Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Some Random SCARY Videos to Share

I'd like to start this post first by wishing everyone a spooktacular Hallowe'en!!!!!!! This really is my favourite holiday out there. I love dressing up, scaring people, and the general pagan feel to the day...good times.

To help everyone celebrate, I have found a few videos to share with people in need of some Hallowe'en cheer...errr...fear...

First off, we have a truly scary clip by none other than Marilyn Manson. Here he performs "This is Hallowe'en" from The Nightmare Before Christmas, and someone took the time to dub it over the original video clip....if this doesn't scare you then you are a braver person than I.

Secondly, here is another fan-made video, this time for "Everyday is Hallowe'en" by Ministry, this time with clips of various cheesy horror movies included, it's pretty spooktastic.

Next, we have the greatest Hallowe'en song ever, none other than Michael Jackson's Thriller...only performed in a Filipino Prison.

If you thought that was weird, then get a look at clips of Lost mixed in with "The Monster Mash".

Speaking of weird clips, here is a trailer for a movie about the REAL Mary Poppins.

Here is perhaps the scariest of videos ever produced...I don't even have the words to express my terror...

Next we have two legitimately scary guys, Mike Tyson and Bobby Brown, performing the Monster Mash...yeah it's as great as it sounds!

And of course, the grand finally...not only the greatest Hallowe'en video, the greatest video ever shown, gather around and worship upon the altar of "Thriller".

Alright so they won't let you embed the full-length of the original, but a lego substitute is good enough, right? If you are the picky sort then here is a link to it anyway.

Until next time,


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Suzuki Roundup

Last night, I had the distinct pleasure of going with some students into Toronto to listen to a talk by none other than the 5th Greatest Canadian ever, Dr. David Suzuki. Of course, he talked about the environment, focusing on the most pressing issue, Climate Change.

He began the talk by saying that 20 years ago scientists urged immediate action against Climate Change, including a letter signed in 1988 by several influential scientists (including many Nobel Prize winners) saying that we had only 1-2 decades to take immediate drastic action and change the way we live, but yet nothing was done. Also he cited a conversation with then Federal Environmental Minister, Lucien Bouchard, where he said that Global Warming "threatened the survival of our species", but yet nothing was done then. Suzuki claimed to have bittersweet feelings about the public acceptance of the issue, saying that it would have been much better to have happened decades ago.

After the preamble, he got to the real good stuff. He was mentioning time that he spent with aboriginals and things that he learned from them. He mentioned a deep seeded belief in many native cultures that people are made up of the four sacred elements, earth, air, fire, and water.

Water is a pretty obvious connections, since it makes up most of our body. Earth and fire sort of got lumped in together, saying that everything we eat comes from the soil and the sun (fire) and is absorbed directly into our bodies, making us who we are. The one that got me the most though, was his connection to the air.

He broke this belief down into scientific terms, saying that the oxygen that we absorb into our body is metabolized by our cells and becomes a part of who we are. So therefore, anything that we do to the air, we are doing to ourselves. He told a story about going to a hospital in Toronto on a smog alert day and seeing children and seniors struggling with asthma. The people who brought their children or parents into the hospital were panic stricken, and were willing to do anything it took to help their loved one breathe. Dr. Suzuki was amazed that these people who were so concerned about their parent's or children's respiratory health drove to the hospital in SUVs. If they were so willing to do anything to help their loved ones, why would they not reduce the pollutions they were producing? There is a very strong correlation between pollution and asthma, yet people are far too disconnected, even when the cause of their problems are staring them right in the face.

Dr. Suzuki mentioned the research of a scientist, who wanted to track the path of one single breath of air. It was concluded, that if I take a breath of air right now, in one year, after going around the world, I will inhale some of the air that I exhaled right now. In the mean time, it will be inhaled by millions of other people along the way. He mentioned that some of the air that we are breathing in right now was in fact in the lungs of Joan of Arc, Jesus Christ, or the dinosaurs. Pretty cool eh?

So he mentioned then, that if I am the air, and you are the air, what we do to the air, we are doing to ourselves and one another.

Dr. Suzuki, then lambasted political and corporate leaders who he claims are far too short-sighted, focusing on the economy as opposed to the planet. He made a fantastic connection to the American-Soviet Space Race of the 1950s and 60s. In 1957 the Russians launched Sputnik and proceeded to have a series of victories in their space program, such as launching the first dog and the first human into space. The Americans could have easily given up, saying that it was too hard or cost to much. Instead though, they worked very hard and were able to land someone on the moon. It cost a great deal, but the economic benefits, such as our telecommunication systems, were astounding. Dr. Suzuki believes that the same thing can happen as a result of confronting climate change.

All in all, I was incredibly inspired by Dr. Suzuki's talk. He spoke very eloquently and with an incredible amount of conviction. I was inspired to go to his website and take his "Environment Challenge", and I really encourage all of you to as well. It outlines a number of really easy steps that you can take to reduce your environmental footprint and live a greener life. It really is worth looking at, because we may not have a ton more time...

Until next time,


Sunday, October 28, 2007

Happy Birthday to...


Well, ok, maybe not me as in Glen, but me as in Getting Glenergized. That's right, 365 days ago I made the following post...

"Friday, October 27, 2006...a day which will live in infamy. I have officially joined the blogosphere. I don't so much have a concept, theme, or general idea as to what to have here but rest assured it should be filled with awesomness.

Tune in to find out!!!"

So here I sit, in front of a computer, typing away once more, and my opening post still rings true. I have no idea what the "concept, theme, or general idea" for this blog will be. I began posting quite a bit about myself and any of my adventures, but since then it has changed, as I have tried to make as many posts about politics, sports, the environment, wrestling, or (like the banner says), whatever the heck else I feel like.

Since I can't make a vegan cake for a website, I have decided that in honour of my Blogiversary, I went through each of my categories here on this site and found what I consider to be the best post in each of them. This way, if you are new to me or my blog and want to get a sense of what/who I am then this is your chance, but if you are someone who has been checking this out for a while, you can go on a little trip down memory lane.

About G: We kick of with my most narcissistic category, the one devoted solely to me, and things about my life. I started this one out when I was posting my "Random Acts of Glenness" posts, but it has changed to be a tag for anything where I divulge any insight into my own past/personality. My favourite post in this category was definetly "My 2006 (12/19/06)", where I described the details of a pretty tumultuous year. It probably was the last post where I focused on myself so much, having got all that I needed to say out of my system.

Cruising on the Information Superhighway: Now this is an odd categot, that I don't really post in too much. It's essentially just anything related to this wonderful thing called the internet. My post of choice would be "My Life is Now Over, and I Couldn’t Be Happier (12/6/06)", where I cave into the great temptation that is Facebook. I was right all along, it certainly did take over my life...uggh...

Glen News: Yet another egotistical category of mine. This one about news in my own life, such as graduation, getting a job, or some of the details of my trip to China, including the post "Culture Shock (5/30/07)", where I talk about going through a brief period of reverse culture shock after I get home.

Happy [Insert Holiday Here]: Instead of focusing just on me, these are the posts where I pass on some holiday wishes. Of course the usual suspects like Christmas and Hallowe'en are there, but I also try to include less celebrated days such as Guy Fawkes Night, Holocaust Memorial Day, or my Martin Luther King Day post, "What Would He Say Now? (1/15/07)".

