About Me

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Split personality. Liking the arts, especially opera, and hockey and Los Toros. I know, I know THAT one is non pc currently. But I can't help it saw some in Spain and got hooked, but good. But on the other hand right now opera and hockey are in the forefront!


Sunday, February 28, 2010

Oh, Canada...

Sidney Crosby stands on guard for thee... as he got the deciding goal in overtime, he now is A CANADIAN hero.
so I know it is not a Maple Leaf, but a Yellow Rose of Texas for all Hockey Players...what a game! A Cliffhanger of a game. What a nailbiter to watch. Do I have any nails left? Kudos to Parise and his team mates for skating as if for their lives!
The speed, the precision, the inate sense of how to palce oneself, the saves, the defense....I am still too wound up to say much.

Only this: IMO - not to detract from these guys' efforts and talents, BUT ...the guys of the "Miracle Team", composed of college students rather than highly paid professional, those guys in my eyes are the epitome of olympic achievements.

And tomorrow or the day after, they'll all be back again skating for their respective NHL club in USA or CANADA. And gearing up for the Stanley Cup Play Offs....Gotta love hockey!

Anticipation in overdrive

before the USA vs Canada Olympic (and how Olympic!) Hockey battle for the Gold! TODAY!
Just read this in "In Goal Magazine" from an interview of USA Goalie Miller:
"It’s going to be a lot of fun. It’s a big game but it doesn’t change the way we play. It’s a hockey game, it’s ice, it’s a puck, the kind of stuff we’ve done for years. Just going to go out and hopefully tie my skates on the right way and play a hockey game. It’s something we do every day. I’m just going to try and have fun with it. It is a great chance."
That hit me!
This ought to be the reaction by any hockey fan "-have fun with it."
Win or lose, "-have fun with it". Playing or watching, "-have fun with it"!
When we see, read and hear about the recent disasters that Mother Nature's muscle flexing caused in Haiti and Chile, and elswhere, it seems ever more important to "-have fun with it"!
Will good sportsmanship prevail IF... on either side.
Or will sour grapes abound? To be continued......later today!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

A night of fights-Stars dominate Aeros

All photos by ArtandHockey 2/27/2010
fighting for the face off!
Too Good A Start?
Beaudoin penalty
Officials get between Earl and fellow Star pugilist

Fight, Fight..
Second intermission feature"Theater on Ice" a pleasant surprise!

