Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Stanley Cup

It’s the end of April, and time for baseball.  At least for me it is.  But here in Canada, people are paying far more attention to hockey, as the Stanley Cup Playoffs are underway.  It takes some getting used to.

When I was a little girl, I listened to the NY Rangers on the radio late at night. I'd never seen a hockey game, but I loved the rhythm of the game, and the French names of the players. My favorite team was the Toronto Make Believes, and I hoped to stand one day in Make Believe Garden. It was a pretty big disappointment when I saw my first (televised) game, and finally understood the name of the team.

When I lived in the Bay Area, the San Jose Sharks came into being, and I paid attention to hockey once again.  The standing joke then was that there were really only 17,442 Sharks fans. That was the capacity of the San Jose Arena configured for hockey, and the most likely explanation for a team with one of the worst records in the NHL selling out every home game.

Now, the Vancouver Canucks are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but even more thrilling, the Stanley Cup was in Kelowna last night.  I'll never stand in Make Believe Garden, but I got to touch the Stanley Cup.

Stanley Cup on the left; me on the right.

No Falcons baseball until June.  So it’s root, root, root for the Canucks.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Pop Quiz!

Fill in the blank.

Damn the __________________.

  1. torpedoes
  2. Americans
  3. Harper Government

Canada’s navy wants to spend about $120 million to retrofit torpedoes they bought from the Americans in order to fire them from submarines they bought from the British, according to news reports.

So Canada has four submarines.  One of them is “partially operational” and the other three are not at all operational.  The navy has a total of 36 torpedoes, none of which can be fired from any of the submarines, even the one that is partially operational.  It takes some getting used to.

HMCS_Victoria_SSK-876_near_Bangor courtesy Wikipedia

Apparently once the torpedoes are converted, Canada will need to spend more money to refit the subs.

All this comes to light in the middle of a federal election campaign, but it was the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency that published the information about the pending sale in a press release dated March 23.  Weapons sales of this nature have to be approved by the United States Congress.  Canada is awaiting approval.