Articles on this Page
- 12/11/15--11:03: _Running Helped Me C...
- 12/14/15--09:12: _Horse Racing Fans A...
- 12/14/15--09:31: _Pete Rose Admits He...
- 12/14/15--10:51: _NBA Referee Comes O...
- 12/14/15--11:33: _How Well Do You Rea...
- 12/14/15--11:41: _Serena Williams Tak...
- 12/14/15--21:04: _27 Huge Moments In ...
- 12/15/15--17:10: _Hundreds Of Santas ...
- 12/16/15--06:06: _13 Animals Who Sadl...
- 12/16/15--06:11: _The Hardest Game Of...
- 12/16/15--07:17: _Can You Name The Pr...
- 12/16/15--09:52: _Can You Name These ...
- 12/16/15--11:25: _Tom Brady Has No In...
- 12/16/15--11:19: _This Group Wants Fr...
- 12/16/15--11:37: _16 People Who Took ...
- 12/16/15--12:53: _Report: NBA Approve...
- 12/16/15--14:07: _17 Photos That Will...
- 12/17/15--07:32: _Jose Mourinho Has L...
- 12/17/15--04:55: _Vladimir Putin Says...
- 12/17/15--05:30: _Can You Name All 12...
- 12/11/15--11:03: Running Helped Me Cope With Depression, But Then I Got Injured
- 12/14/15--11:33: How Well Do You Really Know NHL Team Logos?
- 12/14/15--11:41: Serena Williams Takes The Throne As Sportsperson Of The Year
- 12/14/15--21:04: 27 Huge Moments In Aussie Sport In 2015
- 12/15/15--17:10: Hundreds Of Santas Broke The World Record For Largest Surfing Lesson
- 12/16/15--06:11: The Hardest Game Of "Would You Rather" Arsenal Fans Will Ever Take
- 12/16/15--07:17: Can You Name The Premier League Footballer From Their Club History?
- 12/16/15--09:52: Can You Name These Early '90s WWF Superstars?
- 12/16/15--11:25: Tom Brady Has No Interest In Talking About His Friend Donald Trump
- 12/16/15--11:37: 16 People Who Took Their Love Of Hockey A Little Too Far
- 12/16/15--14:07: 17 Photos That Will Give You A Raging Hockey Boner
- 12/17/15--04:55: Vladimir Putin Says Sepp Blatter Should Win The Nobel Peace Prize
Michael Parkin for BuzzFeed News
I wake to muted daylight, stubborn rays forcing their way through the curtains. My alarm, set to the tune of Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On,” plays for a good 30 seconds before I have the energy to tap the snooze button. Shut up, Celine, I think, and I unlock my phone and do what I do the first thing every morning: open Facebook and Twitter and my email, holding in my urine even though my bladder feels like a water balloon that’s about to burst. I am glued to my bed, fixed to it like a pinned insect.
I know I need to get up, but I can’t turn my eyes away from the screen, which emits a comforting glow like the nightlight in the bathroom in my childhood home. My indecisiveness, my ambivalence toward sliding one foot onto the floor, and then the other, toward actually starting my day with action, with peeing and making coffee and looking out the window and eating a yogurt, keeps me suspended in a melancholic immobility.
It’s my 20th day without a run, and I’m not just despondent. I’m barely functioning.
People often think of running as an evasive measure, a way to get away from something that besets us. Extra pounds. A wild animal. An assailant. Whatever we’re anxious about. (And many human beings are anxious about so many things.)
But running is more than that. It’s a way to contain yourself, to connect with breath and air and ground and movement. And when you struggle with depression and anxiety, running can become more than something you should do. It can quickly turn into something you need to do.
It was certainly something I needed. When I started going to a therapist in 2011, one of the first things he recommended to me was that I try to fit some kind of exercise into my weekly routine. Logically, I knew I needed to do that. I’ve dealt with depression since I was a teenager, and some kind of forced movement, I discovered in my early twenties, can help.
