Thursday, June 15, 2017


Last weekend was my girlfriends birthday and a few months ago we both decided it would be fun to go visit Seattle and watch the Toronto Blue Jays play the Seattle Mariners which happened to land on Kathleen's bday weekend .... perfect . Neither of us have been there before so why not ? I have a good friend living there also that I have travelled with before and I'm sure it will be fun seeing him . So we booked this trip before I went to Egypt , used my aeroplan points to pay for my flight and that made the trip cheap but then we went to book a hotel and found out about the evils of booking in a city that will be flooded by Jays fans from BC and the west coast .... it's called cost and demand :( yeah our hotel we booked sure as heck made up for the cost of the flight over .... we paid $1200 CDN for the 3 nights there !!!! The location was fantastic so I can't moan about that at all as we were walking distance to Safeco Field and everything else you can imagine . Had to bite the bullet . 


The flight over was an early one with Air Canada . No checked luggage , just a couple back packs . Unfortunately there was no food served on the 5 hour flight which sucked but I could have paid for some mediocre food , pass on that ! When we arrived in Seattle we found the Link transit which took us directly from the airport to our hotel for only $3 USD which is very good because we are hoping to avoid using taxis as much as possible . We dropped our bags and met up with Chris Fetters who is also known as the Dawgman and is a sports writer for UW . He took us everywhere that day and then we ended up at his local pub where the Seattle Aston Villa supporters meet and we had a couple pints . We thought it was gonna rain but the weather ended up being fantastic with only a few drops of rain over the whole weekend .... it is Seattle after all lol ! One of the highlights for me was making it over to The Angry Beaver which is Seattles only hockey bar . This place was amazing with hockey jerseys decorating the walls and crazy bobbleheads on the bar like a Hillary Clinton one in hockey gear ???? Yeah funny stuff . 


Of course I had to tie in some hockey stuff even though this wasn't really a Travelling Goalie trip and more of just a vacation . That is why I didn't write a daily blog while there ... just wanted to chill but still gotta let you all know how amazing Seattle is ! Did I mention that we had poutine at the Angry Beaver ? Yeah and it was very good and had real curds not like some places that claim to have poutine :) That night we went to see the Jays play with Chris . We parked his car at UW and took the link directly to the grounds where we experienced what I would almost consider a Jays home game ?!?!? No joke there was way way way more jays fans then Mariners fans , it was ridiculous :) we sat in a section with a younger crowd and I got into sampling the local fare (IPA beer) and man was it ever fun .... too bad the Jays lost but it was a close one .... after the game we fell asleep pretty easily .... remember jet lag and the fact we woke up at 1 am based on the time zone we were in ... it was a long day ! 


Next morning was Kathleen's bday and our tourist day . We started off by getting some coffee which wasn't up to par for Kathleen unfortunately :( after that we went for a walk to the Space Needle which was roughly a 45 minute walk .... on that walk we encountered some police with some barricades near city hall . We asked what the special occasion was and they told us it was for a protest ... oooh . We kept walking and a few blocks down we saw people putting masks on getting ready for the protest ? Or more then likely to cause trouble at the protest ? Regardless ... this is somewhere we will avoid later and good thing we did because it kicked off and we saw it all on the local news the next morning . It was a clear sky and we went up the Space Needle and had some fun getting pics and hanging out , then we went to book our Duck Boat ride but had to kill a few hours so we first went for a Dicks Burger and yes we grabbed a bag o dicks as they say in Seattle :) they were ok to be honest I thought they would be better but I didn't think they were awful or anything .... it's really a Seattle thing I guess as it was quite busy ! 


After that we decided to wander down to the wharf where the Ferris wheel is and of course we went on it . Lucky for us we had a couple of lovers share our carriage :( Kathleen and myself sat across from each other and the two lovers sat beside me .... whispering and making out and I'm sure there was some other stuff happening too and yes it was uncomfortable for us but when I was young I probably did the same thing . Ahh to be young again , I'm sure they broke up by now lol ! By the end of the ride we were saying random stuff to confuse the lovers and we couldn't wait to get off this thing lol ! Eventually we did and then made our way back to the meeting point for the Duck Boats .... if you didn't know , these things are amphibious and drive on land and water . When we finally got on we had the back seats and we drove around to all the spots Chris took us to see the day before , which was kinda redundant but still fun and we learned a couple things we didn't know about through Chris . Overall it's worth doing if we didn't already see everything hahaha . We took an Uber home after the Duck Boat because we walked more then enough .... we were supposed to get to our room change and go to dinner but instead I passed out . I feel bad still because I wanted to take Kathleen out for a fancy dinner but that never happened :( 


When Kathleen finally woke me up we went to do another tour instead of going to watch the Jays . This time we wanted the spooky stuff so we booked a tour with Spooked in Seattle and on our walk there encountered the biggest pod of homeless people I have ever encountered which I must say made me nervous , because if there was ever a time I was susceptible to being mugged this was it .... we kept our cool and kept walking without any hassle phew! This tour was fun and we saw a lot of the underground and heard a bunch of spooky stories that still give me the shivers .... see that doll in the pic above ? One of th spirits apparently is a young girl that plays with this doll .... super chills went up my spine :0 this is a tour I would highly suggest for anyone into the supernatural . It was an hour and a half and totally worth it .... only problem now is we are hungry and there is not a single place open serving food in this area or any area on way to our place .... we never had dinner :( I always hate it when I'm in a city that I can't find a place to eat at after 10 pm . This was one of the knocks against the city and the homeless issue which is pretty bad . If I was homeless I would probably want to live in Seattle too ! So I don't or can't blame any of them for doing or wanting the same . 

