Friday, December 02, 2016

Coffee and Provocation

The Queen delivers a speech on poverty.
A beaver busted into a dollar store in Charlotte Hall, Maryland, and trashed the place, including the artificial Christmas Tree display.

The Russians are having the Koreans clone genetically superior police dogs. It's like a bad James Bond movie.

Ravenous 14-Foot python caught with 3 deer in its gut.

Texas man taunts Alligator and jumps into water ... Alligator kills man.

The longest cat fence in the U.S. was just built on a Hawaiian volcano to protect nesting bird colonies.

Dolly Parton will be helping people back on their feet by donating $1,000 every month for six months to each family that lost their homes in the forest fires in Sevier County. The flames reached the doorsteps of Dollywood, but the park was spared and will reopen on Friday.

Pigeons in Barcelona are being put on the pill (nicarbazin) in an attempt to cut their numbers by 80 per cent.

Thanks Obama!
The outdoor industry will be added to the calculus of the nation’s gross domestic product in a bill headed to the President’s desk.

Big Data for Big Conservation
The US Forest Service says it hopes to use DNA collected from water to map every aquatic animal in the Western states. The resulting biodiversity map, cataloging thousands of species by population boundary, would be an enormous conservation resource.

Women, Work and the Pill
Economic empowerment and freedom got a jump start with modern contraception. Video.

Russian soldiers with dog from the center, 1914.

Drone World

The Leadership of Lions and Dogs

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Everybody Dies, But Not Everybody Lives

Working terriers? They LIVE!

An Elk Picks His Mark

Keep your dog on a leash so it does not chase the deer and elk.

Notice that the elk leaves the two Jack Russells alone -- they're not running away. Wee wolves.

Throw Back Thursday

This would have been in 1976 or 1977, when I was 17 years old. The pack was a Kelty BB5, a marvelous old pack -- the largest Kelty made at the time, and first introduced in 1969. The "sissy bar" on top moved weight higher, which is always a good idea if you are doing long-distance walking and the tree cover over the trail will allow it.

Human Soul for Sale, Dirt Cheap

"Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory; and he said to him, 'All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me." — Matthew 4:8

They eat frogs legs for dinner and drink $400 wines, just like the rest of us.

Those damn frogs were eating the malaria mosquitos in the swamps that will not be drained now that we have Goldman Sachs and a team of billionaires and lobbyists on the march.

Thank God these people don't use emails or help orphans whose parents died of AIDS. The good people of KY and TN cannot have that. Or Medicare. Or the black lung fund. Screw that stuff and pass the Grey Poupon.

Dog House Design Has Not Changed Much in 700 Years

Four Dogs before a Doghouse in a book of German fables from the late 1400s. This illustration is in the J. Paul Getty Museum.

A Christmas Message From the Terriers

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

What Rough Beast Slouches Towards Bethlehem?

The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.

The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

To Tell The Truth

Do you recognize her?

The lady holding back the Borzois is is Kitty Carlisle, aka Kitty Carlisle Hart, who was born on September 3, 1910 – and died on April 17, 2007 at the age of 96.

Kitty Carlisle was a regular panelist on the television game show To Tell the Truth, where she provided a great deal of over-the-top cultural grace to her panelist duties. She seemed rich and cultured because she actually was rich and cultured. Married to playwright and director Moss Hart, she herself was a singer, actress and spokeswoman for the arts. She was was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame, served for 20 years on the New York State Council on the Arts, and received the National Medal of Arts from President George H. W. Bush in 1991. Oddly enough, her Jewish grandfather had been a Confederate gunner on the iron-clad Virginia (formerly the Merrimack), which fought the iron-clad Monitor!

Topping Tulips

Terrier Taxonomy

The Belvoir Hunt Kennels

The Belvoir Hunt Kennels by Sir Alfred J. Munnings. This painting sold for $460,000 at Sotheby's.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Need Dalmatian Puppies

A Sense of Impending Doom

Things feel unsettled in Washington at the moment.  I am reminded of a conversation I once had with my wife:

Me: “I feel bad. Jittery”

Her: “How?”

Me: “A feeling of impending doom.”

Her: “You know what that is?”

Me: “No”

Her: ”Impending doom.”

That’s how it feels.

We have people without experience, and no track record of success, pulling apart things they do not understand, based on a theory they read in a Heritage Foundation white paper written by a graduate of Hillsdale College.

What could possibly go wrong?

Standards Where Health & Performance Are Zero

John Henry Walsh invented the Kennel Club "standard" -- cookie cutter judging based on a series of arbitrary points compiled by folks who may not have even owned any of the dogs they were writing a "standard" for.

Walsh was editor of The Field magazine, and wrote for that publication under the pseudonym of ‘Stonehenge.’

In 1867, a scant eight years after the first formal dog show (where he was one of the judges), Walsh published The Dogs of the British Islands, in which he and several friends set out to to detail the physical attributes of various breeds, and to assign various "points" to these features so that the dogs could be judged in a systematic way from show to show.

