Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Home for the Holidays

"Leaving for the big show!"

A great meal at Fleming's followed by a great concert at the Colonial Theatre. Mr. Connick was fantastic! Timing can be everything when traveling. I had that small window of when the storm died down on Saturday and managed to get home very quickly (considering some of the other delays, a 3-hour delay was quick). Spent some time with a Nichols student on his way home to La Belle Province. It's a cold day but I am quite pleased that the snow has died down and there is some sun to enjoy from the parents dining room.

"2008: The Year of the Ph.D." probably needed AND deserved a Harry Connick concert to end it. As always I am very pleased to see the holiday season is here... World Juniors to watch and many a glass of wine to drink with plans of spending New Year's in Halifax. A Christmas poem...

All out of doors looked darkly in at him
Through the thin frost, almost in separate stars,
That gathers on the pane in empty rooms.
What kept his eyes from giving back the gaze
Was the lamp tilted near them in his hand.
What kept him from remembering what it was
That brought him to that creaking room was age.
He stood with barrels round him -- at a loss.
And having scared the cellar under him
In clomping there, he scared it once again
In clomping off; -- and scared the outer night,
Which has its sounds, familiar, like the roar
Of trees and crack of branches, common things,
But nothing so like beating on a box.
A light he was to no one but himself
Where now he sat, concerned with he knew what,
A quiet light, and then not even that.
He consigned to the moon, such as she was,
So late-arising, to the broken moon
As better than the sun in any case
For such a charge, his snow upon the roof,
His icicles along the wall to keep;
And slept.

-Excerpt from Robert Frost's "An Old Man's Winter Night"

Like the old man in Frost's poem, I am at home and I am in sleep mode full of reflection... from "backspins at the Worcester Train station" in January, the "FA Cup trip to McGann's" in February, "First Date #6" in March, my visit with Ev and Josh in early May, the big defense in mid-May, "7 in 75" at Fenway, Vermont and reuniting with the nephews in June, the "Joel Gott Ph.D." party in July, my first NCAA win in any sport in August, getting acknowledged in a book in September, Cape Cod in October, drinking celebratory Obaminator Ale in November, Thanksgiving/Birthday and the end of a long semester, it has been quite a year. Highpoint: May 14th talking with friends and family drinking J. Lohr from N8's place on 16th Street in Albuquerque. Lowpoint: a long night waiting for a plane in Denver with too much time on my hands even if I was smart enough to remember the lessons of December, 2006 that "Silence is the loudest parting you would never say" (Ben Harper in "Amen Omen").

I knew the freedom of finally obtaining the highest degree would bring responsibility. The social burden has been somewhat unexpected (online and in the "real world") so I would like to close 2008 with a special thank you to everybody who continues to read this blog. It's the "you haven't updated your blog in awhile" reminders that keep me on here.

Wishing all my faithful blog-readers a safe and happy holiday season while recalling what Alan Fotheringham used to annually predict in his McLean's column that "the Montreal Canadiens will win the Stanley Cup and people will fall in love" in wishing you all the best in 2009.

-"Dr. Joelly"

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Getting into the Christmas Spirit!

Leaving Saturday morning out of Logan, I had been planning to stay in Boston Friday night close to the airport... it's actually a better deal than paying for parking. So I was checking events and I said I would always love to see Harry Connick, Jr. sometime in my life preferably at a piano bar in New Orleans. However, since his Christmas music has been overplayed over the years, I also thought it would be a great experience to see him play around Christmas time in some type of a theatre setting. Friday night, I will be at the historic Colonial theatre listening to the big band and one of the great musical Christmas voices.

Friday night will also feature a Boston North End Italian (Giacomo's depending on the line), finding a great wine bar and then running off to see a great show. Exams to give and correct first... I am quite excited about this show. Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

One week from home...

Pictures (from the December 2nd Nichols College trip to NYC). That library Susan once mentioned that was on the corner of 5th and 42nd Street! Smiling in front of the Rockefeller tree.

