Thursday, January 06, 2005

Scoring for pride

In moving from England to the USA I have encountered many cultural differences that have taken some time to adapt to. In particular, the two countries apparently have absolutely no overlap in the sporting events that they enjoy watching. Growing up in England I was indoctrinated into watching sports such as football(1), tennis, cricket and F1 grand prix racing.

As part of my cultural transformation, I attended my first ice hockey game on New Year's Eve courtesy of a good friend at work (Travis you are the man!). We had a lot of fun and, in keeping with the American sporting tradition, I learned that hockey (the prefix 'ice' is superfluous in the US) is a pleasingly violent mix of mangling your opponents into the perspex guard plates that surround the rink and when that fails simply throwing down gloves and stick and beating the living snot out of them with your bare hands.

The Portland WinterHawks (our side) were playing the Seattle ThunderBirds, and although Seattle were clearly ahead in the 'goal scoring' objective of the game, the Hawks were more than making up the score by excelling in the 'beat the shit out of them' objective. We had a lot of fun and even though Seattle were winning 3-0 in the final 10 minutes, the Hawks first scored a goal for pride and then successfully won a five-man brawl for the big finish.

1. Real football (a.k.a soccer), in which the objective actually involves kicking the ball with your feet as opposed to 'American Football' where you throw a rugby ball as far as you can down a field while wearing full platemail armor and then run as fast as you can at someone who is nowhere near the ball and try to smash them into the ground.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Christmas 2004

Tiffany and I had a fantastic Christmas this year. Unfortunately, due to pilot error with our digital camera, I will not be able to post pictures for a little while until we get a new scanner. I have gloss print photos from Christmas but nothing digital and our scanner is currently on the blink.

It was a nice and quiet two-seater Christmas, which I personally enjoy far more than celebrating with crowds. Tiffany and I both did very well with the presents we received, and I hope that people receiving gifts from us felt the same way. DVD movies were the order of the day, with over 30 hours of watchable material being given and received. I was pleased with my new sword, Myst IV, and a radio-controlled truck among other things. Tiffany opened many new toys and books as well as the somewhat intangible, but nonetheless pleasurable, massage appointment. Surprise of the day went to an HP photo printer received from Tiffany's parents. A most welcome gift that has already received much usage.

The meal was fantastic, the turkey tender, and the jacket potates well cooked. Liberal usage of Christmas cheer, a log fire, and blinking lights around the tree rounded out the entourage.

Merry Christmas to all & a Happy New Year!