Walsh's point system (along wih the eugenics theories of Francis Galton) served as the backbone and architectural model of the Kennel Club point system which is used to judge dogs in the ring, and on the bench, to this day.

Walsh's point system gave ZERO points to health and field performance, and that is still true in the Kennel Club ring to this day. Any wonder then why health and performance are so pitiful among Kennel Club dogs?

Get Rich Raising Nutria!

Wow! What a great idea! It says in this 1958 Popular Science ad that the price of nutria pelts is already almost equal to mink. And these exotic rodents breed like ... well, rodents! Women will always wear fur. What could go wrong? Nothing! Just look at that cool logo if your confidence is wavering. This is sure to be an exploding market for a bright, energetic young person.

Coffee and Provocation

Jurasic Chicken
Scientists in Chile have grown dinosaur legs on a chicken. In of last year, scientists successfully converted a chicken's beak into that of a snout similar to its dino-predecessors.

That Monkey is a Whore
When monkeys were taught the concept of money, it resulted in the first recorded incident of monkey prostitution.

100 Million Dead Trees in California
The drought has been long and awful.

When You Have More Money Than Brains
Bowser Beer is a ridiculously expensive six-pack of bottled beef broth.

This Crap is a Complete Waste of Money
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) now requires over the counter homeopathic remedies sold in the US to come with a warning that they are based on outdated theories ‘not accepted by most modern medical experts’ and that ‘there is no scientific evidence the product works’.

What Happened to the Seals?
The Seals GPS technology has helped scientists conclude that a 65 percent decline in Scotland's Harbor Seal population between 2001 and 2010 was due to a toxin produced by algae.

Frog Sex Ratios are Changed by Road Salt
Scientists have found that the proportion of females within tadpole populations was reduced by 10 percent when exposed to road salt, or sodium chloride, suggesting that the salt has a masculinizing effect.

Donald Trump Is Impeachable on Day One
Donald Trump will have to sell billions of dollars of real estate in the next month to avoid being impeached for bribery and payment from foreign powers. He has business interests with Jose E. B. Antonio, who is also Philippines dictator Rodrige Duterte's Special Envoy to the USA. Similar conflicts exist is some 20 known countries where the Trump organization has dealings, and then there is the long, undisclosed list of foreign creditors, potentially including sovereign wealth funds.

No, Santa-san Will Not Be Driving
Domino's Pizza in Hokkaido Japan is rolling out delivery by reindeer.

A Stinking Bad Idea
A Japanese skating rink froze 5,000 fish frozen in ice. It did not go over well with the public.

Beatrix Potter, Mycology Artist

This illustration of a flammulina velutipes, or winter mushroom, was done by Beatrix Potter.
The author of The Tale of Peter Rabbit and other wonderfully illustrated children’s books was a Victorian enthusiast of natural history with a keen interest in mycology, producing excellent drawings and paintings of mushrooms she saw throughout the English isles,

The Grief of One Dog

“This soldier, I realized, must have had friends at home and in his regiment; yet he lay there deserted by all except his dog. I looked on, unmoved, at battles which decided the future of nations. Tearless, I had given orders which brought death to thousands. Yet here I was stirred, profoundly stirred, stirred to tears. And by what? By the grief of one dog."

- Napoleon Bonaparte, on finding a dog beside the body of his dead master, licking his face and howling, on a moonlit field after a battle.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Vintage Hunting and Cars


The Rat Catcher

Alex Russell Flint, The Rat Catcher. Link to artist.

A Drone Over Africa

This short film
was created by Cape Town based Cinematographer and Photographer Naudewashere. It took three years to put together, and is simply jaw-dropping.

Sound of the Less Than Wild, 1911

A sled dog listens to a gramophone during the British Antarctic (“Terra Nova”) Expedition of 1910-1913. Photograph taken by Herbert Ponting, circa January 1911.

You Can Build a Movement on These Two Songs

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Wee Dogs on Big Timber at the Monocacy Aqueduct

Due to scheduling with family, I tried to switch hunting from Sunday to Saturday which was a bad idea as it is deer season.  Cars and trucks were jungled up along the farm roads and it looked like the invasion of Normandy, but with more camouflage and neon orange.

Discretion being the better part of valor, I decided to check out a lock on the C&O Canal that I had never visited.

This is the Monocacy Aqueduct where the C&O Canal is lifted over the Monocacy River just before it empties into the Potomac River -- water over water. The aqueduct itself is 438-feet long and a massive stone work that proved impossible to blow up during the Civil War.

There was a swan on the river, but no one out on the path other than the very occasional runner.  Most of the trees along here are second growth, but there were some notably large white oaks and sycamores.  Not sure what the fallen trunk at the top of this post is, but one of those, and based on the fact that it was hollow, I would bet a Sycamore.