Tag: Franchise

Day 999: Buh-Bye, So Long and Hallelujah


It’s a completely valid question.

For the past 50 or so days I have been fielding one question more often than most: what am I going to do for Day 1000? Will the final kilograph reflect upon the 999 that came before, like some extended clip show of my greatest guffaws and most aww-rending moments? Will I spend my final entry in closing-credits mode, thanking those who have made this all possible and put up with my considerable dearth of free time over the last 2 years and almost 9 months?

In short… no. While my original intent was to meander down that self-serving footpath for my final article, I decided that I would only do so if I could cite the Wikipedia page that had been created about me – as it turns out, that doesn’t exist yet.

In order to figure out my final missive, I felt I should turn to the moulder of my wisdom, the sage oracle who has helped to shape my morality, my perception, and even my understanding of the world: television. I have experienced the highs and lows of series finales – certainly at least one of them could illuminate the road to a poignant, entertaining, and (most of all) worthy coda to this monstrous undertaking.


My first option is the beloved trope of bringing back a classic character for the finale. In my case I could introduce a surprise cameo by Yoko Ono, Craig David, Mary Nissenson, or if I really want to stretch to my roots, Phineas Gage. I could style the entire piece in a blend of haiku, musical theatre and secret code (did anyone ever figure that one out?). It sounds trite and cliché, but that’s always a place to start, isn’t it? Read more…

Day 661: The Long Island Snake


There comes a point in most people’s lives when they realize they will most likely never make a living as a professional athlete. That’s okay, we can still become owners, right? Well, for those of us awash in a life of government drone-dom, owning the team of our dreams is also a fantasy among the unattainable. But what if we could fake it?

ESPN is airing an interesting documentary tonight as part of its 30 For 30 program, documenting the wonky exploits of a man named John Spano, who sort of owned the NHL’s New York Islanders for a brief and weird period in 1997. In Canada we don’t get ESPN, and this program isn’t airing here until Saturday, November 2nd at 11:00am, when I’ll be busy in my Lamaze class (we’re not expecting a baby – I just like practicing my breathing). So instead of setting my PVR I’ll simply hop the boards and do my own research today.

Spano’s story would be deemed too unrealistic, too implausible for that of a fictitious villain. That’s what makes it so compelling. He had balls the size of hockey helmets and sufficient knowledge of how to manipulate the system to put together a pretty slick caper. Unfortunately, he didn’t quite have the knowledge to execute the caper successfully.

Therein lies my favorite ingredient of any story – the utter absurdity.


Back in the mid-1990’s, when hockey games would periodically pause for the occasional acoustic jam by the players, the New York Islanders were a well-respected franchise. Only a few years removed from a near-miss at the Stanley Cup finals (and with the memories of four Cups in a row in the 80’s still strong), it didn’t really matter that they’d stunk up the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum for the past couple seasons. When owner John Pickett decided it was time to sell the club and spend the rest of his years under the Florida sun, he felt an $80 million price tag for his 90% share in the team was a fair price. Read more…

Day 327: A Thanksgiving Quiz – Fictional Sidekicks

Ah, the bittersweet dawn of a Yankee Thanksgiving. Bitter because up here in the frozen tundra, it’s just another work-day. Sweet because tradition insists upon a trio of mid-week football games for me to enjoy. Bitter because I’ll be lucky to squeeze a few glances at the scores from my desk. Sweet because my American friends and family get a long weekend. And bitter because this is the last day we get to complain about Christmas music being prematurely piped into stores and banks.

And so, it’s time for the holiday tradition I started on this site – a quiz. In honor of this gathering of family and friends, today’s quiz is all about companions. Essential companions. Specifically, sidekicks.

The answer is… delicious!

The link at the end of each question will take you to the corresponding article, because I’m not that jerk who makes people wait a day for the answers (I’m looking at you, New York Times.)

1. Perhaps the greatest of all sidekicks kicks off this list. His voice is a roaring salad of walrus, lion, camel, bear, rabbit, tiger, and badger. His hair (and it’s everywhere) is made from yak hair and mohair. He is one of the few fictional characters to receive a lifetime achievement award at the MTV Movie Awards, mainly because fans think he got screwed out of a medal at the end of his first movie. Out of respect, I will steer clear of mentioning his unfortunately holiday TV special. Give up?

2. Initially drawn as a black guy by accident, this animated sidekick is clearly enamored by his… what’s the opposite of a sidekick? Mainkick? Anyway, we have no confirmation on his sexual orientation, but given his fetishistic daydreams toward his centenarian employer, we can certainly guess.

No, not him.


Read more…