“Physical activity is an antidepressant, it’s an anti-anxiety. It serves to reduce anxiety, it increases self-esteem and is a major component of weight loss or weight loss management,” Dr. Kate Hays, a Canadian-based psychologist who specializes in sports psychology and runs a consulting practice called The Performing Edge, told me. In a 2010 paper called “The Effect of Exercise on Mental Health” by Andrea Dunn and Jennifer Jewell (published in Exercise and Mental Health), they write, “Based on recent evidence to demonstrate efficacy to treat some mental disorders like depression and anxiety, there is increasing support that exercise could be medicine for these disorders.”
When I was 18, I swallowed a bunch of Advil and ended up in a psychiatric ward for six days. I didn’t want to end my life; I wanted people to realize I existed. It was a cry for help, as so many suicide attempts are. But soon after I was released, I stopped taking medication. I didn’t like the way it made me feel.
In my early twenties, I started going to the gym on a semi-regular basis. My friend, who also using exercise to cope with depression, refers to it as sweating out the demons. And that’s what I tried to do. But I never could get myself to stick with it. Inevitably, my bad feelings would surface. I’d self-sabotage, and for a good chunk of my twenties, I ate and drank my feelings. That changed not long after I left New Hampshire and moved back to New York City.
Running meant taking action with my life, not stalling it.
By 2013, I was in therapy once a week and running three to four times a week. These runs were the difference between debilitating depression and being able to function. Even on days when cold rain tore at my skin, when my toes were numb from icy puddles, when I waited out a downpour underneath scaffolding: running meant taking action with my life, not stalling it.
One day I found myself rushing to a meeting that was just a 15-minute walk from my apartment. I was running late. A dull pain emanated from my left buttcheek. Several days later, during a long run in Prospect Park, the same feeling returned. It was so bad that I eventually gave up and called a taxi. I felt defeated, but I could no longer ignore it. I made an appointment with a sports doctor, who sent me for an MRI.
The news wasn’t good: a femoral neck stress fracture in my hip. My doctor told me to use crutches for at least two to three weeks, and a cane for a month after that.
I live in a third-floor walk-up. Getting in and out of the apartment isn’t easy when you’re on crutches. My boss let me work from home while I was healing, but stuck inside, unable to move around much, I felt restless and trapped, like a broken jack-in-the-box.
Shortly before the diagnosis, my boyfriend and I had booked a trip to Paris: a month in my favorite city to do nothing but read and write. It was too late to cancel the plane ticket and the apartment rental, so I found a French physical therapist who spoke English. A handsome Dutchman with blonde hair and a lean body, he resembled Patrick Swayze in Dirty Dancing. His office, accessed through an enclosed courtyard, was softly lit and minimalist; it felt more like a spa. Even the bathroom was welcoming, with elegant white towels rolled up for individual use. His strong hands massaged my butt, providing a relief from the pain even while bruising it. I spent time every morning doing clamshell exercises and sitting on an invisible seat, my back pressed up against the wall.
I used my cane to walk to the patisserie in the morning, bleary-eyed and uncaffeinated and craving the sugary and flaky pain aux raisins. Without the ability to exercise, though, I felt like a ghost of a person, a shadow self. My friend changed my social media passwords so I could get some space and clear my head. Without the alerts popping up on my phone, I fell deeper into books, my mind running away from my body.
When we returned to New York in September, I went for another MRI. I felt physically stronger after weeks of diligently following the physical therapy exercises. But once again, the news wasn’t good. The stress fracture was worse. I was told to spend four to six weeks on crutches.
Any sense of calm and focus I had dissipated, like ink fading away from the crumpled receipts at the bottom of my backpack. The world was louder than usual. I couldn’t stand all of the noises around me, both externally and internally.
Instead of writing through the pain and sadness, something I long ago learned actually helps, I sluggishly moved throughout my day, wasting hours on my phone before I could even motivate myself to open my computer. Taking forever to load, the dreaded pinwheel image frozen in place, my MacBook was just as broken as my body and mind.
Exercise provides the electric jolt that is necessary to get moving throughout a daily routine. But when that routine is abruptly disrupted, everything is affected.
“If you’re down on yourself, your body is producing all sorts of stress hormones, cortisone, that actually has the reverse effect on your body from healing,” Dr. Joan Ingalls, a licensed mental health counselor and sports counselor who practices in NYC and Connecticut, told me during a phone interview. “Cortisone almost attacks cellular structures of your body, and can be contrary to healing.”
