Monday, May 11, 2009

The Dark Canuck

Just checking in as I look forward to at least two game 7s in the second round of the NHL playoffs...

As I mentioned last time, Saturday was shaping up to be a busy day and it certainly didn't disappoint. I was supposed to meet Phil at the paper at 9:15 a.m. to record a conversation for the podcast in what I figured would be a quiet newsroom, but it turned out that there was a cleaning crew in there vacuuming, so he came over here. We recorded for over an hour and then I caught the second half of Hannah's soccer game. I'll post part 1 tomorrow night after the Bruins game.

At 3:15, I went to Lynn for the benefit hockey game. We had close to 30 guys show up to play, with a few family and friends in the stands. We played three 30-minute periods, with a break halfway through to redo the ice. My team fell behind early 4-0, but we stormed back and ended up winning 18-15. It was a lot of fun. I showered and then took off immediately afterward to head into Boston for the Tragically Hip concert. I parked at the Lechmere lot and went across to take the Green Line into Kenmore Square, but right after I got there, they announced that there was something wrong with the train and we'd have to wait for buses to take us further. I stuck around for about 15 minutes and finally decided to eat the $7.50 I spent on parking and T fare and drive in to Kenmore. The Sox game was over, so I was hoping I'd find some parking near Landsdowne Street. I was regretting my decision as I sat in traffic in the square, but eventually I found that the lot right next to Boston Beerworks was charging $10 for nightclub parking and was half full. I still hadn't eaten and considered stopping to get a sausage, but it was close to 8 and I wanted to get in the club. It was a good move, because as soon as I got inside, the lights dimmed and the show started. The club is now called the House of Blues, but it's still sits on the same footprint as the old Avalon; the only difference is, now there's balcony seating going all the way around on the second and third levels, so it's basically just went up vertically. The show itself was excellent. The place was packed with rabid Hip fans, mostly Canadians, and pretty fervent ones at that. The new stuff off We Are the Same sounded terrific live, and the band mixed in some classic older songs and an acoustic mini-set. They played a little over two hours, with a 20-minute intermission. Lead singer/spastic sweaty maniac Gord Downie was his usual active self, targeting Toby Keith and the Pope with verbal jabs, owning the stage with his herky jerky movements, and incorporating his mikestand and hankies into the act. The band careened from alt-country on "Morning Moon" to the swamp blues groove of "New Orleans is Sinking" to the hard rock assault of my favorite hip song "50 Mission Cap," a tribute to Leafs Stanley Cup hero Bill Barilko, which Downie dedicated to the struggling Bruins (and it worked, because they totally dominated the Canes Sunday night). A truly awesome show and the last U.S. date for a while as they return to Toronto for some big shows at Massey Hall.

Yesterday, I took the girls up to see my mom in NH for Mother's Day, so that was good.

We had a bit of scare today when Hannah's teacher mistakenly told Hannah she was to take the bus home, when it was actually one of the days she stays in the afterschool program. So the bus arrived at our street and there was no one there to meet Hannah. Fortunately, one of our neighbors has a daughter on the same bus and noticed Hannah was home without anyone here, so she had Hannah go over to her house and hang out and called Deb to let her know. Luckily, she was around. Deb's mom was at work, as were Deb and I. I shudder to think what the poor kid would have had to do if our neighbor hadn't looked out for her. Suffice it to say, we let the teacher know that this can't happen again. I'm guessing she just mixed up the instructions in the "communication book" in Hannah's folder; there certainly was no note asking that Hannah be put on the bus today. Unbelievable.

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