The Caps haven’t played in several months, and they won’t play again for three or four years, so all the rest of the press corps has at last joined me on the hairstyles-and-nickname beat. A few stragglers might mock this brand of coverage, but really, what else are you going to ask about?
And so it was actually some other reporter who thought to ask Karl Alzner about his new haircut on Wednesday afternoon.
“When summer comes around I like to keep my hair as short as I can,” Alzner said. “So I was just kind of getting sick of it. I’m sure a lot of people go through that, when they just don’t feel like worrying about it any more, so I just went and got it shaved. And the lady almost shaved my beard off, because she didn’t really like it too much. I stopped her just short.”
Imagine the headlines if some random stylist had chopped off a playoff beard. As long as we weren’t talking about hockey, I asked Alzner if it was true that Jason Arnott’s nickname was the Big Rig. Turns out I had gotten that one wrong.
“Shultzie’s the Big Rig,” Alzner corrected me. [Arnott’s] big, but that’s a bigger rig right there. Schultzie’s got a lot of nicknames; Big Rig is just one of them.”
“Sergeant Slaughter,” Alzner offered. “In junior, we used to call him Big Daddy and his brother was Little Daddy. Big Daddy kind of got faded out. Sometimes we call him a Giraffe, but, I mean, that’s kind of obvious. When we were in Orlando during All-Star Break, me and Fehrsie, we were at the Animal Kingdom and there was a giraffe there, so we were texting him pictures of the giraffe -- Schultzie, it’s nice you joined us -- little things like that. He likes it, though.”
Figure I have several weeks to get Jeff Schultz’s response before the Caps actually play again.