Dr. Hays works with a wide range of people who exercise, from those who are just interested in physical activity to professional athletes. She’s the author of Working It Out: Using Exercise in Psychotherapy.
Hays says there are biochemical shifts that happen with “rhythmic, repetitive exercise” performed for at least 15 to 20 minutes. With her own patients, she has noticed that runners find “the absence of running” really challenging.
One of the reasons is because running requires a lot of diaphragmatic breathing, and that’s useful in helping with anxiety. Dr. Hays references one of her clients, a runner who overtrained and was injured, but tried yoga and liked it so much that she incorporated it into her regular routine.
There’s no arguing that exercising is a positive way to deal with mental health issues, and so it’s just that much harder to recover and get back to full speed when one is forced to take a break.
My friend Jennifer Pastiloff, a 40-year-old writer and retreat leader who lives in California, was used to exercising every day. She teaches yoga and tripped during one of her yoga retreats (not during yoga itself). But she broke her foot and couldn’t be active for two months.
“I fell into the deepest, darkest hole I had been in in years,” she told me via email recently. “I wasn’t currently on my anti-depressants (big mistake) and my old anorexia reared its ugly head. I felt trapped and depressed and stuck and like I couldn’t avoid my 'shit' any longer by running (literally) so I had to just sit. Exercising made me feel in control, so I felt out of control and desperate.”
That sitting and confronting oneself is one of the most difficult parts, and something I had to learn to dwell in. Ingalls says, “I understand people’s love of sports. Love of sports doesn’t mean you get victimized when you can’t do it.”
Trapped in my apartment, I wallowed in my inability to do anything. Instead of using the time to read and write, I found myself wiped clean of any desire to do anything.
But it’s hard not to feel that way. Trapped in my apartment, I wallowed in my inability to do anything. Instead of using the time to read and write, I found myself wiped clean of any desire to do anything.
One of my Facebook friends, Nick Ostidick, who is 28 and lives in Illinois, couldn’t run for four months after an overuse injury in which he fractured his pelvis. “I was seriously like a junkie drying out,” he said via email. “I tell people I am an addict and that my drug is running because it has seriously altered my brain chemistry. As long as my supply doesn’t run out, I’m good.” The reason Nick is so addicted is because it helps keep his “emotional ecosystem in balance, in check, running smooth.” Without it, he felt unable to cope with daily stresses; his mood changed and he wasn’t able to find pleasure in things he used to love.
Jennifer Purdie, a writer I’ve emailed with through a message board we’re part of, was a marathoner and triathlete who exercised six days a week before she had to take a break for four months due to plantar fasciitis. The 38-year-old suffers from clinical depression and isn’t medicated, due to bad experiences with antidepressants. Running was her self-medication. “It was the best hour a day (sometimes two on the weekends),” she says. “I craved it because it was a way to not feel sad for a while.” But when she was injured, she became more depressed, and couldn’t even go on Facebook because she needed to avoid reading posts about races by other runners.
I’ve felt tempted to do the same, honestly. There’s only so much “I ran another 10 miles today” I can take before I start to hate myself. And I feel guilty, because I used to be one of those runners who would share my stats on my own page. Now I know how bad it can make a person feel.
A few weeks after I was told about the stress fracture, I went to an orthopedic surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery for a second opinion. He ordered an MRI of my spine, and as I waited in the partially enclosed tube for the third time in three months, trying to stay calm, I anticipated even more bad news.
“You don’t have a stress fracture, and you never had one,” the doctor told me. “But we did discover a cyst in your liver that needs to be looked at.” I immediately imagined the worst scenarios, including being told I had only a couple of months to live. I turned to my social media network for support, the same place I also go to distract myself.
I felt suspended in a state of uncertainty until meeting with a liver doctor, who told me the cyst was nothing to worry about. By the end of September, I'd gone to a physical therapist who immediately diagnosed me with the real problem: piriformis syndrome, which explains the pain in my butt. If only I'd been told that in July, I’d have avoided a much larger pain in the ass — one that cost me thousands of dollars in cab rides and countless hours of stress.
Sometimes it seems like I’m spending every day of the week trying to fix myself.
Since September, I’ve had to force myself to go to the physical therapist twice a week, to aim to go to my acupuncturist and my therapist once a week. Sometimes it seems like I’m spending every day of the week trying to fix myself.