Hockey and Other Sports: In attempt to assert some masculinity I discuss sports here on a semi-regular basis, with the vast majority of the focus being on hockey, including my Fantasy Pool, mine and Troy's Predictaculars, or my personal favourite the newly debuted feature, "The Puck Stop – Episode I (10/15/07)".

Muzzak: And yet another of my nerdy passions comes through. My music posts are generally talkign about how great The Arcade Fire, and Broken Social Scene are. I have made a few attempts at creating solid playlists, with "Music to Break-Up To (12/7/06)", being one of my proudest achievements. Oddly, this has been my most visited post since I started blogging. I guess there are always sad people out there.

Random Tales: This is a big category, where really, I just fill in some random story of my own that may be either entertaining or enlightening. In the past year I don't think that there was any story more personally meaningful than "The Universality of Kindness (4/15/07)".

Rants: The biggest category here, were essentially I just get on my high horse and rant about something bothering me. I have taken many posts out of this category by creating a few more, but these are the ones that slip through the crack. My first official rant, "Hallowe’en – The Critical Analysis (11/1/06)", holds a special place in my heart.

Rasslin’: I originally started hiding my most nerdy of passions from this blog, but then Travis had the idea for a joint post where we discuss wrestling (originally for his blog, which hasn't really been updated...), and hten I just began letting loose with many wrestling related posts. If I had to make one pick it would be "Heel Heat – Episode 3 (9/15/07)", mainly because I'm proud of my Photoshop work on the logo.

Real Politiking: The first splinter from the "Rants" category, and a nerdy historical homage to Otto Von Bismark. I usually stick to Canadian politics in here, but "The Death of a President (6/21/07)", is probably my post of choice in this category.

Remixes and Collaborations: So this one isn't really a category in and of itself, it is just a tag I put on any posts that feature some outside input. The contributors thus far have been McNutt, Travis, Kory and Troy, who have done a great job of stopping me from having to think up original content. I have a soft spot in my heart for "Shades of Wrestlemania – Part I (3/23/07)", because it had three special guests coming together in a pretty great post.

Teachin and Learnin': If the name doesn't tip it off to you, these are posts where I talk about some of the issues I face as either a teacher, or before as a B.Ed student. My favourite post, not only in this category, but that I have made is more than likely '"The Kids Are Alright" or "Why the Hell Do You Want to be a Teacher???" (1/10/07)'

Travelling Tales: A blanket post for anything about travelling, either while I was in China or looking back at any travels in Europe or Asia. A few days after I returned from China and wrote "Why I Love China (6/1/07)", which still rings true to me.

Tree Hugging Hippie Crap: Just last week, after realizign just how many of my rants were about the environment, I realized that I needed a seperate category and here we are. I am a big fan of "And the Counter Attack Begins…(2/01/07)", just because it uses Stephen Harper's own words to show just how little he cares about the environment.

Vegan Talk: Another new addition to the fold. I had made a few posts about animal rights, but they were pretty few and far between. About a month ago, I decided to start a feature explaining why I am a vegan, with "It Ain’t Easy Being Green – Take 2 – The Environment (9/26/07)" being something I'm expecially proud of.

Videos: Ok, so this is actually the biggest tab I have, but it just comes up every time I make a post with a video in it. I'm not going to look through all of them, I'm just going to make a post of the greatest gift YouTube has ever given us...

Why I Love…: This is the only recurring feature that merits its own category, because it really just fits in everywhere, "Why I Love Bloggin’ (4/16/07)", my special 100th post holds a special spot and is probably the best insight into why I keep at this blog thing.

Well that concludes this special birthday post, I hope that you've all enjoyed the past year in cyber-space as much as I have!!!

Until next time,


Friday, October 26, 2007

This Month In Fantasy Sports - October

Last month, I introduced a new feature here on this blog. I began to chronicle my hockey pool (actually one of a whopping four that I'm a part of...) and try to provide some advice. Just in case you don't feel like clicking in the link and/or do not have every post here memorized, I'll recap my fantasy team at the beginning.

C - LeCavalier, Jokinen, Staal, Gomez, Prospal, Horton
RW - Jagr, Guerin, Radulov, Knuble, Vrbata
LW - Holmstrom, Brown, Chimera
D - Rafalski, Schneider, Campbell, Redden
G - Nabokov, Budaj, Dubielewicz

And a reminder that in each game you can dress 3 each of C, RW, LW, G, plus 4 D and 2 other Forwards. Obviously, looking at this line-up I had way too many Centres, and no chance to sub out any of my Left Wingers or Defensemen. Clearly some work needed to be done.

So over the course of the past month I've made the following moves:

Drop Add
C - Horton LW - Brashear
G - Dubielewicz G - Price
RW - Vrbata RW - Armstrong
LW - Chimera D - O'Brien
RW - Armstrong LW - Clowe
Place Schneider on IR D - Aucoin
C - Gomez RW - Goddard

First off I have to start by saying that I am a HUGE idiot. I cut Nathan Horton in exchange for Donald Brashear. Yes, you read that right. It's ok to laugh at me, really it is. I wasn't totally sold on Horton, he's had a few disappointing seasons, and I felt that this would be another. Plus I needed at least one more Left Winger, and Brashear seemed to be the best pick, especially given our pools emphasis on Penalty Minutes (more on that to come). I am glad that I was the one able to snag Price when I did. The Habs have been slow starting him out, but I'm pretty convinced that he'll see more ice time as the season goes on. Vrbata hasn't done much this season, so I'm glad to get rid of him. I added Armstrong because I thought that I could use him as trade bait (another guy in my pool raves about him all the time). I didn't have much luck shipping Armstrong away as part of a package for a Left Winger, so I ditched him and found Clowe, who I was surprised to see still available. Having a few spare Left Wingers, let me ditch Chimera and get a defenseman known for racking up the penalty minutes in Shane O'Brien. Speaking of Defense, when one of my top projected D-Men went down I had the chance to put him on IR and pick up Adrian Aucoin, who seems poised for a renaissance in Calgary. Lastly, I got sick of Scott Gomez's underachieving and cut my loses (after thinking great things about him at the start of the season) for yet another goon.

I also made several attempts at swinging trades, trying many times to get rid of Guerin, Campbell, and Brown who I all had bad feelings about. Luck for me, everyone else seemed to have bad feelings about them as well as I ended up with no takers. These three players have been putting up huge numbers for me so far, especially Campbell. I am kind of worried now that Dustin Brown has just signed a six year contract his motivation may slip a bit and he won't be getting so many points.

Going back to why I added Brashear, the league has an interesting scoring system where the points are awarded as follows:

- For skaters, they receive 1 point for each goal and assist scored. With an additional .5 scored if it was a Power Play Goal, Power Play Point, Short Handed Goal, Short Handed Point, or Game Winning Goal
- Also for every point of plus/minus, they receive 0.75 of a point, so if they are +10, they get 7.5 point, however, if they are -10, they loose 7.5 points.
- For every penalty minute, they receive an additional .5 of a point.
- Goalies receive 2 points for a win and an additional 3 points for a shut out.

