Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween and Sneaky Sara

I am trying to get all the Halloween candy in a bowl, preparing for the trick or treaters. I had to run to the back of the house and when I came back, this.
Of course I knew who it had to be....Sara. It always is in these instances.

She is really quite sneak. Her she is saying "What, I don't see any candy...Hey how that get there?". Oh Sara, you sneaky girl you. How do you find it?

Another funny little Halloween story. I a group of siblings from 3 to 11 came to the door. I gave each of them some candy. They ran down the the sidewalk to their parents. Two of them came back, the 11 and 3 year old, to ask about the dogs. Next thing I know, the 3 year old is taking candy from the bowl. I think she has been secretly taking lessons from Sara on candy thievery. It was funny.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Onion-Obama's Presidential Internship

Not sure how many of you are familiar with the Onion but it is a satirical newspaper that is apparently now doing videos for youtube. I have been so bothered by the nonsense that is the run up to the election that I decided I would try to find things that were funny yet not nasty. found this and thought it was good. So I am sharing.
I really want to say, I am really disheartened by how nasty we are becoming to each other in this country. It is really not what the country was built on. Yet here we are, acting as though we are not one country. I believe that if we don't start working together that we will blow ourselves apart. People need to grow up, listen to each other and find common ground. If we don't, we may find ourselves going the way of the Roman Empire.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Learning About Sarah Palin

Because we are getting so close to the election, I thought it was my duty to bring please a couple to chuckles. I know I need them because I am darn tired of this stuff and can't wait for it to be over. So here's to getting mavericky.

I will be searching for more fun stuff up through the election.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Morgan Territory Regional Preserve

I took some friends and the dogs for a hike at Morgan Territory Regional Preserve today. Morgan Territory is another park in the East Bay Regional Park District that allows for off-leash dog walking plus is a beautiful place to walk. This park is approximately 30 miles South of Antioch and is even less developed than Black Diamond. There are approximately 4700 acres of land with many miles of trails. We hiked 5.75 miles through a variety of scenery, some very open and some very shaded. It is a really beautiful park where the dogs can run their little hearts out, I can get my exercise, and we can all enjoy the natural beauty. I feel really fortunate to live in an area that has as much open space. Especially when you consider just how crowded the bay area is.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Mis-reading The Tide Chart

As usual, we headed to the beach today for an early morning walk. Last night, I checked the tide chart and thought I read that it would be a fairly low tide and we would have plenty of room to walk the beach for a couple of hours. Well, once we got there, I realized I may not have read it quite right. From the top of the hill, it looked like the tide was pretty high. None-the-less, I decided that it would be alright and the tide wasn't as high as it looked. That would be my wishful thinking mode (some would say stubborn) because when we got to the bottom, there truly was very little beach to walk on. For the dogs, not a problem. They are perfectly happy getting wet or not. I, on the other hand, prefer not to get my feet wet, especially at the very beginning of the walk. What I wanted and what I got were two completely different things. After the long drive though, I was determined to stay out there for a couple of hours. As you will see from the video, there was some areas we could walk along but more that we couldn't (at least not if we wanted to stay dry). Doesn't matter to me really though, when it comes down to it, a bad day at the beach is still better than most days away.

Colvin (the 11 1/2 year old) is very content after the walk. She is is sweet.

Okay, off to do the NordicTrac.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Things That People Will Buy

I went to Barnes & Nobles to look for images of southwestern, US birds and reptiles. While wandering around the store, I spotted this, "Toilets of the World". Don't ask me why, but I just had to have it . I mean who would think of putting together a book of pictures of toilets and their descriptions from around the world. As I was flipping through it, I found an assortment of toilet types. Everything from your basic outhouse to really elaborate hi-tech toilets. There were a few that I just had to share though. More for their really bizarreness. This one moves and shakes. Can you men imagine using this?

Who knows where they got the idea for this one. Kind of reminds me of someone I might see in a Gay Pride Parade.

This one made me feel uncomfortable even thinking about using these toilets. I mean who wants faces staring at you the whole time?