Stunned fans - despondent - unbelieving - drooping
Driven to become "The Absinthe Drinker" ?(Picasso)
Stars have an incredible start 3 shots ON goal 3 shots INTO Aeros goal, minded by starter "Dubie", after that
" Brusty" comes out and .. lets in one more goal, gets dumped onto his face by McCulloch, then holds off 13 of 14 SoGs, then was pulled at the end and - of course Stars got an empty net goal by Lindgren at 19:04!
Bingo: Stars 5 Aeros 2.THE END!
The goals by Houston: Fraser, Daoust, Gunderson in the 1. period. Followed by Stars goals Nr.1 Wathier, Stafford, Hutchison on a PP, Nr. 2: Hutchison,Sceviour, Korostin, Nr. 3 Tousignant, Beaudoin, Morin.
Second period sees another goal by Stars' Jancevski, Wathier, Rallo. Third period Sifers comes storming from the box, finds the puck and rushes toward Climie who wanders out from his net, and so Sifers gets an unassisted, shorthanded goal at 15:43. THAT WAS A TOTALLY UNEXPECTED ONE! FANS GASPING AND LAUGHING HAPPILY!
But a short while later, Better Half and I had started to wander toward the garage, when huge out cry by fans, Lindgren gets an empty netter (Nr. 5 goal for Stars).
I really like to ask ALMOND what he IS thinking of to start all these fights lately?
Mad because he did not stay up in Minnie? Or maybe he just doesn't think!
How can sitting out penalties not affect the team such that they have to kill said penalties wasting time!
Guys, THINK before you BRAWL!!
I expect fights from Kassian, Testwuide, Sifers, sometimes from Falk, Smith, Daoust, even Irmen and Noreau have lost their cool.
This said, the whole evening could have been a totally lost one.. IF NOT for running into Brandon, The Rock, Rogers who took the time to chat a bit, which was just what the doctor might have ordered to lift my spirit without conspicuous consumption OF spirits! ;-)
Apropos, I do NOT like Absinthe -just to set record straight, LOL.
This was NOT a game, this was slaughter of the (alas not so) innocent!
These Aeros played -well, these Aeros played very hard at playing Junior league hockey : - ( ------;-)
NO defense to speak of, but then that was balanced out by the ABSENCE of offense. Unable to use Power Play opportunities, but they did manage to kill a few penalties, other than that very first goal by Wathier which got the Stars 'sparking' alas!
Just trying to keep up with all the penalties in this "fight of a game
"on a pad of paper impossible...several were concurrent on BOTH sides...so, for the first time here's a reprint AHL boxscore of this LONG list!
1 - HOU Milroy, 0:34 - Holding , 2 min (PP)
1 - TEX
Morin, 10:19 - Roughing , 2 min
1 - HOU
Kassian, 10:19 - Charging , 2 min
1 - TEX
McCulloch, 16:40 - Hooking , 2 min (PP)
2 - HOU
Earl, 2:05 - Tripping , 2 min (PP)
2 - TEX
McCulloch, 6:56 - Goaltender interference , 2 min (PP)
2 - TEX
Beaudoin, 9:44 - Hooking , 2 min (PP)
2 - TEX
Ludwig, 16:56 - Hooking , 2 min (PP)
2 - HOU
Daoust, 17:54 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 - TEX
Morin, 5:21 - Hooking , 2 min (PP)
3 - TEX
Gagnon, 9:13 - Tripping , 2 min (PP)
3 - TEX
Rallo, 10:24 - Fighting , 5 min
3 - TEX
Stafford, 10:24 - Roughing , 2 min
3 - TEX
Stafford, 10:24 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 - HOU
Almond, 10:24 - Fighting , 5 min
3 - HOU
Daoust, 10:24 - Roughing , 2 min
3 - TEX
Peters, 11:15 - Slashing , 2 min (PP)
3 - HOU
Sifers, 13:38 - Boarding , 2 min (PP)
3 - HOU
Falk, 14:30 - Hooking , 2 min (PP)
3 - HOU
Almond, 16:29 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 - TEX
Sawada, 19:19 - Fighting , 5 min
3 - TEX
Wathier, 19:19 - Roughing , 2 min
3 - HOU
Falk, 19:19 - Charging , 2 min
3 - HOU
Falk, 19:19 - Fighting , 5 min
3 - HOU
Kassian, 19:19 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 - HOU
Kassian, 19:19 - Misconduct , 10 min
3 - HOU
Kassian, 19:19 - Game misconduct - Third man in (47.15), 10 min
Now Aeros slide back to 6th place?
They will face the Rampage on Wednesday in San Antonio.
I will be there and report on the outcome if any ;-)

Waxing ..

philosophically, methinks?

Fabled horses of Neptune
Waking up to news of a horrendous quake followed by tsunami in Chile.
How fleeting other news seem next to that:
Ohno disqualified, then getting a bronze in another event; snow whistling down the slopes of Whistler and slalomers hardly able to see the gates!
AND WANING and bemoaning:
Aeros lost, again, but putting up valiant defense, in parts;
Both teams (Aeros/Rivermen) are struggling right now. The only Team, other than Aeros, who have played more games are Icehogs, all others have games to spare to move ahead of Aeros.
Houston can't find the net and the Rivermen were shaken when coach was called up to lead the Blues in St. Louis.
Ranking in the West Division as of 2/26/10 PM
Team Game Won Lost
1 Chicago Wolves 59 37 18
2 Rockford IceHogs 62 35 22
3 Texas Stars 60 32 21 6-0-0 792
4 Milwaukee Admirals 59 32 21
5 Houston Aeros 61 28 26
6 San Antonio Rampage 59 26 24
7 Peoria Rivermen 58 27 25
And more snow in the West and still to come more snow in the East...and on and on.
Feel like THE groundhog..
let me go back and sleep some more!

