Archive for the Sports Category

Philadelphia Broad Street Run 2013

Posted in Sports with tags , on May 9, 2013 by Verge

Okay, so I didn’t run the race, but Monika and our friends Kelly and Cynthia did, and I tried to be supportive by waking up the day after Barley Legal Big Brew Day 2013 (post to follow soon) with a wicked sun burn and a mild hangover, and drove them to North Philly to start the race.

I didn’t take a whole lot of pictures, mostly because my phone was nearly dead as soon as I arrived because it served as our GPS to the starting line and I couldn’t run out of battery because I wouldn’t be able to find the girls afterwards if I did.  Also, I was distracted by trying to find a shot of whiskey at 830 on Sunday morning in South Philly.  For the record, McFadden’s at Citizens Bank Park as well as Chickie’s and Pete’s are both NOT open that early on a Sunday, regardless of a huge race running down Broad Street for ten miles.

For what it's worth, I did snap this picture down at the naval yard about 300 yards from the finish line.  the security after the Boston Marathon tragedy was pretty damn tight, and it seemed like they were on top of their shit.  The marine in this picture was just hanging out, watching people, and high fiving some of the runners.  I was truly touched that about one of every twenty or so runners, after literally just running 10 miles, chose to say "thank you" to the marine.  I'll admit, along with those that ran the entire race holding American flags, I got a little choked up.

For what it’s worth, I did snap this picture down at the naval yard about 300 yards from the finish line. The security after the Boston Marathon tragedy was pretty damn tight, and it seemed like they were on top of their shit. The marine in this picture was just hanging out, watching people, and high fiving some of the runners. I was truly touched that about one of every twenty or so runners, after literally just running 10 miles, chose to say “thank you” to the marine. I’ll admit, along with those that ran the entire race holding American flags, I got a little choked up.

When I finally found the girls, who I missed running past me, they had made great time and we retired to the recovery tent.  Afterwards, we headed to Collingswood and grabbed a beer at The Pour House.  They deserved it for sure.  Monika raised over 600 dollars for cancer research as part of team Determination.  And everyone who participated made a statement:  those raising money, those carrying flage, those wearing Red Socks to support Bostonians, those running for the good of others, those literally wheeling themselves across the finish line, proving that nothing can stand in the way of your personal determination, and all the spectators, who might not be ready just yet, but want to cheer those who've made such a commitment and show support for all of their passion and causes.

When I finally found the girls, who I missed running past me, they had made great time and we retired to the recovery tent. Afterwards, we headed to Westmont, NJ and grabbed a beer at The Pour House. They deserved it for sure.

Monika raised over 600 dollars for cancer research as part of Team Determination. And everyone who participated made a statement: those raising money, those carrying American flags, those wearing Red Socks to support Bostonians, those running for the good of others, those literally wheeling themselves across the finish line, proving that nothing can stand in the way of your personal determination, and all the spectators, who might not be ready to run just yet, but want to cheer those who’ve made such a commitment and show support for all of their passion and causes.

2012 Philadelphia Marathon

Posted in Daily Pictures, Sports with tags , , on April 1, 2013 by Verge
back in November, I think, Monika ran the Philadelphia Marathon for the first time.  The day before, we visited the Philadelphia Convention Center for race packet pickups.

back in November, I think, Monika ran the Philadelphia Marathon for the first time. The day before, we visited the Philadelphia Convention Center for race packet pickups.

I really love this building.  It's a shame not many people get to see it.  I always thought this main room would be an awesome venue for a low key show of some sort.  the acoustics are amazing.  It used to be a market, and rail lines used to run right through here.  Their location is still marked on the floor with parallel lines the whole length of the room.

I really love this building. It’s a shame not many people get to see it. I always thought this main room would be an awesome venue for a low key show of some sort. the acoustics are amazing. It used to be a market, and rail lines used to run right through here. Their location is still marked on the floor with parallel lines the whole length of the room.

It serves as a sort of art gallery, also.  Arching ceilings really give you the feeling of being in a huge hangar.

It serves as a sort of art gallery, also. Arching ceilings really give you the feeling of being in a huge hangar.

a shot of downtown Philly from the steps right on Market street.  I always love the site of the Philly skyline.  It will always remind me of growing up here in South Jersey, watching the skyline morph over the years.

a shot of downtown Philly from the steps right on Market street. I always love the site of the Philly skyline. It will always remind me of growing up here in South Jersey, watching the skyline morph over the years.

this is a random corner on Market Street.  Not sure what it means, exactly, but interesting.  I'm always looking down when I walk in the city, usually looking for Toynbee Tiles.

this is a random corner on Market Street. Not sure what it means, exactly, but interesting. I’m always looking down when I walk in the city, usually looking for Toynbee Tiles.

next day was race day.  Monika got an super early start, and Craig and I headed in after a few hours to meet them at the finish line.

next day was race day. Monika got an super early start, and Craig and I headed in after a few hours to meet them at the finish line.

Mayor Nutter gave high fives as people crossed the finish line, 26.2 miles and 4 hours after starting the run.

Mayor Nutter gave high fives as people crossed the finish line, 26.2 miles and 4 hours after starting the run.

