September 11, 2008

Nostradamus Was A Piker

The 95th Skeptics' Circle is up and running around, and for this Very Special 9/11 Edition, we explore just how accurately a certain writer predicted the events of that day...

I, of course, am utterly unimpressed with long-dead seers and their vague claims. Far more astounding is the predictions for the 2004 Stanley Cup Championship, accurately foreseen by the great seer Bob Marley.

Here are the (truncated) lyrics for Small Axe:

Why boasteth thyself, O evil men;
Playing smart and not being clever, oh no!
I say you're working iniquity
To achieve vanity, yeah, if a-so a-so.
But the goodness of Jah - Jah
Idureth for Iver.

Clearly, this is a warning from head coach John Tortorella for his Tampa Bay Lightning not to get too high ("Why boasteth thyself") on the strength of winning the Eastern Conference regular season with 106 points; they couldn't get away with playing on the periphery any more. If they wanted to win in the playoffs, they had to pay the physical price ("Playing smart but not being clever"). The General Manager Jay ("Jah -Jah") Feaster also gets a nod for assembling such a solid team.

If you are the big tree,
We are the small axe
Sharpened to cut you down, (well sharp)
Ready to cut you down, oh yeah!

As many fans know, the Calgary Flame's big star is Jerome Iginla, a man who's name literally means "Big Tree" in Yoruba, his father's native language. Likewise, one of Tampa Bay's big stars is Martin St. Louis - one of the smaller forwards in the league (he's listed at 5'9", but perhaps they meant with his skates on) but a dangerous scorer. Clearly, the Prophet of Nine Mile meant for him to be the "Small Axe" of song; and with 24 points in 23 games, he did indeed cut down the team with the big tree!

These are the words of my master
Keep on tellin' me - o-oh! - no weak heart shall prosper:
Oh no, they can't! Eh.

While most of this stanza is a simple reiteration of Coach Tortorella's dictum that physical play is expected of the team, it also has a clear recognition of hockey's roots in that final word.

And whosoever diggeth a pit, Lord,
Shall fall in it - shall fall in it.
Whosoever diggeth a pit
Shall bury in it - shall bury in it.

Giving up the first goal in games is often referred to as "digging a hole for yourself"; Calgary was regularly outshot by the Lightning, and in fact gave up the first two goals in the final game of the series - confirmation of the accuracy of Marley's vision.

If you are the big tree,
We are the small axe
Sharpened to cut you down,
Ready to cut you down.

Irrefutable proof that when it comes to National League Hockey, no one cares more about it than Jamaican Rastafarian musicians!

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posted by Thursday at 6:32 pm


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