My boyfriend recently installed a new SSD drive in my laptop, and it’s like a brand-new computer. One can fix or replace digital devices relatively easy, given time or money. But a body doesn’t answer to those demands, nor does a mind. I’m easing my way back into exercising, not without a lot of frustration along the way. I started running again and had to stop because of more pain. I should be completely better by now, but I’m stuck using the elliptical machine and going to yoga classes for the time being. I’m grateful I can exercise at all, yet most days I walk past people who are out for a jog and stare at them as they glide past me, hungry for that runner’s high. My stomach has become softer. I try not to look at myself in the mirror.
I’m attempting to unfreeze myself, but right now I have to remain captivated by the spinning pinwheel that I am, an array of colors and possibilities.
If you are dealing with thoughts of suicide, you can speak to someone immediately here or by calling the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
Williams is the first solo woman to win the award since 1983.
Serena Williams, who won three major tennis titles in 2015, was named Sportsperson of the Year by Sports Illustrated on Friday.
Yu Tsai for Sports Illustrated
Regardless of Williams' accolades, some fans of horse racing were furious that Triple Crown winner American Pharoah was, as they put it, "snubbed" for the award normally reserved for humans.
Dylan Buell / Getty Images
I am disappointed to announce Triple Crown and Grand Slam Champion American Pharoah has not been named Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year Award for 2015. Instead the award went to tennis star, Serena Williams. Despite an overwhelming victory in the fan vote by American Pharoah, maybe this sad announcement should come as no real surprise. [...] Sports Illustrated, your agenda is showing."
Other fans on Twitter decried Sports Illustrated's refusal to count horse racing as a legitimate sport and claimed to intend to cancel their subscriptions to the magazine.
It is true that American Pharoah won the SI fan vote for Sportsmammal of the Year, but a magazine's editorial decisions are not a democracy, and Serena was given the title over the horse.
It's probably safe to say that jockey Victor Espinoza could tell American Pharoah [sic] that he won the award anyway.
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred is concerned that Rose is still betting on baseball.
Elsa / Getty Images
MLB's lifetime ban on Pete Rose for gambling on the game as a manager will not be lifted by new MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred.
A report in the New York Times first announced this news.
Rose is MLB's all-time hit leader, and was banned from baseball in 1989 after investigations revealed he had bet on the outcome of games while managing the Cincinnati Reds. In June 2015, an ESPN report revealed that Rose had allegedly bet on the outcome of games while he was a player-manager for the team as well.
MLB announced Monday that Rose's request for reinstatement by the league was denied, and that he had been given notice "both verbally and in writing" about the decision.
Rose applied for reinstatement when Manfred was elected commissioner, replacing longtime commissioner Bud Selig, and Manfred and Rose met face-to-face in September.
During the meeting, Rose told Manfred "that currently he bets recreationally and legally on horses and sports, including Baseball." In a letter of his decision, Manfred calls that discloser "significant." In a footnote at the end of the decision, Manfred says: "Even more troubling, in our interview, Rose initially denied betting on Baseball currently and only later in the interview did he 'clarify' his response to admit such betting."
Rose admitted to the commissioner that "he bet extensively on Cincinnati Reds games in 1987," but claimed to not remember "many facts established" that "demonstrate conclusively" his betting on games in other years, and as a player.
Manfred asserts that MLB's interest is in upholding Rule 21, which disallows betting on baseball. Regarding Rose's current — legal — betting on horses and sports, Manfred said the legality "does not mean that the bets would be permissible if made by a player or manager subject to Rule 21."
"In short, Mr. Rose has not presented credible evidence of a reconfigured life either by an honest acceptance by him of his wrongdoing, so clearly established by the Dowd Report, or by a rigorous, self-aware and sustained program of avoidance by him of all the circumstances that led to his permanent ineligibility in 1989. Absent such credible evidence, allowing him to work in the game presents an acceptable risk of a future violation by him of Rule 21, and thus to the integrity of our sport. I, therefore, must reject Mr. Rose's application for reinstatement."
In the years since his lifetime ban, Rose has managed to stay adjacent to baseball. He was allowed to make an appearance at the 2015 All-Star Game in Cincinnati, and worked as an analyst on FOX Sports during the 2015 playoffs. While banned, Rose remains ineligible for the Baseball Hall of Fame.
