Search This Site
Silicon Valley veteran doing Technical Community Management. Photographer with a strong interest in birds, wildlife and nature who is exploring the Western states and working to tell you the stories of the special places I've found.
Author and Blogger. They are not the same thing. Sports occasionally spoken here, especially hockey. Veteran of Sun, Apple, Palm, HP and now Infoblox, plus some you've never heard of. They didn't kill me, they made me better.
Person with opinions, and not afraid to share them. Debate team in high school and college; bet that's a surprise.
Support This Site
If you found this page interesting, please consider clicking through this ad and buying something.
If you do, Amazon will pay me a small percentage of the price. You don't spend any more on the item, and the money helps pay for the site and the more people who do this the more time I'll be able to spend on the site improving it and adding content.
More to Read
- Some Thoughts on Lightroom Keywords
- How not to be a doofus with a camera
- Beyond 'Vacation Snaps'
- A teachable moment (or why I love birding, even when I make a fool of myself)
- Sherman, set the wayback machine to…
- An audience of one....
- Talking about 'Stuff'
- What I do for a living…
- 50 reasons Why I Haven’t Been Blogging
Want more? Try this list...
New on the Blog
- The Raffi Torres Hit
- Back from Yosemite
- 2013 playoffs, round 2
- Fuji X100s Review – Fallin’in Love All Over Again
- If you give them an easy out, they’ll take it.
- Another reason Don Cherry should retire (or be retired…)
- Yosemite Bird Photography Workshop openings
- 30 Days Of Sexism
- 2013 playoff predictions
- Calaveras Eagles Nest 2013
Rent Gear at Borrowlenses
Don't buy that gear before trying it out! Renting a lens you're considering buying is a great investment in saving yourself from buyer's remorse!
And if it's a piece or gear you aren't going to use constantly, renting it when you need it is a great way to save money, and I highly recommend Borrowlenses as a place to rent high quality, well-maintained gear.
Every discipline has its religious fights; wherever there are people with opinions, some of those opinions will oppose each other and people on both sides are going to be sure they’re right. In computers, it used to be Mac vs. Windows, and Emacs vs. VI. With audio, it’s vinyl vs. everything, and whether you get better sound with analog gear over digital.
In photography, one of the constant arguments that breaks out everywhere is whether to put UV filters on your lenses or not.
I’ve always been in the “it’s good insurance” category, but recently, for various reasons, I’ve been rethinking that assumption. And because of that, when I saw this article by Kirk Tuck, I linked to it. And when I linked to it, that generated this anonymous response:
On “Keep you lenses clean … Don’t stick a filter in front …”. The author didn’t make a good case from my perspective. My test shots showed me that a “high end” L lens with a UV quality filter is able to generate “high end” images with nil to nul image impact. The fact that I have cracked 2 filters and 0 lenses shows to me that the aded protection bonus of a filter is not to be ignored.
Now, given that Kirk starts the article with:
Keep your lenses clean. Don’t keep cleaning your lenses. And for God’s sake don’t stick a filter in front of them!!!! It’s obvious the battle line is drawn.
What made me link to the article was this:
I’ve experimented many times over the last few decades and I’ve proven to myself that filters in front of lenses degrade the quality of the final images. Here’s how I understand it all: Every air to glass interface causes a slight loss of resolution and contrast. This tends to make a lens look “flatter” and less sharp than it could be. Lens designers have understood for over a century that adding more glass elements increases the compromise.
Now, I like reading Kirk’s blog because he’s sharp and willing to shoot from the hip. I’ve read and talked to other photographers with as many years as a pro as Kirk who’d take the exact opposite view of him. I’ve seen at least half a dozen experiments where photographers have done tests, taking a series of shots with and without filters and asking people to pick out which are which — and I’ve never seen anyone able to do so. I’ve done those tests myself, and I can’t tell the difference in the final print. If you really want to piss off a bunch of photographers, take a half dozen prints, tell them three were taken with a filter, three without, and ask them to tell you which is which (but really shoot five of them with a filter and one without…). The results I’ve seen are invariably random — and some photographers are going to be insistent on their ability to do so and refuse to admit being wrong.
