Church & Carlton – S1, E12 – Whither Taro Tsujimoto?

Punch Imlach didn’t typically use his trolling powers for good, but when he did, it was a thing of beauty,

If you like what you heard, my Patreon is here. Perks included high quality downloads of Josh Labelle’s soundtrack and your very own Fighting Baseball name.

A full, plaint text transcript of today’s episode can be found under the cut. As always, you can reach with me with any concerns about accessibility at ecmarconTO@gmail.com

E.C.

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Joe Bowen Bingo

Leafs play-by-play announcer Joe Bowen calls his 3000th Leaf game tonight. In light of this astonishing achievement in masochism, I have decided to honour one of the most prolific and influential sportscasters in hockey history with the best game I could hastily make in Microsoft Word.

Crank up your AM radio, crack open a beer, and play along as the great Joe Bowen and his stalwart sidekick Jim Ralph call the game like a hoser Timon and Pumbaa.

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Mumps 2: The ReMumpening

The Vancouver Canucks have mumps.

Mumps, a nasty little virus that causes hilarious yet painful swelling of the salivary glands, is highly contagious. Transferred through saliva, it is currently laying waste to Toronto’s bar scene. The NHL had its first mumps outbreak in 2014 – you may remember this iconic image:

Of course it happened to Sid. Of course it did. 

The outbreak passed, teams gave out booster shots, and everyone promptly forgot that dozens of professional athletes had the mumps. But now the virus is back to terrorize the hapless Canucks, leaving us all with the question: What caused the Great ReMumpening?

Several theories have been floated, ranging from the mundane (sharing water bottles) to the disgusting (saliva spray during checking) to the tragically improbable (hot player-on-player action.) But the fact remains that this is a group of health-conscious adult men in peak physical fitness. What are they doing with a 19th century children’s disease?

The answer may be surprisingly simple. Before 1996, the prevailing wisdom in Canada was that we only needed to be inoculated against mumps once. Now, the recommendation is that children need to get the mumps vaccine twice. This means that Canadians born  between 1970 and 1992 are still susceptible to mumps even though they  received their childhood vaccination. The NHL is mostly comprised of Canadians born between 1970 and 1992. If they’re anything like every other Canadian Millennial, their parents lost their yellow immunization card circa 1998. Like all those poor saps who got infected on West Queen West last week, they probably didn’t know that they were supposed to get inoculated twice and have now passed on Canada’s most unfortunate export since Justin Bieber to their international teammates.

The Canucks aren’t exactly playoff-bound this year, but if the outbreak spreads, other Western Conference teams could find themselves incapacitated at a crucial point in the season. The Canucks play the San Jose Sharks tomorrow night. Brent Burns was born in Barrie in 1985.

I hope he’s had his booster shot.

On Nazem Kadri, Donald Trump, and Keeping Politics Out of Hockey

Nazem Kadri first voiced his disapproval of then-Republican candidate Donald Trump’s proposed Muslim travel ban in November of 2015:

“I think he’s pretty delusional. But his opinion’s his opinion…[T]hat being said, I’m lucky to live in a country like Canada, where people of political stature don’t say those kinds of things to make people feel out of place.”

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In Praise of Reims (Originally written Feb. 2016)

I met James Reimer once. It was at last year’s outdoor practice and all of a sudden he was maybe two feet away from me and I had to say something. Except I didn’t know what to say so I said “You’re very popular with lesbians.” He started laughing really hard and I didn’t know what to do so I started laughing really hard and we both stood there in -30 degree weather laughing until we both started coughing from the cold. He smiled the now-famous crooked smile and said “Thank you” and his face was that fire engine shade of red that it gets during shootouts. It was awesome.

It’s true though: he is very popular with lesbians. Well, bi girls, ace girls, and non-binary people mostly, but my brain had entered Emergency Shutdown Mode and the only word I could come up with was “lesbians.“And our weird little encounter is something I’ve thought about a lot since, mostly because he seemed so genuinely delighted to be very popular with lesbians. Continue reading

Honky The Christmas Goose (originally Written Dec. 24th, 2016)

“That’s horseshit,” says Terry. “Geese don’t fuckin’ have noses.”

“It’s for kids,” Johnny says. ‘Kids don’t care whether geese have noses or not.”

“But how does he honk then, if he’s got a fuckin’ nose? Geese honk with their beaks. I seen ’em.”

“And reindeer don’t have red noses, Terry. No one cares about this stuff at Christmas.”

“It’s not so much the nose thing that concerns me so much as the general narrative structure.” Frank slicks a wad of Brylcreem through his black hair. “The chorus implies that Honky’s central conflict will be his struggles with his weight but the verses deal primarily with the problems caused by his honking.”

“Mahovlich,” says Terry. “You’re the biggest fucking fruitcake I ever met in my life.”

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