In a statement to Kostya Kennedy, who wrote a book about Rose, his attorneys said, "Pete's fall from grace is without parallel. He recognizes that it was also of his own making."
While we may have failed at our task of presenting all the facts to the Commissioner demonstrating how Pete has grown and changed over the past three decades, Pete indeed has meaningfully reconfigured his life- the standard laid out by as Commissioner Giamatti.
As such, Pete seeks to be judged not simply by the mistakes of his past- but also by the the work he has done over the last 3 decades in taking responsibility for his actions- constantly working to remain disciplined, compassionate and grateful.
Pete regards the institution of the game as what matters most. Therefore, he will continue to do all that he can to honor its greatness- and remain its most enthusiastic fan.
MLB's full decision is below:
Bill Kennedy is in his 19th season of refereeing.
Referee Bill Kennedy #55 interacts with head coach Michael Malone of the Denver Nuggets.
Doug Pensinger / Getty Images
Longtime NBA referee, Bill Kennedy, has come out as gay after player Rajon Rondo of the Sacramento Kings allegedly shouted anti-gay slurs at him during a game on December 3.
Rondo was suspended for one game by the NBA "for directing a derogatory and offensive term towards a game official and not leaving the court in a timely manner upon his ejection."
In a statement to Yahoo Sports, Kennedy said:
"I am proud to be an NBA referee and I am proud to be a gay man. I am following in the footsteps of others who have self-identified in the hopes that will send a message to young men and women in sports that you must allow no one to make you feel ashamed of who you are."
Kennedy became an NBA referee during the 1995-1996 season.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver provided a statement to Yahoo Sports as well:
"I wholeheartedly support Bill's decision to live his life proudly and openly. Throughout his 18-year career with the league, Bill has excelled as a referee because of his passion, dedication and courage. Those qualities will continue to serve him well both as a game official and as a positive influence for others. While our league has made great progress, our work continues to ensure that everyone is treated with respect and dignity."
Ezra Shaw / Getty Images
Rondo was ejected from the December 3 game by Kennedy following back-to-back technical fouls, and then remained on the court, "stalking Kennedy," according to Yahoo Sports.
Rondo then allegedly told Kennedy: "You're a mother------- faggot. … You're a f------ faggot, Billy," according to information provided to Yahoo Sports by the National Basketball Referee's Association. NBRA attorney Lee Seham declined to provide the same information to BuzzFeed News, citing its sensitive nature. Seham declined to comment further on Kennedy.
"Under typical NBA procedure in these cases, the league had two independent experts review the tapes of the confrontation, and they confirmed the referees' accounts on Rondo's language," Yahoo Sports reports. "This was part of the reason why the league took more than a week to make a ruling on Rondo's punishment. Rondo denied to league officials he made the comments."
Rondo will serve his suspension Tuesday when the Houston Rockets visit Sacramento.
Monday night Rondo tweeted about his comments:
Can you pick out the real from the fake?
Sports Illustrated puts the athlete and all-around queen exactly where she should be.
So, Sports Illustrated just named Serena Williams its Sportsperson of the Year.
The magazine captured Queen Williams at her most unapologetically slayful, chatting with her about tennis and more.
SI says Williams earned the title both because of her phenomenal year in terms of numbers, and her almost superhuman dedication to her game (and basically everything else).
Not only did Williams win 53 of the 56 professional matches she played this year — she also persevered through multiple injuries and illnesses, including a 101º fever at the French Open, which she STILL WON.
On top of that, she also showed at New York Fashion Week, took a public stand against police brutality, and studied to get her pre-med degree...
Fernando Leon / Getty Images
Sport sport sport sport sport.
When Mick Fanning got attacked by a FUCKING SHARK.
Supplied / PR IMAGE
When Adam Goodes wouldn't be stopped from showing his pride.
And the AFL community rallied behind him.
Daniel Carson / Getty Images
But still people booed him so much he had to retire and the game lost one of its greats.
Ryan Pierse / Getty Images
Good tide-ings we bring to you and your kin…
Sydney's Bondi Beach was awash with red, white and beards this week as 320 surfers swarmed the shore to break the Guinness World Record for the world's largest surfing lesson.