Friday, February 26, 2010

AUSTRIA's Medals as of 2/27

Das Land am Berge und seine Medaillen


Alpine Skiing - Women's Slalom Final
Marlies Schild
Biathlon - Men's 12.5km Pursuit
Christoph Sumann
Biathlon - Men's 4x7.5km Relay
Dominik Landertinger
Christoph Sumann
Daniel Mesotitsch
Simon Eder
Freestyle Skiing - Men's Ski Cross Final
Andreas Matt
Luge - Women's Singles Final
Nina Reithmayer

Alpine Skiing - Women's Downhill
Elisabeth Goergl
Alpine Skiing - Women's Giant Slalom Final
Elisabeth Goergl
Nordic Combined - Men's Individual Large Hill Final
Bernhard Gruber
Snowboarding - Women's Parallel Giant Slalom Final
Marion Kreiner
Ski Jumping - Men's Individual Large Hill Final
Gregor Schlierenzauer
Ski Jumping - Men's Individual Normal Hill Final
Gregor Schlierenzauer

Aeros (2) loose to Stars (3) tonight at Cedar park in Austin.
In the 1. Period: Ex Aeros Beaudoin starts Stars off with a PP 1. goal. Morin 2. PP goal.
Aeros unable to take advantage of a major penalty on Stars (10 minutes).
In the 2. Period: Korostin made it 3. Then Aeros Fraser/Smith/Milroy and Almond/Irmen/Buck got the two for Aeros.
No goals for either in the 3.
Climie stopped 27, Brust 34.
That's all folks, good night!
And a repeat, that is repeat game, will take place in Houston tomorrow

Rumor Mills are grinding ...

Riding to the rescue?
Per T3I post game blog, Tony Hrkac, the 'miracle worker' from last season (Nr. 14) has been signed to come back and inject his magic to form another "Circus"! And who else?
Also, since T3I can go 'backstage'( am so used to going back there to hug my opera singers, LOL), I mean of course, locker room,
we read that Rogers, Photo credits:Chris Jerina
"The Rock" suffers from a concussion, thus the scratch, even though he WAS visible AND audible as "The Voice"'s O'Donnell sidekick last night! '!
We also read that "Ironman" Noreau, may have a worse injury, x-rays of his ankle will show for sure.
On the Aeros front, that's all, folks!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

We should have asked..

the USA women Hockey team who won the Silver,
but are shown receiving the medals with somber and long faces :-( ,
to come "SKATING" to the Aeros' rescue tonight.
In period one: zero to zero, 1 PP each, none converted to goal.
"Brusty" in goal, while "Doobie" kept yelling advice or whatever, clearly audible from across the rink!
Was it effective? Who knows. I do know that
Rau-"WOW" was getting some face offs.
Noticeable were "The Streak" Smith caught in a vice by two Moose and prohibited from doing much at that time, Zingoni falling or being pushed down two times-no whistles."Bucky" Buck rushing with the puck towards Schneider's net, but having to give it up, because (as so often the case) no other Aeros kept pace with him to received a pass-alas!
In the second the Moose must have paid attention to Doobie's yelling, because they scored a power play goal by Shirokov (Russian avenger?) with Desbien (Canadian avenger?) - just kidding!
Then - 'HUZZAH '- Duncan, 'the King', Milroy scored for the Aeros at 13:35 with the help of "Sunny"Fraser and "the Streak" Smith,
followed by goal Number 2 - alas -by the Moose ,Austrian born Grabner, with Ex-Aeros Rosa and Oberg doing the honors, just a minute later!
And that was that. "Avalanche"Kalus had a couple really good opportunities, but- ! "Brusty's" bacon was saved once again, on one of his excursions away from the net, by "Son of a Gun"-derson, and "The Scrapper " Daoust managed to steal the puck from a Moose in their zone, but lacking a partner to pass to (same scenario-no pass receiver nearby), it reverted back to the Moose. Period Two ended with Aeros 1 with 18 shots on goal, Moose 2 with 23.
In the third: Moose attack fiercely "Bucky" went airborne;
the Falk'er' looked lost and seemed slow in reactions; Sifers boards and gets caught ;-)!
Noreau went down and was escorted off by trainer and "Testy"Testwuide.
But before you can say "Ironman" , Noreau is back and scores at 15:27 on a power play, with assists by "The Scrapper" Daoust and Almond-"Joy".
BUT again the Moose come back at 16:37, while "Brusty" sprawles lustily, with the decisive goal by Labrie, Keane and Bliznak.
"Brusty" is pulled with a bit over 1 minute to go, but...in vain. Game ends with Aeros 2/28 Sog and Moose 3/29 SoG.
Three Stars: Nr. and 2 Moose Labrie and Goalie Schneider,
Nr. 3 "Ironman" who really IS, Noreau!!
And as Andrew Ferraro of T3I so eloquently expounded in an earlier blog of today...