Looking at this, I immediately notice that gaining .5 points for a penalty minute gives a ton of value to all goons out there, thus my recruitment of Brashear, O'Brien, and Goddard. Sure I made a huge mistake in ditching Horton (who actually has more penalty minutes than Brashear), but I think that my logic was sound.

So I guess my advice for this month, is know the inside and outs of how your pool's scoring systems. My love of goons seems to be paying off for me so far, as I am a solid 58 points ahead of 2nd place (and WAY above 11th place), I hope that I can stay strong for the whole season, I know that there are a lot of games left to play.

While the advice, seems obvious, it is incredibly important for staying ahead of everyone else . If you are in a Head-to-Head League, then make sure you know who you are getting matched up against, and how you can beat them. If you are in a Rotisserie League, pay attention to every category, especially the ones where a quick turn around can happen, such as Short Handed Points or +/-, where the difference between players is often pretty minimal. Find players who can produce in the category you need and ditch ones who can't. While goals and assists are a much sexier option, sometimes a tough defenceman can be just as useful as a first-line centre, and probably much more available.

While I still regret dropping Horton (especially since Yahoo now lists him as a C/RW) I still acted in the best interest of my team. If I don't win this pool, it will be because of this move, no questions asked. If I do win the pool, it will be because of the thought process that went into that move, even if it didn't pay off.

So for any of you out there, hope that your first month has gone as well as mine (I currently sit 1st or 2nd in all four of my pools). Except if you are in one of those pools with me...then I hope that your team starts to really suck...especially if you are everyone else, happy pooling!

Until next time,


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Outing of Albus

San Diego is burning, the US is getting closer to invading Iran, the World Series is about to start, scientists are now beginning to think that they can treat HIV, and of course there's still that pesky global warming. Sounds like we should have a lot to read about in the news right? Then why is the most talked about story this week about the sexuality of a fictional character?

Last weekend, J.K. Rowling made the startling revelation that Albus Dumbeldore, the late head of Hogwart's is in fact gay. This has caused a huge backlash in parts of the Evangelical Right, who already consider the fantasy series to be full of pagan references. This has inspired some Red Staters to claim that some like the late Jerry Falwell, who you may recall first claimed that Tinky-Winky was one of many "undisclosed gay characters" in children's entertainment, are vindicated.

Now I am not going to try and make an argument against the Falwellers, I feel that would be giving too much credit to a horribly ignorant view point. And you know what? They don't deserve my precious key strokes.

But what I do have issues with is Rowling's whole posthumous outing of Mr. Dumbledore. As a fan of the series, I find this deeply insulting, and not for reasons that any of the intolerant Bible-thumpers may.

Rowling herself has called the series a "prolonged argument for tolerance", and that has always been something that I totally respect about her work. From Harry the wizard in a mogul world, to Hermionie the mogul-born, to Hagrid the giant, to Snape the weirdo with a good heart, the main characters in this series are a host of misfits and oddballs who are able to overcome the prejudice both at the personal level (Malfoy) to an institutional level (The Ministry of Magic).

They are able to do this by overcoming any inherent differences they may have, accepting one another and then finally smiting evil in the end. That in itself is a great argument for tolerance, and it is a message that any reasonably intelligent reader/movie-goer should be able to gather. These lessons of accepting people for who they are can easily be extracted from the magical world to the real world we live in right here. Just change mogul-borns to lower socio-economic classes, giants to different races, Snape to emo-kids, and that creepy spider to homosexuals, and ta-da, there we are, a perfect lesson for kids and adults alike. Give people a chance to overcome your first impression and you too can kill Voldemort and excel at Quiddich!!!!

By revealing Dumbeldore's sexuality, Rowling is hitting us over the head with the moral of her story. It's completely unnecessary at this point. This would be equivalent to William Shakespeare showing up at the end of MacBeth to tell us "Don't get power hungry", or Steven Spielberg telling us "Don't kill Jews" after watching Schindler's List. It may be a great message, but they've already given it to us.

Secondly, I found this announcement to be offensive, because, frankly, Dumbledore's sexuality -no matter how fictitious - is Dumbeldore's business and none of mine. It is something that does not come up at all in the novels, so why bother bringing it up now? For all we know, the series could be full of gay characters. I mean, Crab and Goyle always were a little TOO close to one another, and one never really knew what to make out of Doby the House Elf, after Snape got rejected by Harry's mother, maybe he embraced a different kind of love, right? In fact, when you think about it, there are very few characters whose sexualities were ever really reveled. Sure Harry had a girlfriend, but maybe he was bisexual, who are we to know? More importantly, who are we to care?

I feel that by referencing Dumbeldore's sexuality outside of her novels, Rowling has unintentionally committed an act of intolerance herself. She made an issue out of someone's sexuality, when really it shouldn't be an issue at all. From the many conversations I have had with homosexual friends of mine, they have told me that they want to just be treated like everyone else. In her outing, Rowling, has treated the homosexual character differently than any other characters. To treat Dumbeldore fairly, she really should list every single character's sexuality, and that may take a while.

So while I applaud Rowling for her attempt at spreading such great values of tolerance around the world, I really don't feel that this was the best way to do it. Perhaps instead of talking about fictional characters sexuality, she should wave her magic wand and say "Homosexualis Toleroso" instead.

Until next time,


Monday, October 22, 2007

Double Dose of Fear

I have recently dug up two frightening tidbits of information that I feel the need to share with you, my beloved blogees. And somehow, neither of them are about Global Warming or Meat. Intrigued? Well read on!

The first one is a frightening news article from the good people at The Observer it is about a computer worm going around referred to as "Storm". Now this originally came hidden in e-mail attachments with the line "230 dead as storm batters Europe", but has since changed into all sorts of different forms from eCards, to spamming on blog comments, to YouTube invites. According to the article, the worm is particularly insidious since it does not show any immediate symptoms. Instead, it gives hosts certain roles, like an insect colony. Some computers are assigned to spread the worm, some are designed as "Host Servers" to control the spread of the worm and others are currently waiting for other assigned tasks. Creepy eh?

Nobody really has any ideas who the makers of Storm are, how many people have been infected, and worst of all, what they plan on doing with the infected computers. If the estimates as high as 50 million infected computers is right, then whoever is controlling this worm could spread some major havoc if they really want to.

So I really urge everyone out there to not open any suspicious e-mails of any kind, just flat out delete them, and if you get anything weird from me, please let me know!

Secondly on my pre-Hallowe'en fear fest, is an eerie video featuring some former employees of Fox News. As scary as a potentially apocalyptic computer virus may be, the thought of people telling a series of half-truths and/or blatant lies under the guise of being "Fair and Balanced" has far more dire consequences.

If the line "We weren't necessarily, as it was told to us, a news gathering organization, so much as we were a proponent of a point of view" by Jon Du Pre doesn't send shivers down your spine then I don't know what will. It is frightening that this sort of vicious propaganda can be pushed under the guise of legitimate news. While this clip only targets Fox, there are many other media outlets that are just as guilty of this sort of behaviour.

This is a prime example of one of the greatest ironies of our time is that quite literally, every piece of information is available at our fingertips, yet the truth has never been so hard to come by.

