Monday, May 24, 2010

Here A Clip, There a Clip, Everywhere a Clip Clip

The game: Montreal vs. Philadelphia.

Does this mean Mike owes me a beer?: Alas, it's over for the Habs. But I was quasi-right about my prediction for Chicago vs. Pittsburgh for the final. Right state, wrong city.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery: And it might just win you a Stanley Cup. After Pittsburgh broke the curse last year, the Flyers touched the Eastern Conference trophy. The Hawks, however, didn't touch the Western Conference prize. Second time's a charm? We'll find out as the final games of the season get underway this week.

And in other news: The NHL Scouting Combine is underway. On the roster are Portland Winterhawks Ryan Johansen and Nino Niederreiter. Nino is fresh from the World Championships, where he played for Switzerland. Keep an eye on the NHL Network this week for profiles of the prospects and little news kibbles from the Combine. You think I'm crazy about this? This is just a preview. I plan to take off work early on June 25 to go to the Winterhawks first round NHL Draft viewing party. WHL season tickets are the path to total hockey geekdom. Join us. I mean seriously, are you really going to be working on a Friday? Please.

Now, back to topic: Section 5, Penalties. Rule 524, Clipping. Clipping is the act of throwing the body across or below the knee of an opponent, charging, or falling into the knees of an opponent after approaching him from behind, side or front.

524.a. A player who lowers his own body position to deliver a check on or below an opponent's knees, shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, a minor penalty, major penalty + automatic game misconduct penalty, or match penalty.

524.b. A player who injures his opponent by a clipping action, shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, a major + automatic game misconduct penalty or a match penalty.

Morals of the story:

The game: So the keys here are "shall be assessed" and "at the discretion of the Referee." And if you injure someone, it's not minor. What do you need discretion for? This is so obvious, you either did it or you didn't. Either someone gets hurt or they don't. But that's the thing about's never easy and it's never that clear. Kind of like life, which brings me to this:

Life: Clipping in life is so obvious, you wonder why it goes undetected so much of the time. For example:

-- Drivers who speed, weave in an out of traffic and cut you off, but you have no choice but to let them or risk being sideswiped, rear ended or getting your hood clipped as they cut back in.

-- People who see you standing in line alone and quasi cut ahead by pretending they are with you and sort of stand next to you, and then move ahead when it's time to actually buy their ticket. But the whole time they are on their cell phone, so when you yell at them and demand they move to the back of the line, it's pointless... they aren't listening and they split before you can cut back into your rightful place.

-- People who smile and "dress for success" their way to the top without actually doing any work, thereby leapfrogging the people who have been there longer, worked harder and deserve more credit.

At the discretion of the life Referee, a major or match penalty shall be assessed in the form of the following:

-- Stoppage on the highway by a member of law enforcement that will result in your being stripped of not only your license (a minor penalty, really) but also the shiny new red whatever that you were trying to show off by speeding and what not, and said car being given to the biggest high school nerd the law enforcement official can find, along with your fake boob job botox trophy girlfriend, who said nerd can then take to the prom...along with his flip cam, iPhone and other evidence-producing technology.

-- Mandatory installation of a large swinging device that is motion-sensitive and swoops in every time someone cuts ahead of another person in line, thereby knocking them out of the line and preferably unconscious.

-- Humiliating public discovery in which fake, unqualified business professional is locked into a room not unlike a police interrogation cell, where they are forced -- without assistance from anyone or anything -- to complete a project all by their little, shallow selves. No matter what it is... designing a building, writing a press release, you name it. They have to do it alone without stealing it, which of course means they will be discovered, replaced and vanquished from every job web site on the Internet.

Next up: Section 5, Penalties. Rule 525, Cross Checking. Rule 526, Elbowing.

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