Saturday, March 31, 2007

Mission Accomplished.

Unlike other big lies you've heard, using the above statement.. I actually made it down to LaMarque, Texas last night to shoot some real racing at the Gulf Greyhound Park. I mentioned in a previous post that a reader had asked if I would take some pictures of his dogs if I was ever in the area. We were... and I did. And won a couple of bucks in the process! But not on the race pictured below...

...that's "PDX Carnage" in the number 4 blanket; one of the dogs I was there to shoot. Unfortunately, Carnage wasn't anywhere near the front when I snapped this, but I think it's pretty indicative of the intensity of the sport nevertheless. The reader's other dog, "PDX Blackie", won it's race.

I also met up with our friend, Kelly, who had a dog, "C Ya Tag Heuer",

running in a later race. Kelly was invaluable in helping spot the dogs I had to shoot... and, she bought me a Shiner Bock. Way to go Kelly! Lots of images available for viewing at the Shot On Site website.

Kelly, and her friend, Tammy, also reminded me numerous times as I left, to "drive safe" on my 100+ mile trip back to the campground. Ha! Little do they know...

...about my history of driving in Houston. I wonder if I should tell the story here.. hmmmm.. it involves my brother, Mark, and his Toyota, my cousin and her husband, a football game, and most importantly, psychotropic mushrooms, big draft beers, and, yeccch!, Andre Cold Duck, (did I mention the UCLA Song Girls?). What do y'all think? Want to hear the story?

Images ©2007 Shot On Site


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Must Mean it's Almost April...

©Shot On Site
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Friday, March 30, 2007

Age Before Beauty



You know you might be the youngest people in the campground when...

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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Poll Closing.

The "Mandatory Spay/Neuter, Good or Bad?" poll is now closed. Readers voted 84% to 16% (19 votes), that these laws are a bad idea. That's probably within a few points or two of the general population's views. I wonder if our legislators know. Someone should tell them.

It was actually worse than that.. because, remember, that Margaret voted "yes" by accident.. probably because I made the answers "no/yes" instead of the anticipated "yes/no". I learned my lesson... hope Margaret did, too. Wonder who the other "yes" votes were? Must'a come here by accident.LOL

Grindhouse.

If the TV trailers aren't enough to make you want to see Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez's homage to exploitation movies of the 50's and 60's, then this review should do it. We were crackin' up!

WARNING: Mature readers only... no kids!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Bubba.

This is Bubba. Bubba lives across the road from Endgate Ranch, with a couple of girlfriends. Bubba and his girlfriends have a job to do, and they take it seriously. Their job is to guard a couple hundred sheep, lambs, goats and kids from the likes of me and other, more dangerous predators.

Since you all seem to like games so much, we're going to play another:


When I first spotted one of Bubba's girlfriends the other day, she was flying across the field towards the fence by the road I was driving up.. at a rate of speed that defied her size. Not surprising, as my reading up on this breed tells me that they were probably bred from a Mastiff like breed and a "native sighthound". That's a hint, folks. Anyway, he's very handsome, and actually quite friendly- as long as you don't have nefarious designs on his charges.

Sighthound-free Content.

We're wrapping up a little over a week at Endgate Ranch in Ferris, TX. We decided to forego the race meet up in Oklahoma, which was promising to be sparsely attended, and stayed here to shoot something other than speeding sighthounds. This is a nice change of pace for us, and lets us get to see other breeds work, like the Briard, above, and the German Shepherd Dog, below. These folks rarely have an opportunity to have their dogs photographed, so we look at it as offering a valuable (for both parties!) service.

As usual, we also ate out a fair amount. Two places to recommend if you're ever in Ferris, (and since Endgate Ranch is the locale for Lone Star Whippet Club, Afghan Hound Club of Dallas, and Gazehounds In Texas lure coursing trials, I'm certain many of you will find yourselves here.)Right in downtown Ferris is the Fiesta Cafe. Very good, and imaginative Mexican and Tex/Mex food. Last week we went to "Fajita Wednesday"... probably as full as you'll ever get on $6.15. I had the combination fajita plate, with chicken and steak. It was sizzling, so it was good. Today I had the Combination Enchiladas-- four, count'em four enchiladas: chicken, "meat", potato, and spinach. I think the next time we're here, I'm going all spinach. It was very, very good. And it was fresh, not frozen or canned spinach.

Sunday night we went to the Rockett Cafe. In Rockett. Texas. There are some names in this state. Specialty of the house is CFS. (Anybody who knows "home cookin'" knows that's not "cystic fibrosis society", but rather Chicken Fried Steak.) Good coating, meat tender, gravy perfectly seasoned, with a huge baked potato. And a cold Shiner Bock to wash it all down.

