Category Archives: Boltsmag

A Tampa Bay Lightning ramble by the original Lightning blogger

I made a name and reputation for myself with 12-and-a-half years of blogging about the Tampa Bay Lightning. I was a pioneer in hockey blogging in general (starting what will be fourteen years ago in a matter of days). Want proof? I’d send you to the archives of Raw Charge but SB Nation complicates the process (read: I’d send you to my profile alone but they don’t list all the articles, Fan Posts and Fan Shots that I’ve posted).

Have I stopped following hockey or the Lightning? Hell no! Continue reading

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Filed under Boltsmag, hockey, Raw Charge, Tampa Bay Lightning

The road to recovery becomes the highway to…where?

I’m choked up upon reflection this afternoon. I just had physical therapy formally end. Therapy that was assigned to me after the shit hit the fan in December 2016. It’s also exactly one week after I met the surgeon who saved my life on Dec. 6th, my opportunity to express my gratitude to the exact man who is a direct and true hero for my life.

Delusions had me thinking I really was dead in the immediate aftermath of emergency brain surgery. Logic, reality and time have made me wonder just how the hell I survived. Knowing my condition, the infamous genetic disorder NF2, and my medical neglect in recent years (lack of MRIs and communication with my doctors), it just mounted things against me.

Unfortunately, I have other things against me now that logic and reality sway before me in a mocking sense all the time. Lack of social interaction, lack of romance, lack of work, little productivity, empty dreaming of achievement…

Last time I dealt with these morale haphazards was the winter of 2003-04. John J. Fonts Esq., the formal version of my cutesy nickname, was once again recovering from necessary surgery. This time, the catastrophe looming without surgery or with a screw-up during the cut-cut was paralysis. That was defeated, say thank you and praise the maker.  What got me away from that maize of morale post-op was web design, sports and being a pioneer of the NHL blogosphere with the birth of the Tampa Bay Lightning blog Boltsmag.com. Boltsmag has turned into Raw Charge on SB Nation; you can find my old posts through the archives. It may not be an easy feat though. The site’s birthday is February 13th. Next week.

That was then though, this is now. And even then, the site did not financially show accomplishment to me (meaning ads, which I hate, did not pay me back or something). It did give me something to focus on in my unique voice as a writer, but it (and Raw Charge) were not much of a rewarding time investment.

Creativity and writing may still be where I go from here; I’ve been working on a potential book of poetry. It would be stuff I’ve written for the past 20+ years. I’ve also toyed around with lyrical verse and trying to get music made to turn it into song. I don’t know how to have a legit career as a lyricist but that would be an adventure worth taking for this man of rhyme and reason.

I’ve survived, yet I’m lost. I’m happy to be here but I’m in a foul spot of ugh, hold the pickle. What comes next may be nothing, it may be grand, and it may be a fulfilling whisper that makes me feel accomplished. Whatever the answer is, it is still in the process of becoming.

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Filed under Boltsmag, interweb, Medical, Raw Charge, The Life

Brother, can you spare a Loafie?

Dear Creative Loafing,

Look, I’m not the most interesting guy out there. Just go through the archives here on The Stonegauge (which stretch back to 2002) and you can find plenty of boring, personal, and petty drivel. I’m not flashy, but I have been involved with the sites and people that your independent newspaper has honored again and again — such as helping Tommy Duncan run Sticks of Fire from 2005-2007, or aiding CL columnist Catherine Durkin Robinson with her blog as well as editing one of her books. I’m online buddies with one of Tampa Bay’s most popular Twitter personalities in Clark Brooks (oh, yeah, he also writes for me on Raw Charge).

I’ve been blogging for nearly a decade, I am one of the longest tenured hockey bloggers in the sport (having started on Boltsmag.com in 2004). And I’m the only local net personality who has not only been threatened with litigation from the most popular pop group of the 20th century, but I’ve been in USA Today and quoted between the likes of Tony LaRussa and “Crash” Davis.

My point is, how about throwing a little recognition my way in your upcoming 2011 Best Of The Bay awards? I’m not as trendy and attractive as former Interbay Superstar Rachel Moran, nor am I as social as other personalities who’ve won accolades through their net presence…

But I have been around a while, and I’ve been the guy keeping things running for some of your favorites in the past. A hat tip to the mysterious online producer isn’t much to ask, is it?

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Filed under Boltsmag, Raw Charge, Tampa Bay, The Life, The Stonegauge, Web Sites of Mine

No Boltsmag is not Dead

Just FYI for people who are being redirected here while searching for the other site. It’s an issue I am only starting to deal with now.

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Filed under Boltsmag, Web Sites of Mine

A limp yellow dog

I get sorta pissed when I keep hearing die-hard fans or supporters – be it in politics or pro sports – confess their undying devotion towards one thing or another… and then cynically stomp on what they love or some item they are true-blue about.

I mean, I just wrote an article last week at Boltsmag (yeah, Boltsmag isn’t gone yet) about sports fans not being willing to leave their comfort zone to devote themselves to something bigger than their pro sports team… So what do you say about a political junkie who cynically tears down an issue, or a candidate, or a part position… All for the sake of the opportunist stance of “wait and see”?

If you really believe in something, aren’t you supposed to be willing to stand up for that something or at least do what you can to put its best foot forward? Be it an idea, a team, a principle, etc? Or are we all supposed to be just blind soldiers who will accept whatever we are handed by the powers-that-be?

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Filed under Boltsmag, Politics, Sports

Will wonders never cease?

Stop the presses! Big news! Huge news!

I actually posted on Boltsmag! Twice today, in fact! Like, Ohmigod!