Monika, the champion.  okay, maybe not the most flattering picture she'd like me to post publicly, but hey, she just RAN A MARATHON.  Give her some slack.

Monika, the champion. okay, maybe not the most flattering picture she’d like me to post publicly, but hey, she just RAN A MARATHON. Give her some slack.  Notice the cel phone still firmly in hand.  I taught her well.  Water and cel phone, the two necessary things to survive in life.

This is Monika and her friend, who was only going to run a half marathon, but Monika convinced her to run another half during the race.  She really has a way with convincing people to do crazy things with her.

This is Monika and her friend, who was only going to run a half marathon, but Monika convinced her to run another half during the race. She really has a way with convincing people to do crazy things with her.

Kat made it too, her first marathon as well.  We were both super proud of them.  And, glad we finally got our wives back.  They had been training non-stop, everyday, for like 6 months, so yeah, we were looking forward to this whole thing being over already.  I'm sure they were also!

Kat made it too, her first marathon as well. We were both super proud of them. And, glad we finally got our wives back. They had been training non-stop, everyday, for like 6 months, so yeah, we were looking forward to this whole thing being over already. I’m sure they were also!

Steve Sabol Memorial Ceremony at NFL Films

Posted in Daily Pictures, Reflections, Sports on November 10, 2012 by Verge

Today, at NFL Films in Mt Laurel, we had a company wide memorial service for our fallen and fearless leader, Steve Sabol, who recently died from brain cancer that was diagnosed only a year ago, and whom was still walking the halls of our building just three months ago.
In this picture, you can see our new sign, with our new address, covered by a black blanket. It was uncovered, after a short speech, by his wife, his sister Blair, whom our original company was named after by Steve’s father, Big Ed, and Hank McElwee, famed cinematographer who still runs the film show out here.
We are now located at One Sabol Plaza (good luck with that one on your GPS)

They set up a stage and speakers, and gave a eulogy before unveiling the sign.

We raised a new flag, as well. That’s Steve’s initials, and the design that he used with his artwork and collages that have been appearing in galleries the last few years.

The flagpoles in the front lawn of NFL Films was actually one of Steve’s last requests. We never had them before last year, and he thought that we should. The third flag pole was flying a Giant’s logo last week, and it was supposed to commemorate the reigning Super Bowl Champions. That tradition was short lived.  The tree in the foreground was planted in memory of Steve, who loved the outdoors, and symbolizes the continued growth of NFL Films.

Others took photos as well, and some, perhaps, felt some kind of closure.

The new sign at our entrance…

…which of course was filmed for a future highlight of the day’s ceremony. This one was for Steve’s “family,” those of us at the continue to carry his vision and are his living legacy.
There will be another, much larger, ceremony in February, after the Super Bowl at the Kimmel Center. It will be the first Super Bowl ever that Steve will not attend.

This is the “Bridge” at our building that connects the administrative side of the building to the technology side. It’s now named something different.

Sudden Death Sabol,” as he was nicknamed, now takes on a completely different, and poignant meaning.

Inside our lobby, a new picture greets visitor to our location. A picture of Ed and Steve Sabol, a few years back, when Ed accepted his last Emmy Award for Lifetime Achievement. A few years later, Steve was there when his father was inducted into the Hall of Fame, something that we all hoped Ed would be alive to see. Now, we’re lucky that Steve was as well.

Watch a short video of the ceremony here

And, follow NFL Films on Facebook here.

Super Bowl (And Why I'm not Attending)

Posted in Sports on November 23, 2009 by Verge

Well, looks like another year I will most definitely NOT be attending the Super Bowl, again.  Now, for every single one of the 300 million people in the United States, save the 75,000 that actually do get tickets, the privilege of actually attending a Super Bowl game might well be a life long pursuit.

Of course, not every one in the US wants to go to the game.  Only about 100 million actually sit down to watch the game.  But, seeing as the NFL is the second most lucrative sporting event in the history of mankind, and that billions of dollars are spent each and every year on games and merchandise alone, it stands to reason that at least half of those 100 million would like to, at least once in their lives, actually watch the game in person.

Okay, so we’ll be conservative, and say that at least 30 million people every single year at least want to see the game in person.  Now, let’s say that most of them, a damn lot of them, are raving fans that would pay the cost of the trip even though they definitely don’t have the money to do it.  Okay, a huge chunk can afford it, no problem, but a bunch would spend their child’s’ college fund for even the opportunity to be in a lottery and maybe have a fleeting chance at getting tickets to see the Super Bowl.  And would sleep in a van in the parking lot for three days if they couldn’t book a hotel room.

Now, you may or may not know for whom I work but, I have a pretty damn special opportunity.  Now, for a guy that is watching Good Will Hunting, for like the fourth time, instead of watching Monday Night Football, it sometimes gets under people’s skin when I tell them that I work for the NFL and then, tell them that I don’t watch football.