I’ve been thinking about this around the use of the word “insurance” — UV lenses cost money. Broken lenses cost lots more to repair or replace. The core of this is that by putting the filter on the lens, ultimately that will pay off by saving you from having to replace or repair that lens.
Which at some point in your life, it probably will. In my case, I have one time where a filter definitely saved me from a damaged or destroyed front element, and a second time where it probably did. So personally, using UV filters have saved a len, maybe two.
Until recently, I’ve never stopped to ask a different question: this technique can save your lens. But is that a good investment? After all, UV filters cost money. Over the years, you’re going to buy at least one UV filter for every lens. Over the years, you’ll proabably replace a UV filter for a lens once or twice. How many UV filters have you bought over time? And how much money has this cost you?
There’s no question cheap filters degrade your image, so if you’re going to buy filters, you need to buy good quality ones. Without starting another argument over which manufacturer makes “good quality”, for my that’s typically meant Hoya or B+W. And that means my UV filters are costing me $35-80 each. I currently carry four lenses, and the filters on those lenses cost me right around $275. I’ve replaced two of them in the last three years, so my total cost over the last few years is between $350 and $400.
The cost to buy the lens I almost destroyed new: $600. So over the last few years, I’ve spent about 50% of the cost of the replacement cost of that lens to save the lens.
Is that a good investment? To be honest — I can’t answer that. Which is why I’ve been thinking about this. I do know that the more expensive the lens, the better investment a UV filter is, because the more expensive it’ll be to replace or repair.
On the other hand, Kirk also posted another fascinating piece a few days earlier, titled A second chance at writing a competent review of the Zeiss 21mm lens. And the takeaway of that post for me was this:
As we were putting the lens on the front of a Canon 5dmk2 Paul put on his reading glasses and looked carefully at the front of the lens. There were two small spots on the front element. Could have been water marks. Or dried spit. Or some outer space goo. But we’re talking maybe one or two millimeters in diameter, tops. And quite transparent. Paul wiped out a cleaning cloth and ministered to the front element. Minutes later we were shooting amazing tests with absolutely none of the flare I’d seen previously. As Paul explained (and I should have known) flaws on the lens surface are magnified with wide angle lenses. It’s imperative to keep the front element cleaned.
And that’s where this UV filter thing gets complicated. The more expensive a lens, the more expensive and catastrophic repairing or replacing that lens is going to be — but the higher quality the lens, the more chance you’re going to have that UV filter impacting the quality in some way. It probably won’t under good conditions, but when you start talking about flare issues or bad lighting (backlight, strong sidelight, etc) and a top quality lens, I can definitely see where the extra glass of a UV filter is going to start impacting your image — and never have I seen tests for UV filters take those conditions into account.
This is where I think I’m getting off the bus on using UV filters as chronic insurance against damage.
So here’s my current thought on the whole UV filter thing; if you were to ask me whether to put on your lens, my answer would depend on the situation; if you’re one of those people upgrading from a point and shoot to a DSLR like a Canon Rebel, and you were smart enough to not buy the kit lens but instead spend a bit more to buy a good starter lens (like the Tamron 28-300 I use), I’d probably recommend you put a UV filter on it. Why? Because you’re still figuring out how to use the gear, you’re still figuring out how to take care of it, you’re more likely to find damage to a lens catastrophic (where that might cause you to give up on photography!), so in that case, a lens is good insurance. think of it as training wheels if you want. And honestly, for a person like this, they won’t notice the image difference, and probably couldn’t identify lens flare in an image if their life depended on it.
But as your skills increase; as your gear improves, as you move to owning better and more lenses, the cost of buying all of those UV filters increases, too, your skill as using and protecting your gear increases, so the chance of an accident drops, and the chance of the filter impacting the quality of the final image also increases. Add to that two other factors: as your skill as a photographer increases, you are going to spend more time taking images in the type of challenging lighting where the filter could impact your image, and your eye for image quality will increase such that you will see the impact.
