Fusspot rants, embarrassing photos of yourself and general correspondence go here: universalnicks@gmail.com

Hey, it's our first anniversary and we're not feeling self-serving! Pull up a chair, watch some Bad Religion (it kicks into high gear at 1:17) and prep the metal horns, because we have some thank yous to dish out.

To the New York Times, Slate, Deadspin, The Globe and Mail and the rest that we know we're forgetting -- thanks for the expected and unexpected publicity. A number of you helped make Dress Up Jake the world's most popular non-animated running serial involving a NFL figurine (seriously)! We couldn't have done it without you.

To the countless blogs who give us love -- there's no way I could include all of you. You're awesome.

We can't neglect to mention the following people/groups/sites:

The Sun -- they let people think I'm a member of the media (which may be true, but after nearly two years is still hard to comprehend);

The Hater Nation for helping me understand that Butterknife Row is like dealing with The Bish times a thousand, and for getting the ball rolling on the CFL cheerleading fiasco, which was our most popular post of the year;

SLAM's Patrick Williams for his advice;

Leaf Club for being objective when necessary;

Eyes On The Prize for being a regular supporter and always discussion-worthy;

Battle of Ontario for acting as a DMZ between Leafs and Sens fans;

(the apparently and sadly defunct) Hockey Country for providing us with quality Sens analysis;

Scarlett Ice for being a female blogger and getting it. Easier said than done.

To the NHL franchises who visit us: Thanks for stopping by -- now get away from the USC Song Girl video.

To the media who drop in: Thanks for your interest. Aren't you on deadline?

To my lovely sources, who should be playing shows, bagging on STOC or naming their unborn sons, "Bart". Don't worry, they'll never find you.

And last, but not least, to The Driver, who helps me ponder the mysteries of the universe -- like why Eric Duhatschek tilts his head during his Satellite Hotstove segment. (Does he demand to be filmed from only one side, like Barbra Streisand?)

Basically over the past year, I've attempted to have this space represent me as closely as possible -- that's why it's named after a Bad Religion B-side, and not a Trooper album (the column's name is Hot Shots, which coming from Thunder Bay, is slightly appropriate and incredibly funny). The band was the reason why I found Jim Rome, which eventually led to the Sun. They're still my greatest influence (you can't go wrong with punks that are NHL fans and Ph.Ds -- okay, one Ph.D), even when they're trying to get me to put "Impeach Bettman" stickers on my laptop. I owe a lot to them.

In closing...

Thank you to everyone that reads the blog, the column, either or, or both. I don't know what's meant for me, but I can only hope to climb to the lofty heights of previous Thunder Bay-born female Ottawa Sun sports columnists -- perhaps like this one, who went topless in Hollow Man 2. (Warning: slightly NSFW)

(Didn't see that one coming, did ya?)

Remember, it's okay to write about hockey with a sense of humour, not hokeyness. It's okay to not like everything you see or read. It's okay to dislike the media. It's okay to be a media member and pull for a specific team. It's okay to get extremely pissed off at that team, and state so. And most importantly of all, it's okay to be cynical.

Thanks again.

Yeah hey,


10 responses to "We're officially a toddler"

  1. Wow, one year old already? Seems like yesterday doesn't it?

    Guess it's time to spit out the soother, get stronger diapers, switch to soilds and start chewing on them Crayola's.

    That's quite a career ambition, topless sports journalist!

    I'll have to make note of that and post something. Oh the wheels are spinning!

    Reality Check

  2. Thank YOU for the support and for always providing a great read and the inspiration.

    Here's to another year, eh!


  3. Congrats on the anniversary. You're a great read.

    Don in Ottawa

  4. You make the Sun readable one day a week. On those other days at least I know I can come here. Thanks!


  5. When are you calling Jim Rome again???


  6. Screw that ... when are you hijacking Don Brennan's or Chris Stevenson's job? Those guys lost the "want to" years ago.


  7. I'm guessing that if NHL team is spending their time on here instead of doing their job, they must not have won a Stanley Cup lately or at least aren't planning to. Props to you for keeping them distracted.


  8. More Habs and less Sens. And more cheerleading posts.

    Moder Mar

  9. Hi Erin! I'm a regular on your site though I don't drop comments as much I should.

    Congrats on the first year!


  10. Thanks again guys. I really appreciate the support and all the kind words.

    The Universal Cynic