Two years ago, it was all set.  It was before the current recession.  Car companies were still spending millions on advertising instead of bleeding money.  I was set to work my first Super Bowl.  Not a glamorous job.  Long hours, away from my girlfriend for 3 weeks, no car, living in a hotel.  But then again, I was going to be a part of an event that only me and 75,000 other people are able to be a part of.  One that I would remember for a very long time.  Sure, it’s not the same as watching my team hoist the Stanley Cup, but it’s sure more culturally significant.

Things didn’t quite line up.  Back then, my company was going to pay me to work 7 days a week, with a per diem, and overtime, for three weeks.  They’d pay for my food, and my hotel, and even for entertainment.  They’d fly my girlfriend and another friend down to Florida for free, and put them up in my hotel.  Oh, and they’d give them both complimentary Super Bowl tickets.  In addition to my own, which would be on the field.  Sure, I’d be working, but working on the field of the god damned Super Bowl.

Well, that fell through.  And then things were lined up again, maybe for a minute, this year.  No free tickets for the wife, and no free transportation, but good money and still something I had hope for.  Well, that fell through again.

I offered a few people the pair of tickets I’m privileged to buy each year.  Every year, I’m allowed to buy a pair of tickets to the greatest American sports game of the year.  Not many people are afforded that opportunity.  No, it’s not a lottery, it’s not a contest.  If I want them, all I have to do is pay face value for them.  This year, they didn’t raise prices…$800 a piece, not including a flight to Miami and a hotel for a few days.  I didn’t buy them, again, this year.  None of my friends had the money this year either.

Next year, hopefully I can go.  Hopefully the economy is better, and instead of stripping more perks from the menu, they’ll reinstate some.  And I’ll get to go, with my wife.  I don’t care who’s playing since I don’t follow football.  But I do follow American culture, and I look forward to someday be able to  look back, and remember the time my wife and I attended a Super Bowl.  It’s like being in the Coliseum, watching the gladiators, not really caring who wins or loses, but sensing that you’ve been a part of something that’s historic, and will always be remembered by at least 75,000 people…plus 2.

–~r

No Devils for Me :..(

Posted in Sports on November 12, 2009 by Verge

While the New Jersey Nets have taken the solo lead in the race for the “worst basketball team” by losing every single game they’ve played this season so far (0-8), the Devils have been kicking ass.   Of course, it’s way early in the season, but without Elias for most of this season so far, and losing damn near every top player in the past few years (Niedermayer, Stevens, Gomez, Madden, Gionta), they’re one of the top teams in the entire league right now, let alone topping Pittsburgh and New York in their division.

Now, it sucks that the Devs barely ever sell out that new stadium, and they don’t have enough money to keep top talent, but that guy Lou really knows how to run a team.  No wonder he was just inducted into the Hall of Fame.  Hiring Jacques Lemaire looks like a master stroke now that the Devils have a 12-4 record and haven’t lost a single away game this season (8-0)!

So, it’s bad enough that New Jersey’s one good team gets no respect from almost every resident.  I know, cause I’ve been to plenty of home games, and I can pretty much sit where ever I want.  One time, we had seats that were like 15 rows from the top of the whole stadium, and when I said to the usher guarding the lower level section directly behind the net, “hey man, we’re sitting all the way up there, and if you let us through, we won’t cause any trouble,” he looked around, nodded his head towards the ice, and there we were, 15 rows from the ice instead.  Trust me, it’s not crowded.  And it’s sure easy to hold a regular volume conversation in that building pretty much at any time.

Okay, I know, they have a few friends living in the Oranges, but c’mon.  I’m not saying that you can’t be a Flyers fan, or even hope that the Devils don’t make the playoffs, but a little respect would be nice once in a while.  Shit, in the past 15 years they’ve won 3 Stanley Cups, 4 Conference Championships, and 8 Division Championships.  Oh, and they’ve also taken a rookie goalie and made him the most winingest goalie in the history of professional hockey, along with helping him break almost every record set by Sawchuck, Roy and Parent.

So here I am, wanting to watch the damned game tonight and guess what, I can’t.  Firstly, even if I did have cable, I couldn’t get the game because the NEW JERSEY DEVILS Comcast and Verizon consider out of market, namely, the New York market.  WTF is that logic?  Course, they’re on the NHL Network tonight, which you would think means I’m in, but alas, not so fast.  I have to count on the local bar having the exact sports package that includes NHL Network to be able to see it, and sometimes that isn’t always the case.  Believe me, I’ve tried.  And even if I manage to track down a bar that indeed does have NHL Network, since the Flyers are playing, I’ll have to ask for them to put on the Devils, and hope that they’ll comply.  I’ll also have to compete with everyone else in the bar who will be watching Thursday night football.

Hockey isn’t this country’s best loved sports, but for your money, it’s damn exciting to watch.  Imagine any other sport in which the referees allow people to air their grievances with fists on occasion.  And what other sport regularly has guys leave the ice bleeding, get 10 stitches, and return the same period for a few shifts?  Well, whatever your poison is, at least admit the Devils kick some ass.  We don’t get the Jets or the Giants, we’ve got no baseball team, our basketball team is a national joke, but the Devils stand alone as something this state should be proud of.  They go for a perfect 9-0 on-the-road start tonight…wish them luck.

–~r

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