyway, on to other topics. This game is not one to which I was looking forward. Minnesota is basically the Devils of the Western Conference. I think I have actually fallen asleep at an Avs-Wild game, due to the high propensity of neutral-zone trapping and the excessive amount of BORING.
Due to a convergence of factors, including a migraine last night causing me not to be able to do anything but go to bed at 9:30 like a loser, a meeting of like-minded ladies convening to talk about needlework, and a dog that whines like crazy to go out about every half-hour, this recap is not going to be nearly as complete as some. To which I say: first, it is the preseason, and second, I also have a life outside of hockey fandom.
Today’s game was free for the kids. I guess it’s nice to do things for kids, but I definitely share George Carlin’s opinion of children in general.
“It's all you hear in this country. Children! Help the children. What about the children? Save the children! You know what I say? FUCK THE CHILDREN!”
They're getting entirely too much attention!
So I'm pretty glad I wasn't there and was instead driving home and then at my house hanging out with the dog.
In lieu of strict play-by-play commentary, here are my general observations.
It is awesome to be awesome at killing penalties, but I think we’d rather not be getting penalized in the first place.
Cal Clutterbuck was cited as “a key player that is missing.” Is it him or his mustache that Steiggy pines for? To be fair, it is a fairly epic mustache. I think it has its own Twitter account.
This is seriously the best picture I could find of Cal Clutterbuck doing something related to actually playing hockey and not just getting smashed into the boards
Eric Tangradi is proving to be a worthy man to wear the #25. I don't think Zoë will ever really get over the loss of Max Talbot to the Flyers, but Tangradi is doing his level best to make her feel better.
Holy crap, did the Penguins actually score on the power play? Constantly? It’s definitely too early to say that things have turned around completely, but I am hopeful that the power play won’t be the butt of every single joke I tell this year.
Four power play goals on twelve shots? Are we that awesome, does Backstrom suck that bad, or is it both?
I love Pascal Dupuis and I’m super glad we managed to re-sign him.
I would like for it to be hugs time now, please
Geno is BONKERS. I don’t think it really needs to be called out again at this point; I think it’s understood. He’s amazing and we all know he’s amazing. I hope he continues to be amazing for the rest of the season.
Joe Morrow is a beautiful man. We love him. I think I'm going to adopt him as my Age-Inappropriate Man Crush for the duration of the season.
Sorry, Jeff Skinner, but we can still be friends, right?
OMG JEFF TAFFE IS IN THE BUILDING
We managed to make it through this game without seeing Guillaume Latendresse’s ballsack, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t there the whole time. Lurking. Like...a lurking thing. Sorry, I guess that migraine ate my creativity this evening, too.
Thiessen be with you.
Well if this little preseason isn't full of good omens, we don't know what is.
The game against Detroit was just for old time's sake. It's always funzies to beat Detroit, and we all needed to see Geno score just to know he wasn't just the product of some fever dream we had after eating too many Tostitos Lime.
Tonight, however, was about reminding everyone just how serious this shit is. Our famous "third line" wanted to remind you just how important it is to include those quotation marks.
"Wait, Evgeni who? Sidney...doesn't ring a- oh, brb, gotta bury this. We'll pick this up later."
Jordy, who may not have made your scrapbook last year, is bringing the makeup sex.
Get out the stickers
Meanwhile, we're about to murder Dan Potash, because during the first period he noted that Tangradi is wearing a #25 pendant, and that we will hear more about him and how "maybe that was a gift from the old number 25." So we salivate over this possible hilarious information, that maybe Max gave it like a letterman jacket, as an exit showing of fail, but then it is never mentioned again.
Sir, do not make jokes that could potentially be true, leaving us yearning for more.
It's too much like what Max himself did.
Of course, in reality Tangradi is a #25 by nature and has probably had that horrible pendant for years. But still. We can dream.
Brandon Saad recieved some attention this evening for being a blood-betrayer and fighting against his native land. But whatevs. I felt it would be good fun to job him. But I got what was coming to me when I image searched "sad sheep." I am officially renouncing the internet.
It would have been a baad joke.
This was for all of you who forgot why we always start screaming "third period team" when it's looking bleak at the end of the game. We like the classic flair of this game, and hope to hell it stays this way.
Also, if you cannot take this "Lerg" person seriously, don't feel bad, neither can we.
This picture makes it look like Lerg is some frat boy who photoshopped himself into the action.
We accept him and love him all the same.
Hells yeah preseason.