Heading home in a week... exams to give and correct, grades to post, and a few more parties to attend. Just bought my Christmas wine today. Taking home a couple of beauties! It's been a loooonnng semester!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Birthday and Thanksgiving

Pictures from the past week: Monday night, Birthday (fresh from my solo birthday card opening ceremony), Birthday party with faculty and staff celebrating the last day of classes before the thanksgiving holiday, Thnaksgiving eve, and then the dinner itself. The week continues...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Birthday Week is Back... 36 drinks not gonna happen!

Bedroom Renovation ("Before" and "After")
First I should show my weekend fun. You painted it green? Target frames made my room look super nice. I recently got my "Santa Fe Opera 2007" poster framed with a white frame so I kept it consistent. Room looks brighter in the day but the best part is the paint color actually makes for a darker room at night. I love to sleep!

Another Trip to Lowell
I watched the rookie come veteran Mark Flood play in Lowell on Saturday night with his parents, Allen and Virginia, watching. Mark went +2 and picked an apple. Albany won in a shootout 3-2. A great night!

My transcripts arrived the same day I got a phone call to tell my degree was framed. It's officially official now.

So the tradition of having the same number of drinks during the week leading up to the birthday will probably NOT be continued. However, with my reimbursement check arriving on the weekend, I was able to purchase a TV now. Cable arrives tomorrow. IKEA visit on the following weekend. It's been a looong semester and I look forward to Thankgiving... yes, the turkey is ordered!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


More Painting
I was back at the renovation business again. Yes, it's only a rental but I love the makeover of my new apartment. IKEA is an hour away. The greatest place on earth? Possibly.

I WAS "One of a Million" back in January
Election night came... I have never spoken my political leanings on this blog and never will open myself up to a rant from an unknown anonymous. I will only say I was at a bar that didn't represent the second coming of Aryan nation so you could can guess I was with the happy crowd that night. Have you ever told anybody that they could be anything they want in life? I feel like less of a hypocrite when I say this now.

NASSS Conference
The last picture is of me in Denver... ironically I am drinking Obamanator Ale with Herb Howell, my New Mexico friend. The conference went well. A presentation that I am used to giving by now. I submitted an abstract today for the coveted NASSM conference based on my Dissertation committee's advice as to where I should look at examining.

Letters also went out today to Canada Student Loan people. A government program that leaves much to be desired in terms of how it has been handled these past few years. Thanksgiving and my 36th Birthday around the corner... the grey hairs that seemed to be appear the last time I went to NASSS (ironically going through Denver... I saw Gate 35A itself the other day as well!) seemed to have disappeared. I might have gained some peace in some areas of my life... a 3 AM email and an internet search actually helped during my wait for my early morning wake up before my return flight.

Life goes on...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Where Did September AND October Go!?


Well, life moves tremendously fast when you are having fun. My apologies to the fans of the blog (all three of you might be quite upset!). First, I should describe the pictures above. First, I needed a way out(!), at least for a night, from annoying fantasy football/fireworks drunk-talk waking me up at 2 AM so I went to Cape Cod (that's a picture of Ted Kennedy's house from a harbor cruise) for the weekend of Canadian Thanksgiving... a great time which ended with a trip back in Woo-stah to the Boston Market for a 5 oz. serving of turkey. Second, is the picture of the cover of the book, "Counterfeit Amateurs". In a year of many milestones, I have a new one: "my first acknowledgement in a academic type book". Very proud to be mentioned by Dr. Allen Sack. Thirdly, me with my Red Sox jacket on the day after they prolonged the series with an amazing 8-7 dramatic win. While I did sing "Sweet Caroline" twice on Saturday, it wasn't to be.

Nichols Colllege Women Tennis ended their season 10 and 6 going down in the TCCC (I just said "the" twice in the row in that sentence on purpose) quarter-finals with a tough 5-4 loss. Coach Joel learned a lot this season about tennis and about working with women at the Division III level. It was a great experience, overall. If I only had time to use the movie tickets I was given to from the great players I got to watch play this year in thanks for my efforts. On that note... I certainly will miss Paul Newman as I definitely missed him this year on the bus trips. Can you believe "Slap Shot" was replaced by "Maid of Honor" as the movie we watched on bus trips?