So the more skilled you are as a photographer, the better the quality of your gear, the more you need to consider not using a UV filter. For me, personally, that means owning a set of UV filters, but for use under conditions where some lens protection is a good idea (salt spray, for instance); treat them like I do a polarizer and own one I can put on as needed, but not use it chronically.
For your situation? you need to answer a few questions. Is the money spent on UV filters a good investment? Are you better off investing that money in other gear? How well do you take care of your gear, and what are the chances of an “oops” that the filter is going to save you from? And what are the chances you’re going to shoot in conditions that might trigger image degradation, and is your gear of the quality where that degradation might be noticeable?
Want an easy rule? If your lenses are F5.6 or slower, I wouldn’t sweat putting a lens on it. If your lens is F2.8 or faster, I’d never put it on, unless it was to protect the lens from conditions.
The bottom line, if you ask me, is that both sides are right — depending on circumstances. (ain’t life great?)
But that’s not going to stop the argument….
One of the realities of nature photography is that you can only control nature so much — all the planning in the universe won’t prevent some challenges, like a change in the weather. Sometimes you go and epic pictures fall in your lap. Sometimes you go and conditions are such that you just grind it out and hope some of the images are good. And sometimes you sit in the hotel room listening to the rain and wish you’d cancelled….
This week was my spring trip to Yosemite. It’s been a truly weird year weather-wise, in case you haven’t noticed. Spring is late, cold and wet. The wildflower season has been at best, late and erratic. Bird migrations are off as well. All in all, it’s been tough planning around “spring”. But finally, word came out the dogwood was starting to bloom, and I really, really didn’t want to schedule time in Yosemite after Memorial day — as it was, it was clear the park was getting busier and the hotels around it closer to capacity. I finally decided I needed to go, or decide to wait for some other time. So I set everything up for a few nights in the park.
Of course, then I watched the weather, as a late, wet, cold, spring storm decided to hit Northern California and the Sierra. The couple of days prior to my going, yosemite was seeing highs near 70 and plenty of sun. the day before I was due to arrive, the storm moved in and the temps plunged donw into the 40s, and more storms were moving in as the week progressed. There is, unfortunately, a fine line between hitting the edge of a storm and the unbelievable skies that can create for your landscapes and having the clouds move in and close everything down in a sodden grey mass; and many times, you won’t know which you have until you get there and have to haul out the umbrella.
To be honest, I seriously considered canceling. I thought the weather was going to be iffy, but I felt it was worth a shot. So I went, making a later start on Sunday in hopes of trailing the storm and hitting the motel, then driving into the park to scout and see if there was anything interesting to photograph in the late afternoon. I ended up arriving on the Valley floor about 5PM. The temp was in the high 30′s, and the clouds were pretty heavy., but there were a few opportunities at shots.
I stuck around for a couple of hours, and then it started sleeting. That was enough for me for the night, and I headed out to grab a few last supplies and hit the room for the evening. I chose not to do dawn patrol because of the temps and worry there might be ice or chain issues on the roads, but I got up early and was in the park around 8AM, to bright skies and a rather pleasant set of views.
This was the day I knew I’d have dry weather. What I didn’t plan for was for the clouds to build back in as early as they did. By noon, we were back to mostly drab grey, although it did warm up, that afternoon it may have even hit 50. Welcome to “spring”.
My original plan was to travel out towards Hetch Hetchy for birds and critters. The road out was on chain requirements just after Foresta, and Foresta itself was under a few inches of snow. I scouted out there a bit, didn’t go into the chain areas, and finally headed back to the valley. I decided to head out to Wawona (to scout, and for gas) and it was fascinating to see how much snow had been dropped — 6-8 inches and the drive through that area looked like a winter trip. Other than road construction, nothing really caught my eye, so I decided to focus on the valley floor and headed back.