Until next time,


Friday, October 19, 2007

Have Your Oil and Eating it Too

hyp·o·crite [hip-uh-krit]
1.a person who pretends to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that he or she does not actually possess, esp. a person whose actions belie stated beliefs.
2.a person who feigns some desirable or publicly approved attitude, esp. one whose private life, opinions, or statements belie his or her public statements.

-- Credit,

Today Federal Environmental Minister, John Baird, announced that Canada will not withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol, just days after the government declared the targets unreasonable in the most recent throne speech.

This is pretty much a polar opposite of Harper's 2004 campaign promise to opt out of Kyoto, and his 2002 letter to supporters where he called Kyoto a "a socialist scheme to suck money out of wealth-producing nations". Now of course in the past few years Al Gore and friends have done a remarkable job of putting the environment higher up on people's consciences, so slamming the only reasonably valid pro-environmental legislation is not the best political move anymore.

This is another fantastic example of Stephen Harper's remarkable ability to speak out of both corners of his mouth. He is a master at keeping his word to the letter, but defying it in spirit. You want us to keep Kyoto? Sure we'll do that! We just won't follow it. You want us to lower the GST? DONE! We'll just raise income taxes so we'll take the same amount of your money! You want us to stay out of Iraq? Anything for you! Only we're going to up our forces in Afghanistan so then the Americans and Brits can send more forces to Iraq. You want us to face up to any allegations of government scandal you report on? That sounds great! But we're just going to limit the amount of contact the media can have with the government so you won't be able to hear about any of it in the first place.

In many ways, this government is like Jafar from Aladdin. Always giving the people exactly what we say we want, just not what we really want. In many ways we've just been teleported underwater to be near a sunken treasure. You know, I'd rather be straight out lied to as opposed to this half-assed attempt at truth.

I don't know if any of you have seen this hilarious video about the adventures of CO2 Man, but I hope you enjoy it, courtesy of the good people at Climate For Change.

Until next time,


Going Commando to Save Lives

I'm sure by now everyone out there has heard about the horrible crackdown going on in Myanmar right now. In response to the Junta's harsh methods, an activist group has started one of the oddest forms of civil activism ever conceived.

Apparently, in South East Asia, there is a superstition that if a man comes into contact with women's underwear that he will loose all of his power. As such, there is a group of concerned females who have starting sending their underwear to embassies of The Union of Myanmar all over the world in an effort to get them to change their policies.

I think that it is a pretty creative approach to guerrilla-peaceful protest and if the superstition went both ways (or if I wouldn't get such odd looks every time I walk into Victoria's Secret) I would send them some old pairs of my boxers right now! So if you are in possession of women's underwear, and feel like sticking it to THE MAN, or maybe are just finding a good excuse to go commando, here is the address to the embassy in Canada.

Embassy of Union of Myanmar
Sandringham Building,
85 Range Road, Suite 902-903
The Sandringham, Ottawa,
Ontario K1N 8J6

And if you happen to be somewhere else, a full list of their embassies is available at (EDITOR'S NOTE: For some reason the hyperlink function is not working, just copy and past the link to your browswer, the old fashion way)

So ladies, drop your drawers, and let freedom reign!

Until next time,


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Shades of Wrestlemania - 6 Months in Advance

I know, I know, Wrestlemania is not for another 6 months, but for true wrestling geeks like me, we can't help but get excited for it already. So like a kid trying to guess what he's getting for Christmas in the summer, I took the time to guess what matches we will be seeing at the end of March when the WWE gives us the 24th installment of the Grand-Daddy-of-them-all

So without further ado, I proudly present to you, my predicted card for Wrestlemania 24!

WWE Title: Orton © vs. Triple H

This one really appears to be a given right now. The WWE had wanted this to be their big Wrestlemania Match 3 years ago, and you know that they want it to happen again. I’m sure that they have wanted it to happen every year since then. The return of HBK allows Orton to have a feud in the interim and gives them a chance to stretch out H’s “big win”.

World Title: Edge © vs. The Undertaker

When it comes to Mania matches, they usually come in two varieties, fresh, exciting “Dream Matches” and age old “Grudge Matches”. This one is oddly a bit of both. The feud between these two started back in May when Edge cashed in his ill-gotten-gains and won Taker’s Title, making this a grudge match. Somehow, these two veterans have never squared off in a big time one-on-one match (sure they Taker helped squash Edge many times back when he was in a tag team with Christian, but that doesn’t count), thus making this a special dream match as well. I think that the vibe of this match works better with Edge as the champion for some reason, but it could go either way. Also, Edge can claim that since he never finished last year’s MITB Match (and ended up winning the briefcase anyway) that he is still undefeated at Mania, so we can have a Streak vs. Streak Match.

ECW Title: John Morrison © vs. Ric Flair

ECW and SD have recently announced that they are sharing their rosters, which makes the ECW Title open to anyone currently on Smackdown, including the hiatusing Nature Boy. This presents an interesting opportunity for Flair to go for the ECW Title. Sure it may not mean much at the moment, but Flair winning the title could help it out, plus he would be the only wrestler in history to win the NWA, WCW, WWF, and ECW Titles, not a bad list I dare say. Plus after Flair wins and retires, they could set up a tournament for the vacant title and take a chance to “reset” the ECW Title scene.

Batista vs. Lashley

I’ve always kind of liked it when they do special Inter-Promotional matches at Wrestlemania and I see this being a huge opportunity for both men. Since their respective brands title pictures are already full and Batista is really low on fresh opponents, so why not have a special Dream Match of two of the WWE’s best big men? This could be done as either a straight face vs. face match, or have one of them (preferably Batista) turn heel.

Shawn Michaels vs. Rey Mysterio

Here we are with another Special Inter-promotional match, which we have never seen in a big time setting. Sure it happened at the Eddie Guerrero Tribute Edition of RAW, but usually shows like that are ignored when it comes to WWE Cannon. So this could easily be booked as a First Time Ever Match. I think that both men make too good of faces to turn either of them. If the WWE gives these two 20 minutes to flat out go, we should have Wrestlemania moments for years to come.

Chris Jericho vs. Mr. Kennedy

We all know that Jericho is coming back, it’s just a given really! I can’t even begin to say how awesome of a feud I would find this one to be. I love both guys promo work and think that this could really work. The face-heel dynamics would be interesting since they both make such awesome heels, but Jericho would probably return as a face, and Kennedy always gets a ton of face pops. I think that this match could be awesome if they had Jericho go in as the face, Kennedy as the heel and tried to pull the ol’ Double Turn.

United States Title: MVP © vs. Matt Hardy

I think that if there is any current feud in the WWE that can be stretched out for another six months it is this one! I love the dynamic between these two, and feel that it deserves a huge blow-off match at the grandest stage of them all. The build would be pretty simple, just have them continue to work as Partners for a little bit longer, before they lose the title (to a team listed below…) and end up having a match at the Royal Rumble, where MVP retains. He gets some high priced lawyers to say that was Hardy’s last chance and he wants to move onto some other opponent. Come No Way Out, Hardy somehow wins some sort of multi-man match or mini-rumble to get a shot at the US Title at Mania. The only downfall of having this match here is that it would ideally be a Ladder Match, but they can’t really get away with having two Ladder Matches on the card. Still, they could easily make in a No DQ match and it wouldn’t lose much luster.