I presented my dissertation research EXACTLY 5 months to the day of my defense to the faculty, athletic staff, and the overall campus community recently. It was one of my more enjoyable presentations. I hope I did not imply anything negative in that last sentence. I am also looking forward to going to Denver in November to present at the Sport Sociology conference.

Moving closer to campus... pictures to follow!

From the extra class to teach, Sport Management Club working at Gillette, and some professional duties added, it has been a busy time in my life. Will try to be in touch more often!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Some Pictures Are Simply Worth a Thousand Words...

Something arrived in the mail this morning.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

The Journey Continues...

1. Dr. Cormier on his first day of teaching with a Ph.D.
2. and 3 "Before" and "After" of my apartment paint job.

News and Notes...

"The Return of Coach Joel"
What can I tell you? Those 5 AM practices, the trips to the NCAA coaches convention, all those coaching clinics, the years of sacrifice of taking jobs with less pay so I could pursue life at Notre Dame and coach hockey. I finally made it to the NCAA... as an assistant tennis coach. We are three and oh. Big match on Tuesday.

"Classes Begin"
I have an extra class this year but that also means extra money. I have a new class on college athletics. I am in my office this morning finishing off the course pack.

"The last Lecture"
As somebody who strongly identifies himself as an educator, I would be remised if I didn't mention watching the late Randy Pausch's "The Last Lecture" on youtube recently. It was by far the most inspiring thing I have watched or have seen in a long time. His lecture on "time management" was fantastic as well. Strong recommendation for anybody who has not seen it to check it out.

Sorry I have been off for awhile. Thank you for everybody who reminded me of my speech about a month ago during the "Joel Gott Ph.D." celebrations and the message I shall continue to live by.

Happy September!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Summer Ends...

The summer wind that came crashing in from across the sea came to an end. It's been a month and I have neglected the blog while it apparently has not been neglected. I have made the big move into Woo-stah, painted the bedroom, put together some new IKEA furniture, and have my classes ready for Fall, 2008.

Post-partum Ph.D. defense depression kicked in at some point. Having almost complete desire and intellectual curiosity, I was reading up on an shared experience. "What's important now?" and "So now what?" were asked over and over and a few things happened.

After several years of chasing the NCAA dream as a hockey coach, I finally got a position to compliment my role as a professor... as the assistant tennis coach. The return of "Coach Joel"?

More to come later...

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Post-Party Pics...

Busy with my visit with my nephews so just a couple of pictures on here. Yesterday was exactly one year to the day of being offered my position at Nichols College... I am at the stage of asking "now what?". On Thursday, the grade will be posted and it will be official. What a journey!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Golf and the Anticipation of the Great Arrival!

Last week, the highly anticipated event that became a memory was golfing at the Charlottetown Boys and Girls Club charity event. My pre-golf picture from the night before (What? No smile?!) showed a determination I have never seen. Anyhow, several drinks later, I was smiling and enjoyed a great day golfing with Stanley Cup Champion Detroit Red Wings' Assistant Coach Paul MacLean. Paul and I were able to share some of our favorite O'Malley-isms as he once roomed with my Notre Dame mentor at the 1980 Olympics.

Today the anticipation that hopefully doesn't fly too fast is the arrival of my brother Craig, his wife Susan, and my nephews Thomas and Samuel. They are around for this week long enough for the big event of the summer: "Joel Gott Ph.D... The Party". I have been RSVP'ed for close to 30 people now. Looking forward to a big week.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Summer Continues... Happy Canada Day!

I finally got the picture of my moment with Samuel to share. My nephews arrive in a few weeks. With the revisions complete, the "Graduation" gifts began coming in. Okay, so maybe that Manchester United kit was bought by me and the story around the wine goblets was worth say hmmm.... six figures(?), but it is not a story I will post on here. Given the choice between civil disobedience and violence, I prefer to choose the former. However, there is a great youtube clip from "Family Guy" that I have been watching lately with much laughter.