While I was doing that, the clouds were moving in. And so were the crowds. The park was busy, making parking a challenge in places, and to top it off, I was starting to feel like crap, with a headache building and generally feeling like a bug was coming on. On the other hand, the water flow in the Merced was amazing, and the waterfalls were even more amazing. I mentally shifted away from photographing birds and critters and instead decided to focus on the falls.
There are many falls in Yosemite that are only active during spring melt, and which dry up again after a few weeks, so unless you come during this period, you’ll never know they’re there. Some of them are stunning to watch.
Some of the more familiar falls were kicking, too. Bridalveil was as full and active as I’ve ever seen it.
And it wasn’t until I took these shots that I realized I’d never photographed Horsetail Falls at all.
Unfortunately, I kept feeling worse; by 3PM, I was exhausted. Almost fell asleep twice parked and watching the falls to judge how to image them. Ultimately, I decided I wasn’t doing myself any good and pulled the plug. On the way out, however, I saw the clot of people that signposts “critter!”, and in the middle was the ranger, which usually means the critter is a bear. So I found a place to park, grabbed the binocs and camera, and headed back to where everyone was clustered.
Meet “White 1″, a 28 month old cinnamon black bear — not all black bears are black, but this color is fairly rare in Yosemite. He was busily foraging for grubs in the fallen tree. Ryan the ranger was thrilled — as he said “I have a wild bear doing wild bear things, and everyone is behaving so I don’t have to yell at anyone”. And then he pointed to one person who was busily running through the meadow “well, except him, but he’s a pro”.
That was @yosemitesteve, who films for the park and does the awesome Nature Notes series available on Youtube. If you haven’t discovered them yet, do so — check out his one on Frazil Ice. And kids, don’t try that on your own… I ended up with the “wrong” lens on the camera, the Tamron 28-300, which is unfortunately really soft at 300MM, as you can see from that image. If I’d been thinking more carefully, I should have swapped to my critter lens, but didn’t. And when I went back to get it, of course, the bear ran off just as I attached the big lens to the camera body — of course. So all I have are some rather soft pictures as a great practical example of why I try NOT to use that lens beyond about 150mm except in an emergency (and this came up over on the Stack Exchange photo site, and I ended up chiming in on it).
Photographing a bear qualifies as an emergency. As bears go, it’s a rather small animal, being quite young. But still — I wish I’d grabbed the other lens. But still — being able to just watch an animal like that for a while totally made the trip for me.
After the bear skedaddled, I got back in the car and headed back to Mariposa for the night (Having your hotel room an hour away creates tradeoffs, which I talked about on my Wednesdays in Review). It was at dinner that I suddenly realized I was exceptionally thirsty.
So a nice meatball sub and a liter and a half of water later, I headed back to my room, already feeling better.
Dehydrated. Which explained why I felt like crap. And honestly, I know better, I really do. I’ve known since high school that I dehydrate early and often, and when I’m travelling, have to be careful — the air in most hotel rooms is fairly low humidity, and I tend to lose a lot of water in my breathing. And even though I thought I was taking in enough water, I evidently started the trip a bit dehydrated, and it spiraled. So sometimes, even if you think you have details covered, they get away from you (another truism about only being able to plan so many details; the one you miss messes with you). I actually have a protocol for staying hydrated on the road; for various reasons, I didn’t follow it properly, and it caught me. (yes, my life is an endless mental checklist of things I’ve learned not to forget over the years — and which I sometimes forget anyway). That’s a lesson learned — again.
I was asleep before 9PM, and slept 11 hours. And woke up thirsty. And woke up to rain. Which I expected. The new storm moved in overnight, and things looked ugly. I still felt somewhat ugly, and I’d decided the night before that if the weather was bad as expected, I’d cut the trip short and head home, because there was a 2nd, bigger storm chasing that morning storm into the area. The chances I’d had much good photography in those conditions was minimal, IMHO, so I decided to cut and run.
I drank another two liters of water on the drive home; it wasn’t until I was within 10 miles of home that my body started telling me my hydration levels were fine again (do I really need to explain how you can tell? No, I didn’t think so).
