Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Another Good Blog

I noticed Christie Keith's "Dogged" blog on Patrick Burns' blog list this morning. I've known who Christie is for many, many years from postings on the Scottish Deerhound discussion list, but I've not looked at any of her writings prior to this.

I figured, if Patrick likes it... it must be good! And the post I read today was damned good. All about a more than slightly disengenuous marketing campaign by a well known pharmaceutical company. Good enough to add "Dogged" to the blogroll on the right. There many more good dog-related, (and some entertaining non-dog-related, as well), posts. Check it out.


Mine was negative, thanks, but in this case the PSA refers to "Public Service Announcement". I get a daily "Wiki-How To" on my Yahoo home page... some are very whimsical, like "How to Be a Drum Major", to plain old dumb, like "How to Clean a Suitcase" (valuable, I suppose, if one has been smuggling cocaine into the country), and some valuable How To's, like "How to Prevent a Hangover".

Today's Wiki-How To falls into the latter category, especially for dog owners, (who probably make up the bulk of readers of this blog). It's "How to Avoid Foods Dangerous to your Dog".

Most readers I know, are familiar already with most of warnings here, but it's worth reading again. I always used to give Randir a little beer on my finger, (never let him lap directly from the pint, though), and he's eleven years old and going strong so, some things in moderation are OK, I guess. If you know folks less "in the know" than you are, pass this on.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Blatant Commercial Message.

A week or so ago, Margaret sent out about 500 email messages to people we have addressess for. Kinda like spam, only with a more valuable message. Her idea is to have periodic "specials" for our customers. The first of these specials is for a gen-U-wine art gallery style poster... 16x20, and custom designed by Margaret herself! These can be done from any picture we've taken in our "digital era"- from August 2003 to now.

Ideally, they will look a lot like this one of our staghound, Buffy.

Regular price for a 16 x 20 print is $40 + $6 for shipping. If you order by October 10, the price is only $25 for each, and shipping is only a flat rate of $6, no matter how many posters you order. So far, we've sent out about a dozen, and the feedback has been beyond positive.

About 70 messages bounced. If you didn't get one, or if you know someone who might be interested in this special product, pass this post on by clicking on the envelope icon at the bottom. To order, simply send your request to margaret@shotonsite.us. It's as simple as that to get the ball rolling.

See other samples at our event website.

We now return you to our regularly scheduled entertaining blog posting.....

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Super Wide

Finally got the lens I've coveted for over a year. I would have had it long ago if Nikon would have anticipated the hit they had on their hands. The lens covers the range of super wide angle, 18mm, to telephoto, 200mm, thus replacing a couple of lenses in the bag. In addition to the astounding range, it also has vibration reduction... so I can handhold shots at slow shutter speeds I would have formerly had to use a tripod for.

This above shot is Sandia, on the loose, and having fun. Shot at the 18mm setting, this image has been cropped about 40%, and the puppy was only about 3 feet from the front of the lens, which accounts for the little bit of distortion.

And how good is the VR? This shot was taken in the Express, at 1/2.5 seconds... hand held. Other than cropping so you can see the detail, this picture hasn't been sharpened with Picasa editor. It is as it was. Click the image to enlarge and look at the detail around the eyes. Pretty cool. It helps when you can catch the subject in an abnormally pensive... and still... moment.

And the best difference between the 18-200 and the giant 80-200 f2.8 I've been using for the last 4 years is that it weighs almost nothing.. probably almost 2 pounds less I have to carry around all weekend. I love it!

And that's how you foist more puppy pictures on the unsuspecting public without boring them to death.

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....Needs a little work.
Yes.. he was being called here. He's developing an independent streak.
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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Shakey Jake.

Every small town... and Ann Arbor was once a small town... has unique, special characters. From the early 70's and beyond, that character was Shakey Jake Wood, street person extraordinaire.

Word reached us today that Jake died on Sunday. He was 82. Maybe.

I have a picture I took of Jake in 1974, at the Ann Arbor Blues and Jazz Festival- In Exile. (It was held in Windsor, Ontario Canada that year). How Jake got over the border, and back, is still a mystery to me. Anyway, the picture shows him hawking the Ann Arbor Sun- the counterculture paper of the day. If I can find the original slide when we attack our storage locker Thursday, I'll scan it and put it up here.

