Sunday, August 30, 2009

Almost 4 month update

I'm still here, alive and kicking. Twitter and Facebook have pretty much taken over for blogging for me. You can follow me on Twitter @sithndman or on Facebook at .

A lot has been going on here. Kids out of school, the oldest graduated High School, kids back to school and Corey gone to Kennesaw State University. I'm working myself into better condition than I've been in many years, running 15 miles or so per week and still cutting trees on the weekends.

The BMW has been a lot of fun this summer, but is out of commission right now. Seems that a seal has failed in the rear drive which made itself known by soaking the rear brake shoes to the point where they no longer provided any stopping power. I have the parts ordered and they should be here by mid-week, so I'll have the motorcycle back on the road soon!

Haven't run the dogs since the II, but that will start up again soon. We're planning on going to the WRA nats in October and I'm judging in November in California, that's about all we have planned so far.

We're actually going to get a vacation this year. I'm taking the girls down to Cocoa Beach in a couple of weeks (they'll be on Fall break) and Ruthanna will fly down and join us after her Tuesday evening class. Haven't been to the beach since 2007, so I'm jonesing pretty bad and really can't wait.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

The inanity of it all

It really just makes me shake my head. Clayton County School System lost their accreditation a couple of years ago for multiple reasons including school board interference with day to day operation of the schools. Another problem cited was a so-called teachers unions actions. So what shows up on the homepage of the Atlanta rag? A story about how said 'teachers union' are protesting the hire of the new Clayton County School System. All six members. Six. Yeah, I said six. Yes, this makes front page news.

Here's the money shot. A quote by the chairman of the teachers union: "'I don’t like the fact that he’s from California,' said John Trotter, chairman of MACE. 'They don’t know the people. Clayton County likes their home folks.'" Yeah, that's a hell of a reason to oppose the assignment of a new superintendent.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Everett in profile

Taken with my iPhone.

Good dogs

We've attended a couple of coursing events over the past month that have really been enjoyable. First was the Whippet National, this year held in Atlanta. Coursing was at Chattahoochee Hills Farm in Fairburn, GA, a huge, beautiful spot with multiple fields suitable for coursing. What a nice treat that turned out to be! Most everyone was in a good mood and had a good time. Dogs didn't do so great with Everett taking an NBQ. Of course, Ev is seven and Lobo will be seven this month making them among the older of the Field Champions. They still hang with the younger dogs pretty well!

This past weekend we travelled to Boswell, OK, a beautiful spot in the middle of nowhere south Oklahoma for the ASFA International Invitational. I love Don and Sally's place! It's something like 40 acres, footing is wonderful and hospitality can't be beat! The bad news for this weekend was the rain that came in Wednesday night and Thursday morning dropping something like 6-8 inches on the grounds. This made for a soppy mess when people pulled in Friday night and Saturday morning for the trial. We all got in and set up well on Saturday, but another 2-4 inches of rain during the day made the entire grounds a quagmire. Most everyone had to get pulled out with Don's tractor. What a mess!

Lobo was entered in FCh and finished just out of the ribbons both days. Lobo really isn't a warm weather dog, but in the Winter he's usually unstoppable! We had Everett entered in Veterans for the first time at this II and he proceeded to win the Veterans stake both Saturday and Sunday. He lost BoB on Saturday pretty obviously to a wonderful dog named Bonzer. On Sunday, the competition came down to Everett and Vidalia, a little bitch owned by Deb and Maurice Bahm. They tied a couple of times again after the FCh was knocked out in the first run. Vidalia ended up taking BoB Sunday over Everett. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed, but I know that running as well as he did and hanging with a Whippet of Vidalia's caliber is nothing to sneeze at! Additionally, Maurice and Deb are sportsmen, true competitors but gracious in victory and defeat. I'm happy to call them friends and happy that we could share those run-offs.

These were a couple of really nice, relaxing trials. The people I think made the biggest difference as there wasn't the petty BS that we've had to put up with so much in the past locally. The Region 4 people did a great job with the II and made it a friendly, stress-free experience.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

As long as Blondie doesn't leave...

This is fine with me. I've seen some stuff that no one should ever see here, as well as some kick ass bands.