Speaking of alcohol: Not in Ferris. Rockett is also dry, but The Rockett Cafe is a "club", so liquor is served to members. I've never been in Rockett before in my life, but I was already a member! Thanks to my Unicard, which I purchased some years back in some other dry, podunk Texas ville'. Better have one if you're coming to Texas, because over half the geographic area of this second largest state... is dry. (Of course, much of that "half" is unoccupied as well, but that's another post.)

We'll be leaving tomorrow, going south to Livingston, TX to Rainbow's End RV Park- the home park of the Escapees RV Club that we're members of. I may drive down to Gulf Greyhound Park south of Houston this weekend to shoot some greyhounds racing, at the request of one of this blog's readers. That will be new, too.

It's lambing season at Endgate, so how could I not close with an image of unbelieveable cuddly cuteness:
They're so much fun to watch... just like puppies.

Friday, March 23, 2007

"Longdogs With Pedigrees?"

Some people in the Southwest, (particularly those who regularly get beaten by them), consider the Galgo Espanol as just another "longdog" (or sighthound cross). I don't know where they get these outlandish ideas!


That's right; one of these is a Galgo, and one isn't. Have fun.

Changes.

Fighting blog burnout, I decided to play with the appearance of the blog; (Margaret said the sidebar was looking "cluttered".) Moved some links down to what is now known as the "Blogroll/Links" area, and repositioned the counter and tipjar.. Yes! the TipJar is still here! For what it's worth. Also removed the Backwards Bush clock until we get closer to a more optimistic count... later in the year. It will be back!

I'll be deactivating the current poll, so if you know folks who haven't voted, send them on over. The next one will be in the sidebar, and might be more frivolous.

Look for a couple brief restaurant reviews coming up, and a report on the little GCA AKC trial yesterday. Also, maybe a picture of what we do when we're not shooting sighthounds, mountains, or birds.

Plinked a couple of geocaches earlier today in the cemetary down the hill from the ranch. That was fun, and took all of about 20 minutes.

More coming!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Pic of the Week

We took this last weekend at the Lone Star Whippet Club trial in Ferris, TX. You only wish your animals were this well trained, and behaved. I know we do.

We're hanging around for the Greyhound Club of America AKC trial, which is being held in conjunction with the club's southern specialty, then we'll probably go up to Boswell, OK for a NOTRA this weekend. That will put an end to our "Southern Strategy", as we'll begin the long, torturous swing back to the north, going first, to the AKC trials in Wichita, and then to ASFA trials in Belvidere, Illinois. Hope Spring will be following us.

Looming just ahead, of course, is Randir's big moment at the Scottish Deerhound Club of America's national specialty. Margaret's designing a special Shot On Site T-Shirt for the show ring. There will be no sneak previews... but we'll post it up here after the specialty.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

New Toys. It's a Poll!!

It's a poll! You can vote. Try it!
Playing around with more web tools. Would like to get more interactivity going in this blog, so... how about a poll?



I think I know our readers well enough to know how this one will turn out. Not sure if this free service has safeguards against ballotbox stuffing, but I guess I'll find out.

In the future, we'll probably run these in the sidebar whenever we have a provocative topic. Oh, and I'm casting the first vote!

Bracketology II. Squeakball Version.

OK.. I'll admit to somewhat more interest than I intimated the other day. I do need to know: Is Duke out yet?

Update: 10:25PM CDT: Oh yeah!

Now.. let's boot the Irish out, too!

Update: 3/16/07 6:00PM CDT: Done! I suppose it's too much to ask for Florida and their girly-man to get bounced?

Announcement!


It is with great pleasure that we announce- finally- the website for our "non-canine" images: http://www.shotonsite2.photoreflect.com . The first images are up- currently we are only offering 5x7 in 8x10 acid-free mat, and 8x10 in 11x14 acid-free mat. Soon we hope to have large panoramas (ie the Florida Mountain series in 8 x 20, etc.) and possibly poster sizes, (but first we want to look at them and make sure the quality is what we want.) All images will be signed, and shipped in sealed plastic, "ultra clear" presentation bags.

Please think about our site when it's gift-giving time for the non-dog people in your lives, or when redecorating the den. And pass this information on to those folks who may be interested.

I'm hoping to figure out- maybe with the help of some readers (you know who you are)- how to put a little link to the site on the blog. Images will be added regularly, as we travel the country.

ADDED 1:15 CDT - Well, that was quick. Thanks to Todd B., there's now a link to the new site, just to the right. He must'a known I was talking to him. :)

Someday, in the best of all possible worlds, these will all be on the walls of our coffee house/art gallery, somewhere in New Mexico. Look for us.