(why the snark? I’ve been avoiding Boltsmag for quite some time due various reasons expressed on the site tonight)

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What's the Font?

I’ve been struggling to figure out what is the name of the Typeface being employed by the Tampa Bay Lightning in their (alleged) new logo layout:

Tampa Bay — what’s the font?!

In all honesty, the closest typeface I can find to font being employed in the logo is the Star Jedi typeface — yeah, that’s the Star Wars font for all those who don’t want to click on the link. I’ve been searching a few font sites but I’m not even sure where to begin looking regarding this typeface. Some people complain how “Cartoony” the font is, some people complain how “comic book” the font is… Yet it looks like a variant of Ariel or some other standard typeface and not cartooni-ish or whimsical in the least bit (that’s coming from someone who has actually seen what font creators think “comic” or “cartoon” fonts look like).

Any leads to the appropriate type face are appreciated.

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Filed under Boltsmag, Sports, The Life, Web Sites of Mine

Bonus for Boltsmag

So for 3 years I have been toiling (off and on) away at Boltsmag. It’s got a reputation as the Lightning Weblog, it’s renown around the hockey blogosphere…

And as of a few days ago it’s linked to on Sports Illustrated’s Tampa Bay Lightning team profile page. How is that for a birthday gift?

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Filed under Boltsmag, Web Sites of Mine

A rare event

I’ve been doing all I can to prevent people from visiting my CSS testing site… Now I need a little input on changes I plan to make to Boltsmag‘s design…

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Filed under Boltsmag, The Life, Web Sites of Mine

Re-design time

With the coming NHL hockey season, I’ve been working on a new design for Boltsmag.com.

Only problem is that Boltsmag’s new design isn’t cooperating and is driving Johnny insane…

To be continued.

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Filed under Boltsmag, The Life, Web Sites of Mine

Guess I picked the wrong day to stop sniffing glue…

OK, this isn’t an Airplane post, or a Llyod Bridges fanclub post. No, sir… This is just me harping that I picked the wrong time of year to get less-lazy with shaving. (headnod to the Zucker brothers and Jim Abrahams for the awesome title to this post)

I’ve been shaving daily the past few days and it’s been nice to be “smooth as a baby’s ass” with regards to my facial skin. But alas, I can do this no more.

It’s playoff beard time.

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Filed under Boltsmag, Sports, The Life

Lucky Hat

I bought a hate in early 2004 — before I officially launched Boltsmag, before the Lightning had cemented the fact they were on a run to immortality and the Stanley Cup. A tan hat by Nike with the Lightning emblem on it, a velcro fastener in back with “LIGHTNING” embroidered on it and the Nike logo sown into the bill.

It’s a little small, I almost think it’s a woman’s cap… Never the less, I wore that thing from January until I attended game seven of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and saw the team hoist Lord Stanley chalice. This is my good luck cap for the Lightning… Or it was at least… or is it still?

Back in March 2005 I was dating Jenna and went with her to Target to pick out another hatt. After all, my Lightning cap was soiled terribly and really bothersome due to it’s size. I picked out an Orange County Chopper’s hat and wore that from March until just a few days ago…. On rare occasions — like opening night – I wore the Lightning hat. The Lightning won on opening night but have been lackluster for most of the season.

So when Madeline chewed up my O.C.C. hat, I threw a shit fit and went out shopping for a new hat. I couldn’t find something I wanted at Target and couldn’t get down to the Mall to buy a new sports orientated hat… I sulked… I was wearing my smallish Lightning cap at the time… I’m still wearing the cap on a daily basis now…

…And the Lightning are winning again…?

They’ve looked like a different team in the last several days… I disregarded their victory over Los Angeles, was a bit surprised when they beat up Marty Turco and Dallas… Tonight’s game versus the Thrashers makes me wonder mightily about the powers of this ballcap… I know it’s not a can’t-lose cap, but there’s something to it. I’m sure of it.

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Filed under Boltsmag, Sports, The Life

What the Flock?

You know, I heard about Flock a few weeks ago when I was browsing around the Tampa Blab and came across Sarah In Tampa’s post about the browser. It was – in essence – a browser that was built for blogging from what I was reading… I wanted to see exactly what the hub-bub was about the minute there was a released version of the browser.

Well, the developer release version of Flock is out and I did go ahead and download it… And wasn’t really able to accomplish jack with the thing. I tried simply integrating one of my blogs onto Flock and followed the directions and was met with errors every time I tried to log in.

Not totally dismissing Flock just yet but I do think I better just forget about it for another couple of months…

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Filed under Boltsmag, The Life, The Stonegauge

Featured!

I’m officially the father of “the definitive online source for local hockey news.” So Sayeth the St. Petersburg Times in their online blog list which puts the spotlight on Boltsmag this week.

I almost expected this featured status last week, with the opening of the Hockey season on Wednesday but it was for naught — damn you TampaBlab! 😛 🙂 ) — suffice it to say, I am fine with having the featured status this week instead…

…Well, except for the fact I am going out of town and my focus is not on hockey this week. 🙁 Oh well, I’ll live… And so shall Boltsmag!

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Filed under Boltsmag, The Life

Hitting a new low for the D-Rays

I’m laughing my ass off over something I disovered while talking to my buddy Keith….

I wrote a post over at Boltsmag a few months ago calling the Devil Rays the worst pro sports team around. If you do a search on Google for “Worst professional sports franchise” and click on “I’m feeling lucky” — my post comes up as the result.

I don’t know if I should rejoice or feel shame. The Rays suck… And as a TB resident, I’ve helped let the world know the Rays suck. So much as for civic pride.

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Filed under baseball, Boltsmag