Monday, April 13, 2009


I'll have to eat some. Last week, I stated that I didn't think that the US had the cojones to take care of the pirates holding a US citizen hostage on the high seas. President Obama proved me wrong, issuing the go order giving Navy SEALs the ability to neutralize the threat. My highest praise to the US Navy and the SEAL team that took care of the problem!

Today I read that President Obama has relaxed restrictions on Cuba. Not a bad idea if you ask me. Decades of isolation have done nothing to weaken Cuban dictator Fidel Castro so perhaps a change of pace will do Cuba some good.

Yeah, I said that...

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Probably not a sign of things to come...

Remember, this is a private company, not the .gov. When I first saw the story of this hijacking this morning, I figured this would end somehow without any direct intervention from the Federal Government. No details quite yet, but my bet is that the members of the crew kicked some ass and wrestled control of the ship back from the pirates. I don't know if we as a country have the resolve to even stand up to these pettiest of petty criminals.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

No snow

Talk of freezing temperatures and possible snow in April? In Georgia? Huh? Not so much when all is said and done. It's cold, especially after we've been spoiled by a bunch of 70 degree weeks. It's been wet for the past few weeks here as well thankfully. I hear we're out of the drought, but to tell you the truth, I bet it'll be back before long. Better to keep conserving and not fall into the trap that we have unlimited resources. Not traditional "consumptionist" ideology, but I'm a firm believer in resource management.

The AWC Nationals are in Atlanta this week and we had the ASFA coursing last Sunday. Everett and Lobo ran, both finished one point out of the ribbons. Not bad for a couple of hounds who are damn close to being veterans. As a matter of fact, Everett's entered in Veterans for the II in May. Should be fun!

Friday, March 27, 2009

SBF weekend

As coined by my lovely bride. :) After the roofers got done on Friday, I was able to escape to south Georgia and Laura Walker State Park for a couple of days of guy stuff. Fishing, boating and golfing ensued, interspersed with a couple of adult beverages and some really damn good food! Sunday was a lot of fun when we headed south down near the Okefenokee swamp to shoot sporting clays at Okefenokee Sporting Clays. I haven't had that much fun for so few dollars in quite a long time! Those folks have quite the setup going on down there! If you're in to shooting clays, make this a destination.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The roof, the roof, it's not on fire

I'm on vacation this week so that we can get some much needed work done to the house. This is something that I just won't tackle myself since it's so time consuming and I just don't trust myself to put a roof on my on home. :) Anyway, the word was that work was to begin on Monday, but since Atlanta had over 3 inches of rain Saturday, Sunday and Monday, they weren't able to begin work until today. Now that work has begun though, it's proceeding at breakneck speed. The interior guys came in this morning and scraped the kitchen ceiling of all the nasty popcorn that was sprayed when that room was constructed. They got done about 1:30 and took off, promising to be back and be done tomorrow. They still have to put a textured (not popcorn and not stiple) ceiling in the kitchen, paint the living room ceiling, paint the master bath ceiling and re-popcorn the garage. The roof guys showed at about three and are still at it. So far, they've stripped about 2/3 of the roof of the old shingles and I think are beginning to lay down the felt underlayment. They promise to be done tomorrow as well. Here's hoping! In the meantime, I'm taking this opportunity to clean and re-organize the garage. It's slow going, but I'll get there eventually. We just have way too much stuff! Anyone need some whippet size wire drop pin crates? How about Verikennals, small whippet sized? Let me know and I can send pictures.

All this is really getting in the way of my fun, let me tell you! :) Me and my buddies have had a camping trip planned for about three months. That trip is supposed to start tomorrow, but if the work around here isn't done, I probably will be joining them a little late. I just don't want to leave and the work not be done yet.

The good news? All this work is being covered by our homeowners insurance! This is the first claim I've ever made on homeowners (hail damage to the roof and subsequent water damage) and I couldn't be happier! Didn't have to squabble with the adjustor or the mortgage company about the cost of getting the funds. It's been quite a pleasant experience.

Well, let's hope that the work is done well and done soon!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Proving the GA Legislature still has it's head up it's ...

