“Good game, eh Elmer?”
“You bet, Red. They started slow, but eventually got it going. Norway kept it close, though.
“Now, let’s see if we can bounce beer cans off Glenn Healy’s head.”
Just a great game the other night in Boston, and of course we need more of the same from the boys on Saturday afternoon when the Lightning come to town.
Meanwhile, cleaning more stuff off my desktop.
A snapshot of Jacques Plante and his wife in the late 1970s; a vintage sweater box I noticed on a shelf at work, a neat cartoon, and a Forum program that the cartoon was in, from a Montreal Maroons/Leafs game.
Hope you don’t mind. You’re at a slightly unconventional site.
And anyway, I could go on and on about how this year’s squad can never take a night off, how they have to skate and drive hard to the net and have the puck more than the other team and give 140% like I do at work.
But I won’t, because it’s Friday. Which means it’s beer time at St. Hubert’s Chicken.
Folks seemed to like this illustration, which I have in my treasured Habs scrapbook, the first time I posted it back in 2009, and I think it’s worthy of another look.
There’s no Canadiens crests at centre ice for some reason, but the pillars that were there blocking people’s views can be seen just at the top of the blues. And is that Rene Lecavalier and Danny Gallivan up there in the booth telling us in French and English how the boys are doing?
This is a 1960′s artist’s rendition of the old Montreal Forum before its 1968 restoration. I think it’s quite beautiful, in a whimsical kind of way.
And now -
I’m out of town for the day and thought I’d just re-post this because it’s so freakin’ unbelievable. Enjoy the Original Six, with Beliveau and the gang, in splendid quality.
I don’t know how often this has ever been in circulation, but it’s one of most greatest ten minutes of hockey clips you’ll ever see.
It’s from 1967, the quality is sensational, like it was filmed today, and we see Jean Beliveau, as smooth as smooth can be, Bobby Hull, Gordie Howe, Jacques Laperriere, Terry Harper, Ralph Backstrom, Terry Sawchuk, and just about everybody else from that time, all from the old Montreal Forum with the pillars in the background.
It’s called Blades and Brass, is set to music of a Mexican brass band, and comes from the National Film Board of Canada. So just sit back and enjoy the Original Six at the old Montreal Forum, in perfect quality.
Before I do the binder bunch, I want to mention that Darth and his terrific lady Lydie came to visit last night. Our first visitors in Montreal, and we were so happy to have them.
I was also proud to show them my old Canadiens scrapbook, something I’ve been doing with friends since I was seven years old.
Darth, as you might know, checks in here with his comments and fab artwork. Great people, these two, and it was a pleasure.
Now, more from the binders on a hot summer day, which includes – Charlie Hodge, Lloyd Gilmour, Harry Neale and Steve Armitage, old Forum passes, Pete Mahovlich, Rangers, Reggie Jackson, Sam Pollock, Sparky Anderson, and old Forum ticket stubs and envelope.
I finally saw what they did to our beautiful Forum. They reduced it to a cinema complex with a scattering of fast food places and Forum seats.
I spoke to a janitor there and he told me he recently saw Yvan Cournoyer sitting in one of the fast food places, pounding his cell phone on the table, trying to get it to work.
The guy sitting beside me isn’t real, if you’re wondering. He’s fake. Lacking soul. Kind of like the rest of the place.
Maybe Sidney should be careful about the way he’s been talking to the big lug lately.
Thanks to Hobo for sending this pic along. Imagine how funny it would be if we actually saw this?
It’s kind of like Andre the Giant throwing some poor mortal around. Andre lived in Montreal at one time, wrestled at the Forum, and I like to think he was a Habs fan. So no way am I comparing this gentle giant to the guy in Boston.
Anyway, Chara’s a mere 6’9″, 255 lbs. Andre the Giant was 7’4″, 424 lbs and would have crushed the wee lad.
Andre was 46 when he passed away due to heart failure in 1993.
To everyone here and on Facebook, Twitter, and Hockey Inside Out, I’d like to say thank you so much for your well-wishes on our upcoming move to Montreal. It’s a big chapter about to begin for Luci and I.
I even saw the little wooden bastard Gaston shed a tear, but I think it was only because he’s emotional at the thought of those beautiful Montreal women.
It’s a chance to work for such an iconic company, Classic Auctions; it’s a chance to live in Montreal, a city I have great affection for; it’s a chance to be near the team which is so close to my heart; it’s a chance to be near Ontario, where so many of my friends and family are; and it’s a chance to simply try something new, late in life, instead of sitting around and not doing much and getting fat and even more homely than I already am.
