Wednesday, February 22, 2017

She Named the Dog Clytoris?

Caresse Crosby, inventor of the modern bra, and her whippet Clytoris, 1922.

From her Wikipedia entry:
Caresse Crosby (born Mary Phelps Jacob; April 20, 1891 – January 26, 1970) was the first recipient of a patent for the modern bra, an American patron of the arts, publisher, and the "literary godmother to the Lost Generation of expatriate writers in Paris." She and her second husband, Harry Crosby, founded the Black Sun Press, which was instrumental in publishing early works of many authors who would later become famous, including Ernest Hemingway, Archibald MacLeish, Henry Miller, Anaïs Nin, Kay Boyle, Charles Bukowski, Hart Crane, and Robert Duncan.

In 1915, she married Richard R. Peabody, another blue blooded Bostonian whose family had arrived in New Hampshire in 1635. They had two children, but following Richard's service in World War I, he became a drunk who loved to watch buildings burn. She met Harry Crosby at a picnic in 1920, and they had sex within two weeks. Their public relationship scandalized proper Boston society. Two years later, Richard granted her a divorce, and Harry and Mary were married. They immediately left for Europe, where they joined the Lost Generation of American expatriates. They embraced a bohemian and decadent lifestyle, living off Harry's trust fund of $12,000 a year (or about $167,000 in today's dollars), had an open marriage with numerous ongoing affairs, a suicide pact, frequent drug use, wild parties, and long trips abroad. At her husband's urging, Mary took the name Caresse in 1924. In 1925, they began publishing their own poetry as Éditions Narcisse in exquisitely printed, limited-edition volumes. In 1927, they re-christened the business as the Black Sun Press.

In 1929, one of her husband's affairs culminated in his death as part of a murder-suicide or double suicide. His death was marked by scandal as the newspapers speculated wildly about whether Harry shot his lover or not. Caresse returned to Paris, where she continued to run the Black Sun Press. With the prospect of war looming, she left Europe in 1936 and married Selbert Young, an unemployed, alcoholic actor 16 years her junior. They lived on a Virginia plantation they rehabilitated outside Washington, D.C., until she divorced him. She moved to Washington, D.C. and began a long-term love affair with black actor-boxer Canada Lee, despite the threat of miscegenation laws. She founded Women Against War and continued, after World War II, to try to establish a Center for World Peace at Delphi, Greece. When rebuffed by Greek authorities, she purchased Castello di Rocca Sinibalda, a 15th-century castle north of Rome, which she used to support an artists' colony. She died of pneumonia related to heart disease in Rome, in 1970.

Nine Pound Hammer

Happy in the field. All 9 pounds of her.

Coffee and Provocation

An Ancient Cat Hair Rug
What is believed to be the world's oldest rug is Egyptian, made of cat hair, and once carried a mummified human foot. It's now in Florida (of course).

South Koreans Now Live Longer Than Americans
By 2030, average life expectancy for Korean women is expected to exceed 90 years.  In the U.S., we are far behind, and life expectancy here is actually decreasing due to alcohol and drug use, rising heart disease, and alarming rates of obesity, homicide, and infant and maternal mortality.

Get Active to Preserve and Protect America
ISIS is not coming for your health care  or your Social Security. Al Qaeda is not going to poison your water or sell off your land. You're thinking of Congress and this President. Here's how and where you can join the resistance; just put in your zip code!

Suicide Sex Marsupial
Just like what it sounds like.

Pale Problems
Vitamin D supplements may prevent millions of winter infections.

Welfare for Trump Voters
Federal anti-poverty programs lift more blue-collar whites out of poverty than any other group.

Small Balls and Big Egos
In 1928, defending Olympic field hockey champs Britain withdrew from the games, afraid of the possible embarrassment of losing to one of its colonies, the debuting Indian team. The British team did not enter Olympic field hockey competition until after Indian independence in 1948, when they lost to India 4-0 at home in London.