-Salvadore Dali

TIME IS MELTING AWAY ! How much LONGER can they skate on pure adrenalin? I sensed a slowing down tonight even in the most active and resolute players! sigh - these Aeros seem more and more mediocre, unable to pull it together, unable to show constancy and cohesiveness as a team. Cannot explain it. Trying to be upbeat, but ...They all seem to have a good work ethic, sprightly spirits and enough Adrenalin to drown lesser fry.. and yet, and yet! Really planned NOT to post, but here I am, it was such a night that asked for comments. Good, Bad, Indifferent.. and I am tending toward the latter!

A night at the Opera...

while OLY medals were won, or not,
I was sitting in the dark watching The Met's Simulcast Encore of
Domingo as Boccanegra
The various acts' scenery very dark, probably hard to light properly for recording.
Scene form the prologue when Simon B. is suggested and voted in as the new Doge.
Even the garden scene seemed to take place at dusk, rather than daylight under a Mediterranean sun.
But the splendor of the period costumes abounding in rich brocades, furs (could NOT tell if real or fake, so PETA please don't get on my case just yet!), glittering jewels and sparkly embroidery made up for the dark.
It was another milestone for the world's beloved tenor, turned conductor, turned opera magnate, Placido Domingo. Five decades into a legendary Met career, Plácido Domingo makes history singing the baritone title role - at times sounding rather tenorial in it ;-)! But overall impressive.
Briefly: Simon Boccanegra, is a gripping political thriller about a father and his lost daughter. The highlights are without doubt, the recognition scenes involving father and daughter, father and grandfather, grandfather and daughter IF movingly sung. But the opera really lives or dies with the thrilling Council Chamber scene, in which the Doge brings about a reconciliation between warring Plebes and Patricians. In which Domingo excelled. Comparisons to 'modern' life politicians such as Mandela, are, IMO, a bit thin. However that IS up to the beholder!
In the cast were, still a, tenor Marcello Giordani, stentorian and yet at times rather lyric as the love interest 'Gabrielle Adorno'; soprano Adrianne Pieczonka, the object of love (manly and fatherly) as 'Amelia/Maria' with lovely sound and a respectable range quite suited to the role;
Bass James Morris, 'Fiesco', as father of Maria, Simon's love and mother of child Maria/Amelia), grandfather (unbeknownst to him until the last minute) of Maria/Amelia, co-conspirator with Adorno, and arch enemy to Boccanegra, who, well, sang and acted 'nobly'! IMO, in the prologue, he seemed a bit 'rusty' with a fairly strong vibrato, which, after having warmed up, later was not there anymore.
Domingo is a relentless singing, acting, conducting, directing or managing machine!
At 69, he is constantly challenging himself to out-do himself, because there simply aren't many more grand singers, conductors, managers or directors, to out-do left ;-)! He takes on this baritone role, after having taken on Heldentenor roles in the past, and plans to do more in the baritone Fach, except perhaps for such villains as Iago in Verdi's 'Otello'. Domingo shines in magisterial - royal roles, tenor or baritone, such as this.
Which, given his age, seem more suited now than portraying the ardent young lovers of the tenor Fach. As a matter of fact, he did seem to have some trouble rising from his knees in the prologue when, per libretto, he portrays a young pirate ;-)!
However, in the death scene, and yes, my friends it was a protracted one, undoubtedly due to the slow acting poison he had ingested much earlier ;-), he collapsed, raised and collapsed and raised himself to lounging positions without too much help by his 'daughter, her lover/husband and even his ex-arch enemy, turned admirer,Fiesco.
This said, it was a sumptuous production, the 'council chamber of the Genovese ruler' boasted a marvellous reproduction of "original ? "ceiling paintings so beloved by the Italian ruling classes. The orchestra under the baton of James Levine played heroically, minor roles and chorus did well.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

