Rennie to Be Given Key to the City
To say that fans of the Vancouver Whitecaps were getting just a wee bit impatient with head coach Martin Rennie over the past few weeks would be putting things mildly. Like, peppers-and-onions-free-salsa mildly. Like, baby's first post-Thanksgiving turkey-induced nap mildly. Rennie's been under pressure is what I'm saying, and he needed to come up with an answer to his critics in a big way and fast.
Well, count your lucky Spike feathers, Whitecaps supporters, because a 3-0 victory over the hated Montreal Impact (they're still hated, right?) was delivered from Nobody Saw That Coming Station and, as a result, Martin Rennie is being fêted as a tactical genius. His inspired decision to put Matt Watson - yes, that Matt Watson - in a forward attacking role has made Rennie the toast of Robson Street, while his jaw-dropping placement of an unfrozen Cro-Magnon hunter-gatherer (more on that later) at striker is still buzzing on everyone's lips. It's a night-and-day transformation for the 'Caps skipper and, in what might be the epitome of the stereotypical fickle Vancouver sports fan, Vancouver city council has unanimously voted to award Martin Rennie a ceremonial key to the city.
"For a sports town starved for some sort of good news, this result hit the spot," said councillor Geoff Meggs at Tuesday morning's council meeting. "Even better, this result came from someone whose exit from this league and city was not just presumed but had spawned numerous office pools. I, for example, had $20 on October 28th. I'd be lying if I said I didn't want that $20 back, but since the 'Caps are winning again, hey, who am I to complain? Just so long as one Vancouver team is in the playoffs, that's good enough for me." A round of applause broke out in the council chambers, at which point a noticeably awkward Rennie (then again, when is he not?) stepped forward to accept the ceremonial oversized key from mayor Gregor Robertson. "All the way to MLS Cup, right?" said the mayor to laughter as he and Rennie posed for photographers.
Rennie chuckled before responding, "Sure, once we make up that four-point gap and get back into the playoffs." At that, the council chambers went deathly quiet and Rennie, sensing something going wrong, attempted to lighten the mood. "All we have to do is take points from Real Salt Lake, Portland and Colorado at home, and Seattle and Colorado away. Money in the bank, am I right?"
While the Eighty Six Forever reporting team was unable to get a clear view of the brutal melee that erupted following Tuesday's key presentation, we are confident Martin Rennie and his shiny new key will turn up eventually.
Tommy Heinemann Adjusts to Modern Life on the West Coast
LIFE SO DIFFERENT NOW FOR CAVEMAN! SPENT EARLY YEARS BASHING STICKS AND ROCKS TOGETHER FOR FIRE SINCE COLUMBUS VERY COLD AND PREHISTORIC. NO, REALLY, THIS IS CAVEMAN TALKING TO YOU AND WHEN I SAY IT PREHISTORIC, ME MEAN CREW STADIUM MORE DINOSAUR THAN ACTUAL DINOSAUR, THOUGH CAVEMAN OBVIOUSLY NOT ALIVE DURING DINOSAUR ERA. THAT CRUEL ANACHRONISM! STOP SENSELESS CAVEMAN STEREOTYPE! FLINTSTONES RUIN EVERYTHING!
OH, RIGHT, CAVEMAN DISTRACTED. WHAT TALK? OH YES! MODERN LIFE NOW IN VANCOUVER! VERY DIFFERENT! SMASHING STREET LAMPS WITH CLUB NO LONGER PROPER ETIQUETTE. CAVEMAN APOLOGIZE TO GASTOWN. LOOK VERY PRETTY NOW! CLUB DENTS HARDLY VISIBLE! CAVEMAN LOVE GASTOWN! ALL GOOD NOW, YES? NO MORE YELLING AND THROWING AND LAWSUITS? YES? GOOD!
LIFE WITH CAVEMATES - OR, NEW WORD, "TEAMMATES" - ENDLESS LAUGHS. MADE VIDEO WHEN SULKY GLOVE-MAN NO WANT TALK. SAD ABOUT STORK OR SOMETHING. NOT CARE; HAD FUN! MIGHT HAVE BROKEN FINGERS ON CAST-MAN'S OTHER HAND. TO BE SAFE, CAVEMAN SMASH ROOMMATE'S HAND WITH CLUB. NOW THEY BOTH CAST-FRIEND TEAMMATES! EVERYONE HAPPY WITH TEARS AND SCREAMING. MADE OTHER VIDEO ABOUT SCORING GOAL AND NOT LOSING TO WORST TEAM IN CONFERENCE. SO MANY VIDEOS IN NEW LIFE! CAVEMAN STAR NOW! CAVEMAN LIKE BEING STAR ALMOST AS MUCH AS NOT LOSING. WOULD DO BOTH AGAIN. CAVEMAN WOULD ALSO SMASH DAN KENNEDY'S FACE WITH CLUB. TOO MUCH TALENT TO WASTE ON LOSER TEAM! PUT OUT OF MISERY NOW!
Reminder: The Playoff Dream Is Nearly Extinct
As eloquently waxed about in TJI #29, the season is dead and the playoffs are but a faint mathematically-possible-but-come-on-who-are-we-kidding pipe dream. As a coping mechanism for all of us as the countdown to the inevitable freight train of disappointment winds its way to a close, we will feature another nearly-extinct being before each match. This week: the addax or "white antelope".
Unlike the Whitecaps season, the addax are a slow beast and are easily threatened by predators such as lions and hunting dogs. Like the Whitecaps' season, their time on this earth is at a critical juncture and all ills can probably be blamed on stupid humans. Also, for all you Canadian men's national team fans out there, here's a fun fact: an addax was on the bench as a backup goalkeeper for Mauritania during one of their friendlies against Canada. Goodness knows how it managed to horn its way onto the team.
Rituro is a freelance nerd, sports fan and avid gamer. Feel free to throw a tweet his way and follow @ThatRituroGuy.