When you woke up this morning, it probably didn't feel like hockey was coming. It was warm and sunny, after all, and unless you've been lucky enough to have your finger on the pulse of training camp all month, it all felt like a faraway dream, experienced through Pens Report and Twitter, which is obviously insufficient to the genuine article--the reality of hockey. Preseason hockey feels like the real thing, after all. It's been a fucking long summer.
The sun went down tonight, though, and it got a little chilly.
Those chills are up and down our spines right now.
PEOPLE ARE PLAYING HOCKEY IN THE NHL AGAIN!
PRAISE CURRY (of the Hamburger Freezers)
or Brad Thiessen, whatever suits your tastes.
So, we settled down tonight feeling a bit perplexed, but all the better for it. How could this possibly be real?
Well, it was clearly so real that it was bordering on the unreal. Look wat the cat dragged in:
jesus, Jimmy, your soul is as full of doughnuts as Chris Osgood's was of lard-covered bananas and deep-fried cheesecake. We're glad you could come tonight.
Steiggy and Errey had to blow off some steam before we could get down to business, so they heartily glossed over the "absence" of Max Talbot, as if he had simply failed to show up one day for 10th grade chem lab.
As if all the bad karma had left the room based on that remark, Chris Kunitz buried it.
We had our first Vesa Toskala moment of the season, in which the net ended up on top of Fleury, and there was a brief scramble to restore sanity.
It was during this time that we negated the whole exercise at the PH Mansion by having our houseboy find Cal Clutterbuck's wedding photos for us. Mistake.
Also emerging this time is the knowledge, for those of you who weren't already in the know, that Joe Morrow is a.) seriously talented and b.) adorable and c.) 18?!?!!?
This year's draft class: makin' it happen, somehow, against all odds that this generation is full of failures and egomaniacs. Joe Morrow has the Most Solid night. Or at least, makes Stieggy and Errey very proud that they have a play to telestrate.
Then, all of a sudden, there is a reference to the African wildlife.
"Why am I laughing?" inquires Errey to the American public.
PH will use the hippo as Bob Errey's spirit animal until further notice. Blingees encouraged and required.
In the second period, we had a welcome realization: Gene is fucking alive, guys. He's alive. He is skating like a monster and scoring Monster Goals. Welcome to 2009? Maybe? We'll see? But man it was beautiful.
We probably forgot to mention that throughout the time, the Red Wings were pretending like they did shit. Kronwall had some goal in the first. Fuck chronology, we're too good for it.
We were too busy paying attention to guys like Joe Vitale getting us all excited. It was like making out with us after the date and then not sleazily inviting yourself indoors, Joe Vitale. But we forgive you.
Then, once upon a time, the Pittsburgh Penguins power play and Matt Niskanen had a brief rendezvous which resulted in a surprise pregnancy:
THE DOCTORS SAID IT COULDN'T BE DONE
BUT BY GOD, WE NEVER GAVE UP HOPE.
The Red Wings showed up in gang formation, trying to assault the child:
We barred the door and held them off through the night.
Tomas Holmstrom will feed elsewhere this eve.
In short, this game probably should have counted. If solely for these faces:
Such dysphoria. Is that even Gene? Or is it his highly-paid body-double? His skin was looking unusually clear tonight.
IT HAS BEGUN. . . . . .
sort of anyway.
We will continue to bring you these non-awards style recaps until opening night in Vancouver, and you're going to fucking like them, right? Right.
IMPORTANT SHIT GOING ON DOWN HERE ABOUT THINGS WE'RE GOING TO BUY YOU OR HAVE BOUGHT YOU
We're just getting around to sending out the Hair League prizes, because we're bad at things. Rest assured, they are appropriately hair-themed and coming to you very shortly, certainly before opening night.
As for right now. . .
If you feel creative, please write us a brief description of a Penguins or NHL-inspired mixed drink or other alcoholic concoction (my personal latest creation was the bourbon raspberry parfait) and leave it somewhere in the comments of any post on the site before puck drop on October 6th. We will issue reminders, as usual. In return, you'll get something tacky and possibly wine-related if we pick yours as the Ultimate Best Alcohol.
We're The Most Fun. We kill that which isn't fun.
Never thought you'd see MY name attached to a post again, did ya?
Well, despite what 99% of everyone we knew thought, Zoe was not pulling an elaborate Weekend-At-Bernie's scheme trying to convince everyone that I was alive while I was really decaying somewhere in a pile of filth.
Well...I did spend some time in Detroit.
Although, I gotta say, from such great tragedy, some true art comes about:
While I was off climbing mountains and rolling around in the filth of the Great American South and the Kind of Okay American North (further north than Detroit, obviously) the hockey world was kind of stalled with various sad news and some WILL HE OR WON'T HE on Mister Sid. Zoe and Mary kept me up-to-date on anything that was happening, and eventually I realized I needed to come back in time for the season to start (I ran out of money and needed to get a damn job.)