Women’s Title: Beth Phoenix © vs. Kelly Kelly

There needs to be a Women’s Title Match at Mania, and there are rumours of an Extreme Expose edition of Playboy coming out in March. The WWE loves to reuse the idea of having the Playboy gal go for the Women’s Title, and I see no reason why this year would be any different.

WWE Tag Title: Khali and Big Daddy V © vs. Harry Smith and Ted Dibiase Jr.

I know this one is a stretch, but hear me out. First off, they need to get the Tag Titles off of MVP & Hardy eventually, but the tag scene on the blue brand is pretty lame. Now that SD and ECW are sharing rosters, they have a great chance to create a Colossal Connection type team with Khali and Big Daddy V, since they clearly are not going to fire either of these guys. They could run rampant over the Tag Division for months before a new tag team “The Next Generation”, consisting of the sons of The British Bulldog and The Million Dollar Man, step up and challenge the dominant champs at the biggest show of the year. Come on, it practically writes itself!

Money in the Bank: Jeff Hardy vs. CM Punk vs. Umaga vs. Kane vs. Santino Marella vs. Finlay vs. Cody Rhodes vs. Carlito

It’s a yearly tradition, and a pretty dang good one I dare say! The cast-offs of the other matches all getting lumped together in one crazy spot-fest. The group I have this year may not have the same star power that they had last year with Orton, Edge, and Booker, but it would still be a pretty darned good match. Of the potentials I have listed, I think that Punk, Hardy or Umaga would be the most intriguing winners.

And that concludes that. Hope you enjoyed, in 6 months I'll look back and see how right I was!

Until next time,


Monday, October 15, 2007

The Puck Stop - Episode 1

Hey there, welcome to yet another new feature here at Getting Glenergized. It features some familiar faces talking about a familiar topic, as Troy and I continue to talk hockey. Only this time instead of just predicting standings (which will still happen) we will be providing some insights into some current hockey related issues, and providing our always objective opinions*.

* The definition of objective being used is really quite subjective *

So without further ado, here we go with our first edition...

Topic #1: We are only six or so games into the new season, but which teams have surprised you the most so far?

Troy: Well on the plus side two teams have surprised me and no surprise, they're both Canadian. In the East Ottawa has been on fire led by some strong play by Alfredsson and Heatley and stellar play by Marty Gerber. In the West Vancouver has been very strong and have steamrolled their competition thus far. The most surprising aspect is that it hasn't all been Luongo. The Sedin twins have been playing very consistent hockey since the season started and this can only bode well for the Canucks

Glen: The two teams that have surprised me the most are actually the last two Stanley Cup Champions, the Anaheim Ducks and the Carolina Hurricanes, albeit for different reasons. The Ducks looked completely unbeatable last season, but so far they look incredibly average. I don't know if it is the retirements of Neidermayer and Selanne, the injury to Gigure, the English jet-lag, or just old fashion Cup Hangover, but these guys need to turn it up if they hope to repeat. On the other hand, the 2006 Champion, Carolina Hurricanes, have been simply amazing this season! They look just as good, if not better, than they did when they won the cup. So far, Cam Ward and Eric Staal have bounced back from disappointing seasons and this team looks like they will be back in contention.

Topic #2: Jesse Boulerice has recently received a 25 game suspension for a vicious cross-check to the face of Ryan Kesler. What are your thoughts on this?

Well it looks like the Broad Street Bullies are back as Boulerice joins teamate Steve Downie on the suspension list. I think that the cross-check on Kesler was absolutely vicious and completly inexcusable. I am really glad that the league gave such a harsh punishment, but I feel that they need to really step it up even more to hope to stop this kind of behaviour. I think that a good 30-40 games would have opened some eyes.

Troy: In this case it is plainly obvious that Boulerice had every intention of injuring Kesler. In my humble opinion then 25 games is not enough. I don't believe it is enough of a deterrent. I'll even take if a step further than my hetero lifemate Glen and take it to 41 games, half the season. I believe this would send a serious message to the rest of the league. Hockey is a violent and passionate game and things happen very quickly where decisions must be made in fractions of a second but this type of play cannot under any circumstances be tolerated.

Topic #3: Do you think that Peter Forsberg will play in the NHL this season, and if so, where?

Troy: Simple and obvious answer is yes. I'm not much of a Forsberg fan but the simple truth is that when he is healthy he can carry a team on his back. He can take a game over in an instant and that type of player is very rare and because of that any team that has a chance to go after him would be foolish not to do so. His health is a gamble, but it is a gamble well worth taking.
At this time the rumour seems to be Dallas which would certainly be a smart move on their part but at this point I think any team would have to take a serious look at him and based on that it is hard to handicap this situation. Personally I think Ottawa would be a great fit. He would add some much needed grit yet won't be counted on for all the offense allowing him time to get back into shape slowly

Glen: Yeah it's a pretty simple fact that he will come back yet again. The man has a remarkable ability to step into any level of play and be ready to dominate. Sure he's completly falling apart, but we can rebuild him...we have the technology..As for the team he'll be on, it's hard to say. It's always difficult to count out Detroit but he would fit in great with the struggling Ducks right now. But if he wants to cut down on travel then the Eastern Conference may suit him a little more, and apparently he really liked playing in Philly, so I think that he'll end up back there.

Topic #4: Troy is currently 10 points ahead of Glen in their hockey pool, what are your thoughts on this one?

Troy: Well interestingly enough most of my points have come from two players, Henrik and Daniel Sedin. And how did I acquire these two players? Oh right....Glen offered Daniel to me in a trade which I gladly accepted. But so far my team has been pretty much injury free and playing consistent. This is not over though. Glen has a solid team and it will be tough to stay out ahead but hopefully that's that's what happens"

Glen: Annoyingly you're also getting a ton of points from Brian Campbell, who I also added (as well as Marc-Andre Fleury) with Daniel Sedin for Alexander Frolov, Sergei Gonchar and Henrik Lundqvist. Honestly, I didn't think that you'd accept it as it was too much in favour of me...shows what I know...Troy is right, my team looks solid on paper, especially up front, but paper and results rarely match. Ten points is a pretty commanding league in a rotisserie scoring pool, so I have to get a lot of work out of my big guns, including Crosby AND Ovechkin, which just hasn't been happening so far this year...stupid Troy-Garbage-Face

Well that concludes the first edition of The Puck Stop, I hope that you enjoyed it!

Until next time,


Appendix -- Current Hockey Pool Rosters


C - Malkin, Marleau, H. Sedin, Sakic, Briere, Statsny, Statsny
LW - Naslund, Brunette, Gange, Huselius, D. Sedin, Zetterberg
RW - Heatley, Demitra, Perry, Satan
D - Lidstrom, Phaneuf, Zubov, Ohlund, Pitkanen, Cambell, Ryan Whitney
G - Luongo, Backstrom, Fleury


C - Crosby, Gomez, Jokinen, Staal, Roy, Savard
LW - Ovechkin, Kovalchuk, Vanek, Semin, Frolov, Tanguay
RW - Iginla, St. Louis, Michalek, Pominville, Radulov
D - Souray, Boucher, Timonen, Gonchar, O'Brien, Visnovsky, Aucoin
G - Lundqvist, Nabokov, Hasek
IR - Avery, Boyle, Schneider

Note: There are two other people playing in our pool, that's why some prominent players are missing from our lists

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Beauty In the Contrast

Wednesday night I had the opportunity to participate in something very special here at school. I helped take a group of very wealthy private school kids into downtown Toronto to go on a night walk with the Salvation Army.

