Two days until the CBA expires between the NHLPA and the team owners, and my stomach aches. I wish the two sides could agree on terms so I don't have to go without my favorite professional sport this year. In 2005, I found myself passing time by sitting in my room, and missing hockey. I dated girls and wasted nights with friends, but nothing held a candle to watching the Pittsburgh Penguins skate around the ice for 60 minutes each night. Even when the team lost, I found comfort in the fact that hockey existed. This year, we as fans might face the same dilemma, thus I compiled a list of ten substitutes for the NHL to pass the time. None of the pastimes listed entertain me as much as hockey, but they should suffice until the players and owners come to terms.
5. Study — As a student on the verge of graduating college in December, I stand to face a few tough tests this semester. I should just sit on my lazy boy, light a candle, put on my reading glasses, and gather information. Sure, that sounds completely appealing since the NHL wants to lock out and all, but that only covers half of a season. The emotional investment I put into hockey each season would translate into too much studying, thus an obscene amount of brain power. Why take that chance? I want to remain at the same intelligence level as my friends. I must consider their feelings as well.
4. Clean the House — Sure, my wife loves this idea. The mop and I form an alliance against dirt, as Windex covers the frontlines in the war against fingerprints. After class and before work I annihilate dust bunnies with the magical Swiffer. What a grand idea. But, taping the broom handle and screaming obscenities at dirty dishes only promotes sadness. I already retired my Mr. Clean jersey, anyways.
3. Walk the Dog — Exercising and enjoying fresh air outdoors seems fantastic. The dog and I briskly walk through the park, and sneer at other dogs and owners who fail to keep up. The dog enjoys walks, but he hates when I get competitive, thus body checking other dog walkers just seems out of the question. The last incident turned ugly, and cost me $100 via citation. Though, in my mind, I won.
2. Watch Other Sports — The Pirates looked incredible this year, until the all-star break. I love letting my heart break more and more by cheering for the Buccos. Let's face it, though, baseball games last forever when your team loses for nearly two decades. The Steelers normally win a ton of games, and stand as the best form of entertainment with no hockey season. But,Chris Collinsworth talks the entire time which ruins every game. And basketball, well, stinks. I wish Mike Lange commentated on every sport, because a good back-scratching with a hacksaw always seems like a great idea.
1. Play NHL 13 — I love this idea more than the rest. The Penguins always win, and I always experience a great deal of satisfaction when my friends cry in defeat. The Playstation acts as an amusement park as I ride an emotional roller coaster full of glitch goals and terrible miscues. I scream at the television as if it cheats on a consistent basis. In fact, I firmly believe it does cheat. I want to go with this idea, but as I previously mentioned, I got married last year. Wives hate NHL, which trumps that idea completely. Married men understand what I am saying. I do plan on sneaking a few games in here and there, when I suggest she needs to spend time with her friends (great ploy by the way).

Posted in Pittsburgh Penguins, Pittsburgh Pirates, Pittsburgh Steelers

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