And then there was this one. Frightening on so many levels but funny too.

Anyways wanted to share.

Flat Tony and His 3D Self

We just received this cool certificate from 3D Tony and his flat self. Thanks Tonys! Although, just being able to participate was much more fun than I could have imagined. It was truly a blast. I hope to continue to read about Flat Tony's adventures worldwide.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Vizlsas on Alert

I am preparing my dinner and all of a sudden Sara jumps up on the couch, ready to pounce on whatever has dared to enter her backyard. Colvin is trying to figure out what is going on. I walk over to see what it is....leaves. It was windy. Good job Sara. We are safe from the threat of blowing leaves...phew!

The Demise of the Troll Clown

I think the dogs have been reading the comments on the blog. When I came home today, I found this...

Dixy hovering over the troll clown. At this point, I am not certain whether it is Dixy or Sara who is responsible for this shredding. Of course Sara is saying, "who me?", as she is licking her tongue.Still not sure who is responsible, I assess the damage to the sinister troll clown.

As you can see, he is now empty-headed and hairless. Apparently, the dogs had little patience for his antics and did not want him wreaking havoc on anyone else's life. But still...which one was the ringleader? All of a sudden, it became very clear...

I should have known. Nothing happens without Sara's approval. She is, after all, the queen vizsla of the household.

Apparently Sara took my comments from the previous post to heart. She really punished him. Sorry Staci-he only lasted a day in the house.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Troll Clown

Something fishy has been going on in my office. For the past couple of weeks, I have had all kinds of phone problems in my office. My phone would ring to nowhere and would be answered by a black hole. No matter who I reported it to, they weren't able to fix it. My frustration was reaching it's limits. I was at my wits end. Then I came into the office and caught him in the act. At first I wasn't sure what he was. I guess he anticipated that, so he added his own little note.

As you can see, he is a devious little creature. He was screwing around with my phone system. He must have tired of toying with me and allowed himself to be caught, figuring he would be free to move on to the next tied-to-technology human. He hadn't expected me to pack him in my bag and take him home to meet...


She had decided to make him her own.

So there you are little troll clown, maybe now you will know not to mess with a vizsla owner. We are protected.

Another moral to the's not just the gremlins that will get you.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Another Red Dawn Champion

Red Dawn Mr Fritz finished his championship today by beating out six other males. He won Winner's Dog and Best of Winner's. This is the second of Sara's puppies to earn their championship this year and the third overall (Dixy being the other). Congratulations to the Hahn Family and Cheryl Krajcar, the handler. We are all very proud.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Duna-The Thoughtful Boy

Duna is one of Grady's brothers. He is probably the calmest of that entire litter. While the rest of the dogs may be running all around us jumping for water, the tennis ball, or whatever, Duna always seems to rise above it all and calmly evaluates the situation. He has been like this since he was a wee little guy. As his human mom says, "Duna is very strategic". I just say he is a sweetheart.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Fearless Sasa-The Tree Climbing Vizsla

Just got a couple of pictures of Sasa up in the tree she leaped into. Sasa is Grady's sister. She is the second of Sara's puppies that is a champion and a wild child. Dixy is the other. Anyways, wanted to share the pictures and Susan's (human mom) commentary.
"Here are a couple of pictures the one of Sasa in the tree- she is actually about 20' off the ground in a huge oak tree. If you have a video camera we would like to borrow it- she launches about 6' up to get to the first branch and has no fear running further up the tree. The pictures just don't capture how awesome it is."