So some thoughts on the trip. Instead of the planned 2 full days and two partial days, I got one full day and a few hours the afternoon before. Instead of spring weather, I got late winter blustery and dull grey skies (and sleet). I took a total of 350 images, a percentage of that was pieces for HDR generation. My ding rate was about 10%. I ended up putting about 50 images into my primary library including HDR material, with a total of 27 “keeper” images. the rest went into my retired library (technically good, but overlapping the keepers and not as interesting, but there if I want a different take of need them in some way). I drove 620miles, and I spent about $500 on the trip.
Was it what I planned? Not remotely. Did I come back with some good images? Yes. Was it worth it? Just to stand and watch the bear for a while, absolutely freaking totally yes. Despite being disappointed at having the wrong lens handy for the pictures, I don’t care. Much.
Would I do it again? Yes, but without the dehydration; that impacted the day a lot more than I realized until later (I don’t know about you, but when I get dehydrated, I get slow and tired, low energy, a headache, grumpy and a bad attitude; so I didn’t push myself into doing as much as I would have if I felt better. oh well). Part of that is practical; I wasn’t going to reschedule my time off at work again. I wasn’t going to push my Yosemite trip out past Memorial day. Staying home instead was an option, but hell, a chance to go to Yosemite?
But I do wish I’d hit more spring than late winter. And it’s a bit annoying that a couple of days after I pulled out, the rain is gone and the weather is heading back into the 60′s. This storm was perfectly timed to annoy me.
Still, when you’re doing nature photography, it’s important to remember nature doesn’t always cooperate. And just roll with it. (and drink plenty of fluids).
And I ended up with zero shots of dogwood blossoms, after all of that. Because they were gonig to be a big part of the 2nd day of photography. oops. well, next year.
And that may be the important lesson of a trip like this (other than “drink that bottle of water NOW, and open another”) — a place like Yosemite, you don’t visit once and have a finished portfolio. Too much to cover, too many different things, too many different looks — adding images every trip is how you do this, over time and with some patience. And in the final judgement, the images I added weren’t the ones I’d planned (except the chapel image, which I’ll write about tomorrow), but they were the ones that deserved to be added based on what was going on when I got there. And with that, I won’t complain about a little sleet and a headache. After all — Yosemite? Or going to work.
Having just returned from my Yosemite trip and using Mariposa as my base camp, here are a couple of places I can happily recommend if you end up in this area….
I stayed at the Mariposa Lodge. This is the first time I’ve actually stayed at the Lodge I’ve recommended the Lodge to a few people over the years based on recommendations I’ve gotten from others; all of the people who stayed there gave it the thumbs-up, and I’m happy to say I can as well. This is your classic motor lodge, park outside the door to your room, carry your bags 20 feet kinda place. Some of these places can be a bit dated; my room was in great shape and seemed recently renovated, but the furniture didn’t quite match, so it avoided that “corporate sameness” problem you have with the chains. Even better, it was quiet, the bed was comfortable, the room was large, and the television had Versus so I even got to see a bit of hockey. The staff was friendly and happily moved some things around to get me a room away from stairs (for which my knees thank them). And they’re inexpensive. Not the cheapest place in town, but the towels won’t exfoliate you when you shower, and your neighbors won’t hear you typing away at night on your computer… It’s in the center of town (such as the town is defined) and there are some places you can walk to if you want food or coffee. I can recommend them without hesitation, since they’re going to be my place of choice when when I’m staying there.
I spent most of the trip eating from carried supplies, but I did have one dinner at the Happy Burger Diner, because I was ready for some protein and grease. Burgers and similar fare. Fries, Onion Rings (which rocked), drinks, shakes, desserts. Your classic burger joint. Bonus points for friendly staff, double bonus points for saying “hun” without is sounding silly or forced. More bonus points for the sign telling you it’ll take 15 minutes to get you your meal because they actually have to cook it — it’s a burger joint, not fast food. Tasty and well done, and the onion rings were nicely hot and crisp and just a bit greasy, the way god intended, and not the way you get them in the chains. For those in the bay area, food is similar to St. Johns, but not quite so production line. I saw a couple of folks eating chili in a bread bowl that looked quite tasty, too. Maybe next time.