Killing the Oldest Animal on Earth
The oldest animal on earth (c. 1499 – 2006) was given then name of Ming. It was an ocean quahog clam (Arctica islandica), that was dredged up off the coast of Iceland in 2006, and whose 507-year old age age was calculated, upon killing, by counting the annual growth lines in the clam's shell.

The Art of the Con
Two con men sold a fake painting for €1.5 million, only to find out all the money they received was counterfeit.

Good Pizza
The founder of Little Caesars pizza paid Rosa Parks’ rent for over 10 years. When Mike Ilitch learned the 81-year-old civil rights activist had been robbed and beaten in her Detroit home in 1994, he moved her to a safer apartment, established a trust to cover her housing expenses, and continued paying her rent every single month until she died in 2005.

Chicago Rush Hour, 1909

Straight-8 Bugatti

Jean Bugatti with the Bugatti Royale 'Esders' Roadster, 1932. A straight-8 with a 779-cubic inch engine. Click picture to enlarge.  Real car porn.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Liberté, Égalité, Falconré

From The Washington Post: Terrorists are building drones. France is destroying them with eagles.

Under French military supervision, four golden eagle chicks hatched last year atop drones — born into a world of terror and machines they would be bred to destroy.

The eagles — named d'Artagnan, Athos, Porthos and Aramis — grew up with their nemeses. They chased drones through green grass that summer, pecking futilely at composite shells as seen in Sky News footage. They were rewarded with meat, which they ate off the backs of the drones.

When the eagles were ready — this month — d'Artagnan launched screeching from a military control tower across a field.

The bird covered 200 meters in 20 seconds, slamming into a drone, then diving with the wreckage into the tall grass.

"The eagles are making good progress," said the French air force's commander of a program that adapts the ancient art of falconry to the threats of unmanned flight.

Zeppelin Construction, 1935

Those are some serious ladders!

Happy in the Field

Where Do Dogs Come From?

Most dogs in America start off life in a precarious or interrupted ownership situation, with about half of these dogs passing through an animal shelter.

In April of 2015, Moore Information opinion research was commissioned to do a poll about Dog Ownership and Sources of Pet Dogs in the U.S. The poll was quite well done, with 1,500 live interviews of people age 18 and over, using land lines and cell phones.  The poll has a sampling error of +/- 3 percent, and a confidence interval of 95 percent.

So what did they find?

  • 44% of households own a dog. Of these households, 49 percent of Caucasians, 32 percent of African Americans, 42 percent of Hispanics, and 36 percent of "others" owned dogs. Total "non-Caucasian" dog ownership was 37 percent..
  • .
  • Of folks who have dogs, 58 percent had one dog, 26 percent had two dogs, 10 percent had three dogs, 3 percent had four dogs, and 4 percent had five or more dogs.
  • Most dogs do not come from commercial sources. 34 percent of dogs came from friends or neighbors, 26 percent came from an animal shelter, 5 percent had been found as strays, 3 percent had come from a rescue, 2 percent had come from a family member, and 2 percent had been pups born to another dog in the house. Only 22 percent of dogs were reported to come from a "small local breeder," with 7 percent from a pet store, and 3 percent from the "Internet".
  • A full 52 percent of folks had no idea where their dog had been as a puppy, signaling that MOST dogs are bounced about and do not end up with their original "puppy owner". Another 4 percent of puppies had come from an animal shelter, and 2 percent were found on the street as a stray. In short, 58 percent of all dogs started off life in a precarious or interrupted ownership situation, with about half of these dogs passing through an animal shelter.
  • Not reported on the PowerPoint from Moore Information, but stated elsewhere as a conclusion of this survey, is that Americans own approximately 89 million dogs -- a sum about 10 million higher than reported by previous researchers.

The Alternate Route is a Rough Ride

The road to alternative heaven is paved with alternative facts.

Rolling With the Muttniks

Monday, February 20, 2017

Presidential Dogs

It's President's Day. There have been a lot of terriers! Only a horrible person would not have a dog! Guess who?? The Mango Mussolini!

