Geegaw #1: at the Mayflower GSP hunt test, I met a fellow with a nice jäger (or 'jaeger') leash. As the name suggests, these 'hunter's' leads can be worn across the chest to leave your hands free. I like the idea of it for hunt tests, especially, where you can have the leash on, unclip the dog, and then simply tuck the loose end into your vest or pocket -- always ready for the end of the brace or an unexpected circumstance.
This style of lead isn't super-common, but I found a nice one made by Paula Hogan at Hogan Custom Leather -- which I just received. In addition to having the capacity to be clipped to a variety of different lengths, some styles of jäger leash also have a floating ring on one end so that you can rig a slip-lead if necessary. Paula was willing to put one in on one of her standard leashes -- and I may regret it at some point, but I can't envision ever needing a slip lead for our boys and decided to do without it. You can tell immediately that she uses high-quality bridle leather and quality hardware. Very pleased so far.
Geegaw#2: Momo's foot is almost healed enough that he will walk on it full-time again. He seems to reserve four-paw use for maximum leverage when wrestling his brother. After months of ho-humming, I finally took Pat the Terrierman's advice and bought some Fish-Flex to have on-hand just in case things like cut pads look like they may become infected.
Gimcrack #1: Way back when we visited Denise + Steve in Flagstaff back in January, Steve asked me if I had heard Friday Night in San Francisco, a mostly live album by Al Di Meola, John McLaughlin, and Paco de Lucia -- which as All-Music states "catches all three players at the peaks of their quite formidable powers." It is, frankly, pretty amazing as a live, acoustic guitar album -- so cool, in fact that it has its own Wikipedia page.
As folks know, I like to listen to podcasts on my subway commute -- and listen to (primarily) PRI's Global Hit. While I had owned the album for some time, I only recently heard PRI's podcast about Le Trio Joubran's (then) new album Randana. The trio is distinctive because a) they are brothers, b) they all play the oud, and c) the youngest brother, Wissam, is also a luthier and made all three of their instruments. In this podcast, though, Samir (the oldest brother) describes the influence Friday Night had had on him and how it had inspired him to try and recreate that album's electricity in his work with his brothers. Randana is great -- but after just a couple of listens, I would say that their newest album, Majaz, has perhaps even more of the spirit of Friday Night to it.
And while Le Trio Joubran are really great, I was actually reminded of Friday Night because I heard another great live album recently, Ojos de Brujo's Techarí Live. As the link tells you, the album features a fabulous, not-at-all-reggae version of Bob Marley's 'Get Up, Stand Up.'
And if I haven't mentioned them recently, my two other favorite live albums of all time would be Gilberto Gil's Acoustic and the incredible concert album 1, 2, 3 Soleils featuring the three superstars of Algerian rai Khaled, Faudel, and Rachid Taha.
Gimcrack#2: we are having brunch tomorrow with Emily, Tom, and their new son, Sam. (Emily is famous here at The Regal Vizsla for requesting more ballet -- for folks looking to test their ballet trivia knowledge, I would recommend this quiz at the New York City Ballet. Don't say I don't care, Em!) It will be the first time meeting Sam for me, so hopefully the experience won't be too traumatic for him. We'll probably leave the boys at home even though it might actually be better for Sam to get a few vizsla kisses.