Archive for January, 2010

RIP Robert B Parker

Posted in Authors, Miscellaneous, Spenser with tags , , , , , on January 24, 2010 by tangentman

I was stunned by an email I received early Tuesday afternoon.  Literally stunned.

It was from someone in one of my yahoo-groups, and the subject line said it all:  “[spenser] He’s gone”.

Robert B Parker, author of nearly 40 novels in the Spenser series, passed away at home in Cambridge, MA (working at his desk) on January 18 at the age of 77.

Dr Parker was a master of brisk, witty dialogue, which made his books a quick read and often hard to put down.  The banter between Spenser and his friend/leg breaker/cohort Hawk would often have me laughing out loud.  Spenser made it to television, starting a three year run in 1985 with Spenser: For Hire, starring Robert Urich in the title role and Avery Brooks as Hawk (who some, myself included, consider to have been made for the part).

Along with Boston PI Spenser, Parker’s other series include alcoholic ex-LA cop turned small town Police Chief Jesse Stone (played in TV movies by Tom Selleck), female PI Sunny Randall (also from Boston), the Western adventures of Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch, and two recent ‘young adult’ novels.

A few years ago, my fiancee Laurel and I took a trip to Boston/Cambridge and made one day a “Spenser Day”.  We took in Boston Common and the Public Garden, crossed Arlington Street to stroll Marlborough, the Mall on Commonwealth and the stores on Newbury.  We made our way to the Park Street T-Stop at the Common, where the opening scene of the Spenser: For Hire pilot, Promised Land, plays out, followed by a few steps up Tremont Street to the Old Granary Burial Grounds (where Spenser ends up shooting the huge stone marking the grave of Benjamin Franklin’s parents in the same scene – no marks on it now, thanks to special effects 😉 ).

We then visited Faneuil Hall and got a bite to eat at Quincy Market before heading back to Cambridge to take a stroll down Dr Parker’s street, hoping to catch a glimpse of the writer himself (no luck).  Laurel remembered his house from the back of the dust cover of one of his books; I thought it was a different one.

I never met the man; never wrote him to say thanks for his work.  I really wish he’d been in his yard that day so I could have given him a quick wave of appreciation.

Rest in peace, Sir.


Peart’s “The Hockey Theme” to Debut Tonight

Posted in NHL, Philadelphia Flyers, Rush with tags , , , , , , on January 14, 2010 by tangentman

Rush drummer/percussionist/lyricist Neil Peart’s version of The Hockey Theme will premiere tonight at 7 o’clock on NHL on TSN in Canada during the Toronto Maple Leafs game against the Philadelphia Flyers.

Being  Rush fan and a follower of all things NHL, I’m excited that Mr Peart was included in this effort.  Being in the US (and not being a subscriber of the NHL Center Ice cable package), I will not be able to hear the song tonight.  However, The Hockey Theme will be available on iTunes this coming Tuesday, January 19th.

There is a complete story on the TSN website.

A preview of the song is available on YouTube.

The Professor
(Photo courtesy Josh Tidsbury – see the complete set of 13 pics on Josh’s flickr page)

EDIT – Well, it didn’t take long at all for the video to be posted on YouTube.  Good stuff.

Assorted Nuts

Posted in Browsing, Fantasy Hockey, Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , on January 10, 2010 by tangentman

Before we finally get around to taking down the Christmas tree today (and taking Geddy the Cat’s new fort away), I thought I’d throw a little something together and share a few things with everyone.

I’m a Firefox user, and I’m always looking for add-ons to make surfing more enjoyable.  There are a couple that I find extremely useful, and they are listed below, along with a fantasy hockey site that all players should find helpful.  If you have any favorites of your own, please feel free to share them in your comments.

I hope everyone’s New Year has started off on the right foot.  Enjoy what’s left of the weekend.

Firefox Add-ons:

RSS Ticker – Notifies you on-screen when your favorite sites are updated.  I don’t know what I did without this one (yes I do, but it wasn’t this easy).  Live Bookmarks now appear in a ticker that scrolls across the top (or bottom) of your screen while you surf.  Moving your mouse over a headline gives you a small pop up box preview.  Fully customizable.  Click the link for full details.

Morning Coffee – Simple app that opens your selected websites in tabs all at once.  You can add sites via the Bookmarks folder.

Fantasy Hockey:

Left Wing Lock – Starting goalie info, with updates throughout the day.  I added a link here on the blog also.  Most of you probably know about this one, but for those who don’t, this will help.

I won’t be sharing all of my favorite fantasy hockey sites here.  Some things are best kept to oneself.  😉

‘Til next time, thanks for reading.