Organised by RedBalloon, the surfin' Santas only needed 250 participants to set the record, which they easily overshot.
Mark Kolbe / Getty Images
The morning began with participants donning their gay apparel, before a quick lesson from Let's Go Surfing, a local surf school.
Mark Kolbe / Getty Images
If you didn’t know, Sports Illustrated recently named Serena Williams Sportsperson of the Year.
Yes. Very good. Much slay.
Yu Tsai for Sports Illustrated
How do you differ from other Arsenal fans when answering these difficult questions?
Time to find out if you’re as much of a statto as you think you are.
Do you know your Skinner from your Diesel?
“I’m just here to play football.”
Tom Brady walked out of a news conference Wednesday after being asked two questions about his association with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, who the quarterback describes as "a friend."
In September, a "Make America Great Again" hat was spotted in Brady's locker, which he told reporters came from Patriots owner Robert Kraft.
When asked if he would endorse or vote for Trump, who at that point had made proclamations about sealing the U.S. off to immigration, Brady swerved and said, "He's a good friend."
Asked again, Brady joked that Trump would put a golf course on the White House lawn.
On Tuesday, Brady appeared on the Dennis & Callahan radio show, and was asked again about his relationship and possible endorsement of Trump, whose recent comments about banning Muslims from America have offended even some of his previous supporters.
"Can I just stay out of this debate?" Brady said. "Donald is a good friend of mine. I have known him for a long time. I support all my friends. That is what I have to say."
The next day, Brady's likeness was plastered alongside Trump's on the cover of the New York Daily News:
During a news conference Wednesday, Brady was asked about the Daily News cover and criticism of his support for Trump.
"I don't think about it much," he responded.
Brady then tried to change the subject back to football and the Patriots' upcoming game against the Tennessee Titans. But he was instead asked if he believed he had "opened the door to the criticism," to which he gave a forced laugh.
"I'm just here to play football," he said before leaving the news conference.
Or just call him Denzel.
You think you know how to say this handsome man's name, right?
Harry How / Getty Images
P.K. Subban. Pee-Kay Soo-Ban. Easy.
Harry How / Getty Images
Right? Yes. Unless you're the The Association For The Support and Use of The French language. In which case, wrong.
The group, which you have probably never heard of and will likely never hear about again, sent a letter humbly requesting that French Broadcasters pronounce P.K. Subban's name in French.
Like, Peh-Kah. Not Pee-Kay.
And Soo-bauh. Not Soo-ban.
The letter was obtained by La Presse and also noted the typically Anglicized pronunciation of French players such as Vincent "Vinny" Lecavalier and Daniel "Danny" Briere.
Shots shots shots fired.
This teacher who believes hockey and homework go hand-in-hand:
This remote control owner:
The person who is totally OK with using this urinal:
Seriously, anyone who is and was involved in the purchase and/or use of urinal hockey nets:
Mikhail Prokhorov will need to sell his stake in the stadium if he wants to sell his share in the team, the NBA has previously told the Russian billionaire.
Bruce Bennett / Getty Images
The NBA has agreed to let Russian billionaire and Brooklyn Nets majority owner Mikhail Prokhorov become the sole owner of the Nets and Barclays Center, the team's home stadium, according to a Bloomberg reporter.
BuzzFeed News has contacted the NBA and Prokhorov's representatives for comment.
Prokhorov currently owns 80% of the Nets, while former principal owner Bruce Ratner owns 20% of the team. Prokhorov also owns 45% of the Barclays Center, where the Nets and now New York Islanders play home games.
In addition to the two basketball teams, the stadium also hosts lucrative concerts.
Rich Schultz / Getty Images
The NBA has told Prokhorov that if he were to sell his ownership in the Nets he would also have to sell his ownership stakes in the stadium as well. Becoming the sole owner of each will simplify any potential sale of the team and stadium to new ownership, should Prokhorov decide to sell.
Prokhorov's representatives has previously told BuzzFeed News they are "always open to listening to offers – that's just good business," but have asserted that there is no active pursuit to sell the team and/or stadium.
Prokhorov purchased the majority ownership of the Nets and partial ownership of the Barclays Center in 2010 for $200 million. In January 2015, Forbes valued the Nets at $1.5 billion.