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Their Own Worst Enemy

I guess I missed this story the first time around, but it ranks right up there with the greyhound folks in California who thought it would be cool to invite a TV film crew out to a jackrabbit hunt. Maybe you've already heard about this "hunting club" in Pennsylvania, apparently suffering from cabin fever, who charged archers $12 to shoot live, farm raised turkeys.... which were tied to bales of straw. And we wonder why the antis keep coming after us.

Eric Sharp, outdoors writer for the Detroit Free Press, has good advice for all of us in today's column, including this all-important nugget:

"...but 'fair chase' is an emotional concept defined by the human brain, not the laws of nature.

So let's put aside any notion that emotion won't or shouldn't play a role in the future of hunting, or that we hunters can simply ignore the feelings of the great nonhunting mass. They are the people who get to vote on whether we can hunt." (emphasis mine)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

More Coursing.

Brush up on your EspaƱol...

As long as we're passing movies along, here's some more coursing I found on YouTube. This happens to be Galgos in Spain from a 2005 championship meet. Many who know me know I've coveted a Galgo for years, (even though the houndsmen of the southwest US consider them nothing more than another mixed breed). And if you occasionally root for the hare, (and who doesn't?), watch the move the hare makes at the end of a fairly long course, to escape.



It turns out there are lots of live (and lure) coursing videos on YouTube.. although I guess that shouldn't surprise me. Most are not put there by AR anti-hunting whackos.. but a few are. I wish someone would explain the "Borzoi Wolf Hunt" to me, though. As one commenter wrote: "That was pointless." I'd have to agree.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Outtakes.

It's been some time since we mentioned the globe-trotting dancing guy, Matt Harding. In fact, I'd nearly forgotten he was linked here until our friend, Paula (the world's greatest bartender!) mentioned that she had followed the link recently. I decided to do likewise, and isn't this just perfect timing that he's released the long awaited outtakes video from last year's world tour. Without further adieu, here it is:



That damned rock wedged in the top of the 1000M fjord still creeps me out.

He's also going on another world tour, courtesy of Stride Gum. And we can't even get a damned dog food company to sponsor the Hare Brained Express!

Creedence Said:

"Looks like we're in for nasty weather.."

5:15PM CDT, Santa Anna, TX
Fortunately, it went just South... it was gathering energy and starting to rotate.
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Bracketology

Those who are expecting a treatise on NCAA basketball should go here, or (for laughs) here instead. When the rest of my friends are wrapped up in "March Madness", I'm just afflicted with "March Minor Irritation". So no, this happens to be about Enlightened Bracketology, as found in the book, The Enlightened Bracketologist: The Final Four of Everything, edited by Mark Reiter and Richard Sandomir. The book uses NCAA-style brackets to help you determine useful stuff, like "what's the greatest movie death scene?", or "which is more burned into your memory: 9/11 or JFK assassination?". Or best ad line, (I was way off from the "experts" on this one, but I still like my choice better!). Slate.com has put together 4 interactive brackets here, along with an essay by the editors, so you can try it out for yourselves. Let me know how yours turned out.

And dammit; I'm sticking with, "With a name like Smuckers.... etc".

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

New Mexico Reviewed..

We left New Mexico a little over a week ago. I was going to write a long review on the weather, the coursing, the eats, the touristy stuff and I realized I pretty much was doing that as we went along. Except for the eats, (and a couple other odds and ends). So briefly:


The Campos was apparently the place for us, this year, which is surprising, because we missed it completely last year. We more than made up for it this year, visiting at least 5 times. Might have been 6. The owner, Mr. Campo, is a former chef at the Double Eagle in Old Mesilla, near Las Cruces. He was delivering something to Deming several years ago, liked it, and started his own place. The menu is a fantastic fusion of New Mexican/Southwest/Cajun/Italian... If you can impress JoAnn Van Arsdale (with the Ceviche Zacatecas in this case), you're doing well. Very well, indeed. My favorites ended up being the Skilletini- a sizzling iron utensil filled with pasta, Italian and Cajun sausages, ham, and other tasty, heavily seasoned goodies, and the San Franciscan- one of the best "California" sandwiches I've ever tasted... smoked turkey, cheeses, tomato, green chiles and avocado with a spicy sauce, on very thick and chewy sourdough bread.

When going to The Campos it's best to ignore the ambience. There isn't any, other than the giant gourd on the north wall that's painted to look like a penguin. But we don't go there to be impressed by their interior decorator. The exterior, on the other hand is this masterpiece, which the painter (who's name I didn't get), was working on the whole time we were in Deming. The Campos doesn't have a website.. in fact, none of the places in town do, but you can find some great comments on all of them at ChefMoz.org.

