Friday, August 1


It says a lot about the times we live in that a classic bit of cinematic dialogue like, "we'll always have Paris", probably now more conjures slutty innuendo from name piggy-backing Worldherpe Paris Hilton than from Humphrey Bogart (5' 7), and that movie, (Casablanca) (And just in case you are wondering I have trademarked the word Worldherpe...oh, you weren't wondering? Okay). But today as soft deadline day, August 1st, came and went with exactly the same information we knew 3 months ago, it happened. I was thinking about Mats and I shrugged and thought, yeah he's retiring. It was just simple like that, snap, like requesting brown toast instead of white at breakfast. And whether or not that thought germinated after I read all the columns today doesn't even matter, the thought is still there. I believe that's sometimes called reasonable doubt.

- I hate to repeat myself but I don't have my hands covering my face when I say it and that's a step in the right direction but I believe Mats Sundin will retire, and forgive me for having a Send In The Clowns moment but I will miss him terribly. We all will. You all know I love the Toronto Maple Leafs so much I wish I could carry them around in my pocket and feed them treats all day. And Mats Sundin, god friggin bless him- 987 points in the uniform. And excluding the 94-95 season never less than 70 games a season. Never less than 20 goals a season, 6 foot 5 241 pounds, can communicate with bi-peds, and correct me if I'm wrong but he can hold his breath under water for like 11 minutes. Hopefully what these facts lack in statistical correctness they more than make up for with correct spelling and punctuality. No? (Shakes head)

Of course, I'm using humour and run on sentences to hide my pain. This is the end of an era folks and the bloggers and the fans and detractors alike won't really miss Mats Sundin until we begin to play (and watch) games without him. So therefore, thank you Mats, we'll always have Paris. And readers, if you could see me right now you would be like, "Norte, turn that frown upside down." and I would be all like "What the fuck are you doing in my house you fucking asshole?"

Mats Sundin and I, referentially speaking, would have gone to high school at the same time, he would have been in grade 12 when I was in grade 10 but we both would have been slow dancing to Eternal Flame by the Bangles at the school dance, not together of course but figuratively speaking. That's a fancy way of saying we're around the same age. A few summers ago I spent some time fishing up north as it were and let me tell you my friends, I never wanted to step foot out of that goddamn boat. Fuck it, it was like, just leave me here to fish and get fat. I don't blame Mats one bit for wanting to do the same thing.

To use a phrase from the hyper-real world of beer commercial vernacular, I think it's: Mats Sundin, Welcome to Your Carlsberg Years.