Look, I'm sure your local community skating rink is a thing of beauty.
And I'm sure your backyard rink is on point. But this is winter. In Canada. And the sweetest hockey rinks of all aren't rinks at all.
I'm talking about the unrivaled, erotic majesty of our all-natural frozen lakes.
Like Clear Lake in Manitoba where, when the conditions are just right, the ice turns see-through and you can skate while watching fish swim.
The Stamford Bridge fan-favourite has parted ways with the club.
Jose Mourinho has parted ways with Chelsea FC after the club's worst ever start to a Premier League season.
At a meeting on Thursday, the club's directors decided the beleaguered manager should go despite giving him their backing earlier in the season.
In a statement on the club's website, Chelsea confirmed the Portuguese manager's departure from Stamford Bridge:
"All at Chelsea thank Jose for his immense contribution since he returned as manager in the summer of 2013.
"His three league titles, FA Cup, Community Shield and three League Cup wins over two spells make him the most successful manager in our 110-year history. But both Jose and the board agreed results have not been good enough this season and believe it is in the best interests of both parties to go our separate ways.
"The club wishes to make clear Jose leaves us on good terms and will always remain a much-loved, respected and significant figure at Chelsea. His legacy at Stamford Bridge and in England has long been guaranteed and he will always be warmly welcomed back to Stamford Bridge."
Ian Walton / Getty Images
The Portuguese boss still had strong backing among the club's fans, with his name still being chanted during matches, and banners depicting his image still being flown proudly at Stamford Bridge.
But with just 15 points from 15 matches, Chelsea's defence of their Premier League title is in tatters. The club is 16th in the table – just one point above the relegation zone – and there have been clear signs of a rift between Mourinho and some of his most important players.
Laurence Griffiths / Getty Images
On Monday night, the club lost 2-1 to current league leaders Leicester City, who narrowly avoided relegation last season.
After the defeat, pundits questioned whether Mourinho's squad were willing to play for him, focusing on one particular incident that saw Chelsea's star player Eden Hazard choose to leave the pitch and play no further part in the game.
Hazard was caught by Leicester striker Jamie Vardy and appeared to hurt his hip in the incident, but some had speculated as to whether the injury was genuine.
His father Thierry Hazard dismissed these claims and told Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad: "These are stories that are invented when things go bad."
Laurence Griffiths / Getty Images
Blatter meets Putin in St. Petersburg, Jul. 23.
Pool / Reuters
Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters during his annual press conference in Moscow on Thursday that he believes suspended FIFA president Sepp Blatter is a "very respected man" who should receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
Putin's comments came the same day FIFA's ethics committee is due to sit to discuss the fate of Blatter, who is currently serving a 90-day suspension amid bribery allegations.
Blatter and Putin during the Preliminary Draw of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in St. Petersburg, July 2015.
Dennis Grombkowski / Getty Images
Putin said, according to Russia's Sputnik news wire:
"As for Joseph Blatter, he is a very respected man. He has done a lot for the development of international football. You know, his contribution in the humanitarian sphere in the world is enormous. He always used or tried using football not just as a sport, but as an element of cooperation between countries and peoples. This is who should be given the Nobel Peace Prize."
The next FIFA World Cup will be held in Russia in 2018 after the country controversially won the vote to hold it in 2010.
Putin speaks during his end-of-year news conference in Moscow, Dec. 17.
Maxim Zmeyev / Reuters
Putin's yearly press conference saw the Russian leader touch on a wide range of other issues in front of 1,400 journalists, and he continued his war of words with Turkey, whose military downed a Russian warplane on its border with Syria last month.
He reiterated that the downing of the plane was a "hostile act," and that there was "no prospect" of Russia-Turkey relations improving, the BBC reported.
"It is hard for us to reach agreement with the current Turkish leadership, if at all possible," Putin said, according toYeni Safak.
He added: "The Turks decided to lick the Americans in a certain place," the BBC reported.
There are 11 British teams to have played in the Champions League proper, do you know them all?
You have 60 seconds to name all 11 British clubs to have competed in the Champions League proper (i.e. First Round or later).
(This quiz does not include teams who played in the old European Cup, and does not include teams from Northern Ireland).
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