Tuesday, January 15, 2013

How Long It's Been: We Had Hockey

This Saturday, the NHL season will start again. The Devils will open away, to the New York Islanders.

Swell place to open the new season: The Nassau Coliseum. All the drawbacks of old-time hockey, and none of the perks.

Still, it'll be NHL games. We haven't had them since the Devils lost Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

That was on June 11, 2012. 218 days. How long has that been?

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Well, for one thing, Mitt Romney was being viewed by Republicans as a great choice to be President. Now, even they realize what a joke he is. It's not just that he wrote of 47 percent of the American people -- resulting in him getting "only" 47 percent of the vote. It's isn't even just that he targeted Big Bird and bragged about getting "binders full of women" as suggestions for State government posts in Massachusetts while he was about to become their failed Governor.

It's that he didn't stand up and tell his party, "Listen, we have to stop this. We have to stop treating women, especially rape victims, like we don't care. We have to accept that some people fall through the cracks through no fault of their own. We do have to care about the very poor. They are Americans, too."

Jersey Shore has been canceled. Snooki has had a baby. Richard Castle and Kate Beckett have finally gotten together on Castle. And on NCIS, Leroy Jethro Gibbs brought a knife to a gunfight. And won. (Okay, it was only against Richard Schiff... )

LeBron James has won an NBA Championship, something previously thought impossible. He's also won an Olympic Gold Medal.

The San Francisco Giants have won another World Series. Pablo Sandoval became the 4th (and least likely) player to hit 3 home runs in a World Series game, joining Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson and Albert Pujols.

The Yankees found out something they hadn't found out since 1995: What it was like to go through a postseason series (mostly) without Derek Jeter. They also found out something they hadn't found out since 1981: What it was like to go through a postseason series without Mariano Rivera. And, oddly enough, neither one turned out to be their biggest problem in the 2012 postseason.

The Jets went through the Tim Tebow experiment. Having let him go, the Denver Broncos got the top seed in the AFC Playoffs with Peyton Manning. The Indianapolis Colts made the Playoffs without him. The Colts did very well with a rookie quarterback, Andrew Luck. The Washington Redskins did even better with another, Robert Griffin III. The Seattle Seahawks started scoring points as if they were Nebraska tearing through the 1980s version of the Big Eight Conference. The Philadelphia Eagles had a meltdown that made the Jets look like a model of stability.

And the Kansas City Chiefs had maybe the worst season any NFL team has ever had: Other teams have gone 2-14, or worse, but the '12 Chiefs had a player kill his girlfriend, and then drive to the stadium and kill himself in front of the head coach and general manager. Who have both now been fired.

The Olympics were held in London. The World Cup was not held, but Euro 2012 was, and Spain won it, making it the 1st time a national soccer team won 3 straight major tournaments, following Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup. England lost their Quarterfinal match in Euro 2012 on penalty kicks (something that has happened all too often), and, playing for Italy, Mario Balotelli did his shirtless flex pose.

There was no change in the President of the United States (though there was an election), the Prime Minister of Canada or Britain, or the Pope. There were no new Amendments to the Constitution of the United States, and no new tallest building in the world.

The worst power outage in world history left 620 million people -- roughly twice the population of the United States -- without power in India. Curiosity, the Mars Science Laboratory mission's rover, successfully landed on Mars. Discovery of the Higgs Boson Particle was confirmed.

The Benghazi attack happened. The Republican Party demanded answers for the deaths of 4 Americans, and questioned President Obama's commitment to our national security. Which the Democratic Party did not do after Bush ignored a warning that led to the deaths of 3,000 Americans, which happened 11 years earlier to the day.

Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner became the 1st person to break the sound barrier without any machine assistance, during a record space dive out of the Red Bull Stratos helium-filled balloon, from 24 miles over Roswell, New Mexico. I still don't know how he survived the heat of re-entry.

Hurricane Sandy struck, killing 233 people. Typhoon Bopha killed over 1,000 people in the Philippines. Guess which one was more reported in the U.S. media.

Another round of Palestinian murders, and Israeli retaliation, happened. Instead of saluting the Israelis for defending themselves, the United Nations awarded the murderers "non-observer status."

Andy Griffith, Ernest Borgnine, Sally Ride, Gore Vidal, Marvin Hamlisch, Phyllis Diller, Neil Armstrong, Hal David, Michael Clarke Duncan, Andy Williams, Sylvia Kristel, George McGovern, Larry Hagman, Dave Brubeck, Ravi Shankar, Daniel Inouye, Charles Durning, Jack Klugman, Norman Schwarzkopf and Patti Page have died.

The first children of Molly Sims, Sienna Miller, Kristin Cavallari (& Jay Cutler), the aforementioned Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, Anna Paquin, Drew Barrymore, Megan Fox, Adele and Claire Danes have been born -- and the first for both Kim Kardashian & Kanye West has been conceived.

June 11, 2012. As of this Saturday night, it will have been 222 days.  GAME ON!

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