In no particular order, we also went to our old standby, Palma's Italian Grill, a couple of times. Absolutely the best bread dipping sauce around... with excellent fresh bread. The Lasagna was still good, and the Tuscan Salmon was as good as we remembered it.. and still a steal at $9.95. And on Saturdays, the owner/chef still strolls around the dining tables with his wireless microphone, karaokeing Sinatra. You don't find that in the "big city".

El Mirador, is one of the many Mexican restaurants in town, and one that we hadn't visited before, but there always seemed to be lots of vehicles there during their two meals, breakfast and lunch. We had one of each, and they were real good- especially the huevos ranchero. Can't give a review on the menudo, but it looked good as it went by to the table behind us. The restaurant, (or one of the four that the same family owns in Deming), was featured in a 2002 issue of Bon Apetite, but I couldn't find anything online.

A name that always popped up in the polls on who has the best green chile cheeseburger, was the local (or regional?) fast food chain, Blake's Lottaburger, and since, coursing our dogs aside, green chiles are a big reason we keep going back to New Mexico, we thought we'd better give it a try. And it was damned good for fast food!

The night before the Pack Hunt, we met a couple of other hound folk, and Dutch and his family, at the Holiday Inn, so we finally were forced to eat at the Prime Rib Grill. I forget what I ate. It was a Holiday Inn, after all.

And on a memorable Saturday night, we drove to Silver City to meet with Dutch, Cherie, and Buddy, and Susan Trow (visiting from Canada), and we drove to even further altitudes to the Buckhorn Saloon & Opera House, in Pinos Altos. Entering into the saloon portion, built in the 1860's, we were warmed by a huge potbelly stove. We went to our linened and silvered table and enjoyed some of the best steaks anywhere- we had he special, New York Strip, smothered in melted cheese and, what else?, green chiles. It was all the more tasty, as it turned out, Susan wanted to buy! We relented. You never have to twist my arm much.

Our last week was in Roswell, and I can't tell much about the local cuisine; we ate at Chili's one night because we had gotten some gift cards for Christmas, and the Golden Corral on another night because, well... we just think the GC is a cut above most other steak buffet places. You ought to try it sometime.. especially for the dessert bar! I almost forgot- we did eat at a small chain steakhouse, The Cattle Baron, following the Saturday hunt. A memorable salad bar, and for some reason, I chose to have blackened Halibut- at a steak place. Was good, though. We also met for the draw on Saturday and Sunday at a former Denny's, now christened, The Cover Up Cafe. Very good breakfasts and free coffee with a meal.


That pretty much covers the food end.. we also enjoyed the "Dine In" nights at the Escapees RV part- every Thursday evening, volunteers put together some good home cookin', with salads, desserts, and drinks for a ridiculously low price. They also have ice cream socials every Sunday, and breakfasts on Saturdays if we could get up in time.


Deming also got us our cheapest oil change ever for the RV. $30 at Tinley Tee Tire Co. Also, helpful repair services can be had if your RV or big rig breaks down in the area at E&M Truck Service in Deming, and REMCO towing and Service in Roswell.


Speaking of Roswell, I also met another "living legend" of the New Mexico houndmen : David Hise. "I got rabbit dawgs, coyote dawgs, bear dawgs, hawg dawgs... I hunt everything. You wanna go chase some rabbits?" So we did, and I ended up breaking Rally good. But like another well known convert earlier, David began to trust the GPS when he was judging the hunt. I got made the huntmaster for the two final runs- promised a hare in 30 yards- and was wrong. It was 40.


We stopped, finally, at another Escapees park, in Lakewood, NM- there's a post office, and not much else, but it looks like you can walk out of the park and chase jacks. Something to remember for next year. The next morning, we cruised into Texas. And that's enough writing for now.




Monday, March 05, 2007

Headlines That Just Catch Your Eye

"Alaska Moose Brings Down Helicopter". Hey Rocky.. watch me pull a helicopter out of the sky....

Here's A Plan...

...Army Doctors shouldn't lay a finger on ChickenHawk Cheney's blood clot until something is done for the troops he purportedly supports, at Walter Reed, and other veterans' hospitals. Seems the useless ones always get priority treatment. Just a thought...

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Park in the Suburbs...


...Drive into town, in a real "town" car. Shot On Site at "The Ranch" Escapees RV Park, Lakewood, NM.
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They're Doing It Again...

Those damn yankees...

"That’s our Boston: from proud birthplace of the American Revolution to a city of drooling idiots just blowin’ shit up."

Read all about it here.