Monday, August 27, 2007

running with the big dogs...

Sorry if the title of this blog is a little tenuous, but I was struggling with how to link canine intelligence and handcycling prowess.

Big woof #1:
World Off-road Handcycling Championships: Steve Garro, 'the unknown' as Denise puts it in her blog, took 3rd in Saturday's hillclimb competition and then 4th yesterday in the cross-country event. Kudos to Steve! And some serious bragging rights... don't think there were any Leadville 100-style belt-buckles being given out, but from telephone reports it sounds like it was a well-organized event with lots of schwag for the contestants.
If you go to Denise's blog, you'll see lots of pictures from Saturday up so far. There's one shot of Denise and her brother-in-law walking up one of the hills alongside Steve... uh, keep in mind that the handcycles weigh close to 55lbs and that behind them someone with a regular mountain bike is walking the hill.

POST-SCRIPT: Steve has some other pics and personal testimony on his own blog here.

Big woof #2: While I cannot disclose any personal information for fear of an international incident, I have recently learned that my new canine hero, God rest his soul, is a cocker spaniel named Ike. It seems that Ike had the imminently good sense that when, then, Secretary of Defense, Dick Cheney, visited his owner's house, Ike leapt on him, covered him in slimy mud, and bit a hole in the Secretary's suit somewhere around the mid-section.

Big woof #3: Just remembered another great canine photographer, Nancy Whitehead, and this is her site. She has some incredible dog pictures, but some of the most remarkable scenes are of woodcock in flight. I wish I could take pictures like she does.

Big woof #4: The Jozsi-Monster has clearly demonstrated that the first time wasn't a fluke. I took him out yesterday for an early morning training session with a pheasant wing... and he is a fiend. We got another five or so, solid retrieves in at about 15' or so. I think he'd still try to keep it from me if I didn't underscore the 'come' with a gentle pressure on the checkcord, but he's showing good signs of being a natural retriever. Here's the evidence... the big smudge is dew on the lens from being put in the grass... couldn't quite juggle a checkcord, lob a pheasant wing, restrain a puppy, and take a picture with just two hands.

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