I was about 14 the first time I was ever in Montreal, when a friend and I took a bus from Orillia to see a game at the old Forum, which was several years before the 1968 renovations. I can remember waking up on Sunday morning in the downtown hotel and looking out the window and thinking that the Montreal Canadiens players were at home somewhere not far away, and I wondered what they might be doing.
It was magical for me, and the memories have remained lodged in my little memory bank. What’s left of it.
Cripes, I think I even heard church bells ringing. Yes indeed, it was a holy moment.
As an adult living in Ottawa, I’d go to the Forum several times a year, and in summer I’d often make the two-hour trek down to see the Expos, a team I absolutely loved, at the horrific Olympic Stadium, which I absolutely despised.
Now I’m going back to Montreal, only this time to live. It might not be for a long time, but then again it might. It all depends on how the job feels, and whether I’ll be suitable for the good folks at Classic.
I’ve always been one to take chances and move around, it’s in my blood, and I can’t wait to get this thing going. Even the drive across is going to be great.
Your comments are so much appreciated. My blog has been a vehicle to something very special, which is the connection I’ve made with you, and although I think I’ll be very busy in this new job, my little site will carry on. I’ll make time for it. It’s become too important to me to discard.
Thanks again for your wonderful messages. I’m very touched.
Not long ago a couple of folks here wondered how teams are able to keep track of all the players’ ice-time during a game. I wasn’t clear either, so I began looking around my stacks of magazines and through old boxes, and I came up with an answer.
Of course, the answer comes from 1959 so things have changed slightly. But hey, it’s still sort of an answer.
This example is from Maple Leaf Gardens, but I’m sure it was the same at the Forum and the other four rinks back then.
Thirty-six clocks were originally installed at the Gardens in 1950, with two panels of switches, and from their vantage point, two men kept track of the players on the ice for both teams. There was one panel for the Leafs, and one for the visitors. Each panel had 18 on-off switches.
Beneath each switch was a player’s name inked on white tape, and the names were arranged so that the switches for players playing together were side by side. The two guys then quickly flipped the switches as players changed.
The 36 clocks were in a small room up high in the Gardens, and under each one was the name of the player whose switch in the booth was connected to his clock. The giant Sportimer over centre ice was also wired into the clocks, so when the timekeeper at ice level started and stopped the Sportimer, he automatically controlled the clocks for each man on the ice.
After each period, an employee recorded each player’s time in minutes and seconds, and when the game was over, the times went to the coaches of each team. Sometimes the employee would get a call for the times at the end of each period or even during a period if Punch Imlach or Toe Blake or one of those other guys wearing a nice fedora needed to check on a particular player.
Time in the penalty box wasn’t counted. When one of the Leafs once got into a game to sit out a teammate’s penalty, his total playing time was logged at four seconds – the time it took to get back to the bench after the penalty expired. “Too slow,” said Leafs coach Hap Day. “It shouldn’t have taken him so long.”
After the game, the coach wants as many statistics as he can get. Along with playing times, he wants to know which players were on the ice for different situations. In 1959 at least, these extra things were done by a couple of guys up in the press box scribbing like mad.
So there you have it. A couple of guys asked, and I, with the help of my old trunk, delivered. Even though the information comes from 54 years ago.
(Originally posted August 19, 2008)
I should’ve been a Forum maintenance man.
I remember going to the Forum years ago and noticing a small apartment building a block away. I’ve thought about this apartment building, because it would’ve been the key.
I should’ve saved enough for a year’s rent, went to Montreal as a teenager, and rented an apartment in this building. Then every day, early in the morning, for months on end, I would’ve walked the short block to the Forum and bugged people about a job.
Every day I’d be turned down, but slowly I’d swing into step two. And that would be helping Forum workers carry things from trucks and getting their coffee. I’d do this for free, of course, because it would be all part of the master plan.
The workers would soon enough get to know me because I’d be there at the same time every day, and was more than willing to help. They’d see with their own eyes that I really wanted to work at the Forum, and eventually their boss would see this too.
At some point, the Forum needed a new labourer because someone had quit, and because the boss and all the workers liked me and knew I was energetic, I was hired. Probably part-time to start.
I would’ve worked myself into a permanent position, and stayed there for more than thirty years. I would’ve cleaned up hats on the ice. I would’ve fixed the glass, painted lines, laid the red carpet for dignitaries, scraped blood from the ice after John Ferguson had throttled someone, been working the night of the first 1972 Canada-Russia tilt,, and became friendly with all the players and their wives.
I would’ve been at every game and every Stanley Cup in Montreal at the old Forum for more than three decades, helped the boys work out some kinks at the new Molson/Bell Centre, and then retired.
It would’ve been good.