Welcome

Welcome to my blog. Here you will find information that is both interesting and useless. You can even see how Steve, my camera, sees the world through my eyes, or get your hands on my latest novel, Jihad Joe at:

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/119633

Thanks for visiting. Hope you enjoyed the coffee and cake. Sorry we ran out of donuts.


Sunday, January 30, 2011

before jihad came home--this photo is blogged

Egypt is in turmoil, Iran probably is ready with their nuclear weapon, everyone hates Israel including Obama and Hillary, and the snow is up to my belly button. Aside from this, everything is great.

The world seems to be posturing for something big, doesn't it? I don't know for sure, nobody does, but there is so much unrest of late. There's talk about sharia in Canada and the States, and nobody seems to care or perhaps they don't really know what that is. They don't know what jihad is either, but think it's only about an internal struggle. I believe the liberals need to feel good and look the other way, while the conservatives need to be alarmists and look at the danger in everything--even exercise. hmmmm

I just had a birthday and it blows my mind that I've turned 64 years old. That's older than my father lived to be. Older than Ellen, my older sister, lived to be. Probably older than Uncle Joe and Uncle Vinny lived to be. I ask myself, "Rob, what the hell are you doing, still alive?" and I have no answers. I'm glad to be alive but I'd change things in this world if I could. I'd change the millions of factions that separate people--things like religion, politics, race, economics. But that's impossible, eh? Christopher Hitchens is right when he claims that religion poisons everything--at least he's partially right, if not totally.

I miss my childhood, my innocence, my Winny the Pooh records with Jimmy Stewart narrating the voices. I miss Mickey Mantle hitting homers, Susie Snowflake, and Children's Theater. I miss my dad rubbing Noxema on my itchy feet after coming in from the cold, and my parents singing in the car as we drove along as a family.

But I have a wonderful life and I'm so grateful for Thasneem and Shabana (my Shampoo) and Frankie, my son-in-law. I will be a grandfather in a few months and that is a great thing to be. It doesn't make me feel old--the amount of time gone by, the black and white memories of my youth, recollecting thoughts of people I knew when 'hanging out' was what was happening, they make me feel old. My family keeps me young, happy, and in love with life. My photography and my writing make me feel that my life is making a statement, good or bad, but mine.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Canadian Nightmare

The definition of a Canadian nightmare is when your hockey team is up by a goal with under a minute to play; the other team (the damned Guelph, in this case) pulls their goalie, they tie the score with abooot 30 seconds to go, and then score again and lead by 1 with 11 seconds left--and bang, you lose. The only good parts to the game was going with Frankie--he bought me a 67s shirt for my birthday. The other good part was it was relatively quick getting out of the parking lot. They could not possibly suck more than they did today--the game is 3 periods long and they played only for 2 of them.
Oh well, we still have 3 more games to see.

Shirt Swap--this photo is blogged

Well, I'm on my way to another Ottawa 67s Hockey Game. They're playing against Guelph, a team called The Storm. And speaking of the weather, it's -23 freaking degrees today. Colder than a well-digger's butt and the car didn't want to start this morning when I took Thas to work.
Anyway, I've never been to an Ottawa 67s game when they lost so I'm hoping I'll bring them good luck again, and if I can continue bringing them good luck, I might be able to convince them to let me into the games for free.
Gotta go pick up Frankie--I'm outta here.

Friday, January 14, 2011

This photo is blogged


This photo is blogged
Originally uploaded by Rob Hoey
I just got off the phone with Jamie, a salesman with the Ottawa 67s. He called me after I went to my first 67s game last week and sold me a Family 4 package, so Frankie and I are going to 4 games right through March. If they get into the playoffs (almost wrote "payoffs") I definitely want to go. They skate fast, shoot hard, and score that goal. They also fight fairly well too, but I don't go to the games for that, I go for the game strategies . . . okay, and an occasional fight or two. I'm not sure what it is about Canada, but once you live here, hockey becomes a natural part of your life. I think if I had been born a Canuck, I'd have a lot of hockey stories to tell between the empty spaces of my teeth.

So my next game is January 23rd, when the Ottawa 67s take on Guelph (not sure if it's called "The Guelph" or just plain Guelph, and I don't have any idea where they're from--probably a place called Guelph just down the road from LaFromage Ettienne).

So we got these great seats in the black section at a ridiculous price of $150.68 for both of us for all 4 games--that's what hotdogs, a soda, and fries go for at a Yankees game for you and your partner.