Homeland Security

Moxie patrols the yard even when inside. She doesn't have a relax button unless I tell her to bench; then she'll settle down for as long as two hours. She needs to be told "that'll do."

Terrierism in Sweden

Sweden's terrierist problem is out of control.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Look Who Showed Up in a Field Magazine Tweet!

Two of the four dogs in this tweet from The Field magazine are my wee psychos. A link to the gallery of terrier pics from The Field magazine web site can be found here

Faulkner's Feist

I find that some paragraphs need shattering.

A case in point is this one from William Faulkner's The Bear in which he writes of the little bear-hunting terrier.

The words are all Faulkner, but the carriage returns are my own.

Apologies if the addition of space to the text is an irritation, but this is such an intricate piece of work done in such dense rhetorical wood,  that I fear the good bits may get lost if presented too quickly as a whole.

..[A]nd a little dog,

nameless and mongrel and many-fathered,


yet weighing less than six pounds,

who couldn't be dangerous

because there was nothing anywhere much smaller,

not fierce

because that would have been called just noise,

not humble

because it was already too near the ground to genuflect,

and not proud

because it would not have been close enough

for anyone to discern what was casting that shadow,

and which didn't even know it was not going to heaven

since they had already decided it had no immortal soul,

so that all it could be was brave

even though they would probably call that too

just noise.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Car Jacking: The Continuing Crisis

Raccoon Hitches a Ride on the Restaurant Truck

This raccoon hitched a ride from Rosslyn to Falls Church, Virginia (my house is located between the two points) this morning.

He got off when the driver was notified, was looked over by an animal control officer, and then was released to go on his way.

The War on Cats to Save a Species

The Heath Hen lost the war and is now extinct thanks to hunting, fire, disease, feral cats, fox, and development.

In the end, they killed cats in droves to protect the birds, as this gibbet suggests, but still they kept coming until the Heath Hen was no more.

But is that all of the story? I argue it is not. The Heath Hen, after all, was not a species, but a subspecies of the Greater Prairie Chicken, which still exists. If anyone wants to "reintroduce" the Heath Hen back to Massachusetts, or any of the states with scrubby heath barrens along the North American coast from New Hampshire to northern Virginia, all they have to do is have the right habitat and cover free of feral cats, fox, dogs, hawks, coyotes, bobcats, and other predators. Good luck!

Fish on Friday

In Iraqi Kurdistan, a restaurant called ‘Trump Fish" has opened offering bottom-feeder common carp prepared in traditional Kurdish style. The fish are freshly caught from the nearby Duhok reservoir and slowly baked near an open fire for over 1.5 hours before being served whole.

Long and Low and Dry as a Bone

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Kennel Club Horse Show

Let's Do to Horses What We Did to Shepherds

One of my friends in the U.K. has bird-dogged me to a Belgium blog at which the German Shepherd dog has been morphed from what it once looked like to what it looks like now in the show ring.

See below.

The blog's clever author then went on to morph a horse to show what that animal would look like if we did to horses what we have done to German Shepherds.

See below.

Anyone want to be a Jockey on this one?

Pass It On

Trump is Burning

How fast has it come undone??  Obama is still on VACATION.

This so-called "President," who did not win the popular vote, and who Time magazine has painted as a Pinocchio easily manipulated by Steve Bannon, is being openly mocked by world leaders even as the leadership of his own party is curling away in abject terror.

Millions of people have already taken to the streets in protest, and Congressional phone lines are ringing off the hook to the point that the phones are being unplugged.

Members of Congress from both parties are terrified to hold meetings in their districts -- Republicans because they cannot defended the indefensible, and Democrats because they have not yet physically set the White House on fire.

Trump's immediate staff is worried they will lose their jobs within the month, while Trump's National Security Advisor has been fired, and three close associates are under investigation for possible treason.

