Saturday, April 4, 2009

My Seminar Nuts and Bolts of Good Writing

I will hold a one-day seminar Saturday, April 18 at TCCC. We will discuss exciting beginnings, how to hold a reader's interest throughout the story, development of characters and much more. The workshop hours are 9:00 - 12:00 and 1:00 - 4PM. Bring your lunch. You must register with TCCC Continuing Education at 835-4313. The fee is $35.00.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Link to a chuckle

For a pick-you-up in these depressing times, go to my friend's link, Jack Cassady, and his cartoon blog. Nice to have you aboard Cass.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Please don't touch my dog.

I was recently reminded of a show my Yogi and I attended in Canada. (see pic of Yogi). An Old English Sheepdog takes a lot of precise grooming before entering the show ring. Every hair in place. A young boy and his mom came by us with Yogi on the grooming table. He came straight over, hand out to touch that mound of full, cottony hair.
I asked him to note touch him and why. I promised after showing he could hug and pet him all he wanted. But after he won that class the boy was ringside for his promised hug. However we had to go back in the ring for Best of Breed so no touch yet.
He won that at had to go directly into the Herding Group which he won. Again the young boy was ringside patiently waiting. I asked his mom if they could stay just a bit more and she said sure, her son would not be happy until he could put his arms around Yogi.
Yogi won the group and had to go right into the ring for the final judging that day, the Best in Show ring. He won Best in Show and was whisked away for pictures.
After pictures the boy was there and was allowed to hug and pet Yogi and I think Yogi was ready for a hug from a little boy himself. I sent them home with one of Yogi's ribbons and a promise for a copy of a picture to be mailed later.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Big One

For my followers who love dogs. If you thought Westminster dog show with 2500 dogs entered is big, think again. Starting next week Crufts in Birmington England is a three day show with total of 28,000 dogs. Handlers and dogs from America are frequent winners. In 2007 it was the Tibetan Terrier and last year it was the Australian Shepherd. At some point I am sure much will be televised on Animal Planet. At the end of the show, one dog will be crowned the best of 28,000.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Westminster Kennel Club

Thank you Glenda and Brenda Kay for your comments. The Best in Show was probably a shock to many in the dog show public. This dog, a 10 year old dog, a Sussex Spaniel, is so rare that I rarely see t hem at a show. And it is the first time one has won the show. The entry of 2500 was packed with top dogs in many breeds with big bucks to compaign them, sometimes entered at a Saturday show on the west coast and Sunday on the East coast because the judges may be more favorable for a big win. Because I judge Poodles, every year at Westminster week, I am invited, as is every judge in the country who judges Poodles, with an embossed invitation, to a party at the Sonoffs who live in upper Manhattan. They are filthy rich. They own top winning Poodles. Of course, I never go.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Best In Show

I agree with you, Glenda, that little Beagle felt he was as big as any dog in that ring and he would tell that judge "hey, look at me." We call it asking for it. Beagles were the first breed we bred and exhibited. I love the little guys but they need fields to run.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

The premier dog show, the Westminster Kennel Club show will be televised on USA Monday and Tuesday evenings. Only AKC champions may be entered, and the top 5 winners in the country in 2008 will be allowed to enter early. The balance of the limit of 2500 entries will fill soon after that. Unfortunately not all the breeds will be represented but given the potential for nasty weather, and the expense of traveling and room and board in NYC, an amazing number of dedicated dog lovers will be there to show, with pride, their special entry.
Watch for the Pointer, the English Setter and the Pug. A breed new to AKC recognition and one that will be entered at Westminster is the dog de bordeaux. A puss only a mother could love. Oh well, to each his own.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Possom Drop

I just found this picture from the famous New Year's Eve Possom Drop at the Citgo station in Brasstown. My friend and I attended that year. It was packed as shown here...over 1500 people from Ga. S.C., Tenn and N.C. and farther. It was a blast. Hot cocoa and cider available free all evening. At a few seconds before midnight the count down began as the possom, in his gilded cage, was slowly lowered to the ground. The evening concluded with a spectacular fireworks. Only in the mountains.