For those of you who have never left the world of report cards or paychecks and wonder what is out there beyond the daily grind and hockey, let me tell you, it isn't much.
I do not recommend it, unless you need to get here:
(Just a touch.)
So, the three of us are here, for you, all season long.
Tonight is the famous Black and Gold game. To be fair, Zoe is rooting Black, I am rooting Gold (their fourth line sounds like a western film actor - Gibbons Sill Walker) and Mary is going both ways (one night only, ladies!)
This game promises hilarity, so please watch it and love it.
Also, if you want to hear a female reporter try to make a very awkward joke that is not received well by Sir Malkin, watch this. It's cringe inducing. How dare she try to be so familiar with this man. Only we can be so bold.
Can't wait can't wait can't wait until the season starts.
The giant ice sculpture of the armadillo goes to the left, next to the shrine to Crosby's ass.
We're throwing away all of Max Talbot's speeding tickets that we found stuffed in the filing cabinet.
We're building a magical mirror to Zbynek Michalek's soul, through which the viewer only sees rainbows and ice cream.
We're baking thousands of gluten-free brownies, and possibly actually doing something important.
The Pens are at camp. We had season ticket deliveries. Every city (worth speaking of) is teeming with hockey folks and a chill is on the air.
Pens Report is back shoving a giant fucking Arcade Fire video down our throats like so many dicks.
OH, HOLY SHIT, HOCKEY IS COMING.
Here's the details on Crosby, who won't be taking contact.
We realize that we have to blog again and make contact for you guys to like us. You're not just going to drop into the comments and start talking about your Views on the Universe with us without getting a little in return.
Rest assured, we are not an absent boyfriend who leaves a trail of broken promises all the way to the bar.
Well, maybe we kind of are.
But, unlike the absent boyfriend, things will be different this time.
Now, put down the unicorn statue where it belongs and get to work.
Have you ever seen more determination and seriousness?
In part, we have maintained a nearly month-long silence out of respect.
The majority of what we bring to the table in the hockey community is light-hearted and optimistic, and we don't know how to deal with tragedy publicly--in fact, much of what follows in the wake of tragedy should almost always be kept private, we believe. Grieving is private and that should be respected. Terrible things have happened to the hockey community this summer. You know this. We don't break news here.
These are all guys we've made fun of, joked about, poked and prodded. We still wish their families our condolences. They should still be here, but they aren't.
Today, the KHL lost an entire hockey team, more or less, in a completely ridiculous and terrible plane crash. All relevant news can now be found at Dmitry Chesnokov's Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/dchesnokov. Later, who knows. Google. Conflicting reports. Lots of people are dead.
Right now, doctors are updating on Sid's head.
But we'll deal with it privately right now.
Don't talk so much. Stop and think.
Go Hockey, Go Pens.
Kim is back in the Known World and is starting to absorb the changes that have come to pass. Namely, the departure of Max Talbot. We felt that a unique portion of our lives had been seized from us. Our outlets for bad taste, shitty/disappointing fantasy dates, and Sunday scotch had been wrested from us in the heat of an ungodly summer.
Well, until we realized that there's someone else out there who is just as bad at life.
Some snippets from our musing on the matter of Mike Green:
"Wholesome enough to take you to dinner but not wholesome enough to not send you ambiguous texts" - Zoë
"I imagine he texts with horrible abbreviations. i want2 c u 2nite but im confused about it" - Kim
And thus was born our own fantasy date with Mike Green:
10:03:17 PM Kim: Then he calls you, that night
10:03:27 PM Zoë: "where are you?" he says
10:03:31 PM Zoë: "can i come over"
10:03:50 PM Kim: "I left the bar early....so I can see you..."
10:04:12 PM Kim: But then he gets to your apartment and acts ambivalent.
10:04:31 PM Kim: Watches half an episode of law and order, acts awkward, drinks your milk
10:04:34 PM Kim: Doesn't have sex with you
You are welcome to alter this evening as you see fit.
We know, we know. It's a long summer.
If you need proof of the link, look no further:
Douchey facial hair! He even surpasses Talbo because he has the technical skills to take and post photos of himself on the Internet. Not eve ADHD or a vague, directionless need for attention and love. Intentional douche-ness. He wins all the prizes.
Here's to being more excited than usual to beat the Caps and the Flyers.
Also, to make this post Penguins-related, this comes up on the Google machine when you search James Neal:
And now you know.