Today is my first Canada Day in 4 years in the land of the free North of the largest unprotected border. Happy Canada Day to all my Canadian and American friends!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

"The Summer Wind Came Crashing In..."

Four weeks since my dissertation. Wow! Went to Vermont for the first night before reuniting with Thomas and Samuel. Excellent days in Ottawa! We made it home where it has been a feast of feasts. Lobster (twice!) including last night's feed with steak and asparagus with prosicutti ham on the Q. Spent a couple of days in halifax where enjoying amazing meals at my usual reliable Il Mercato and first time experience at the Wooden Monkey in Halifax.

Attempting to get some corrections done for my online class before heading to the gym... yes, with this kind of eating, the gym is a must do!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Celebration Week

I did travel by train to watch them on TV this past winter. 6 days after the dissertation defense, my United lads winning the Champions League Final for the first time in 9 years was also a great accomplishment. My first week post-Defense was capped off with a Red Sox game. One minute, you're getting grilled in a small classroom in Albuquerque... one exact week later you are on a train about to hit 7 pubs in 75 minutes before heading to the ball park!

Revisions were worked on very solidly Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. I began to smile right before the Final match as I realized the majority of my work was done. Yesterday, I attended my first faculty function at a head table for an admissions event. "Joel A. Cormier, Ph.D." was written on my name card. It might have hit me then: "What a week."

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Holiday Pictures

Depending on the size of your computer screen, pictures go either in a left-right order with two per row or a simple top to bottom order. Pictures from the holidays: heading home on the Confederation Bridge a week before Christmas, me with the parents having a pre-"M-Pub"-drink to McCartney's "Everybody Dance Tonight", Me and Santi on New Year's, my brother and Samuel, Samuel with his hand up telling me that I have taken enough pictures, and finally me and Thomas. The unshaven face says it all... time to go back to Massachusetts! "I need home for a rest!"- Spirit of the West

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Oh, Canada!

Overtime winner!! (Photo Courtesy of Reuters via Globe and Mail)

It doesn't get old. Four years in a row I have come home and after Christmas, sat down and watched the World Junior Hockey Championships. Four years in a row, I have sung off-key "Oh, Canada" after watching the Gold Medal game. One of my speakers of a coaching conference I organized in Saskatchewan, Curtis Hunt, was one of the Assistant Coaches on this year's addition. And while I don't personally know any of the players, you sure get to know these kids watching them everyday during the holidays. And what a great performance they put on continuing a holiday tradition that also signifies that soon I will be leaving Canada and going back to the grind.

After a crazy Friday night/Saturday morning, I tested my liver again yesterday watching the finals at a local Sports bar. As the "Spirit of the West" song goes:

You'll have to excuse me, I'm not at my best
I've been gone for a month, I've been drunk since I left
These so-called vacations will soon be my death
I'm so sick from the drink I need home for a rest.

I need to go back to work for a rest! But first I am off to spoil the nephews in Ottawa! I shall see my Island home after the cows get out and in PEI historian David Weale's words "make it to the grass". Already looking forward to a great summer in 2008.

Friday, January 04, 2008

One year later....

First picture is from the blog archive 2007.... second picture is from 20 minutes ago. Which weather do you think my face seems to say I prefer?

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy New Year! Cabin Fever...

The picture from the Island Webcam is worth a thousand words. With my laptop back in Massachusetts, I am unable to download any of the great photos from my camera (mostly with a glass of wine in my hand). Regardless, it was a great Christmas and I have certainly enjoyed my time at home and I will add those pictures later.

Just finished watching "Brooklyn Lobster", a great movie and will watch "Bourne Ultimatum" later on. I plan on running down the street at midnight even with the snow up to my hips if I have to.

Off to Ottawa in a week to see Craig, Susan, and the Nephews before heading back to reality.