We took a bunch of supplies, ranging from toothbrushes to socks, with us and went on a tour of the "hot spots" of the homeless community to distribute them and talk with any of the homeless people around Toronto. We first walked through some pretty rough neighbourhoods and got yelled at and taunted by the locals. This frightened some of the students, who have lived, by and large, fairly sheltered lives.

There was this one girl, let's call her Christine, who was especially afraid. She repeatedly asked for me to stay close to her and revealed to me that her number one fear was having someone pull her into a dark alley and shoot her up with heroin. Despite my many attempts at explaining the inherent infeasibility of her concerns, they did not subside.

When we walked through a park, Christine was incredibly afraid of any contact with any homeless people. As the night went on, I gradually snuck away from her, hoping that she would be slightly more comfortable in her environment. I was pretty amazed by the results.

As we approached Nathan-Phillips Square (City Hall for any of you not familiar with the centre of the Universe...) we saw more, and more homeless people. Many students went up and donated their gifts directly to the recipients but I noticed Christine staying with our group. As we rounded the corner, I continued to watch her.

After a while it was fairly apparent that Christine was one of the few remaining students to have not made direct contact with a homeless person. Sensing this, she bit down on her fear and slowly made her way over to a gentleman huddled in a bus stop. I listened as she introduced herself and offered an apple and toothbrush. I could sense her voice shake.

To my delight and her shock, he gratefully accepted and begin to have a real, normal, honest-to-goodness conversation with her. No screaming, no stabbing, no stealing, no injecting with drugs.

She could probably pay off my student loans with her allowance (and that's saying something!), and I would see more money in a month than he would in a year. But in that moment, it did not matter. Right then and there the three of us were all equal. Three exceptionally different lives and social classes all juxtaposed in one surreal environment.

As our group left Nathan-Phillips Square I looked over at Christine, and said the five words that I feel every educator should say as much as possible, "I am proud of you".

I certainly, was not lying on that one. I was proud of her for helping someone in need, I was proud of her conquering her own fears, but most of all I was proud of her for opening up a piece of the real world, not only to herself, but to me as well. Her, and all of the other students there with us, really helped remind me that deep down inside we aren't all that different.

Looking back, I would be lying if I said that I wasn't a little bit afraid wandering through these slummy parts of Toronto, but after being inspired by the students and meeting some of these brave homeless people, I can say that much of my fear was alleviated.

While it is not at all easy, I really encourage any of you out there living near a disadvantaged area to go out and find a chance to interact with the people who are far less fortunate than you are. Who knows, it could give you a chance to be proud of that little bit of Christine that lives inside of you.

Until next time,


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

Much of the buzz on the webernets today is centred on British super band, Radiohead. Today they have officially launched their new album In Rainbows. Sure we see bands release albums every week, but this one is very different.

Just in case you have been too busy following unimportant stories like the two provincial elections allow me to bring you up to speed. Radiohead, currently working without a record label, announced only a week and a half ago that they were going to be making their album available for download on their site, Now here is the real revolutionary part...they are letting people decide how much to pay for it. Radiohead is also offering a deluxe box set for sale (at a set price) for the real die-hard fans looking to get more out of their listening experience.

This of course, is a huge blow to the record industry which has been reeling ever since the dawn of Napster back in 1999. The record labels have been fighting very hard against the spread of digital music, even having issues with the iTunes Music Store, one of the few financial success of the digital music age.

Since Radiohead made their announcement, there seem to be a few other big names jumping on this bandwagon. Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, now a free agent, has been making some hawkish noises against the record industry, so it would be no shock if he follows Radiohead's lead on this one.

As if the biggest alternative and industrial band's defections were not enough, there are rumours that both Oasis and Jamiroquoi could be following suit. Leaving record labels without four major acts who decide to take their music directly to the people without the dreaded "Middle Man" taking a share of the profit along the way.

It certainly is refreshing that these acts understand the vital paradigm shift that has occurred over the past eight years. In the radio/video star age the single would always serve as sort of a commercial for the album. If people liked a single enough they would hopefully buy the album, and all was good. But now, if people like a single they will download it, and if they really like it they will just download the album, leaving people's pockets empty. What Radiohead and co. seem to get is that while the single is a great advertisement for the album, the album is now a great advertisement for the artists brand.

Even if Radiohead did not put their album up for "sale" today it still would have gotten out and people would have downloaded it for free. Sure it would have been illegal, but thanks to the anonymity of the internet, that is not much of an issue. While the album could have been downloaded, there is no way that a special deluxe boxed set could be downloaded, and you know what, people are buying it. You know what else can't be downloaded? T-shirts, concert tickets, DVD extras, and much, much more. This my friends, is the future of the music industry. No matter how good the clip on YouTube is, it does not compare to the reverberation you feel in your chest as a band starts playing your favourite song live.

Back in sixties and seventies, when Rock and Roll was in its infancy, people were convinced that it would free people's minds and change the world. Fast forward to the nineties and zero-zeros and that same sense of optimism surrounds the internet. While both Rock and Web have yet to bring about major change in the social order, they can at least be content to have changed one another, permanently and irrevocably. And I dare say, that's a pretty big accomplishment.

Until next time,


Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Holding Back the Laughter

While I have only been an official big boy teacher for a short time, I believe that I have already found my kryptonite. While my weakness is not some mystical glowing rock, it is the simple fact that kids are funny. Almost every day I am blown away by the incredible wit of my students. They are constantly doing thing that I find completely hilarious, even when I'm supposed to be getting mad at them.

Today during my Grade 11 class, I was sitting in the back listening to another teacher (I am team teaching by the way, which is AWESOME), and three of my students are misbehaving. They are quietly talking to one another and not paying any attention. I get eye contact with them and they quiet down a bit. One girl goes to throw a water bottle to one of the guys after borrowing it. She throws it in a completely gentle manner, but the guy misses it and well, it hits him in an incredibly sensitive area. I instinctively bite my lip and turn away. I feel my face start to turn read as I hold back my bodily convulsions, because let's face it, people getting hit in the groin is funny.

Instead of trying to do anything about it, seeing it was an accident, I don't do much about it, since I clearly can't even try to act stern at this point. Instead, the next time the group continues to talk, I stand over next to them and they quietly pay attention. Which is great and all, but it doesn't compete with a water bottle in the groin.

So blogosphere, any thoughts on this one? Should I grow up and stop finding shots to the junk so funny, or did I do the right thing then and there? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated on this one...

Until next time.


Monday, October 08, 2007

Well Said Albert...

Hey there blogosphere, I have a really random post to make for you to today. I was cruising along the webernets when I came along a wonderful essay by none other than Albert Einstein. It is not about quantum physics, time travel or anything else that I don't understand, no, it's just everyday musing about life in general by one of the greatest minds of all time.