The next morning Chris picked us up and took us to Beth's Cafe which was on Man vs. Food and is known for its omelettes .... particularly the 12 egg omelettes ! I couldn't even imagine trying to stomach that so I opted for the 6 egg omelette which is ridiculous also ! I almost ate it all ... probably a good 3/4 of it . I was STUFFED !!! Chris dropped us off at our place and we needed to walk it off so we went to the big open market and went to visit the original Starbucks and then watched the guys toss fish around in the market which always draws a crowd . It was a lot of fun . We grabbed a couple delicious cupcakes even though we were still full then made our way back to our room to get ready for the Jays game which was an afternoon match .... before the game we stopped in for some
oysters and they were awesome aside from the massive ones I had to bite into to swallow .... of course Kathleen had to remind me they were alive . Thanks ! From now on I will stick to the smaller oysters .... lesson learned hahaha . We sat in a different section for this game and we were on our own . Unfortunately we were on the shady side of stadium and the section we were in was totally opposite of crowd we were amongst on Friday . This seemed more like a family section :( not my cuppa . We didn't drink but we did end up stuffing our faces with garlic fries which is a must eat at Safeco Field . The Jays played awesome and the weather was great aside from being on the shady side of the stadium lol 😂 it was a great view of the city and finally we got to see the Jays win a game this year .... I think Kathleen had seen them lose 5 times this year already without a win so for the both of us it was a good day . 

After the game we went to our room and waited for teraffic to cool down before calling an uber to go meet Chris at the George & Dragon  to watch USA vs Mexico in World Cup qualifying . Good match that ended up in a draw then we watched the end of the Stanley Cup Final which Pittsburgh won then we went to have one more pint at Chucks Hop Shop which we loved and has like 1000 beers in the store to purchase and over 50 taps ! This is a store with a beer garden so you can go grab a 6 pack and sit out front and drink it :) how awesome is that ? Oh and there is a food truck there too ! We had one last stop before calling it a night and that was to see The Fremont Troll . When Chris mentioned it I thought it would be some rinky dink statue but no it wasn't . It was massive and amazing :) so glad I got to see this amazing piece of art. Seattle is filled with art and I really haven't covered enough of what we saw or did . But basically do yourself all a favour and go visit Seattle . You won't regret it . 


Friday, June 9, 2017

Goalie Heaven

Sitting at YYZ and finally I find the time to write about my new pads . Yes after roughly 10 years of service I've retired the old Kohos which I've grown to hate because of their colours ... you wonder what's wrong with the colours ? Well they are the same colours that the dirty habs wear ! Done with em :) hahaha ! So for years I have been taking them in to get repaired by my friends at Toronto Hockey Repair / Goalie Heaven and thanks to them I have never needed a new set but over all those years the shop owner Fiorenzo Arcadi has heard me bitch and complain about weight issues I have while travelling . So just before I went to Egypt I went in to get the set I was donating repaired which Brendan Krick donated (thank you again!) and when I walked in Fiorenzo handed me a sweet new black pair of pads ? They were light . I mean like 5 lbs lighter per leg which is unreal .... he says to me they are all mine if I wanna give them a shot .... ummm YEAH !!! 


New pads have come a long way from when I last got a new set .... goalies are now hybrid style and the pads are geared to that . More padding on the side of knees allows a smoother surface to slide on which will take some adjustments and they are much bigger then my old pads . I'm not gonna get into a discussion on sizes as I have said many times that goalie equipment should be worn based on feel rather then what someone told you to wear . This is obviously gonna take time to adjust to . When I got the new pads I was already planning to wear the donated gear on my last adventure and now that mission turned into trying to adjust to larger pads . Larger in height not width as the new pads are roughly 2 inches thinner on the width side .... will have to get used to that too .... so off on my adventure I went thinking when I got back the new pads from Goalie Heaven would be suited for me and ready to go .... 


When I got back I had a game and it was go time for the new pads ....  which might I add are a new design for the team at Goalie Heaven . They have been making gear for decades under the name Arcadi and THR so this is nothing new for this shop but the design as I mentioned is new .... the face of the pads is a one piece with no stitching and has a knee fitting that helps you drop down in the butterfly quite easily . Honestly they are very comfortable and quite sleek looking . They have received many compliments and I'm sure will be flying off the racks . These pads have no breaks on them and that will take time to get used to also as my old pads have the triple break on them which allows me to stop a bit easier when sliding across the crease .... with this new hybrid style (that I have to get used to ) I shouldn't need that instead there is more breaking with your skate heel and toe ... or at least that's how it's working for me :) 


As of now I have played in 7 games wearing the new pads and I have pulled off a 5-1-1 record which is good . The first game and first shot I faced with them was a left pad toe save which felt good that I made the save but I really couldn't feel the puck hitting me and I felt like I was floating above the ice when me knees hit the ice flat . That's how much things have changed since my old gear where you could feel everything and I mean that I could feel impact and not in and ouchy kinda way . I highly doubt I can get hurt wearing these pads which is awesome . It is taking some time getting used to the new style of pads and how to use them but I'm sure I will be able to adjust over the summer . I definitely would highly recommend checking them out if I were you and if you are a goalie . If you're not a goalie beware because these pads are gonna help me loads . These pads are geared to make the 5 hole disappear and so far they have helped me out with my problem . Honestly I'm so excited to have the opportunity to try out this new gear and I'm looking forward to testing out the new blocker and catchers also in the next month or so . It's definitely a good thing to be working out with new leg pads now and breaking in new gloves later . This hasn't been the easiest transition for an old school flopping goalie to try to learn a hybrid style but i have to admit that these pads are making the transition much easier and I'm sure that anyone reading this with the same issues would benefit from this too . If you ever are interested in getting a pair contact Fiorenzo at the link below .... they are going for a good price . And tell them I sent ya !