Sunday, December 20, 2009


Recent grumblings across Hab Nation question the anticipated return of defenceman Andrei Markov to the Beautiful Team after an expected four-month layaway, now revised.
It is no secret that apart from acting as the springing board for all Montreal attacks, Andrei Markov represents the whole of Team Russia’s defence and the glue that holds the entire team together. No Markov, no Russia.
By knowing certain doors, greasing certain jams, and bribing certain people, one can access the Bell Centre phone transcripts in the third sub-level of the east wing basement and with the proper tools, jimmy certain file-drawers in which they are held. This is what your dedicated reporter did.
(SUN. NOV. 15. 09) “Hello?”
-“Mr.Bob, my friend!”
-“My friend, Bob!”
-“What can I do for you?”
-“You send Markov outside; we take home and fix. That’s what you do for your friend Dmitriy.”
-“Uhh, I don’t think we can do that, the rules say…”
-“I think of this already, my friend Bob.” We have maskirovka prepared. We have man looks like Markov, but not real Markov. You make walk around and smile, no problem. But no talking. Team not know difference; media not know difference, even mother not know difference. But no talking, Bob. Very important. In the meanwhile, you send real Markov out and we take home and fix with Eastern healing methods.”
-“Listen, Mr.President, I really appreciate what you guys…”
-“Car is downstairs; do not make me come up.”
(Connection terminated.)
Barely 24hrs later, Andrei Markov was knee-deep in Mongolian outback, trudging through pain and snow, and frequently whacked in the back by a bamboo stick held by a very stern and grizzled old man (who, by a happy set of incredible circumstances, your faithful reporter happens to be pen-pals with). “PUSH the snow; not WALK the snow! Push the snow.” Whack!
He was brought to a hidden monastery and told to polish the whole marble floor with spit-shine rags tied to his feet. Markov tried to explain he was there for medical treatment but a quick strike from the bamboo stick interrupted his lament. “POLISH marble; not WIPE the marble! Polish marble.” Whack!
Furthermore, there were only Turkish bathrooms in the place, which meant Markov was forced to squat to pee, and since his diet consisted mainly of rice soup with vegetables and a piece of mutton thrown in on Sundays, you can imagine how often he did this. Still the old man with the bamboo stick was there. “SQUAT to pee; not STAND to pee! Squat to pee.” Whack!
Four weeks passed thusly, fetching water from the well outside through the snow for the soup, polishing the floor he would dirty on his way to and fro, and peeing; all in all, a very drab affair which bordered alarmingly on the unpleasant and not at all in tune with the athlete’s exuberant disposition. Finally, he could take it no longer and rebelled. Markov pointed out rather piqued that he was there to be healed, not to do menial tasks for an old monkey and pee away his insides. The old man stared at him with a curious expression.
“Do ‘Push the Snow’” he said.
-“We’re inside!” Markov whined.
-“Do ‘Push the Snow’!”
As Markov began executing the movements, the old man turned his stick sideways and began cross-checking the NHLer in the chest. Markov pushed through easily. The surprise had barely registered before the old man added “Now, do ‘Polish Marble’!” The old man tried to trip up Markov using his stick to jab at an invisible puck but Markov evaded with brio. “Now, do ‘Squat to Pee’!” As Markov folded at the knees, the old man tried to keep him down by pushing on his shoulders but was cast off without difficulty at every rise.
“You are healed and may return to Canada now, Andrei. You will do proud Mother Russia. Dmitriy tell me to say that you not be seen in same place as your double when you get back or the maskirovka is kaput. He also say he will keep good eye on your family while you are in Vancouver. Dasvidaniya, comrade; I am off to write letter to reporter friend.”
Andrei Markov hurriedly caught the next badger-pulled sled outta the monastery, the next horse-drawn carriage outta the village, the next 78hp engine car outta town, the next taxi to the train station, the next train to the airport, and the next flight outta the country. Arrived in Montreal Thursday evening. Had a steak.
More updates as conspiracy warrants.

1 comment:

MikeMcLaren said...

I am SO glad that investigative reporting isn't dead! Please take care of yourself though, exposés such as this can lead to serious reprisals.

Watch your soup, if it smells like polonium-210 stay away!