I agree with almost everything that the man says because well, let's face it, I'm no Einstein...but he sure is!

Without further ado...

"How strange is the lot of us mortals! Each of us is here for a brief sojourn; for what purpose he knows not, though he sometimes thinks he senses it. But without deeper reflection one knows from daily life that one exists for other people -- first of all for those upon whose smiles and well-being our own happiness is wholly dependent, and then for the many, unknown to us, to whose destinies we are bound by the ties of sympathy. A hundred times every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving...
"I have never looked upon ease and happiness as ends in themselves -- this critical basis I call the ideal of a pigsty. The ideals that have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. Without the sense of kinship with men of like mind, without the occupation with the objective world, the eternally unattainable in the field of art and scientific endeavors, life would have seemed empty to me. The trite objects of human efforts -- possessions, outward success, luxury -- have always seemed to me contemptible.

"My passionate sense of social justice and social responsibility has always contrasted oddly with my pronounced lack of need for direct contact with other human beings and human communities. I am truly a 'lone traveler' and have never belonged to my country, my home, my friends, or even my immediate family, with my whole heart; in the face of all these ties, I have never lost a sense of distance and a need for solitude..."

"My political ideal is democracy. Let every man be respected as an individual and no man idolized. It is an irony of fate that I myself have been the recipient of excessive admiration and reverence from my fellow-beings, through no fault, and no merit, of my own. The cause of this may well be the desire, unattainable for many, to understand the few ideas to which I have with my feeble powers attained through ceaseless struggle. I am quite aware that for any organization to reach its goals, one man must do the thinking and directing and generally bear the responsibility. But the led must not be coerced, they must be able to choose their leader. In my opinion, an autocratic system of coercion soon degenerates; force attracts men of low morality... The really valuable thing in the pageant of human life seems to me not the political state, but the creative, sentient individual, the personality; it alone creates the noble and the sublime, while the herd as such remains dull in thought and dull in feeling.

"This topic brings me to that worst outcrop of herd life, the military system, which I abhor... This plague-spot of civilization ought to be abolished with all possible speed. Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism -- how passionately I hate them!

"The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science. Whoever does not know it and can no longer wonder, no longer marvel, is as good as dead, and his eyes are dimmed. It was the experience of mystery -- even if mixed with fear -- that engendered religion. A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, our perceptions of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty, which only in their most primitive forms are accessible to our minds: it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute true religiosity. In this sense, and only this sense, I am a deeply religious man... I am satisfied with the mystery of life's eternity and with a knowledge, a sense, of the marvelous structure of existence -- as well as the humble attempt to understand even a tiny portion of the Reason that manifests itself in nature."

-- Einstein, Albert, "The World As I See It", available at

Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!

Until next time,


Friday, October 05, 2007

Some More Random Videos to Share

Here we are, back in what I hope to be a monthly feature here as I scour YouTube and share it with you my devoted blogeroos...

Our first video is a trailer for a movie, which if judged by cast alone could go down as the greatest film of all time...move over Citizen Kane we've got Juno coming here!!!

We have a CLASSIC clip of Stephen Colbert on The Daily Show when he was "live from London" and talking about allegations about Prince Charles' sexuality. It's one of the few times where he actually looses it...

I was shocked when I heard this song on a car commercial, I feel it is my duty to spread the whole song and video to you, the masses...

It's no question that Chuck Norris is amesome, but there is a question that needs to be answered...will Chuck Norris blend???

Wicked band, wicked album, wicked song, wicked video...

This is what $7.5 mill will get you...

That looks like a good spot to end you like that one Leafs Nation? Ha ha ha ha, suckers...

Until next time,


The Champ is...Home?!?!?

On Monday night, I was watching RAW (surprise, surprise) and talking on MSN with my good friend/wrestling buddy Kory. I was so angry at the WWE for giving away Cena-Kennedy for free and then I was even more angry at the rushed and odd finish to the match. While I was shaking my head, Kory typed something that would have a huge impact on the world of wrestling...

"Cena's hurt"

With that simple sentence, the WWE was turned upside down as their franchise, John f'n Cena, the man who was in the middle of the longest title reign in 19 years (he had recently eclipsed Hogan's second reign and Savage's first to be 6th on the all time list) tore his pectoral muscle and will now miss 6-8 months.

Cena was schedule to face Randy Orton in a Last Man Standing Match this Sunday at Unforgiven but those plans have been thrown out the window completely. The WWE has not officially announced what the plans for the title are, they have only said that "History Will Be Made".

Orton is the clear favourite to walk away with the gold this Sunday, but there are many other dark horse candidates to consider. The rumours going around right now are to make the main event one of Orton vs. Triple H, Orton vs. The Undertaker, Orton vs. Jeff Hardy, or Orton vs. Triple H vs. Umaga, all of which present interesting opportunities. I think that Hardy could be the most intriguing match-up. Few people play the underdog better than Hardy, and after Triple H, he is the most over face left on the RAW Roster.

But allow me to offer some more interesting possibilities. First off, there is always the HBK factor. Apparently Shawn has been asked to return but has been putting it off because he wants to spend more time with his family. Could he possibly be persuaded with the chance to have one more run at the top? Next there is definitely Ric Flair. Apparently he had a falling out with management a few months ago, but apparently things are back on track. Reportedly things turned sour when Flair had been promised another World Title run but McMahon changed his mind on it. could this be McMahon's chance to apologize to the Nature Boy and give him a short run with the WWE Title?

And my personal favourite option is to go with the man featured in this very video...

That's right, I want so badly for Jericho to return, win the WWE Title from Randy Orton in a huge geekout moment. It would help him promote his book and it would bring quite a bit of interest into the WWE Product with a fresh face suddenly at the top once more. Come on WWE, you know you want to...

Well at least I want you to, and that has to count for something right?

Until next time,


Monday, October 01, 2007

Glen and Troy's Pre-Season Predictacular - Northwest

Troy Says:

Oh....that's's finally here. The final frontier (....of pre-season predictaculars...not space exploration...which would definitely be more exciting but unfortunately due to cut backs in the budget my space exploration plans have been pushed back a year or two.....damn casino).

Mr. Glen and I have been getting you primed, and pumped for the upcoming 2007-2008 NHL Season and this my friends is the final chapter before the season starts. Yes I'm aware that Anaheim and Los Angeles already started the season in Europe but it doesn't count because it happened on the other side of the pond. So here it is, our predictions for the greatest division in hockey.

The Northwest division has been the best division in the NHL for a few years now and I see that trend continuing this year. Let's start things off with my least favourite team in the division, Minnesota.

Minnesota's biggest strength has always been defense with a great counter-attack lead by Marian Goborik and if it ain't broke, don't fix it. The Wild made very few changes in the off season so they remain pretty much status quo but this team will still be very competitive. If Mikko Koivu continues to improve and Pavol Demitra can play a strong season offense will not be an issue.

I hate Colorado. I hate them for many reasons but two of the most prominent are this. Firstly, they signed Ryan Smyth who I absolutely love, and secondly Glen loved this team in highschool and since they're not a Canadian team he was taunted and jeered at until my throat hurt. Last year the Avs missed the playoffs which prompted a few changes. The largest and most heart breaking (for me at least) change was the signing of Ryan Smyth which is very smart on the part of Colorado. Their biggest challenge will be in goal where the two contenders are Jose Theodore and Peter Budaj and with a $5.5 Million contract Colorado is hoping to see Theodore return to his Hart Trophy winning form.