Georgia is one of three, yes three, states where you can only buy packaged alcohol six days a week. Every year a bill is submitted to allow voters to decide whether their municipalities will allow Sunday sale of alcohol and every year that bill gets lots of attention. Attention from the news media, attention from the pulpit and attention from the general public. Seems that public sentiment always leans towards allowing the people to decide, but try to sell that to the legislature. This year is no different.

Bandwagon issues get lots of attention though, and usually sail right through. Take for example octo-mom and her brood. Don't worry about that happening here in Georgia, no sir! The legislature will tell you how many embryos you can implant.

Choice is what it comes down to. Obviously the Georgia legislators think that their constituents are just not intelligent enough to decide what is best for themselves.

Throw the bums out.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Too young

Pylon guitarist Randy Bewley passed away last week. Pylon is one of the pioneers of the Athens, GA music movement during the late '70's and early '80's, the movement that shaped post-punk, new wave and pop music in the United States. This was the music that shaped my musical tastes from the early '80's on.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Dog's 10 Commandments

1. My life is likely to last 10-15 years. Any separation from you is likely to be painful.

2. Give me time to understand what you want of me.

3. Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being.

4. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainment, but I have only you.

5. Talk to me. Even if I don't understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me.

6. Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it.

7. Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I could hurt you, and yet, I choose not to bite you.

8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long, or my heart might be getting old or weak.

9. Please take care of me when I grow old. You too, will grow old.

10. On the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can't bear to watch. Don't make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there, because I love you so.

h/t to xavier

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I did say I'd blog more...

But didn't guarantee the quality of the content.

I've been sick since Sunday, leading to the dearth of posts. I'm trying to find the groove again and hope to be back soon.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

"I pledge"...

I pledge to be an individual. To not follow the Hollywood douchebags who try think celebrity = wisdom. To fight socialism.

This video earns the 'Nope' seal from me today...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

iPhone love

As I've written here before, I believe the iPhone to be the best cell phone I've ever used. I started out with Nokia phones and kept with simple Nokia phones until I got my iPhone. I loved Nokia, they seemed bulletproof, had great sound and grabbed even the weakest signal. I tried out a Motorola Razr, but was totally disappointed in it's performance. My kids have had numerous brands of phones from Motorola to Samsung and I just haven't seen much quality.

When I got the iPhone, it took a little getting used to. Speeds weren't all that great and the firmware seemed a bit...quirky, I guess would be the best way to put it. One thing that I noticed was with 3G turned off, I got the best signal reception I had ever gotten, even beating the various Nokia models I had used. Notice that I had 3G turned off. Until the first week of January, AT&T's 3G network was non-existant past just a few miles away from downtown. I coped, though, using the EDGE network for data when I wasn't around a wifi connection. According to this article, most of the iPhone's speed issues could be traced to AT&T's network.

BAM, the week after Christmas, I'm messing with the iPhone. Hmm, let me just check out the range of the 3G network. WOW! We're pretty much covered up with 3G around here now! I love the increased speed. The iPhone, while always a thrill to use, became even better and has fulfilled all my expectations now.

Monday, January 26, 2009


Please vote on this gun issue question with USA Today. It will only take a few seconds of your time. Then pass the link on to all the folks you know. Hopefully these results will be published later this month. This upcoming year will become critical for gun owners with the Supreme Court accepting the District of Columbia case against the right for individuals to bear arms.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Help out a friend to sportsmen

Go read on Dan's blog about Dutch Salmon's son and their tribulations over the past little while. I don't know Dutch, but know of him quite a bit. He's a renowned author, houndsman and hunter.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Cool technology

Apple has filed a patent application for what looks like a huge advancement in UI. An ambient sound sensor will detect the presence and level of sound in your environment and automatically adjust the volume of your electronics accordingly.

See for more information

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Is one of Obama's key appointees a PETA radical?

Cass Sunstein, chosen by President Obama to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, could jeopardize your ability to hunt, eat meat or have pets. According to this article, Sunstein "has a secret aim to push a radical animal-rights agenda in the White House. Sunstein supports outlawing sport hunting, giving animals the legal right to file lawsuits, and using government regulations to phase out meat consumption."

If you're at all concerned, please speak up.

h/t Steve Bodio's Querencia


Just piss me off. For the majority of the years I've been involved in lure coursing, I've had to suffer a certain fool who likes to stir up all kinds of crap, break rules, generally cause trouble then turns around and plays the victim. I'm over it. I've decided that Dan's gift says it best. So, I'll post it once again.


