Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Trampoline netting rant and the Canes at the mid-point

What would a Christmas in the Cason household be if we didn't have at least one engineering nightmare? For years the missus has bugged me about getting a protective netting system to go around the family trampoline. I grew up in an era when you were lucky to have a pad around the outside of the trampoline. I grew up in an era when you played dodge ball and performed WWF-style flying suplexes on a trampoline. We didn't need no stinking safety netting system. You took yer broken collar bone and ruptured scrotum like a man.

So this Christmas Santa left the kids a slick new trampoline netting system with an add-on basketball hoop for this newly progressive 21st century father to assemble. Weee Haaawww, says I in my best deadpan. And I thought putting together bicycles was a pain.

No, they couldn't anticipate that progressive parents like me might get stuck rigging an after-market safety net. Those trampoline engineering geniuses didn't think that far ahead - couldn't design the beast so that this net abomination might integrate seamlessly into the trampoline architecture. Nope, why do that when you can make dad jerry rig countless bungee cords, clamps and nylon tapes. A bungee to go from top to bottom of each pole. A bungee to secure the other bungee, and bungees to attach the net in 16 places to the springs. Oh yeah, and dozens of nylon tapes to mummify everything.

Bungee cords, clamps and nylon tapes are an easy out for lazy engineers. Bungee cords, clamps and big hunks of soft plastic with nubbins that have to fit together. But that latter one is for a future rant. Yeah I'm talking to you AK Designs. I would have done a lot better on this little project had I been a boatswain's mate in one of my previous lives. And yes, this bungee thing is personal. 2006 Christmas tree number one was lost on an Interstate 10 overpass because of bungee cord failure. "Daddy, I didn't know a Christmas tree could fly..." I came this close to wandering out into three lanes of freeway traffic to retrieve that lousy tree.

Back to Hockey
Canes and Pens tonight. Luke has a piece about Eric Staal's struggles. Kid looks like he's at half-speed on most nights. Strides that used to be long and powerful are looking frighteningly Malik-like. His transitions are also real slow. Reminds me a bit of how Fred Flintstone used to run. Remember how his legs would spin in place for a few seconds before he got going? That's how Eric looks on many shifts.

I was thinking about a mid-point grade card on the Canes, but David and Bubba have some prose in the queue on this subject, so I'll just list my mid-point honor roll and detention lists (in no particular order).

The Honor Roll
1. Rod Brind 'Amour - Name the category and you'll find Roddy among the leaders
2. Justin Williams - Yeah I miss Danny Markov, but JR fleeced Bobby Clarke on this one as well
3. Anton Babchuk - Becoming my favorite Cane. Kid's game is maturing as we watch
4. Mike Commodore - Tons of minutes for the Canes best all-around blueliner right now
5. Scott Walker - Dude flies around the ice and will hit or brawl anybody, any size, any time.
6. Ray Whitney - Mr. Finisher

After-School Detention
1. Eric Staal - The future of the franchise looks flat worn out
2. Kevyn Adams - I hope it's all in the wrist...but I have my doubts
3. Tim Gleason - Some sound decision-making would be nice
4. Cam Ward - I expected more than this below .900 save percentage and bottom third GAA. Cam is letting in too many softies.


JP said...

Reading this post, I immediately thought of this, from Deadspin earlier in the year. You might not want to let your wife see it.

CasonBlog said...

I guess you can still get old school injured even with the dopey net.

magnolia_mer said...

I like your honor roll choices. What do you think is up with Eric Staal? He's been in a scoring drought for quite a while.

CasonBlog said...

I think it's a lingering "lower body" injury. His legs look like they are lined with lead.