Now, a few words on using Mariposa as a staging point for a Yosemite trip. Be aware it’s a drive — 40 miles one way from Mariposa to the valley floor. It’ll take you a good hour each way, so this is not a place where you can decide to pop back to the room, you’ll see the room at the start and end of the day, and you need to plan drive time into your schedule.
Your options are somewhat limited when visiting Yosemite, though, especially when the weather might be off. You can stay in the park, but it’s expensive. Yosemite Lodge at the Falls, which remind me of a 70′s Travelodge — well cared for but dated — will set you back $220 this time of year, if you can get a room. My room was $90 (both prices before taxes). The primary advantage of the Lodge at the Falls is that you’re in the valley, so you have little travel time. On the other hand, food in the park is either expensive and not very good (the Lodge cafeteria) or more expensive but very good (the Lodge restaurant). Other places within the park follow that model. If you want to stay at the Ahwahnee, expect to pay double that price for the room, and dress for dinner (cost: don’t ask), if you can get a room. Curry Village is less expensive, but — rustic. many rooms without electricity or heat. If that’s your style, great. Not me, not any more.
I happen to love the Wawona, which is on the south road. It’s a three season hotel. pricing is on a par with the Lodge at the falls, but it’s a beautiful place. Many rooms share a bathroom, some have their own. And the restaurant is pricey but good. Be aware that even though it’s in the park, it’s easily a 40 minute drive to the valley floor; you aren’t saving much time, if any, staying here. But I really like it, and it’ gets you away from the crowds to some degree.
Further south out of the park is Tenaya Lodge, run by Delaware North, the yosemite concession host. supposed to be nice, I haven’t visited. And pricey, but upscale. Even further drive than Wawona.
Between Mariposa and the park is El Portal, which is really little more than a couple of hotels and gas stations. Right next to park entrance is the Yosemite View Lodge, and a few miles down the road towards Mariposa is the Cedar Lodge. Yosemite View Lodge gets good reviews by people I know, and is typically where photo seminars run in the park stay. Cedar Lodge is less expensive — Laurie’s stayed there and rates it adequate with a bit of character. So to speak. Either one is a reasonable option, but in both cases, if you’re staying there, you’re going to be eating at the motel restaurant, because there’s no other infrastructure around.
As the crowds around Yosemite build (starting now — the park was fairly busy and some hotels in Mariposa were full), the prices for rooms goes up and your options get limited. But as a checkpoint, right now, Yosemite Lodge at the falls would run you about $220, Yosemite View Lodge about $160, Cedar lodge about $120, and Mariposa Lodge was about 90. All plus tax. If you can find rooms; right now, everything within the park is stuffed, and both Yosemite View Lodge and Cedar Lodge seem to be basically full well into June.
One hint if you want to stay within the park is keep an eye on the yosemitepark.com web site, some times you can grab last minute cancellations. Unless you plan way ahead or go during very slow times (November through early March), that’s about the only way you’ll grab a room within the park. They also have a newsletter (somewhat hidden on the site, look for the “Email Updates” forms spread around) that if you’re timing it flexible, can get you offers for discounts if you can go during slow times or can plan ahead.
My recommendations: when I visit in the winter and roads and weather can be ugly, I try to stay at the Lodge at the Falls. Off season rates are fairly reasonable, and I don’t have to worry about the roads being accessed; the valley floor is rarely impassible, but the entrance roads can get iffy or require chains. Either motel in El Portal is a reasonable value and minimizes the commute, but be aware you’re limiting your food and gas options; what you save in driving you’ll invest in more expensive gasoline (warning: do not buy gas in El Portal. It is by far the most expensive option. It seems counter-intuitive, but you’ll get your gas cheaper by driving into the park and going to Crane Flats or Wawona. Mariposa is the closest reasonably priced gas, but El Portal is typically $.50 or more a gallon more expensive than Crane Flats. Be warned). But while the drive from Mariposa is long (it’s sort of like visiting Disneyland by staying in San Diego) I find I prefer that. It depends on what I’m trying to do — if I’m going to be doing a lot of night photography or crack of dawn work, El Portal would be worth it. But I think the best values are in Mariposa. Just fill your tank before you head in…
The plot so far: I went 7-1 in the first round. And in the second round….