HT to Margaret's son, Tony. RTWT- especially the comments!

"I Brake For Jake".

Friday, September 14, 2007

Incriminating Evidence.

Why yes... we do have a new puppy. How did you know?

Frankly, I'm happy that the boy is reading at such an advanced level. I wish he would do a better job turning the pages.
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An Economic Decision

This morning we made a tough decision to forego our originally scheduled event- a LGRA meet with an added ASFA Fun Trial- at Oberlin, OH. Instead we'll be very nearby our Jackson, MI campground, for an AKC trial about 30 miles away.

This wasn't an easy decision. We really hate to make a change- especially a last minute change- once we've posted an event on the blog and at the website. However, we learned that the entry at the race meet and trial would be quite small, while the AKC trial had a good number of pre-entries, including many Junior Courser runs each day. Add to that the fact we can leave the motor home parked where it is, and take the car to the trial, thus putting off buying gas for it until next Friday, and also that I have an early morning VA appointment in Ann Arbor on Monday.. it just made economic sense.

We apologize to the LARC folks, for leaving them in the lurch, and we will return to Oberlin next year. Raisin River Rhodesian Ridgeback Club?? We'll see you tomorrow in Manchester, (where I intend to bug somebody about this club name... as far as I know, the body of water is officially known as the River Raisin. Not the other way around.)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Heinous Crime!

It's not like I enjoy making fun of Georgians... they just seem to bring it on themselves.

The Top Ten Valuable Things I Learned from SPAM.

Number 10: "Out of more than 50 drugstores CanadianPharmacy proved to be the best"

Number 9: "you may be eligible for a $1000 Target Shopping Spree'"

Number 8: "thousands of cars are seized by different Government agencies."

Number 7: "You could find a beautiful home that has been seized by the Government"

Number 6: "The second hand moves JUST like the real ones"

Number 5: "People judge your dick size by your shoes size."

Number 4: "Doesn't matter what is the problem - we have pills to cure everything"

Number 3: "A giant progressive jackpot waits to be grabbed!"

Number 2: "ladies like em big"

...and the NUMBER 1 Valuable Thing I Learned from SPAM:

"the average American has 6-10 undigested meals resting in the colon!"

And you all thought it was just useless clutter.... (SPAM, that is, not the meals resting in your colon.)


Why we never miss the Wind Chasers Lure Coursing Club September trial...
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Monday, September 10, 2007

Weekend's Best Crash.

Uh Oh...

...and they finished the course.

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The Others

With all the fuss over the new puppy, you'd think we didn't have any other dogs. Well... most of you know better.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Test dog extraordinaire! Best described a few years ago by Sandra Moore as "the best fixed broke dawg I ever saw!". And still the prettiest dog on the planet.

UPDATE 1: I'm looking at this, and it reminds me of something. What is it? Wait! That's it!!

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All Relative.

Since I posted pictures of Sandia's parents last week.. (or was it the week before?), I thought maybe readers might like to go back another generation to see the grandparents..

Above, is Grandmother "Zanda", and below, Grandfather "Xicot", (the tall, dark, and handsome one in the group- pronounced, "Chico".) Click on the link to see some background information, and a list of European titles... most of which I don't understand. Probably show, racing, and lure coursing, but I'm not sure.
Images courtesy Anke Schute, in the Netherlands. Thanks!

EDIT 1: And, just to close a circle here... When I wrote the story of my Galgo "quest" back in August, I mentioned exchanging emails, back in the late 90's, with the "Little Lobitos" folks in Germany about their pending first litter. Well... it happens that in that first litter was a cute little girl... by the name of Zanda!

Small world. (At least in Europe it is...)

As before.. to view Zanda's puppy picture, click on the link, click on "Puppies", click on the "A" litter, roll your mouse over all the cute puppies until "Abizanda" shows up, then click on that picture. For some reason we can't link directly to a specific page on the website; only the home page.

Nature Finds Us.

We generally don't have to go looking. Case in point, yesterday; we're packing up after the weekend's trials in Hobart, IN. We've had the puppy's travel crate outside all weekend. It makes a nice table/workbench/catch-all. Under all the stuff I find this guy...

He/she had plenty to eat this weekend; the mosquitos were quite horrendous. If I had to guess, I'd call this a Grey Tree Frog. Any amphibian biologists out there want to help out, feel free to jump in. It's about 3 inches long, got some serious grippy toes, and was a dull grey with vibrant black and yellow areas under the arms and legs.

