Post Mother’s Day Update: Ice “Dancing” Clarifications, The Capitals Collapse and How To Make $9 Million/Year and Still Ruin Mother’s Day

I must say that I think I did a great job on Mother’s Day this year. I showed up at 10am on Sunday at my mom’s house with a bouquet in hand, I was ready to help her plant numerous pots of flowers on the back deck and I was financially solvent enough to take her out for a nice meal in downtown Annapolis (plus I wasn’t too hung over from the night before!). Contrary to what you might have guessed my mom looks nothing like her relatively big, hairy and constantly hungry son (I got all of that from my father) so the lunch bill wasn’t too astronomical…at least on her end.

I'm gonna get so much crap for this...

Now, this was a stark contrast to Mother’s Day of just a few years ago where yours truly not only locked his keys in the car the night before, but left the keys in the ignition with the car running. Needless to say, I did not make it to my parent’s house the next morning and topped it off by first calling my mom for help and then shorting my car battery when I incorrectly tried to jump start my car with hers. This ended with an expensive tow to a local Toyota dealer where we discovered that we had to pay an absurd amount of money for a circuit about this (            ) big. So, while we weren’t coming into this thing with infinitely high expectations, I still managed to greatly exceed her pretty low ones.

The ManBearPig Mother's Day 2007...

Now, why does my Mother’s Day matter to you Halfwits more than other Mother’s Days? Because after reading my “hockey-cherry-popping” post of last week my mom, in perfect motherly fashion, had a few clarifications for my (few) regular readers. Don’t get me wrong, she did a great job of complementing my work and got a kick out of both of my parent’s cameos, but she still thought it needed a little extra depth. For one thing she doesn’t like Tara Lipinsky. This is not done in a “she looks like a tight faced b**** with pursed lips” (my first reaction after looking at some photos…) kind of way, but in a “she specializes in the jumping and less creative aspects of ice skating and that’s why she won the gold in ‘98” kind of way (go figure).

For another, she doesn’t like ice “skating” competition nearly as much as she likes ice “dancing” competition. You see, ice dancing pairs two people together on the ice and doesn’t allow things like tossing or jumping (we’re talking double, triple and, in the men’s case, quadruple axel point whoring here) and instead requires the skaters to be more creative in what they do with at least one skate on the ice at all times. This means your music has to be great, your choreography better and your execution flawless because you can’t make up for it with a bunch of nifty jumps that distract from your otherwise imperfect routine. Lipinsky’s tiny frame lends itself to jumping into the air and twirling. In ice dancing the pair of skaters have to battle to be more perfect (I know that doesn’t make total sense, just go with it) in other areas to make up for a relative lack in exciting axels.

Seriously, try doing this WITHOUT the ice skates.

Lastly, there is more to male ice skating than Brian Boitano’s more masculine routines of the past. In fact, the relative “progressivism” of the modern world (and those helping to set standards in men’s ice skating/dancing) has led to more “flamboyant” (I just can’t come up with a better word) and dancing-centric routines amongst the men. Recent famous American competitors like Johnny Weir and even 2010 Olympic Gold winner Evan Lysacek have shown that wearing tight, colorful outfits and focusing on more dance-centric routines won’t detract from your ability to win big and in some cases can even enhance it. To clarify, it’s not like Boitano didn’t strap on some leggings on occasion, and its certainly not like Lysacek and Weir shy away from the axels on occasion. Still, I doubt if Brian ever looked like Natalie Portman’s double in Black Swan either.

Seriously? Seriously...

I’ll probably get filleted by the other halfwits (and all 8 of my readers) for posting another article on ice skating, but I think I can finally look at my mom and say “that really awful Mother’s Day? Yeah, I think I’ve finally made up for it.” If I have to catch some extra crap at Kenny’s Castaways in Manhattan this weekend (Kevin Rath goes on at 10PM everyone), so be it.

Will Kev Rath do something like this after some serious face melting? We can only hope.

In other news, I’m not quite sure what to make of the Capital’s collapse yet. I feel like a lot of factors played in to an epic sweep by Tampa last week, and I also feel like I don’t know nearly enough about hockey to feel fully confident in dissecting what happened. I do know that these early exits (i.e. choke jobs) have been a theme of the last four years with the combination of Ovechkin as the star and Boudreau as the coach. I know that each of those years they’ve been at or near the top of the conference in the regular season. I know that against the Lightning they looked ridiculously slow overall and I also know that this team is still relatively young (Ovechkin just wrapped up only his sixth year in the league and he’s one of their big veterans). What does all that mean? I’m not sure, but I’m going to spend some of the NHL off-season actually focused on the NHL.

Ovy will spend the offseason perfecting his "skills"...

Lastly, while I’ve spent most of this article commending myself on being a great son this Mother’s Day (you can all stop gagging and writing me vicious e-mails already), I can only imagine how the grandmother of Lamar Odom (his mother died when he was young) and mother of Andrew Bynum must feel right now. It’s not enough that they participated in the outright destruction of the Kobe Bryant era (regardless of what you think of him he’s an all time great) and ignominious end to Phil Jackson’s coaching career. No, they had to dole out ridiculous cheap shots late in a 40+ point blow-out at the hands of the Dallas Mavericks in game four of a sweep (the first of Jackson’s career…ever) in the Western Conference semifinals. They didn’t do much of anything to stave off elimination (Bynum had a 6-6-1 with 3 turnovers while Odom had a 10-2-1 on the night) and decided that, instead of sucking it up and taking the gut punch like men, they’d try to take out a couple of Mavs players before the final whistle. Odom at least admitted as much about his crappy and dirty play, while Bynum tried to actually justify his douchiness (yeah I said it) with a quote I won’t even bother to include in here. To top it all off he took his shirt off to show his decidedly out of shape physique. Well done Andrew, you sure did your mama proud on her day.

“Blah blah blah, blah blah blah, I’m an a**h***.”

 That’s all for now folks. Tune in next time for: “The Heat have officially earned back their full nickname. Here’s hoping Chicago or even Hotlanta will be able to cool them off where the Celtics largely haven’t,” “I haven’t been this excited about a Derek Jeter home run (let alone two) in May since, well, ever,” and “If the Mavs can do it maybe the Caps can too…in 2018.”


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