Category Archives: Hockey Goons

The Pencil Today:

TODAY’S QUOTE

“The clock talked loud. I threw it away. It scared me what it talked.” — Tillie Olsen

TEMPUS FUGIT

It was a wild ride around the sun this time, no?

Don’t unbuckle your seatbelt just yet. The next one promises to be just as bumpy.

HUGO

The Loved One and I caught Martin Scorsese‘s “Hugo” yesterday. An out and out visual treat. It was the master director’s love letter to the movies.

Understand that I’m a big Scorsese fan. His “Raging Bull” was the greatest sports movie ever made and deserves consideration as the greatest movie ever made, period. At least two scenes from his movies have become conversational mantras: “I’m funny how? I mean, funny like I’m a clown? I amuse you?” and “You talkin’ to me? I’m the only one here.”

Joe Pesci As Tommy DeVito

But Scorsese, in my unhumble opinion, always has kept a distance from his characters. He has handled the likes of Travis Bickle, Tommy DeVito, and Bill “the Butcher” Cutting with an icy reserve. He’s as dispassionate as a surgeon.

Even Hugo Cabret, the train station orphan who’s desperate to discover his purpose in life; Scorsese observes him from a remove. It’s the story of “Hugo” that Scorsese embraces, as if it’s his own.

“Hugo”

I’ll bet in the deepest recesses of his imagination, it is.

Anyway, one thing I couldn’t get past. The movie is set in a Paris train station. The vast majority of characters are French women and men (and kids). So why does everybody speak with an upper-class British accent?

NOCERA SWIPES MY IDEA

Speaking of sports (well, I mentioned the word in the above bit, didn’t I?), Joe Nocera penned a compelling piece for tomorrow’s New York Times Magazine. He suggests we strip away all the pretense and just pay college football and basketball players. He also recommends dropping the whole student-athlete charade.

Nocera

I endorse every word he writes, mainly because they’re precisely the things I’ve been hollering for years.

Living in a college town for more than two years now I realize how important the Hoosiers or the Buckeyes or the Badgers or even the Nittany Lions are to their surrounding communities.

Big time college athletics has become so ingrained in the life of the region around each university that the teams have become, in essence, public trusts. The Hoosiers, rightfully, are more a possession of the local citizenry than they are of Indiana University.

So, run the operation like a business. Which means pay the labor.

Even The Chinese Who Built The US Railroads Got Paid

NEWS AS ENTERTAINMENT

The Herald Times decreed today that the Lauren Spierer disappearance was the top local story of 2011.

I suppose that would be true if by “top story” you mean the one that played out most like a dramatic daily serial.

Me? I figure the top story was — once again — funding cutbacks for schools, libraries, social services, Planned Parenthood, and the like due to the 2008 crash and the inexorable move to the right in our holy land.

Then again, that’s not as riveting as The Case of the Missing Well-Heeled Pretty Blond Coed.

STAYIN’ ALIVE

Hey, if you’re planning to get sloshed tonight, remember to take the Yellow Cab Company up on its offer of a free ride home. IU-Bloomington Hospital as well as the city and the county are helping pay for the service.

Some 19 drivers will be shuttling the tipsy and the downright drunk home from their parties from 9:00pm through 4:00am.

See, It’d Be Better If This Guy Didn’t Drive Tonight

Call 812.339.9744 for your ride.

Oh, and don’t be a smart ass — the free ride is not meant for people shuttling between parties. There’s always some knucklehead.

THE FIGHTING GOP

Peter Sagal on “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me” revealed this morning that former Minnesota GOP governor Tim Pawlenty claims to relax by logging on to a website featuring hockey fights.

You know, where two uniformed simians on skates pound each others’ heads and faces and otherwise express their version of sportsmanship.

Relaxing

Yep, nothing like watching incidents of otherwise-felonious assault to reach that zen-like state of repose. As long as you ignore the fact that many hockey goons will suffer brain degeneration and may well die young.

Is it any wonder why I’ve never voted Republican?

TIME

It’s a good day to listen to the Chambers Brothers hit from the fall of 1968.

Live this next year as if it may be your last. And let’s hope we can say that to each other fifty more times.

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