The Bailout Explained

So it has been a few days since my last entry and I was thinking about what I wanted to blog today. Initially I thought I would just let everyone know the mundane things that have been going on. BUT as luck would have it, my friend Staci passed along this gem of a video. It gives me the opportunity to better understand the reasons of how we ended up in this financial mess and how our bailout numbers were derived. You see, it is clear that these leaders of men went to the Ma & Pa Kettle School of Mathematics And we, the uneducated masses, just need to see this little video to understand that the numbers will add up.'s to educating as many as possible. Now we can all relax knowing our financial futures are in good hands.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Three Day Weekends-Yeah

With all the craziness that is in the news, it was nice to have an extra day to recharge the batteries. It was a little difficult to realize how bad of a hit my 401k took. At this rate, I will never be able to retire. That being said, there is not much I can do about it in the short term so what better way to get my mind off everything but a trip to the beach. The weather was perfect. The norm is for September and October to be beautiful in San Francisco. Today it didn't disappoint. The temperature was about 72 degree with an ever so slight breeze. An added bonus was that since it was a holiday that only about a quarter of the population gets off, there were very few people at the beach. It really was relaxing. We were there for a couple of hours. I really envy the way the dogs are so carefree too. I wish I could get some of that feeling. That being said, I did come home feeling a little more serene, realizing that most of what's going on is out of my hands and I can only do what is in front of me. So that is my mantra re-enforced again.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Spenceville Wildlife Area

Today Grady was entered in a dog show in Yuba City, CA. It is located about 2 hours NNE of Antioch and where my sister Maris lives. My brother-in-law, Charlie loves to hike as much as me and the dogs so he planned a great hike in the Spenceville Wildlife Area. It is located about 20 miles east of Yuba City. The day was beautiful, about 67 degrees with a nice breeze. The group of hikers included Maris, Charlie, Suragani, me and the dogs. At the beginning of the hike is a pool of water which the dogs enjoyed very much. Once we started out, we walk on a trail that followed a large creek that runs year-round. They were waterfalls along the way. The scenery was really beautiful. There were a lot of Oak trees on golden colored rolling hills. It was really a scenic hike all the way. And our special treat was the large waterfall (about 70 feet) at the end of the trail. It was really a wonderful way to spend the day. I am relaxed and the dogs are pooped. The above photoshow includes some of the images we saw today. I have also included a link to the area. The history is really interesting.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Living in the East Bay of Northern California

One of the great things about living in the East Bay is that there are literally a dozen parks designated as open space throughout. None of this land can be developed and for anybody who has been to the bay area lately, undeveloped locations are hard to come by. I am fortunate enough to live ten minutes (3 miles) from one of these parks. It is Black Diamond Regional Mine Preserves. Besides the close proximity, it is really a beautiful park with a diverse landscape. On top of that, the dogs are allowed to run free. It's almost like 1000s of acres for my backyard. This particular park has over 65 miles of trails that cover all types of territory. Over the past seven years, I have hike almost every mile with the dogs many, many times. The park looks different at different times of the year. There is a softness to the lighting in the fall that really appeals to me. I added a photoshow of today's hike. These are some of the things we saw during our 3 1/2 mile walk.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Final Gnome Update and Jury Duty Summons

It's day ten. I think he has reached his full size. He doesn't seem to be growing anymore. Only fading in color. One of his eyes is crossed too. Let's see if he brings me good luck.
On a completely different note. I went to the mailbox and pick up my mail. What did I receive today...a jury duty summons. First thing I think of is, darn, it will probably be during my Thanksgiving vacation. I open it up, expecting the date to be at least a month away. Yikes!!! It is for TOMORROW. I ask myself, how did that happen. I only have a ton of things to get done by Friday and I have multiple meetings scheduled tomorrow. I would normally request an extension by mailing in the form but it is TOMORROW. There was a number on the form to call but I was skeptical. How often do you call those numbers only to be put on perpetual hold or in an endless automated loop. Much to my surprise, someone answered relatively quickly. Terence was his name. When I told him I received the summons today for jury duty tomorrow, he said SURPRISE! Actually, he was very helpful and moved my jury date to January 5th. Funny thing is, at first I was a little perturbed but then I said to myself, whatever happens happens. There you go...Terence took care of me. Now I get to go to work tomorrow...hmmm, on second thought, maybe I am the loser in this deal.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Beach Story-Light Reflections and a Naked Man

