Saturday, January 17, 2009

Bruins Blog Project Game 7: 1/13/08 vs. Montreal Canadiens

Final Score: Bruins 3 Canadiens 1
Attended With: Dave
Banner Count: 2 Jumbotron appearances, 1 TV appearance (to be explained later)

Pregame: The MBTA must have read my last blog (here's your shoutout Dan Grabauskas) because Dave and I flew into North Station on gameday, getting to Hurricane O'Reilly's by about 5:20. And we weren't the only ones...

Canadiens/Bruins games are a treat because they're regular season games with playoff atmospheres (if you really want to blow your mind, go to a Bruins/Canadiens playoff game. Holy shit, they're intense.)

Dave and I were seated quickly, but the place was PACKED. Fans from Montreal always flock to Boston for these games because it's a relatively short drive and it's much easier to get tickets here than it is up there. Entire sections get filled with Habs fans (I'm looking at you Sec. 303.) We ate, had a few beers (O'Reilly's has an epic deal on Miller High Life FYI) and soaked in the festive atmosphere. A few "Go Habs Go" and "Ole" chants broke out, but nothing too severe.

We went early and scoped out the Pro Shop eager to show off our new project. The Banner.

Before every game, the Bruins play a great historical montage, then a season montage before introductions. They are incredibly well done and really give you the chills. Well, there's a portion that resonated with me, and I figured it would be a good way to celebrate our first year as Season Ticket Holders and honor Bruins fans of the past.

In one part of the video they show fans holding a banner that reads "Killer B's" and waving it in the balcony. At one point in the offseason I said, "I'm going to make that banner," and the time had finally come. A Habs/B's game would be the perfect time to unveil this to the masses and start a new tradition with our seats.

Jon got me the sheet (King sized, ugh) and during my days off, I went to work with some paint, a Sharpie and some brushes. Then, on game day, Scott helped me cut it down so the freaking King sized sheet wasn't visible from Outer Space. It was fun work and it was ready to go.

Dave and I got it into the Garden no problem (we were unsure the rules of banners so we hid it anyway) and laid out the banner so we could raise it quickly and, more importantly, not backwards. Then we sat there... and sat there. I mean, it was 20 minutes to game time, the building wasn't really full. Should we look like idiots and start showing this banner off to no one?


We noticed this group doing a similar thing with a Bruins flag in Sec. 305 so we decided to join them. With 2 minutes left in the pregame skate we stood up, unfurled The Banner and pointed it to our right to our flag bearing friends, unsure what people would think.

Everyone fucking loved it!

The flag dudes were going nuts, people in our section were asking us to turn around so they could see it and snap pics. Our confidence boosted and we were no longerembarassed to flash the banner.

During the pregame montage when the banner showed (14 second mark) people in our section were like, "Put up the banner!" which we did a few seconds late. We're going to try and make this Standard Operating Banner Procedure. Flash the banner, during the montage

The Game: God I love Habs/B's tilts. It's perfectly acceptable, if not expected, to lose your voice by the end of the 1st period. As much as I hate Canadiens fans, you have to respect them, because they bring Bruins fans to the next level. The Garden was rocking from puck drop.

Zdeno Chara was an absolute beast. In the opening seconds, he flattened Tom Kostopolous, went on to score 2 goals in the game and just shut down everyone near him.

The first period was scoreless, the Habs were flying, we got popped up on the Jumbotron once and everyone inside was on edge.

The Habs scored first on a goal by one of the flying Kostitsyn Sisters and Habs fans were eager to shove it in our face. Big Z answered back (Jumbotron sighting!) and then scored again on a slapper that acted more like a changeup because of an Andrei Markov deflection.

In the midst of these two goals this happened:

The roof was barely on the Garden by the 2nd intermission.

I don't know when this happened, but it's worth mentioning. There was a huge brawl in Sec. 314 and it looked like Bruin on Bruin violence. Someone got jersey'd, and there were some huge haymakers thrown as well. Sad, really.

Montreal kept threatening in the 3rd, leaving us on the edge of our seat. It wasn't until near the last minute of the game when the Czech Jesus, David Krejci iced it.

Then my phone started ringing off the hook. Hmmm.... I wonder why? "Were we on TV? It's a VS game, I doubt they'd show us. Let me call Jon back."

Holy shit, we were! It's pretty much all Dave (rocking his autographed Manny Fernandez t-shirt) and the top of my hat. But it's still very amazing to me:

Post-game: I triumphantly wore the Killer B's banner as a cape on the way out. People still loved it. Dave and I hit Sully's Tap afterwards, which was about 103 degrees and still (shockingly) smelled of shit. After that, a slice of pizza at Halftime Pizza and a ride home on the T, only to watch us on the DVR about one million times after.

Thanks to peeps at HFBoards for the pics, and encouraging words about the banner during its contruction.

The Banner will now be rotated between the Season Ticket Holders and will hopefully be at every game for the rest of the year. Stop by and say hi.