I'm not sure if Glen remembers this or not but before the beginning of last season I predicted big things from Vancouver for no other reason than the addition of Roberto Luongo, because yes, he is that good. I thought if he could play as well as he did in front of a crap team like Florida then imagine what he could do playing in front of a less crap team in Vancouver. Fortunately I was right and the Canucks won their division and this year should be another good year for Vancouver. The off season changes mostly amounted to simple tinkering but the additions of Aaron Miller and Brad Isbister should fit nicely. As the only Western Canadian team not to make the finals in the last 3 years Vancouver will be making a big push this year and they will be tough.

Last season was one to be forgotten for Edmonton. Injuries and under achievement took their toll on the Oilers. Kevin Lower, the Oiler's GM is not one to accept defeat and in that light he was quite busy this off season. His biggest addition was Sheldon Souray from my beloved Canadiens. I will allow it though as I happen to like Edmonton. Kevin Lowe is still trying to find a replacement for Chris Pronger and the additions of Souray and Joni Pitkanen will definitely help and is certainly an improvement from last season. This could be a long year for Edmonton though if they don't do anything to help their anemic offense.

Calgary came out of no where when they made their way to within one win of the Stanley Cup and ever since expectations have been very high for the Flames but they have failed to live up to them. This year the expectations are no different and with the hiring of Mike Keenan if the expectations are not met consequences will follow. Last year it was playing on the road that killed the Flames as their exceptional home record was cancelled out by their embarrassing road record. With Keenan behind the bench and Mikka Kiprusoff in goal this team will be very exciting to watch and anything less than a birth in the finals will be a disappointment.

This is how I see the Northwest division looking when the dust settles:

1. Calgary Flames
2. Vancouver Canucks
3. Colorado Avalanche
4. Minnesota Wild
5. Edmonton Oilers

I hope you've enjoyed our Pre-season Predictacular and we look forward to a great season. Over to you Glen.

Glen Says:

It began with a division full of Canadian teams, and so it shall end. We kicked this series off with the Northeast division and now here we are with its Western Canadian counterpart, the home of the Flames, Oilers and Canucks...ohh and the Avalance and Wild as well, the dreaded Northwest. This division is certainly the most well matched and balanced division in the NHL.

This division really is the one that always goes under the microscope whenever you talk about schedule reform. In reality all of these teams could make the playoffs (note: the Oilers won't but they would be an interesting long shot...), and it is a shame that given the fact that they play each other so many times, while the Central Division's powerhouses get off easy, that they really all won't make the playoffs. On the other hand though, the games between any of these 5 teams are always loaded with emotion and are really a testament to what good hockey should be. So should we rob ourselves of so many guaranteed great games?

The biggest victims of the scheduling imbalance last season where probably the Minnesota Wild. After slumping mid-season they ended up finishing 1 point behind Vancouver in the race for the division title and so therefore had to have a first round date with the Anaheim Ducks, yeah fat chance there. After making the wrong choice by keeping Fernandez over Roloson back in 2006, they redeemed themselves by keeping Backstrom over Fernandez in 2007, and shipping old Manny off to bean town where his stats will certainly get inflated. Other then that, the Wild haven't done much in the off-season, but in reality they didn't need to. They have a solid young nucleus and a great system in place. Assuming that Gaborik plays at least 70 games for a change this season they should avoid that mid-season slump that they were faced with last year and I could see them finishing in the Top 5 of the Conference this season.

Leading onto the other American team without an s in their name, we have my former favourite team, the Colorado Avalanche. Now I used to be a Nordiques fan, and well I followed them to Colorado, and delighted when they acquired Roy and won the Cup that first season. But then over the next few years that Nords loyalty faded and I realigned my loyalty to my other favourite team the Senators. Anyway, the Avs have really gone above and beyond this off-season in acquirind Ryan Smyth. While I really wanted him to go back to Edmonton, a Smyth-Sakic duo is something to be excited about. This is also a team that consistently drafts well and proved so last year with Stastny and Wolski doing wonders in their first seasons. I would be shocked if both of these guys did not do better this season and rose to even higher heights.

Speaking of Smyth, his original team, the Edmonton Oilers, is a real wild card this season. They made some interesting acquisitions by getting Souray, Pittkanen, Sanderson, and Penner, and the face of their team is dramatically different than it was even a year ago, let alone back in 2006 when they were in the Finals. I am excited to see the progress that Sam Ganger makes, and if he has any trouble adjusting to the big leagues. While I think that this team will certainly be the odd one left out of this division come spring, I think that they will be a fun one to watch along the way.

The other Alberta team, the Calgary Flames, are a different story all together. Last year they were early season favourites who massively underachieved both through the season and in the playoffs. I just don't see that being an option this year under Mike Keenan. Say what you will about Iron Mike, but the man produces results, especially in his first couple of years with a new team. I think that the physical Flames are a perfect fit for Keenan and he should take them to great heights. A trip to the Conference Finals, and maybe even the Cup Finals would not be entirely out of the question for this team.

Lastly we have the Canucks. I hate to say it, but last year Troy was right. I just did not think that there was enough room in the playoffs for all three Western Canadian teams, and I had no idea that the Oilers would choke as badly as they did. While Vancouver should be proud that they won their division last year, the reality is that they did not win it, Calgary lost it. Like I said, I just don't see that happening again. The Canucks have a solid team with a spectacular goalie, . Either way, Luongo is clearly good enough to get them to the playoffs, but I doubt that he alone is good enough to take them far. Their offense is really week and I hope that they do something to address that in the season. I see them finishing somewhere in the 6-8 range this year.

So my last predicted divisional standings are....

1. Calgary Flames
2. Minnesota Wild
3. Colorado Avalanche
4. Vancouver Canucks
5. Edmonton Oilers

So yes, this is the end, my only friend, the end, and like all ending this one leads to a beginning, as the regular season starts for the 28 teams that didn't start in England on Wednesday, I hope that you all enjoy what should be an interesting 82 games this year!

Until next time,


Personal Milestone

October 1st marks an important day on the Glen-Calender (..Glalender?). On this day, 4 years ago I made a really important and influential decision.
That's right, on this day back in 2003 I decided to become a vegetarian. I officially gave myself one calender year to switch to a full-scale vegan, setting myself dates and targets (i.e. After this day, I will no longer eat _______).

When I first made this decision I got a lot of flak, including McNutt's infamous "Go back to your room and think about what you've done" rant at me when I first told him and my father asking "what's her name?", thinking that I was doing it for a girl. Many, many, people said that I wouldn't last a month and well here I am four years later.

In looking back I think that this is one of the best decisions I have ever made, I feel so much healthier, I am in better shape, and more importantly, I feel like a stronger person as a result of that day back in 2003.

That's about all I have to say, I apologize for a lack of original content, I just wanted to wish myself a Happy Veggiversary, and to any other members of the Green Mafia out there, keep on fighting the good a non-violent way of course...

Until next time,