It was a chilly February day in Austin today. But the sun was out and the landscape looks nice. I headed out to watch the Concordia baseball team play. It’s the first Concordia sporting event I’ve been to since I became a grad student. The game was awesome as they won in the last inning with a bunt squeeze play for the tying run and a walk-off single for the winning run. I really enjoyed watching “my school” play. A main reason I wanted to go to grad school was to be a student again. Enjoy the camaraderie of the collegiate atmosphere and taking part in the traditions of school. There was a good crowd and strong support for the home team Tornados. I met a few current and past-students who struck up conversations with me like they already knew me. That is a wonderful aspect of this school. Everyone is accepting and friendly. I’m an older student but I’ve never felt looked at, judged, or out of place. It’s nice. I want to work here after I graduate.
So today is Friday and I should have been writing daily for fulfillment of my Leadership class. I have not…I just don’t have that much to say. Hopefully my professor will not give me a failing grade for this….I will do better.
Any case, I’ve been feeling extremely stressed over the last couple of weeks. Not having a job will do that to you. I lost my job in mid-November. Fortunately, unemployment kicked in and has been allowing me to handle my financial obligations. During the holidays, it was nice to not worry about work. I just enjoyed the holidays and was able to take my annual Christmas trip to Las Vegas. I really enjoy spending Christmas in Las Vegas. Not having kids of my own, I prefer to spend Christmas alone. Thanksgiving I spend with family, parents, brothers, nieces and nephews, who I all think are awesome. But Christmas is for the kids and they don’t really care if I’m there or not, they just want presents. So I go to Vegas. I can have a great time surrounded by people that I can talk and socialize with all kinda doing the same thing as me. It’s almost like a club of strangers who are united by our escape to Vegas for Christmas. And the decorations are the best anywhere I’ve ever visited. The place is just full of energy (as it always is) but this is Christmas energy.
So now it’s February and reality has hit that I can not go much longer without a job. I’m not going to elaborate too much on that now because today I woke up feeling great. Weirdly enough, it’s primarily due to a really cool dream I had last night. I won’t elaborate on the dream (no it’s not X-rated) but I had a great night sleep that was awoken by the end of a great dream. So I feel good today. I did not immediately get on my phone and social media. I turned on some nice music, made some coffee, and sat on the porch to watch the sun and the wildlife wake up with me. I need more mornings like this. It also makes me feel closer to God,which I have been really working on improving my relationship.
So that’s this morning. I’ll do my best to keep it going…
So it has certainly been determined with my first attempt at a blog that I’m an idiot. With my love of the sport of hockey, living in a non-hockey city with few hockey fans, I thought providing a simple and fun approach to enjoying the sport as a fan I would introduce new fans to watching hockey. Yea no one cares. I’m a nerdy dude in Texas who has never played one minute of the sport. My small circle of nerdy friends in Texas who also have never played seemed interested in my view. And to their credit, they did support my efforts and read my posts and a couple even re-tweeted them. So my pals have my back and I love ’em for that.
Now I’m changing things up. I recently began my quest to earn my MBA degree from Concordia University in Austin, Texas. I’m now taking a class call “Leadership Self Seminar” and part of the class requirements is to journal about my daily life and my path to success and leadership. So I changed the name of this blog to “ChasingMyDreams8” and will use it as my own personal journal.
I chose the name “Chasing My Dreams” cause it’s a saying I began using several years back as a response to any one of those generic exchange greetings you have when passing in a hall or parking lot or somewhere. You’re familiar with this: Person A: “how’s it going?” Person B: “pretty good” or “what’s up?”, “not much” and then each go your separate ways. I wanted a more creative response…so that’s where “Chasing My Dreams” comes from. Unfortunately, chasingmydreams was taken as a blog site so I added the number 8 because it’s my favorite number. Oh and the subtitle “…one nightmare at a time”, I just thought it sounded cool.
So there ya go. This blog will now be my life journal in partial fulfillment of my MBA requirements and partially for my own personal ramblings.
P.S. I still love hockey. Watching it. Following it. Talking about it. Today is February 19, 2017 and it’s “Hockey Day in American” and I’m watching my 4th game in a row. It’s been a good day!
It’s hard to write anything on this blog because I’m too busy glued to all this badass playoff hockey. These Eastern Conference semis are as slammin! I’ve been watching this kid Tyler Johnson for Tampa Bay. This guy’s the star of the playoffs so far and I don’t think anyone outside of Tampa and paid hockey analysts had ever heard of this dude before. When you talk Tampa Bay Lighting you think Steven Stamkos, but Tyler Johnson has carried this team in the playoffs as the playoff leader in goals scored. The Lighting and Washington Capitals have been my two favorite teams to follow this playoffs. I’m a big Ovechkin fan and he has been dominating. If you haven’t seen it, check out his split 2 defenders diving goal shot from Saturday!
