Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Roberto Luongo Hates You! No, You! Yeah, That Guy!

"A paranoid is someone who knows a little of what's going on. "

Well, it’s October again, and that can only mean three things:
1.   Long, agonizing car rides listening to the many reasons why Starbuck’s should be selling Pumpkin Spice Latte’s year round. Here’s my rule… If your order at a coffee place has more than 4 words, we can’t be friends. If your coffee order exceeds the 4 word rule, it’s a lock you’ve worn a fedora at some point.

2.   Flu season is right around the corner. Look, I’m not asking for you to go all, Contagion biohazard suit or anything, but for the love of God, don’t touch me. I miss the good old days, when I could just use my crippling emotional pain and neuroses for reasons not to be touched. Way to screw me, Oprah.

3.   The Canucks are in their October lull. Specifically, Roberto Luongo is in his October lull.   

We’re not even 10 games into the season and Vancouverites are already picking up their pitchforks and torches and getting ready to run Roberto Luongo out of town.  It seems in the last few years, the fuse on the average Canuck’s fan’s keg of dynamite has grown ever so, Wil E. Coyote shorter and shorter in response to the lackluster start of Luongo’s seasons.
Slow to the puck, horrible rebound control, lack of focus, goes down more than a heavy set cheerleader with low self esteem. You name it, Luongo has been tagged with every criticism a goalie can possibly be labeled with, and after last year’s failure to protect a 2 game lead in the Stanley Cup final, fans are quicker than ever this season to call him out on his viscous October (Slow-tober. And Yes, I’m trademarking that).
What makes it worse for most fans, is the “Woodersonesque” way that Alain Vigneault and Mike Gillis seem to accept is as de rigueur when confronted by the media and fans. If the Canuck’s brass were to take more of a hard line stance with Luongo would the fan’s vitriol be less so? “Well, yeah, he sucks, but Vigneault is trying to light a fire under him. So, uhmm, there's that.”  
Instead, year after year the Canuck’s tow the party line, and not only is Luongo defended,  it seems like he’s given a free pass. Is this normal? Would this happen on another team? I mean, Calgary seems to be cool with Kiprusoff’s and Iginla’s tortoise like crawl to November, but here’s the difference, Calgary doesn’t have a goalie that could be a solid number one on most other teams, sitting in a hat on the far side of the bench.
We’re barely into the season, I mean, Don Cherry hasn’t even pissed off (Insert ethnic and or special interest group) yet.  In the recent game against the New York Rangers, Luongo gave up four goals in the 3rd period, and although you can argue those goals weren’t his fault, the fact that Henrik Lundqvist was impenetrable on the other end only added fuel to the fire and resulted in jeers from the crowd.
Yes, jeers! Not boos, stony passive aggressive silence, but jeers. Now, I know what you’re thinking, (“Hey, they’re just jeers!) but Roberto Luongo isn’t’ exactly middle aged English woman when it comes to keeping his emotions in check.  These are jeers, people! There’s a reason it’s “Cheers and Jeers” in the TV Guide. Jeers are not good.
It’s hard to feel sorry for Luongo. He brings a lot of the ridicule, criticism, obscene limericks on himself. I mean, it’s not like he has it hard or anything. You know who has it tough? Franklin Amrstrong from The Peanuts. Hey, you try being the only black kid in a  close knit Vermont community. And to make it worse, your only friend is a closet lesbian. Although, secretly (OK, in my own unpublished fan fiction) Violet really had a thing for Franklin. She looks like she’d grow up to be freaky; I think it’s the bun.

All the fans want is a guy who stops the puck when he's supposed to stop the puck.
So, yeah, Luongo sucks in October, the fans want him out, the management seems apathetic towards the fans. This has all the makings of a Tyler Perry movie. Wait, Tyler Perry-ish.
And yeah, YEAH, I’ve got a stake in this; I’ve got a wife and kids! I need the Canucks to go as deep into the post season as possible, or else I’m going to wind up at a Pottery Barn in mid May looking at pewter napkin rings, or hearing about the differences between Cate Blanchette and Kate Winslet. (Spoiler… Unless you have an odd Merchant Ivory fetish, they should be way, way down on your laminated cards.)
I don’t want to be the guy getting conversationally roofied by another parent at youth soccer who wants my Facebook info so they can add me to their “Stamp Out High Fructose Corn Syrup” page. (Sidenote… Why all the fuss about high fructose corn syrup? I grew up with High Fructose corn syrup and I seemed to have turned out OK. I don’t remember any death row interviews with John Wayne Gacy where he wishes he’d had a parent who would have kept him away from the Count Chocula.)
I rarely play the “man card,” as a matter of fact, I will disown you if you put “man” in front of the words, “cave,” “hug” and “crush”. The only acceptable uses of “man” is as follows “-wich” “-imal” and “Six Million Dollar…”  but I’m a man, I need to be on the couch surrounded by the bones of hot wings (As a sign to other snack foods that their demise is inevitable) and a roughly thought out idea for a production of “Glengarry Glenross” with emotionally dead ‘tweens.
Anyways, here’s few things Robert Luongo could be doing in October while Cory Schneider all but secures us the Northwest Crown by October 31st:

1.   Roberto Luongo, member of “The Crest Team” - Things go perfectly fine until the real fat cavity creep gets in his head and then it’s a jackhammer here, a pick axe there and before you know it, the worst case of gingivitis in the history of dentistry. I mean, bad. Steve Buscemi on a toffee bender, bad.

2.   Roberto Luongo, Storm Trooper ID #45632 – Darth Vader: “OK, Ro-b-erto, good to see you here. Look, I’m going to just level with you; this “Death Star” has a bit of a flaw. One space torpedo in the wrong spot and Kablooooey! So, all you gotta do is not let any space torpedoes get by you. Think you can handle it? Oh, what? It’s October 7th, why?”

3.   Roberto Luongo, Hardy Boy – The Mystery of the Old Mill goes unsolved because Roberto refuses to admit Joe is the brains of the operation. Joe and Frank go onto mystery solving super stardom. Roberto ends up getting Simon and Simon’s mail.

4.   Roberto Luongo, as one of the people on the island in LOST. The smoke monster kills 8 people as Roberto argues with Jack over the rules about hunting at night. Later on, he blmes their deaths on the little Australian dude standing in front of him.    

Follow me on Twitter @SteveintheKT. I won’t pump your tires.

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