AWESOME DAY 13 of the OLYs... for USA

Even though it was NOT Friday, Day 13 of the Vancouver Olympics brought victory to USA Hockey: 2 - 0 over the Swiss. I watched with bated breath, yes, glued to the tube...HOW CAN ONE NOT LOVE this?

Miller got his shut out, but had incredible help by defenders such as Eric Johnson, and offense guys such as Zach Parisi (Minnesotan?) with another open netter at last minute, and others. The game was fast, nail biting to the end! Bitter for the Swiss players who are now on their way back to whichever team they normally play, in Europe or NHL, but, oh, so sweet for Team USA who will go to play Saturday and then ???
Hockey Angels root for USA!

BIG, and I really mean BIG, kudos to Jonas Hiller, the young Swiss goalie, who stopped 43 of 44 shots on goal.

That's all folks for today. Tomorrow a brief review of the Met's Simon Bocanegra by Guiseppi Verdi, which I shall see soon - the Encore presentation, that is, since I had to miss the live simulcast earlier.
And much later, the latest on the AEROS/MOOSE confrontation at the TC.
GO AEROS! (hope you all watched this afternoon and some of it rubbed off via osmosis - just saying ;-))

The 'Moose' in the South, a repeat?

and we'll hear 'Oh, Canada' again sung in the TC.
Must admit I enjoy that presentation over many others who so, big sigh, mangle The American anthem!

I am taking the day off from posting other than THIS:
Austria got another GOLD in Nordic Combined (Jumping and Skiing)! We watched the final Austrian Skier seemingly loosing against the American then pulling ahead to win the GOLD! Austria's winning time in the 4-by-5-kilometer relay following a jump off the large hill was 49 minutes, 31.6 seconds. .

The team of Stecher, Felix Gottwald, David Kreiner and Bernhard Gruber defended its title Turin. Stecher's strong finish had him cruising past the finish line ahead of the American.
AND USA got the Silver, a first!

Just watching that...almost could feel the aches in legs and arms, and lungs! LOL. And dreaming about THAT (the aches I mean) kept me awake half the night pacing the 'pins and needles' away!
IMO, lovely to see Canadian Winners actually sing THEIR anthem! Such a difference to watching grinning and neck jerking reactions of so many others!
OK, so you can't sing a note, who cares..mouth it, the cameras don't record your actual sound, or, the least you can do, stand to attention with eyes on YOUR flag, instead of roaming the audience to search for sponsors ..just kidding!
I did have one beef: why that "fireside chat" with Phelps, the swimmer!
So he WAS there, so WERE others, too!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

unrelated thoughts swirling..

Salvatore Dali's take on "The average Buerocrat"
It is NOT known if this example will survive human evolution ;-)

To quote from a recent WSJ article:

"These days, the key driver of evolutionary change isn't who survives long enough to have children, but who has the most children and how soon they start. It's those that procreate early and often who have the most genetic impact on future generations". Which causes some researchers to fear that because "the most educated and affluent people are having the fewest children". And predictions arise that "the human race could diverge into two parts-tall, fit elites and a larger pool of shorter, less educated laborers". Hmm?