So I’m pretty positive I don’t have one single person who reads this blog so I might as well talk about whatever the heck I want. I started writing a book a few years ago and I’m pretty sure it’s the worst dribble ever put down on pages. So far I’ve written the equivalent of about 30 pages in a typical-size paperback book. I have know idea why I decided, or even thought I could, write a book. Just bored one day sitting around the house. Part of it was to give me something to do while sitting alone in bars drinking draft beer or Johnnie Walker Black, so as to look somewhat interesting or not like a weird old dude sitting alone in a bar.
While I type this I just watched Stamkos put a move on Carey Price, possibly the best goalie in the NHL, for a goal that blew my mind. Oh and an assist to Tyler Johnson, of course. Wow! That was impressive!
Man it’s fun to watch playoff hockey….
With a handful of games left in the regular season, there are some super intense battles going on for the final playoff spots. This is peak hockey season! Teams are playing their fastest, roughest, most intense hockey of the year. Previous Cup winners like Boston Bruins and LA Kings are fighting to get into the playoffs. Every single game counts. In the past several years, playoff seeding hasn’t played a pivotal roll in winning The Cup, you just want to get in. The hottest teams going in are the ones to watch and it doesn’t matter if you’re the 1 seed or the 8 seed. Lots of games on TV including NBC on Sundays, NBC Sports & NHL Network on weeknights, and your local FoxSports station. Now’s when you get on-the-edge-of-your-seat-excitement every game!
This weekend is All-Star Weekend which is complete with fun, entertainment, and excitement all of its own. Beginning with the All-Star Roster Draft (an idea the NFL has recently adopted), to the Skills Challenge, to the All-Star Game itself, it’s a great opportunity to see the true personalities of the players. These guys are so skilled, strong, and tough yet they maintain great senses-of-humor and don’t take themselves too seriously. Even though they play for opposing teams during the season, most know each other through junior leagues, colleges, international play or former teammates, so it gives the players a chance to be lighthearted with their peers. It’s also funny to see some of these guys without their helmets & equipment on. My favorite “not what you’d expect” player is Phil Kessel of the Toronto Maple Leafs, whose one of the best young forwards in the game and looks like a middle-age accountant.
The All-Star Skills Challenge gives players as chance to show off their speed, puck control, and shooting skills including the hardest shot in the league (over 105 mph)! And the game itself is a showcase of talent from the very best players in the league. Throughout the entire weekend, fans get a chance to interact with players, get pictures and autographs, and enjoy the skills and personalities of professional hockey.
Hopefully, you’ll get a chance to watch some of the festivities this weekend. Here’s the television schedule:
Roster Draft: Friday, 1/23, 7:00pm EST on NBCSports
Skills Challenge: Saturday, 1/24, 7:00pm EST on NBCSports
All-Star Game: Sunday, 1/25, 5pm EST on NBCSports
Every game counts. Every period counts. Every shift counts. It’s not about if I win I get endorsements, I played great so I get a new contract, I’m going to Disneyland. It’s about THE TEAM won. WE get to hoist The Cup. Touch The Cup. Spend a day with The Cup. It’s all about The Cup. But like Christmas, the chase is the most fun.
I often hear complaints from casual sports viewers about the speed, or lack of, in professional sports games. Hockey provides so much more action than any of the other major sports viewing. Not knocking other sports, because I absolutely enjoy watching baseball, football, nascar, and pretty much any sporting event on television. Not a big fan of pro basketball. Too many fouls. Too much flopping. Too many game stoppages, especially in the final minutes.
Hockey games are extremely action-packed, fast-paced, and overall quicker games. Three 20 minute periods with very few stoppages compared to the other sports. The final minutes of a close hockey game are amazing! Quick, hard-hitting, edge-of-your seat intensity. If you are curious about getting into watching hockey, I would start out finding a televised game with a close score and just watch the final 5 minutes. You won’t be disappointed!
NOTE: Last post I mentioned Rene Rancourt, the Boston Bruins national anthem. I recommend YOUTUBE Boston Bruins National Anthem after the marathon bombing. It’ll give you chills and pride.
So I’m no writer and I’m no hockey expert. I’m just a huge fan of hockey and want to see it’s viewership expand. I’m constantly telling people about how exciting hockey is to watch and follow and always trying to turn more people into being fans of professional hockey. I’m only familiar with the NHL and AHL, so that’s what I’ll be referencing here. I ask and welcome any and all input.
Some topics I plan to cover are:
- How to follow and enjoy a televised hockey game.
- Watching hockey vs. other sports
- Fighting, physical play and penalties
- Players – star players and role players
and other topics of discussion as they come to mind or suggested. Like I said, I’m a fan. Not a rules expert. Not a historian. Feel free to call me out on areas where I may be wrong.
Speaking of traditions, as I watch the Flyers vs. the Bruins in the first televised game of the 2014/2015 opening season, I’m getting chills listening to Rene Rancourt, sing the national anthem. Rene has been the national anthem singer at Boston Bruins home games for 35 years, and he is a tradition himself. Rene always finishes his national anthem with a certain number of fist pumps, depending upon the importance of the game, and has an innate ability to fire up a crowd like no other national anthem singer!
So, here we go. The 2014/2015 NHL season has begun. Watch, enjoy, get excited. It’s like no other spectator sport out there!