Wanted to tell another story about our trip to the beach yesterday. First off, I can't remember the last time I went to the beach in the late afternoon. There is something about the light on the water that is special. I tried to capture it in the pictures above. It was high tide when we arrived so there was little beach for the dogs to run on. So the dogs and I walked along the trails in the dunes. Periodically, we would find a spot where we could walk along the beach for awhile. When I couldn't walk on the beach without having the tide come up over my shoes, we would take a path back up to the dune trails for a time until another path led to an area with more open beach. After being back on the beach for awhile, I noticed there was a naked man walking from his set up into the water. He was about 100 yards away from us and I saw him before the dogs (thank goodness). They would have wanted to run up and greet him and that is the last thing I wanted to do. Don't get me wrong, he was harmless. Having lived in the bay area for so long, there are lots of areas where you will see a naked person at certain times of the year but that is expected. The craziest thing...the guy went swimming in the ocean. Do you know how cold that water is? Anyways, I decided to stay up on the dune trails after that. I was still able to see the light reflection on the water and the dogs had a perfectly wonderful time running all over the place.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Dixy's Obsession-Fetching Balls (or anything else that can be tossed)

Dixy is completely obsessed with fetching tennis balls. Doesn't matter what else is going on (except for birds). Today, I forgot the "Chuck It" toy in the car and didn't have a tennis ball to toss either. Dixy stuck by my side for about ten minutes, waiting for me to throw the tennis ball I didn't have. Well, when she finally realized I wasn't trying to hide a ball for her, she set off on her mission to find one for me to throw. The following photos are the sequence of events that ensued.

Dixy proceeded to bring me the first of her finds. As you can see it is in horrible shape. It didn't even have felt on it. No way I can throw it. But I have to try. She is so proud of herself. I threw it were she couldn't find it. Mean, I know, but I really couldn't see trying to throw that for the next hour and a half.

When the other couldn't be found. She replaced it with another. As you can see, this one was in even worse shape. At least it had felt on it. I was able to lose that one too. Again, not gonna throw it for the whole walk.

She searched for a long time hoping to find another, yet better, tennis ball. Didn't happen. But having the need to fetch, she found and brought me this...a golf ball. She is one nutty girl.

Weekend of Dog Shows-Grady's Nightmare

Mom made me do it again. We had to spend another weekend going to the dog shows. I keep expecting for it to be over but it is not. Yuck! I do not like it. Mom says I only need 5 points to finish (whatever that means). I just want us to go out and have fun. I don't much like the Judge going over me part. I always sit down when he checks out my rear end. Wouldn't you?! I mean who really likes that? Mom said I have to let the judges do that or we will never "finish". Yesterday, I sat so when the judge went over me so mom took me to our trainer last night. I guess she is trying to have me get used to it. Mom said I did much better today. I didn't take a step when the judge went over me. Didn't help though. We still didn't win. Oh well, at least a nice dog took the point. I don't like losing to ugly dogs. Mom put together a little show of what we go through at the shows. Look at my ears. See how happy I look? Not!

Well...Why Not....

He couldn't possibly do anymore damage than those who are already in there. Right? Seriously though, all I could think of when I saw this sign was the cartoon kid with the big head who had a crush on the little red-headed girl AND always had the football picked up by Lucy before he could kick it. If this was you, wouldn't you have change your name to Charles, Chuck, even Fred? Anything other than Charlie(not that Charlie is a bad name). I don't know how much confidence this would instill in his potential constituency. I mean (although his intentions are good) do you want to vote in someone who can't even manage his own little league baseball team? Or whose beagle always gets the best of him? Just wondering what his handlers are thinking.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Friday, October 3, 2008

Represented in Florida

My brother-in-law, indulging my weirdness in Lakeland, Florida. Thanks Michael.

Gnome Update


Yikes....and he his still growing...this after only 4 days. Watch out friend who cringes.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Introducing Flat Tony

We are playing host to Flat Tony. His 3-D self lives in Tasmania, Australia and can't get away on many vacations. Many of us around this globe are showing Flat Tony around. If anyone else is interested in hosting Flat Tony, I am sure he would be thrilled. For further details on Flat Tony's travels or you want to host, check out Tony's blog. It is a good time. Tony's blog address is listed below.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008