Look closely, and you can see the self-portrait of the photographer in the eye!

If You Have to Ask... You Must be Dick Cheney.

The Question? Are Liberals Smarter?

William Saletan at Slate.Com reports on a study that shows that "Liberals' brains 'are more responsive to informational complexity".

Where's the news there? I knew that. Didn't you know that?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

First Rabbit!

But he seems to have a kind of Abu Ghraib attitude about them. Should we be worried?
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Who's Yer Daddy?!

You know it's true... nobody works harder to get you a unique, spectacular image of your hounds..

So, where will we be working hard in the upcoming weeks? Why, it's time for a schedule update:

Sept 8-9 WCLCC Hobart, IN ASFA trials (and annual Pig Roast!)

Sept 15-16 LARC Oberlin, OH LGRA racemeet, and ASFA Fun Trial

Sept 22-23 NCC/ASFA Region 6 Invitational, Ravenna, OH
Sept 26-30 LCLC Romulus, NY ASFA & AKC Events
That's it for September! Remember, if you just want pictures on a disk, you're cousin Vinnie can handle the job; if you want a Full Time Professional Photographer, offering a comprehensive photographic product list, including: Prints, CD's, CD Slide Shows, Posters, Photo T-Shirts, Mouse Pads, Tiles, Checkbook Covers and Wallets, Cutting Boards, and... and... the list goes on- you get the idea. Call us!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Today's Puppy Pic To Die For.

People wanted more pictures... we're glad to oblige.


One of today's visitors...


You can always tell when we're parked in one place for more than a couple of days, can't you?

New Links

Added a couple of new links on the sidebar. Definitely worth a look as we try to be less sighthound-centric here at the Hare-Brained Express. Patrick Burns has working terriers. He posts sometimes witty, sometimes scathing commentary on all things dog, and other related subjects. He's recently had a couple terrifically entertaining posts on the show dog - working dog dichotomy.

And because gun dogs need representation, too, we have Andrew Campbells Regal Vizsla. He has puppies, too. When you're tired of looking at Galgo Espanol puppie pictures here, click on over to Regal Vizsla and see how the puppies are progressing there! (But for the life of me, I can't imagine why, with a name like Andrew Campbell ,the man doesn't have Scottish Deerhounds!). Andrew also enjoys cycling, and actually admits to being a University of Michigan grad! Welcome.

Embarassing? I'll Give You Embarassing!

One piece about the Michigan-Appalachian State debacle last Saturday, and then I'm done with it.

Yes, I'm a Michigan fan. Margaret, too. We both were born and grew up in Ann Arbor. Margaret's parents are rabid fans.. they not only go to the major sports events, they go to women's gymnastics, softball, baseball, lacrosse, and even field hockey, (the Michigan Women were National Champions a couple years back). My parents were also die-hard fans. My dad worked as an usher at the Big House, and passed the job on to me when he retired back in the 70's. Neither of us attended UM, but when you grow up in "A-Squared" you're either a Michigan fan, or you're the equivalent of some kind of child molester.

So yes. It was embarassing last Saturday as the scores ticked in throughout the afternoon. It was doubly embarassing because I was shooting a trial in Dayton, OH that was rife with incorrigible, hated Buckeye fans... (who were probably secretly thanking whichever deities they believe in that their school wasn't stupid enough to schedule Appalachian State, a move which, win or lose, would have no good come of it).

Very embarassing. Can't say it enough. Nearly as embarassing as, say, going to a high profile National Championship football game and getting bitch-slapped around by a team nobody thought should even be there. (And then, to add insult to injury, to show up at another National Championship game in another major sport just a few short months later, and get bitch-slapped around by the very same school for all the world to see.)

Yup. Last Saturday was almost as embarassing as that. I'd put it at Number 2.

The Queen!

I've written often here about my Scottish Deerhound, "Randir", who turned 11 a couple weeks ago, and I have more to write on the subject. That's an advanced age for a deerhound, especially a male, and the funny thing is he really doesn't know he's old.

Randir's in the minor leagues, however, compared to Megan, a deerhound in Berkshire, UK. Astounding! HT to Ellen B. in Jersey!

Monday, September 03, 2007