Next two homegames are all me, St Louis with my Mom, and then Washington.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Bruins Blog Project Game 6.5: 1/6/08 vs. Minnesota Wild

Final Score:

Attended With: Jon, Chris, Mom, Dad, Brothers Dave and Rob

Few quick notes, thus necessitating a pre-pregame column.

1) I know it looks like I've been slacking, but I really haven't missed blogging a season ticket holder game. Last game I had was on 11/29 and the next one I have is 1/13. I did watch the Bruins destroy the Thrashers 4-2 on December 13th. Hell, I watched it from the 4th row:

So why didn't I blog? Well a combination of big time internet problems at home, facebook not uploading photos for about a week and, oh, a pretty big hangover.

2) Scored a sick new Bruins jersey on ebay. It is the road white jersey. The seller had it for Buy It Now: $99 or Best Offer. I jokingly Best Offered him $70 and it is now mine. I love it, but think it might be bad luck.

3) Attended the Bruins Wives' Charity Carnival on 1/4 and it was awesome. Katelyn and I got our photos taken with Zdeno Chara, toured the locker room, etc. Took 200+ photos here.

4) You may have noticed the "Attended With" section is quite full. Well here's the deal. Chris had our Section 308 seats, Jon had won 2 loge seats for $5 through some Cybear Club promotion and at the aforementioned Wives' Carnival, I won 4 seats to the game. So, being the #1 son & brother, I gave the tickets to my family.

OK all caught up?

Pregame: The MBTA fucking hates me. Allow me to explain. Got to Wollaston before 5 p.m., with the hopes of meeting Jon at Hurricane's by 5:30 or so for a beer or two, meeting up with the fam and heading in. I hate being rushed getting to the game, and being in town at 5:30 for a 7 p.m. game is so very refreshing.

A train finally comes (took about 10-15 minutes) and we pull into the next stop, North Quincy. And nothing happened. And nothing happened. And nothing happened. For a good 15 minutes, I was waiting on a packed train at rush hour while the conductor frantically walked outside. Eventually, we pulled up the extra 50 feet to the station and were let out. Train out of service. Good times! Apparently, someone had jumped onto the track to retrieve a cell phone and the train made an emergency stop or something. Great. Now you have two trains worth of people waiting for the next train and I've gone one stop in 35 minutes.

*Aside: Our train also went out of service on New Year's Eve right after N. Quincy, which caused us to nearly miss our Joel McHale show*

Finally back on the train, we are stopped abruptly for about 5 minutes in the middle of nowhere. When we get going again, finally some good news appears. This will now be an Express Train to South Station. SWEET! From there on my problems washed away and I was running to Hurricane O'Reilly's at 6.

Met up with Jon, grabbed a quick beer and my family arrived. We chatted away for a few, snapped some pics, then headed in. I didn't want them to miss the intro. Tonight's giveaway:a Ghost Ryder poster featuring Michael Ryder. The Bruins love their fake movie posters.

The Game: Not much to say here about the actual game. Fucking Minnesota and their stupid trap. They are perfectly content sitting 4 guys back in the neutral zone and winning every game by scoring 1-0. Which is exactly what they did.

Buncha B's looked really bad, and I'd say the best line was the Krecji-Ryder-Wheeler line, per usual. Wheeler was skating around guys as if they weer pylons but couldn't get a decent shot on the net, Krecji was passing too much (not always a bad thing, but in this case it was), and Ryder rang one off the post. Big Z also had a good chance but somehow couldn't pot it. For the love of all that is good and joyful, please remove P.J. Axelsson from the Power Play unit. Thanks!

The seats that Jon nabbed were sick. 21st row behind the net, which put us in the last row before the premium seats. Here is a look:

My family was up in Sec. 321 so I went up and sat with them for the 2nd period. I know this seems like a fantastic family man, but really I just wanted to sit on the side where the Bruins shot for all 3 periods. Just kidding. Possibly.

Here's the few from up in the heavens:

You might be asking yourself why I'd choose to waste a whole period way up top when I was so close. Well, my friend, it's clear you have never been to a hockey game. I love the balcony. It's livelier and you can see EVERYTHING. Remember those 4th row seats I mentioned earlier? Great for when the play is right in front of you. After that, you're at the mercy of whatever the Jumbotron is showing.

I mean, check out this video I took for no reason while really, really drunk to illustrate my point:

Additionally, the atmosphere down low is nothing compared to the heavens. There's rarely any chanting, nothing beyond clapping, really. To really put things in perspective, at that Atlanta game, there was a woman in my row wearing a fur coat.


Post game: Went to the Penalty Box with Jon and met up with Chris, Jackie and Andrew. We discussed the upcoming Sharks game we are all attending, Chris' love for Joe Thornton, Jon's eBay addiction and the soon-to-be constructed epic Cam Neely hooded sweatshirt.

Early night, work in the A.M.

Stay tuned for a busy month from me, however:

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Using Me As A Promotional Image: A Surefire Way To Doom Yourself?

I enjoy myself some Biba. It's good with gin, it's good plain and it's even good in some beer (seriously), but I have to doubt their marketing plan.

Unless their core demo is bearded, flannel and toque clad 20 somethings. Then it's a great idea.

Thanks to Katelyn for pointing this out.