Mozilla Firefox

I have run into a problem with ebay. When writing for help IE wouldn't work. I downloaded Mozilla Firefox and that works like a charm. Once you download it you can use either one as a browser. You can go back and forth with no problem. I just thought it was worth a mention if sometime you are tearing your hair out trying to make something that should work but doesn't. If I can be of further help on this, just send me an email

Monday, January 26, 2009

Contributing Writer

The Show Ring Online, an online magazine for dog show enthusiasts, has invited me to contribute articles on the handling of dogs in the ring. My tips will be offered by a judge, that person on the inside of the ring, for better success of taking home a winner at the end of the day/weekend. Newbies to dog showing need to be aware of ring procedure, dress and presentation of their dog.
It is believed that those who begin the sport of exhibiting will fall away within five years. They become disillusioned when they consistently don't win. Of course, it is important to start with a quality dog but even that dog may not win time after time without skillful handling. I hope this article will help those new to the sport and particularly to our young people who learn Junior Showmanship.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Home from the Frozen North

One would think a judging assignment outdoors in sunny Florida would be a respite from our below 0 weather. The day started at a frigid 28. But, the sun did come out and by lunch we could take off our heavy coats and continue the day in the next layer. 4 for me. A nice entry. Many quality dogs. I saw a lot of old friends from when we lived in that area many years ago.
However, the reason I am accepting few assignments is the problem with traveling. The flight from Atlanta to Asheville was delayed for 3 hours. I got there after dark. It was snowing hard with high wind. Took a room close to the airport and drove, maybe 200 yards, to Ruby Tuesday's for a delicious dinner. The next morning I was so glad to be home.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Comment by Sam Hoffer

Sorry Sam I should have thanked you for your comment on our stay here during the big one. The Poms were a little prissy of getting their little feet wet but Bunny, our 40 lb. Keeshond truly found the snow to be a lot of fun.

Isn't it Lovely

Thanks for your comment. That surely was one winter story we will always remember. We were 3 days in our little vacation with no electricity. We went into town knowing the storm would hit soon. The stores were being stripped of propane lamps, stoves and heaters that didn't work too well. The local am radio WKRK stayed on all night telling of where we might get food around the county or roads closed or cleared. They did a great service.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Thanks Nancy

Thanks Nancy for your comment on my snow picture. I really hustled out there to take the pic before it was all gone. That may be my Christmas card for 2009.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Sun on the Snow

Somehow my picture did not go with my post. Let's try again.

Isn't it Lovely?

The sun has just come out and it will probably be gone by noon. I remember back around 1994 when we were here for the big one...26". Bunny, our Keeshond, trotted across the porch as if she were on solid ground. Suddenly she disappered into the mass of snow. The it became fun for her as she jumped and jumped all around. Our 2 Poms had to be carried out to the van where they could do their business under the van.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Collie Lover

Thanks Sam for your note about your father-in-law reading my book. We dog lovers lap up everything in print about our faithful and beautiful dogs.

My Journal

I am using my blog as a journal, mostly about our dogs. Someday I may want to write a book about our years with our dogs. Unlike my book just out, I will concentrate more on each dog and of their lives and antics within the last twelve years starting with my Australian Shepherd, Fanci.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Equine Second Chance

Kathy and I visited the farm with sixty abused or abandoned horses. We took a bag of apples which was appreciated by the horses. We met Chance, the namesake for the farm and Chief a paint turned over to the farm by his owners. They said they couldn't afford to have him treated after he got tangled in barbed wire. A handsome bay 17 hands high will go to W. Virginia as a jumper early this month. The pictures of this horse before coming to Second Chance were shocking. He was all bones.

Warren and I plan to attend the Lippizan Stallions at WCU on January 15. We never thought we'd have the opportunity in the mountains.