Thanks to the 4000th visitor to this little blog, registered this morning. I'll post more details later.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A gift from my friend...

Dan, aka Shot on Site, aka dyed in the wool pinko...

Picture was taken while we were both in Hollister, CA this past summer. That finger is what I think... :)


See Tuesday 1/13? Many of those visits are thanks to Tam linking to the Obama Test. If you haven't yet, please go read View From The Porch. It's one of my faves.

{edit}LMAO, it's a Tam-a-lanche, not a Ta-a-lanche. I wouldn't even know what that is!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Well, he is an embarrassment to me...

I'm an embarrassment to Barack!

I only scored 18 on the Obama Test

Friday, January 09, 2009

Update on the hounds

We haven't had too much to brag about regarding the hounds lately, mostly because we just haven't been running them that much. I got some great news in my email the other day that Lobo has finished his LCM 6! We're extremely proud of the Little Buddy!

Dinner and a Show

Like the article says,
“If you have $20 in your pocket, do you go somewhere where you can just get food or do you go somewhere you can get entertained as well?"

Hooters, ever the establishment of good taste, is making money in a weak economy. I'm not a huge fan of their wings, but have to admit that I've never had a bad meal, or a bad time at Hooters. Sex sells.

Thursday, January 08, 2009


Testing Twitterfeed. Keep your fingers crossed.

I'm digitally worried about our analog country

I became worried about the direction of our country when Obama was elected. I worry about my right to bear arms. I worry about my taxes. I worry about the deficit. I worry about a lot of things.

Didn't think that I needed to worry about the switch from an analog to digital TV signal, but Obama says I need to. Thought the (dot)gov and TV networks were taking care of that. You can't listen to the radio, watch TV, read a newspaper or news magazine without being warned that sometime in February the OTA TV signal will switch to digital.

To borrow a line from John Stossel, Give me a break.

A worthy bailout?

Here's a bailout I could probably get "behind"! ROTFLMAO!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Just wondering...

When fuel prices were rising, and rising rapidly, the price of everything from airline fares to milk rose along with it. I understand the economics behind prices rising as the price of raw materials rises.

What's the deal now that fuel is 1/3 to 1/2 as much as the max? Food prices have not dropped, airline fares and the special little surcharges put on extra baggage are still in place.

Just wondering.

Monday, January 05, 2009

The New Year

Happy New Year to you all!

Here are some of my goals for this year
Continue getting fit - I dropped about 30 pounds over the past couple of years... And put about 12 of that back on. It's time to finally finish the work I started back in 2007 and lose the last bit of weight I want.

Improve eating habits - goes along with ^. Not really hard to do, just have to ween myself from a little bit of junk food.

Get more ink - Love the tattoos I have already, but I need to finish the one big piece I have (Sweeney needs some background) and I'd like to get started on a sleeve for the other arm.

Take advantage of more educational opportunities - In general, I'm going to get back to working on my IT degree. More specifically, I'm going to work on my VMware certifications.

Love my family - Pretty easy to do! :)

Smile - I find that I'm a little to serious at times. I just want to loosen up a bit and have a good time!

Back up my data - Um, Yeah. I have 99% of the solution, just need to get it wrapped up and implemented. With all my music converted or bought as mp3's and so many of my photos in jpegs, I'm crazy to walk around with them only on my laptop!

Clean up my music collection - I've got a good bit that needs to be gone through and organized.

Travel - Maybe just a little bit. R and I didn't really take a vacation last year together, so it's something I'd like to do. She wants to see the Grand Canyon again and I wouldn't mind either.

Blog more - Easier said than done, but I'm going to try. I promise! I'm really interested in dogs (of course), concealed carry laws and gun control laws in general, technology and politics. Whew!

Twitter more - micro blogging is cool. If you don't, and you enjoy blogging, check it out!

Stay in touch with friends - For sure. I'm lucky that I've kept really, really good friends since childhood. Just the way it is for us. I see a few on a regular basis, but others not so much. Got to do better.

That's it for now. Maybe if I get to 3/4 of what I have here I'll be doing good. I hope everyone has a great 2009!!!