What about the impact of better nutrition? What about the diminishing need for physical labor in favor of mental labor? What about the urge to create ever more robots to surplant humans for those mind-numbing conveyor belt type labors?
Wayyy back, the reason to have so many children was simply to supply plenty of hands for farming, tending herds, milking and so on! Now we have tractors, sowers, mowers, balers, threshers, milking machines, directed by ONE human in the 'cockpit'

And back to the Olympics... having fun!

a neat idea (LOL) for the next figure skating dance competition, NOT!

Monday, February 22, 2010

More dancing to come..

The highlight of the day: Austrian Men win Gold in team jump/large hill...lovely names those boys have Thomas Morgenstern (Morningstar ;-)-(missing from this pic),

Andreas Kofler,Wolfgang Loitzl and Gregor Schlierenzauer,who won 2 previous medals.

I am not going to grouse any further about the missing USA/Canada Hockey showing on NBC in favor of various delayed clips, etc. too many disgruntled viewers have filled the blogosphere and FB, Twitter and other 'social' websites with it.
IMO, (pray do not slay me for that!) all these hockey teams are alike! Many on their individual nations' teams actually play in the NHL and - get paid handsomely for it! So now they pit their individual prowesses against each other,
ONLY to return to "their NHL team" after the Olympics are past.
The Olympics just pit the NHL giants temporarily against each other!
Of course, I, too, root for one team or the other depends which team is the foe !
Only to change allegiance once again should this team play against that team, however it falls out to be....that's Olympics! Confusing... but so much fun!
Keeping an eye on more Oluympic action and gossip...fun!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

USA vs Canada 5-3 and where are you AEROS?

which end of the Black Hole?
Watching Austria get another Silver in-Skicross-which is a crazy mixture of downhill skiing and moguling/jumping.
Watching Bodie Miller going for the gold in Super Combined (downhill and slalom).
we hear an exited Joe O'Donnell"HE SCORES!"
And so it was, RAU-"WOW" scored an unassisted PP goal in the second, followed by "Frisky"Gillies, Almond"JOY" and "Ironman"Noreau.
In the 3. "King"Duncan Milroy with "The Streak" Smith and "Sunny" Fraser scores the 3. goal, and with seconds to spare "Irms" Danny Irmen gets goal 4 into an empty net.
In another battle of the BBs: Goalie Barry"Brusty"Brust faces off with Ben"The Giant"Bishop, who was pulled.
'No Love lost' between him and Kassian ;-)!
Three Stars: BB Nr. 1,"Brusty" , Armstrong (only goal in 1. for Peoria), and RAU=WOW.
Which now puts the AEROS with 28 wins in 5th place after Stars with 31.
Peoria with 25 sits behind Rampage with 24.
So unless the Stars keep slipping badly, and/or the Rampage rampage ahead fiercely,
Aeros chances for play off are, indeed, slim!
But then there have been Miracles LOL

Rooting for ????

Russian Federation vs Czech Republic
(4-2) "Pravda vítězí" = Truth Prevails...alas, Russians are better skaters!
OK, so we were settled in to watch some hockey this afternoon! And especially USA vs Canada, after getting warmed up by the above mentioned game, or not so warmed up, as we both rooted for the Czechs. Guess what, one can watch it, generously provided by NBC cable, on cable!

The 'poor man's' TV will show lots of 'blah blah blah' followed by ice dancing in toto and numerous commercials which time we, admittedly, all use to perform various functions, raid the fridge, blow noses, warm up a pot of tea, pour a glass of something spirited, pop a can, flip a cap, nuke cold coffee - just not watch those commercials, anyway! So, no need to change allegiance just now!
On the positive side, Austria now has 8 medals: 2 Gold, 3 Silver and 3 Bronze
(Schlierenzauer 2. Bronze/ski jump aged 20 yrs), putting it in 6th position in medals count.
How would you like it to be:
Olympic coverage ought to be Olympian!
Just show everything as it happens: That's where the drama lies.
There are at least four networks to call on; show it all as it happens!
Eurosport for instance is showing the RUS vs CZE hockey game live in its entirety without interruption,
or so I hear. and others have full coverage of all sports, maybe live, maybe canned but in full!