At least 20 national security agencies are investigating the Trump Administration for bribery, conflicts, and manipulation by foreign agents and banks, while the CIA and FBI say they are finding everything that they can check in the infamous "British Dossier" is coming up true,  Rumors swirl that the Russians have both video and audio tape of Trump with prostitutes, and that this tape is from multiple locations on multiple dates. The specificity of this charge, and the fact that is comes from MI-5, is frightening.

The burn rate and trajectory here is like nothing we have ever seen.  It is unsustainable, and rather than slow down, the vortex of dysfunction seems to be speeding up, with Trump's poll numbers in free fall, and the actionable lies stacking up like cord wood.

The core problem is Trump himself.  He is a sociopath and a malignant narcissist who has surrounded himself with people so eager to have their 15-seconds of fame, that they are willing to sell America to the Russians, poison our rivers, and see thousands of American go bankrupt and die from lack of health care.

America will not put up with it. We will have our nation back, and it will be sooner rather than later.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Pretenders and Fantasists at Westminster

What you see, in the picture above, is true inbred thinking.

This German Shepherd -- the winner of the Westminster Dog Show -- is standing on its own hock -- a serious structural defect caused by a deformed back and hip structure.

This is a herding dog, that has never seen a sheep, being celebrated by people who have spent a lifetime ruining dogs, and who have never once wondered why the U.S. Secret Service will not use a U.S.-bred German Shepherd to do anything.

Max von Stephanitz suspected it might come to this.  Over a hundred years ago, the creator of the German Shepherd wrote:

"The breeding of Shepherd dogs must be the breeding of working dogs, this must always be the aim or we shall cease to produce working dogs.

In contradistinction to working and utility breeding is "sport" breeding, which produces a temporary advance but is always followed by deterioration, for it is not done for the sake of the DOG, nor does it make him more useful, it is done for the vanity of the breeder and the subsequent purchaser."

Of course, the deterioration of the German Shepherd was assured as soon as the dog was pulled into the show ring.  Look at the skeletal differences between true herding dogs and the wrecked American German Shepherd Dog.

Master Race to the Bottom

German Shepherd wins Westminster.  #PresidentSteveBannon so proud! #WestminsterDogShow

The Police State of North Dakota

All of Native American history in one photo.

New Kennel Club Standard: Dog Must Be Able To Actually Stand Without Assisstance

GSD bitch Cruaghaire Catoria was best of breed at Crufts in 2016.

No, this is not a joke. From the folks at Crufts:

With effect from 1 August 2016, the Characteristics clause of the Kennel Club Breed Standard for the German Shepherd Dog has been changed as follows (new wording is inside the asterixes):

Characteristics: Versatile working dog, balanced and free from exaggeration. ***Must be capable of standing comfortably and calmly, freely and unsupported in any way, in structural balance, whilst both rear pasterns are vertical.*** Attentive, alert, resilient and tireless with keen scenting ability.

This is being touted at DogWorld as "KC imposes tough measures," which pretty much summarizes what is wrong with the entire mind set of the show dog world. Requiring a top show dog to be able to actually stand without support is a "tough" standard!

But guess what? The show dog people are bawling about it. Again, from Dog World:
The German Shepherd judge at Crufts 2018 is having second thoughts about the appointment following the Kennel Club’s shake-up of the breed.

Nikki Farley – who is WUSV/GSD League British Regional Group chairman – said she was not sure that the KC could ‘break its contract’ with her that way.

“I have a contract and letters from them and nowhere there does it say anything about having to re-sit an examination,” she said.

“So I need to look at more detailed information and think very seriously about it.

“What the KC has done is horrible, but it hasn’t really surprised me.”

I have said it in the past,
and I will repeat it here:  It's time to shut down the Kennel Club.

It is the Kennel Club that mandates that dogs be bred in a closed registry system in which increasing levels of inbreeding are the inevitable byproduct.

It is the Kennel Club that green lights the standards which select for defect and which means that most members of some breeds suffer their whole lives.

It is the Kennel Club that credentials judges who have no idea of what they are doing because they know nothing about working dogs or even the basics of anatomy.

