Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Road (Trip) to Hell is Paved

The Road Trip to Hell is Paved With Good Intentions

I went on a road trip from Montreal to Ottawa on Saturday. The C*4 Wrestling promotion's last show of their "Season Two" Crossing the Line II saw them crown their first champion (Kevin Steen) Good show, a little long for my tastes, but it had great matches and some absolutely hilarious moments that I will write about in the comings days.

Our topic of the moment is how I got there. I wasn't planning on going to the show until Pat Laprade offered me a ride to Ottawa and agreed to drop me in Morin-Heights at my parents on the way back. Little did I know that I was agreeing to the Road Trip to Hell!

In the car: Me, Pat Laprade (driving), James Stone, Bakais and Pat's cousin, Maxime.

On the basic principle of saying some nice things about the drive, before I get to the good stuff, I reluctantly admit that the drive was not a total disaster:

  • We did arrive in Ottawa before the doors opened.

  • Miraculously with all limbs and organs intact.

  • I did get dropped off by my parents safely.

  • Red Lips, Black List - The James Stone StoryAs James Stone discovered, Put Me, Laprade and Bakais in a car together and we will completely rebook your life, your promotion and your career, including booking James Stone's heel turn "But I'm not turning Heel!?!" in an angle that we called: Red Lips, Black List. Which would be a great title for a blog by the way.

  • There is nothing better than letting Pat Laprade say something stupid and then James Stone and I spending fifteen minutes tag-teaming him as we prove point by point that he has no idea what he is talking about.

  • Like James and I patiently explaining to Pat that HDNet is owned by Mark Cuban who invented streaming video and has more money than Vince McMahon and Donald Trump combined, so while the fact that HDNet got booted off Time Warner Cable in a contract dispute is not great news for ROH, it is also not the apocalyptic doomsday that Pat and other Chicken Littles are predicting. Heck Nickelodeon got booted off Time Warner Cable last year for a weekend in a contract dispute. Getting kicked off Time Warner Cable is practically a badge of honour.

  • Or James and I explaining that while the Kevin Steen who succeeded in 2007 in ROH was certainly a better wrestler than the Kevin Steen who did not succeed in 2005, the biggest difference between the two runs was that Kevin was given a chance to succeed in 2007 that he was never given in 2005. There is a huge difference between being given the Briscoes as opponents and told to show off what you can do and being sent out in a five minute match. Patrick tried to counter by listing moves that Kevin did in 2007 that he never did in 2005. James and I patiently explained that these were moves that Kevin had used well before 2005, but that they were moves inappropriate to five minute matches which is why you never saw Kevin using them in ROH until 2007. In any case, it is a silly argument because the biggest difference between Kevin Steen 2005 and Kevin Steen 2007 wasn't his move-set, but his maturity in the ring and backstage, a better understanding of when and how to use that move-set and a better opportunity to do so.

  • I had heard of Kevin Steen standing up to CM Punk backstage at ROH in 2005, but I had never heard of the 2007 postscript to that story where CM Punk came back to ROH for a show in 2007 and Kevin Steen walked up to him, held out his hand and said, "Hi, let me introduce myself. I'm Kevin Steen." As though the two men had never met and that is HILARIOUS.

So enough of the namby-pamby polite stuff, let's start really dishing the dirt shall we?

Jimmy Stone At the risk of ending up as an entry in James Stone's soon to be infamous Black List, it came as a complete shock to me and Pat Laprade and I suspect Bakais that James Stone is the most bitter, sad-sack, miserable excuse for a human being that I have ever been trapped for three hours in a car with. And I say this as a man who once drove from Montreal to Philadelphia and back with PCP Crazy F'N Manny, the IWS photographer Technical Diffulties and Chris Mergle whose idea of luxury is camping out in a burned-out wreck in the middle of an otherwise empty field somewhere in the Laurentians. Seriously James Stone hates EVERYTHING. He makes misanthropes like Dick Cheney, Conrad Black and Lex Luthor look like Mother Theresa by comparison.


The only halfway negative thing that I can say about Bakais is that the man can choose a monster bag of potato chips, pay for it, open the bag, inhale its contents and begin complaining that he ate too much as a prelude to the emission of toxic gases in the amount of time that the rest of humanity would still be looking back and forth trying to choose between Salt and Vinegar or Barbecue.

The rest of the problems of the trip: All Pat Laprade's fault.

  1. He started the trip by locking the car with the keys inside it.

  2. Despite normally calling or IMing me so much that he legally qualifies as a stalker, Pat waited to call me to tell me that he was picking me up until he was two blocks away from my office.

  3. My office is on Sherbrooke and Metcalfe. Despite plenty of parking spots on Metcalfe, Pat drove two blocks further West to park on Stanley. Not that I mind walking but we were already late because of 1)

  4. Pat is apparently allergic to driving with both hands on the wheel for any length of time whatsoever.

  5. When stopping for gas, Pat feels compelled to inform his passengers that while he is filling up the car, they are now free to exit the vehicle and purchase refreshments, because apparently up until then, we were his prisoners.

  6. Pat waited until we were circling Ottawa on the auto-route to inform us that he had no idea where the venue was.

  7. Prior to telling us this, Pat spent about fifteen minutes programming his GPS with his right hand while searching the Internet on his Blackberry with his left hand for the venue address despite the fact that Bakais was sitting in the back seat with a perfectly useful iPhone. And yes, Pat was driving at the time.

  8. Worst of all, Pat knew that Bakais had an iPhone because we had just spent a half-hour arguing as to what the most useless iPhone app is with half the car picking the "pouring a virtual beer" app and the other half arguing for the "light a virtual lighter" app. For the record, I was arguing that the virtual beer was more useless. At least the virtual lighter you can hold up at rock concerts.

  9. Finally there is the small matter of Pat's GPS which is no doubt the infernal device handed out during your initial orientation on your first day in Hell.

Design Flaws of Pat's GPS
Note that some if not all of these problems may be due to operator failure rather than equipment failure

  • It takes half an hour to program the damn thing by which point you are either already at your destination or you have already missed your exit.
  • For some bizarre reason, despite how long it takes to set-up, Pat always begins by asking you what address to enter and then after asking for the address, telling you not to give him the information that he just asked you for because he is still programming his GPS.
  • It has a disconcerting tendency to tell you to turn left while you are in the middle of an intersection.
  • Because it apparently gets its signal from an Albanian spy satellite that was no doubt launched into a wobbly partial orbit by a giant sling-shot, the only way that Pat's GPS device can acquire and retain a signal is if Pat holds the device in his right hand and slowly waves the device around the car while driving with his left hand.
  • It threatens to run out of battery power when you in the exact middle of nowhere.

Despite all of this Pat Laprade calls the Tom-Tom GPS, a brand of GPS other than the infernal device he currently uses, a piece of shit.


So what are the odds that I can continue to weasel out of paying my share of the gas money?

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