Thursday, May 28, 2009

Four More Wins

Bring on the Penguins…once again. The entire postseason I have watched the Penguins and hoped that someone would knock them off. Well, I guess the Wings will have to step in and do it once again this year.

Honestly if it was any other year and someone told me that Osgood was playing great going into the Stanley Cup finals I would say why bother playing the series, just give the Wings the Cup now. Eastern Conference teams just don’t see the tough defense like the Wings have, and the Wings can score as much or more than Eastern Conference teams against the tougher defensive teams of the Western Conference. However, this year is a little bit different and I have to say it is certainly not a lock for the Wings (ESPN says the Wings aren’t even the favorite).There are four strikes against the Wings that make this much more of a challenge then the typical Stanley Cup Finals (earlier I thought if we beat Anaheim the Cup was ours…now I think it’s still up for grabs).

1) Penguins again – We have to play the same team two years in a row, which means they have a team full of guys that don’t want to go through the agony of losing again.

2) Hossa – He was their top player from last years finals (I think) and turned down a lot of money from them to play for us for less money because he said he wanted to win a Cup…while this is added motivation for Hossa, it is also a lot of motivation for the entire Penguins team.

3) Wings Injuries – Injuries are piling up for the Wings. We are deep but I don’t want to have to play the Penguins without Lidstrom, Datsyuk, Ericsson and Draper. The Wings are great and the young guys have really impressed me, but I don’t want to have to fight battle with both arms tied behind our back.

4) Schedule – The NHL has successfully created the worst possible schedule for the Wings. With all the injuries and three overtime games in the previous series the Wings now have to play the opening two games on back to back nights…well there goes home ice advantage. Oh and they are considering an earlier start than 8pm on the Sunday game, which would mean the first two games at home for the Wings will be played in less than 24 hours. What the What!!!

If it were any team besides the Red Wings I would say they didn’t have a chance, but since it is the Wings I’ll still say they’ll win it. However, I expect a really long challenging series…though if the Wings could do a solid for a long time fan and sweep them it would really help me since my wedding is during Game 5, thanks.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Better Graduation Photos

I meant to post some better pictures from my graduation awhile ago but forgot. Unfortunately the camera Dem had used to take pictures was stolen so there are a limited number of pictures that I have. I feel kind of bad that I don't have pictures with the rest of the family that came, but I at least I have a few pictures.

I have to start with a picture of me with my parents since they are the biggest reason I'm where I'm at.

Then we have to have Dem since this moment is probably going to effect the rest of our lives.

Then I got to have a picture with Dr. Weber.

Me showing off my hood and Dem looking joy-filled.

G'pa trying to fix my hood...apparently it didn't want to show off its colors.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Goodbye Fortress of Solitude

Michigan campus shortly after I moved to Ann Arbor...taken while showing my parents around.

Since I moved to Ann Arbor from Kalamazoo I have lived in the same building, termed the "Fortress of Solitude". Back in 2006 I moved from the first floor to the third floor, but that has been my only move since January of 2004. I realized a few days ago that since 2004 there have only been a handful of nights that I spent in Ann Arbor that were not slept in that building. The only nights I could remember (which actually Dem remembered when I told her that I never have) was a few nights after the Beachhouse was broken into when I slept on their couch. So since as of two nights ago I began sleeping in Dem's and my future residence, I figured I should post a short entry remembering building 20.

View of the sun setting from the parking lot...getting a picture of the sun setting from the place we are remembering...artistic?

Aww...little Brian in A8 (i.e. first floor) before he was broken from graduate school.

After about a year on the first floor I did some rearranging...I believe this was the arrangement when Sherry first saw my apartment.

The arrangement on the third floor was rather constant...though my little green chair moved around a little bit.

My baby bamboo...for those that have seen it recently you can see just how much he's grown up.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Red Wings & Lady Gaga

Tonight the Red Wings got their 10th win of the Stanley Cup playoffs, which leaves six more needed. The Wings I think were out played for the most part. Samuelsson will get a lot of the credit for the win and rightfully so since he had a takeaway, resulting in a three on one, and ended with him shooting in a beautiful shot for the win in overtime. However, in my opinion the number one star has to be Ozzie...the Hawks had a ton of great shots on goal and Ozzie was a wall...OZZIE! OZZIE! OZZIE!

The Wings celebrate after the game winning goal in overtime.

Anyway, so why the weird title...well its a shout out to my friend Karen who not only has helped expand my music interests with artists like Rilo Kiley, Ladyhawke, and Lykke Li but has also helped me with my Red Wings reading. In a recent ESPN article it was noted that the Blackhawks hadn't won a Stanley Cup since 1961, which was before the world had heard of the Beatles. Then it mentioned that the Red Wings haven't won the Stanley Cup since June of last year, which was before the world had heard of Lady Gaga...oh yes I get that reference now and I recommend everyone just dance, it'll be ok...thanks Karen!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Game Seven

Since 1996 the Red Wings have won more Stanley Cups then played game sevens. Tonight they played their third since then and just like the previous two they won. Honestly even as the game came to an end I had to admit to myself that this certainly wasn't the most exciting. However that says nothing about how awesome this was...its just how can you beat a 1-0 victory in double overtime with a shot from Yzerman or beating the Avalanche so bad that Roy got pulled from the game. This one had somewhat of a different was close throughout but somehow even after giving up the two goal lead it was clear that the Wings were in charge. Who would have thought that Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Hossa, and Franzen won't score but the Wings would never trail from start to finish in a game 7. I also have to give some recognition to Ozzie since he has been great throughout this playoff and I'll say it right now that he should be in the Hall of Fame.

1996 Game 7 - Western Conference Semifinals vs. St. Louis

2002 Game 7 - Western Conference Finals vs. Colorado

For Statue of Liberty Play in Game 6 start at 4:15
For Game 7 start at 4:45

2009 Game 7 - Western Conference Semifinals vs. Anaheim

Wednesday, May 06, 2009


This past Friday was my dad's birthday (happy birthday well as Matt O). It also was the official completion of my formal education. I was hooded, which is basically what is done when you receive your PhD. I was able to have my co-Chair hood me, which is nice since not everyone gets that opportunity. I don't have any pictures from it (though I assume some folks have pictures for me), but I was able to borrow some from the web and Sherry's graduation last year.

Hill Auditorium last year for Sherry's graduation...same look for mine.

Prior to the start of the ceremony the graduates (master and PhD) formed a processional from the Rackham Graduate School to Hill Auditorium. This gave the photographer an opportunity to snap a picture of each graduate.

Me enjoying the graduate processional.

The ceremony was very nice and I thought the speaker did a very good job. My co-chair told me that at one point he used a long technical term and the sign language guy just put his hands up indicating that he didn't know what to do with it. Once the master students were recognized (congrats Seth), the PhDs were announced individually. The master students were given the option to do a fist bump with President Coleman instead of a hand shake due to the swine flu. However the PhDs were just given hand sanitizer and everyone shook hands with her.

Shaking hands with President Coleman...I knew that my tassel was going to be in my face for this picture.

Then that was pretty much it besides another picture off to the side and a nice dinner with the family that joined me for the day.

The culmination of 23 years of formal education.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Our Future Home

Piece by piece the details of Dem and my wedding/marriage are coming together. Recently we found where we are going to live and I think we are both very excited about the place. There are a few things about the place that we are slightly concerned about but overall its a good fit for both of us. I'm actually going to move in later this month and then Dem can start moving her stuff over as well so that when June 6th hits our home will be ready for us.

The community pool...there is also a fitness center that is available 24 hours a day.

The Buildings.