I picked Washington and Boston. Got the Bruins, I still have no idea how the Caps blew that series. Fro that matter, I bet the Caps have no idea how they blew that series, but perhaps we should just plan on not ever betting against an Yzerman team, even if he’s not in detroit. I will give full kudos to St. Louis and Roloson. They really deserved to move on, and Washington did not.
Boy, I’ll bet in January a lot of people were looking forward to a Pittsburgh and Washignton eastern final. Well, that’s why we play the games…
And in the West, I picked Vancouver and San Jose (in 7!) — and we have Vancouver and San Jose. Oh ye of little faith, it’s not the first team to three wins, its the first to four. Although honestly, the San jose andwings deserved one or two overtimes just to extend the season a bit. it was that tight a series, both teams deserved to win.
But only one could, and the Sharks did it.
So I’m 10-2 for the playoffs so far. By far, my best playoff call ever. so far.
So now what?
In the east, having just said not to bet against Yzerman, I will. Boston in 6, on the back of Tim Thomas. I just think the Bruins are a better team. and if Tampa again proves me wrong, that’s awesome. But I expect the Bruins to win through.
And in the west…. wow.
I’m not sure who I prefer between San Jose and Vancouver, to be honest. So I’m going to pick the Sharks in 7, but I’m hoping it’s another barn burner of a series like San Jose and Detroit was. I think Luongo and Niemi cancel each other out in terms of shut-down capability, and so it’s going to come down to 2nd and third lines and how well san jose can contain the Sedins.
So. Boston in 6. San Jose in 7. And I honestly feel I could be wrong in both series and not feel bad about it.
I can’t speak to much in tonight’s game because, honestly, I only saw the first period before we went out to dinner with a friend. We did, however, after taking a vote, pull out a phone and tie it to NHL.com for updates every 15 minutes. I have the game on PVR, but right now I’ll probably look forward, not bad. (for what it’s worth, the restaurant is one we go to about once a quarter, Tigelleria. And it’s awesome. It’s usually worth about $125 a person with wine and tips, and I consider it a great value. The duck breast and carrot soups tonight were out of this world. And we still spent significantly less than our former seats would have cost us to sit in tonight…)
And I’m going to be in Yosemite for game 1 and I may or may not be back from that trip to see game 2. I am, shall we say, crushed.
Not. Which is not to say I’m not interested. And won’t be watching closely when I’m in town or grabbing scores when I can. Just taht right now, hockey is not the do-or-die priority of my life. I know. Sacrilege. Given how many years I’ve missed the Yosemite dogwood blooming for the sharks, I hope they understand…..
So now there are four teams left — and all are awesome. The hockey has been awesome. The fan response has been awesome. And have you noticed how the canadian hockey writers, especially out of Toronto, are trying to talk about possible lockouts and seeing what negative things they can write rather than actually accept that maybe the hockey right now is pretty damn good? It’s too damn bad those folks are unable to just enjoy the sport for what it is, and instead try to revel in negativity. Perhaps that’s a reason why the rest of us should stop reading them….
Dear hockey writers: there’s plenty of time in the offseason for you to complain about everything you don’t like about hockey. How about, right now, shutting up and enjoying the damned sport for a few weeks? Nah. never happen, because then, the fans might focus on how good things are right now instead of paying attention to you, as we all know the center of the universe ought to be the toronto hockey writers. and larry brooks. always larry brooks, who’s an honorary ontario hockey whiner…
onward to some damn good hockey, with or without the hockey press! actually, preferably without….