That was the beginning of the end of innocence that comes to everyone. Now for years afterwards the shit just bubbled slightly under, manifesting itself in theft of friends’ fathers’ porn and incresing surliness but by the time junior high rolled around we were at the mall on Friday nights walking back and forth back and forth looking for girls. The late seventies were before the beef hormone injected aided puberties of today, most of the girls we knew at twelve were as flat chested and scrawny as we were. But for the few early bloomers, well they were blessed or cursed, depending on their point of view, with the ravenous attention of all of their male schoolmates.
For the most part their response was to wear the tightest possible jeans possible (Hooray for 1979 fashion), so tight that, well, long before I heard the term, I knew what cameltoe was and actually thought that this was a standard look.
Sudbury girls in 1979 were classy!
Of course with the exception of those few tight jeaned, heavily made up, feathered haired girls with boobs who we longed to play grab ass with (actually one of my fondest memories and the first time I touched a girl was behind the shopping mall one Sunday afternoon – I know this because it was deserted completely, closed I mean – she was twice my height but of course even then I was amazingly wiry) most of the girls we knew were either totally runty or completely awkward and goofy. I remember years later being at some sort of beerfest by the lake and bumping into my female doppleganger from Grade Six. She had been a little curly haired goody two shoes just like me, well moreso really, and here she was, blue bikini, brown skin, beautiful eyes, drinking cold beer in the summer sun. We shot the shit for a while and if I’d had the guts I would have asked her out but part of me thought it would be like dating my twin. Weird. Too close I guess. Man oh man.
There was another girl in grade school. She was gawky and goofy and brash and man, she never did shut up. She drove all of the guys crazy but because she was a talker, not because Beduoins suddenly appeared, lonely and confused, when she strutted by Le Chateau.
I saw her now and then over our years in high school and then strangely enough I began to see her more frequently after we went away in university. She was a semi regular at our summer haunts and she went to the same school as my best friend (one of the guys from back in the day, we remain best friends to this day, all the way since Grade One) so I'd see her when I wander up the 401 to party.
A terrific girl, she had a wicked cutting sense of humour and would call bullshit in a second. All intelligence and personality and she could drink with the best of them and she looked just like Geddy Lee, poor girl. That was her nickname.
Watching the playoffs and I was reminded of Geddy Lee and his band, what a great band they are. Back in the day Canadian music was pretty iffy for the most part. There was some decent shit in the seventies but the early eighties was a bit of a wasteland and Rush was one of the few bands that stood above it all before things really began to take off (imo anyways) with the emergence of the Hip, Blue Rodeo and the terrific and varied scene that followed.
Rush may not be your cup of tea but they’re quality whether you dig them or not. Sort of like a lot of the clubs still standing. Watched the Chicago Vancouver game last night and it came to me very very quickly that the Oilers have a long long road to hoe before they get to where they need to be. Chicago, like the Oilers 2006 club, actually moreso, is loaded with value contracts. From the kid snipers Kane and Toews to the shutdown pair on the backend, Keith and Seabrook, up and down the lineup they are running with cheap young talent. Its not going to last forever of course, they have a ton of guys who are going to be getting paid soon but these guys are going to have earned it. Barker and Walker and the Finn and Ladd and Bolland out here protecting the lead at the end of the game, the kid Versteeg, the giant Bummuffin, Ben Eager and Patrick Sharp, one of the first to get paid.
Four big contracts – the two goalies, Havlat and Campbell and the only one they may regret down the road is the Campbell deal. Guy is a good player but likely their fourth best defenceman right now, by my eye. As for the others Havlat and Khabibulin were injured and indifferent respectively for most of their contracts but they’re paying off in spades now.
A lesson for Tambellini as he tries to fix the goddamn mess his predecessor left him. Lowe should have known better then any with that 2006 club, loaded with quality cheap homegrown talent, guys that could play the toughs, but somewhere he lost his way. Even the guys who he picked up on the cheap, Glencross and Hejda, the guys who were unwanted, the guys who would blossom, the guys you need to build a team around, these hidden gems, he managed to let them walk.
Combine that with a farm club which is a laughing stock and you have a club that’s taken steps back again.
Don’t get me wrong. Kane and Toews were elite prospects and top picks and it takes luck to hit a home run like that when you pick fifteenth every year. But you don't help yourself when you leave prospects to wither on the vine.
But I look at the Hawks and the Wings and I suspect if you were to comb through the rosters of the remaining clubs out there and you’re going to see a lot of smart bets I suspect in terms of draft picks, trades and free agent signings. Oiler fans want Tambellini to steal guys like Steckel and Dubinsky and the reality is unless Doug MacLean gets a job soon teams aren't likely going to give up good cheap talent unless you're sending terrific value back. Robert Nilsson isn't going to get it done. Naw he's going to have to beat the bushes and figure out who had off years and who'll bounce back and go from there.
Better to figure out the ones who are going to pay off in the long run, even if they do look like Geddy Lee.