Hockey--who knew, eh?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Portrait by Thasneem--this photo is blogged

I have a talented wife--she painted this "just like that." She often uses expressions like "just like that" for exactly that reason--the reason = just like that. Canada has given us colder weather than we had in New York City, but with that came the opportunity to get involved with our interests that we neglected back in the states. For Thasneem, it`s her painting, for me, it`s my writing and photography--the latter I never really put aside, but now there`s even more time to play with it on the computer.
I received my Visitors Visa Extension today--I`m good for a whole year before they come to take me away. I think I should have my Permanent Residency status by then, but I still keep my fingers crossed, which is to say that I still worry aboot it. I`ve heard myself repeating certain words like "about" and "process" saying them like a true Canadian should. The culture kind of freezes on you, if you know what I mean, so maybe they`ll let me become a fixture in this country.
The gym is pretty cool (less cool than our home, which is a fortune to heat), and I`ve gotten to know some nice guys there--most of them are retired, which is why they go the same time as me, a guy who is not retired but can`t work without that perm. res. card.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Canadian Nightmare


Ottawa 67s Goalie
Originally uploaded by Rob Hoey
I went to an Ottawa 67s game yesterday and they totally kicked butt--the final score was 6 to nil (they like to use the word `nil` for zero or nada). I went to sleep feeling good about living in Ottawa but it occurred to me that if I were to dream a hockey dream where my team that actually won, lost in the dream, that would be defined as a Canadian nightmare.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Global Warming: this photo is blogged

Al Gore was one of the first to popularize the issue, and he made millions for his noble efforts. He showed us with unquestionable (?) evidence that global warming is a fact. And just because this has been seen as a problem for decades, and it hasn't really happened to any certain degree as yet, is no reason Al Gore shouldn't become even richer from this world problem. If we just stop using incandescent light bulbs, plastic bags, and switch to paper, we can save the planet. Recycle. Never mind that it takes several garbage trucks, (union requirements, of course) to deal with the categorized trash: one truck for paper, one for plastics and glass, and one for kitchen waste. Never mind that these trucks pollute the air, waste the taxpayer's money where it takes 18 cents to recycle a bottle that costs 3 cents to produce, and only delay the problems that our trash causes the planet, we must do as we're told.
How arrogant we are to think that bringing our own cloth bags for our groceries will somehow save planet earth. If planet earth needed saving, it would do the job without our help. If anything, our mere existence is the surest danger to the planet. And if mother earth wanted to get rid of us, like she did to 98 percent of previous species of life, she would shrug us off like fleas on an old coat.
There is no real proof that we are undergoing global warming, but that isn't what the politicians with a stake in the matter would want you to believe. The real problem is that we earthlings possess enough nuclear weaponry to actually destroy all life on the planet. And even if we did destroy every living creature, due to our religious convictions, (convictions that ironically have the same epistemological evidence as global warming has), the earth will remain here. Sure, it will be uninhabitable due to the radiation we've gifted it with, but eventually she will be okay and we will be just a bad memory for nobody to remember.

So what do you think about global warming? Or is it just me?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

getting his award--robhoey127.blogspot.com/

Many years ago, I coached kids soccer. They ranged from ages 6 to 7 and were at a point in their development where the word "pass" did not yet exist. They got the ball, focused on the goal without looking around to see if another player was free, and ran for the goal until some kid from the other team would steal the ball away from them. Rinse and repeat.


But the junior hockey league, which I had the privilege to photo-shoot on December 30th, was a different story. Of course, the kids were older, more mature, more developed, and less selfish than the kids I coached, as they were fully aware that there is no "I" in team spirit (wait, there are two), but they played hard, they played fair, and they were good sports even when they lost both games. I have seen grown men cry over sports losses, as if their loss was of a loved one rather than some game. But these kids took it in stride--it made me wonder if they just very used to losing, but I think not--they played quite well.


When I coached the AYSO league (American Youth Soccer Organization), there was also an awards ceremony at the end of the season. Every kid on my team got a trophy, regardless of how terrible he or she played. There were no trophy-less kids. They had a trophy for best passer, quickest off the field for a substitution, best uniform wearer, best goalie haircut, and such. It doesn't get any more liberal than that. Nobody loses. Which is why we live in a nation (two, if you count Canada) of underachievers. Why work when you're going to get rewarded anyway? Why put in the effort when Joe or Sarah will do it for you? Not so with junior hockey. Only the top players and hardest workers got a trophy, and that's the way it should be because when everyone wins, they also lose.

Yes, there will be some unhappy kids whose efforts simply sucked or were nonexistent. Yes, there will be some pissed off parents who look at the efforts of their little Johnny as herculean, when in reality they were, at best, namby-pamby. But in the long run, these losers will have  an important life choice to deal with--whether or not they want to make the real effort only a winner can make, and actually earn an award for their effort, or simply let the other guy do all the work.  It's kind of like social welfare, isn't it, eh? 

In truth, by being realistic with them now is being kinder than giving them everything when they didn't earn it. That's how to mold a winner.

This is just my opinion--don't lose any sleep over it.