Friday, October 07, 2005

What the puck?

I cannot believe what I have just read. Nick Coleman, the biggest moonbat ever to walk this Earth, defends Gov. Pawlenty for mis-speaking at Wednesday night’s Wild game:

Gov. Tim Pawlenty was just supposed to drop the puck, but he dropped something else at Wednesday night's return of professional hockey to the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul:

The effenheimer.

The governor and First Lady Mary Pawlenty were in the crow's nest, high above the crowd of 19,000 fans ready to celebrate the resumption of hockey after a year's hiatus. His task was to intone the Minnesota Mantra that has been said before every Wild game since the team had its first regular season game on Oct. 11, 2000:
"Let's plaaay hockey!"

But the governor tripped on his tongue. TV reports had to bleep Pawlenty when he led up to the Minnesota Mantra with an introductory line: "The time has come to drop the puck."
Pawlenty bungled it:
"The time has come to drop the (bleep)puck," he said, with "bleep" used here in place of a word that rhymes with duck but which wasn't puck.

You can take the boy out of South St. Paul, but you can't take South St. Paul out of the boy.
Pawlenty is the son of a truck driver from the earthy slaughterhouse culture down Hook 'Em Cow Way, as they used to call South St. Paul, where "Bleep you" is a term of endearment. He also is a born-again Christian and smooth-talking politician, a guy who plays nice in a suit but hard-nosed on the ice. A guy who can sweet-talk you into a budget deal or run you into the end boards. It can't be easy to reconcile all those pieces, the high sticking with the backslapping. Something has to give. Wednesday, it was the mouth.

The Minnesota Mantra -- Let's plaaay hockey! -- was coined by Bob Utecht, the rinkside announcer for the North Stars club during the first 14 years of that since-departed franchise. One night, Utecht had an inspiration and spoke to the ref just before game time. "Don't drop the puck until I say something," Utecht told the ref.

Voila!, as they say in Quebec when they aren't swearing a blue streak in French: "Let's Plaaay Hockey!" was said at the start of every North Stars game until Utecht and the franchise parted company and Bob refused to let the team keep it up. Years later, Utecht revived the Mantra when the Wild first took the ice in 2000, getting the honor, at age 80, of bestowing his phrase on our new team.

It's corny, and it's us.

But maybe Gov. Effinator has stumbled upon something besides his tongue. Maybe the Mantra needs a modern edge, a profanity update to give it some bleeping muscle. Instead of "Lets's plaaay hockey!"

How about if we just say: "Drop the freaking puck!"

So let's cut Pawlenty some slack. I never trust a governor who doesn't cuss. Besides, it was refreshing: It was the first thing Pawlenty has said that might make Phyllis Schlafly red in the face, even if it was just a tongue malfunction.

"I realized that as I was starting to say 'puck,' other sounds were coming out of my mouth," an abashed governor told reporters Thursday. "It was an unfortunate slip of the tongue. ... It just came out wrong. I apologize for that."

Let's not make a bleeping mountain out of @###!! molehill.

Hockey and the F-bomb always have gone together in hotbeds of the game, and I have heard many a puckster swear like a meat packer with a dull cleaver and a shaky hand.

Pawlenty's locker-room language rang true to fans who went without hockey for a year because of a stupid standoff between players and owners.

You're damn straight it's time to drop the bleeping puck, governor. Jacques Lemaire couldn't have said it better.
(Source: Star Tribune, Oct. 7, 2005)

For once I agree with Nick Coleman. Unlike most politicians, Pawlenty didn’t grow up in the rich suburbs, go to an Ivy League school, nor did his grandfather start a department store. Pawlenty grew up in South St. Paul, son of a truck driver. He’s just another blue collar kid that made good.


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