Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Montreal Pride

I had an interesting conversation in the lab. Of all things some of the guys were talking about the local sports team, The Montreal Canadians otherwise known as the "Habs". I've been watching a game or two here and there so I could hopefully one day hope to hold my own in a conversation. From what one person said, "The Habs weren't playing their game... They were playing Boston's game." Then there was a lot of name dropping and zen like talks about "energy" and ... man, i have no idea. I decided to add my two cents. "Yeah, i saw the game on Saturday. They did seem to not have a lot of energy. Not to much hussle. But they have a lot of spirit, I think they're going to pull this thing off.... Ummm... Plekanec?"

One of the guys scratched his head and continued the conversation as if I had said nothing. I really don't get it. I don't get sports. I watched the game on Saturday, the names of the players don't really stick... I mean, to me they're smacking around this puck and half heartedly fighting each other. I guess it's entertaining enough. But people's passion for the sport will always baffle me. There's so much to remember, so many teams. But what really gets me is the pride that our city of Montreal feels at our success in Hockey. It really struck me when we were singing the national anthem. You know when you can feel the pride in people's voice? It was so solemn, I daresay not a single person in the Bell Center was off note. It was actually quite beautiful. And why? For a game! So we can say, "Screw you, Boston, we're good at Hockey! You may have the best universities but we have the best... Plekanetz!"

How does pride come into it? I mean, we didn't do anything. We watched people do stuff. Where's the pride in that? And while these athletes are training and risking injury to play a game, we sit back and celebrate them piously in our day to day lives; on clothing, on buildings, on the news (after talking about death and suffering overseas), on vehicles. The buses in montreal now have "Go! Canadiens Go!" on their marquees. Is 'Go' a french word now? If not it's illegal to display that publicly. And what's "Go"? Go where? And how can they be the Canadiens and the Habs??? Pick one!!!

It's not that I mind or anything. Hockey's fun enough. I just feel like a spectator when watching or listenning to the spectators and the fans. I wonder what aliens from another planet would think if they came here and saw people injuring themselves and exerting themselves for effectively no reason. They don't gain food, they don't teach, they don't help us understand anything about this crazy world we live in. And even stranger, the people around them applaud this and cheer them on AS IF they have done something. Of course, this post probably means nothing to other people. It seems as if everyone in the world is on board with the sensation that is hockey in Montreal. I'm the only one who doesn't get it.

There is one thing I'm looking forward to, though. The riot that will ensue at the end of the season! That's something i can get on board with. I mean, when cars are overturned and entire city blocks are ravaged by roving lunatics, at least people will be able to look back on the mayhem and say, "I contributed to that!" Now that to me is a basis for pride.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Ain't that a B?

As I get older and grumpier things seem to bother me more. This week, I'm somewhat disgruntled with the word "brunch". Oh, that word angries up the blood. I remember when I was just a young lad, that word was fun and somewhat quirky. I remember thinking to myself, "How clever! It's a mixture between the words breakfast and lunch."

But as I grow older, fun and quirky seems to be increasingly synonymous with pretentious and contrived. I came to realize no one really eats anything between breakfast and lunch. I suspect most people only get out of bed at 10am, or 11am on a weekend, the only day working people would be able to arrange to have so called "brunch" with someone. The result? Usually two unsatisfying meals between 11am and 4pm which invariably ruin your supper. Cereal as you rush out of the house, and a panini or some crap at 3pm. I wouldn't consider either of those meals a breakfast/lunch hybrid.

Brunch is sort of a no-man's land of meals. It's what you invite someone to when you don't want to commit to a REAL meal. And oh the things that restaurants serve at brunch. I can respect a good breakfast, pancakes croissant, various meats... But why call that brunch? It's just breakfast at that point. Hamburgers and other sandwhiches seem too lunchlike to be eaten at brunch. So to get that brunch feeling people order strange omelettes with goat cheese, capers and/or some odd vegetables that you normally wouldn't keep in the house. What a sorry alternative to a proper meal... Some omelette that tries too hard to be different with it's exotic cheeses and unconventional vegetables. Can't you picture it now? With it's odd colors and odors, the stink of it filling your every breath, a suffocating cloud you can't escape... With pieces of green and red stuff in it looking like a pile of fried puke. Disgusting. And people justify its existence by giving it a super cool, hipster name like brunch. Punk kids. They should call it... Brarf.... A clever amalgumation of the words breakfast and barf.

Sincerest apologies to anyone who I've invited out to brunch recently. I'm cured of that now. From now on the only meals MastaCSG eats are Breakfast, Elevenses, Lunch, Afternoon-Tea, Supper, Desert and occasional snacks in between. But not brunch. NEVER BRUNCH!!! And to anyone who will invite me out to brunch in the near future, I will go, but I won't call it brunch and I WON'T have an omelette. If you don't like it, why don't you grow a pair, and invite me for supper or breakfast?