It is the Kennel Club that gives show dogs zero points for health, zero points for work, and zero points for temperament.

It is the Kennel Club that allows puppy mill dogs to be registered

It is the Kennel Club that refuses to allow any breed club to mandate health tests as a requirement for registration.

It is the Kennel Club that refuses to allow any breed club to mandate working tests as a requirement for registration.

It is the Kennel Club that refuses to allow any breed club to delay registration until a dog is an adult and is actually proven to look like the breed it is supposed to be.

The Kennel Club is not same faceless entity; it is run by people with names, and it time those people were brought up on charges for systematic abuse of man's best friend.

To be clear, what has occurred to dogs is real abuse, and it has not been an "accident" but part of a systematic and regimented plan that has predictably led to millions of dogs in long-term pain, early death, and endless misery.

It's time to shut it down.

Monday, February 13, 2017

At Westminster, Health and Work Get ZERO Points

The logo of the Westminster Dog Show features a pointer, but don't let that fool you, as honest field work is counted for ZERO points at Westminster.

 Health and temperament also get ZERO points at Westminster.

Westminster is NOT about breeding better dogs;  it's about propping up an artificial market in dogs with closed registries, potted fictional histories, and sniffing pretensions.

John Quincy Adams, Dog Delivery Man

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Darwin Day

DARWIN appeared on my toast this morning, and it turns out it's DARWIN DAY, his birthday. Mysterious!

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Coffee and Provocation

Don't Give Us Any New Ideas
A group of chimpanzees conspired, killed, and cannibalized an abusive former leader.

The Back  Yard Lions of Los Angeles
What do you do when the neighborhood wildlife eats your pet Alpaca?

Amazon Fire Tablet for $40
This is how I watch TV when the wife is watching something else.

Meat Eating Plants
How did some plants evolve to eat meat?

A Robo Barista?
Yep, it's come to that.

The Mango Mussolini's Paid Applauders
Donald Trump and his spokes-liars say over 3 million protesters were "paid." That's a total and transparent lie from a lying liar. But what's not a lie is that BogusPOTUS launched his presidential campaign in front of an "audience" of actors paid $50/each to wear campaign shirts and cheer wildly, and he brought a version of this paid cheering section with him into the presidency, bringing along staffers to applaud at key moments during his press conferences and other appearances, such as his disastrous speech in front of the CIA. Paid applauders is such an old scam, it has a name: a claque.

Massive Mayan Roads Found
In Guatemala, scientists have found a system of superhighways that once connected pyramidal complexes, which means the Maya civilization can be said to rival that of the Romans.

One for the Truck, the Car, the Pack
A 3-pack of Smith & Wesson black Tanto Tactical Knifes for $23.

Vincent Van Gogh's Terriermen

Vincent van Gogh painted this scene in 1889 and titled it "Two Diggers Among Trees," but it could just as well have been called The Terriermen.  Today, it is located in the Detroit Institute of Arts in Detroit, Michigan.

Public Lands are a Public Good: Protect Them

America’s 640 million acres of national public lands -- including our national forests and Bureau of Land Management lands -- provide hunting and fishing opportunities to millions of Americans. They represent the uniquely American values of freedom and adventure that are the envy of the world.

Public lands need to remain federal public lands. Why? Simple: Individual states do not have the ability to shoulder enormous costs associated with fighting wildfires, maintaining roads and trails, eradicating invasive species, and conducting habitat restoration on millions of acres. Without the money to maintain public lands, states would sell off vast chunks of land, at bargain rates, to the highest bidders, which would include billionaires who would close access, and foreign corporations that would strip America's lands for private profits parked overseas.

If You Kill Me, You Better Kill the Dogs Too

Because revenge is a bitch.

Christmas Ferns in the Woods

I found a nice lay up of Christmas Ferns (Polystichum acrostichoides) while walking in the woods last weekend. Christmas Ferns tolerate a wide range of water conditions, from dry to moist, and are evergreen. They lie pancake flat like this in the winter.