a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: 25 Things About Me, and 25 More

Thursday, January 29, 2009

25 Things About Me, and 25 More

SUMMARY: Another homework assignment from Facebook.

There's this thing going around on facebook. It's like a virus. You post 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about yourself, then you tag 25 other people to do the same. It can be pretty interesting. But you can't just open up facebook notes to the entire world like I can with TMH, so I don't post there.

Plus, I don't place the tagging onus on others; I like to let people volunteer. So this doesn't have to be in FB anyway.

But what the heck who doesn't like talking about herself? Perhaps it'll reveal something new to herself, some innermost meaning, desire, or strength that she hasn't previously discerned? But to post on Taj MuttHall, it's supposed to be dog related, according to the rules that she makes up as she goes along.

So here, forthwith, are 25 Random Dog Things About Me:
  1. Used to like cats more than dogs. Until we got our first dog.
  2. I'd rather play with my dogs than groom them. Where'd all this dog hair come from?
  3. Six of the eight dogs I've ever cohabited with have been mixed breeds.
  4. I've earned the equivalent of 11 agility championships: Jake in NADAC (twice over), CPE, USDAA (championship and performance), and ASCA (although almost all those legs duplicated the NADAC legs); Remington in NADAC; Tika in CPE and Bronze Ch in USDAA (triple ADCH).
  5. My Siberian Husky lived to be 17. She had one litter of puppies after we adopted her from the pound at about a year's age.
  6. I promoted and chaired the first-ever Bay Team CPE trial. A brief pause now for acceptance of thanks or curses.
  7. Herding dogs rock.
  8. I created my first web page in 1995, same year I started agility lessons. Taj MuttHall was fated to become!
  9. Kibble: Yes. Raw: No.
  10. Ideal dog: Not really sure. None of mine have been perfect, but I've loved them all and miss the ones that are gone.
  11. Minivans: Bleah. Only because I regularly haul dog butts around (MUTT MVR).
  12. Blue merles forever!
  13. For 2 years on wikipedia, I spearheaded the dog breed project to expand, edit, and standardize all dog-related articles--of which there were only a couple dozen when I started. I created the first version of the dog agility article. I created or edited virtually every dog-related article during that time. I have 85 dog-related photos there.  Go look. (User:Elf)
  14. I competed in 65 agility trials before I ever bought myself a canopy. Sun umbrellas and sheets worked fine. You canopy wimps don't know real roughing-it!
  15. I love teaching dogs tricks. Remington won a few small tricks contests. I'd like to spend more time teaching tricks to Tika and Boost but somehow instead spend it honing agility skills. For all that gets me.
  16. Wanna see my childhood dog scrapbook?
  17. Big yella dogs forever!
  18. Agility trials entered: 206. Runs run: 3,052. Qs earned: 1157. NQs for leaving the collar on: 2, both Jake, darn that long hair! Bars knocked between Jake and Remington: About 5. Bars knocked between Tika and Boost: Oh, good lord, why would you ask such a thing?
  19. My dogs have all learned to hold biscuits on their noses. Even the Siberian. Boost is still an apprentice. Remington could balance almost anything on his nose. I'm sure he thanked my friend's Nikki-dog regularly for first showing me that trick.
  20. I have a clicker in every room of my house, in my car, and in my yard. I rarely use them these days.
  21. My dogs sleep on my bed. I love it and I hate it.
  22. Number of times Jim Basic has used my dogs' before/after gambling statistics in his seminars as an example of how well his distance training works: Many.
  23. I had ugly experiences with AKC trainers with my first dog and I've learned so many more reasons to dislike AKC since then.
  24. Spaying and neutering dogs and cats should be encouraged but not required. Cosmetic docking and cropping of dogs' tails and ears should be illegal. 
  25. I take all my agility ribbons home and hang them on the wall.

And now, since there are parts of me that aren't attached at the hip to my dogs, here are 25 Random Nondog Things About Me:
  1. Found a human body once while backpacking with the Girl Scouts. They didn't have a badge for that.
  2. I played flute and took lessons for 12 years. I was almost pretty good. 
  3. That enabled me to march in the Cal Band, one of the great experiences of my life.
  4. I'd love to take voice lessons.
  5. Glen Campbell enthralled me in junior high school. They didn't have a badge for that, either.
  6. I was picked on terribly in the 3rd-6th grades by the horrific Nancy S and her "in" cronies. It really hurt.
  7. Color of my teen years bedroom furniture: Blue and purple. Colors at my wedding: Blue and purple. Colors on display everywhere in Macy's this season: Blue and purple. W00t!
  8. I still buy stamps for my stamp collection and postcards for my postcard collection even though they just go into a big box. They did have a badge for that. (Collecting, not boxing.)
  9. I earned the Sign of the Arrow and the Sign of the Star in girl scouts. Pretty high honors. A couple of years later, I quit.
  10. Shoe shopping: Gag me with a spoon.
  11. In high school speech and debate, I earned the National Forensic League's Double Ruby, the highest pin available at that time, and in my senior year made it to the state finals in Extemporaneous. 
  12. Seven No Trump. Doubled. Redoubled. Vulnerable.
  13. I'm the oldest of 5 sisters.
  14. My geek code is  GCS/CC/M/TW$/O d- s+: a++ C++$>--- UBLHS P+ L>+ E--- W+++$ N o? K? w$>--- !O M++$ V PS++ PE+@ Y PGP t !5 X- !R tv-- b++>+++ DI++++ !D G e++ h-- r x?  Use THAT to find out more about me. This should count for about 40 items right here.
  15. As long as I'm at it, I've programmed in SPL, Basic, FORTRAN, Ada, Jovial, Pascal, PL/1, ALGOL, various assemblers, machine code, COBOL, C, Java, Javascript, PERL... and probably some others that I thankfully don't remember. Don't ask me to do it now. But I can currently whack out some rugged HMTL.
  16. My 512K Mac is still in my attic.
  17. No-bake fondant! Mmmmm!
  18. From July 2004 through March 2006 on Wikipedia, only between 200-300 people had ever made more edits than I had. Fortunately, I recovered. 
  19. Style guide quantity in my office: at least 25. Quantity read most of the way through: Most.
  20. Places lived: 18 different buildings in 9 different cities in 3 states. I've set foot in almost every US state except Alaska.
  21. Sold two fiction short stories. Started dog agility. Sudden change in obsession.
  22. Abortion should be safe and legal. Gay marriage should be safe and legal. Curse you, Red Baron! Go Bears!
  23. Once upon a time, I could recite all of Guthrie's "Alice's Restaurant". While playing some of the guitar background.
  24. My fastest time for a Mercury-News crossword in the last 2 years is 3 minutes and 47 seconds.
  25. Household dragon count: 262 and climbing. Yes, thanks for asking, it does include a dragon-head stapler and a dragon-shaped toilet-seat lid.


  1. OK, for #6 non-dog things, it was nancy F 4th-6th grade for me :)

    Ada programmers unite! Thank goodness those days are behind me.

  2. So it's those Nancys, huh? Fortunately there are some good ones around to average them out.

    I didn't do much in Ada; wrote documentation about it so wrote maybe a couple of small sample programs.

  3. Funny, both of them! I did my own 25 random things on facebook myself yesterday (or maybe the day before, I'm old so I get confused about what day it is) It was sort of fun.

  4. Flute? Really? Now I know why I read your blog, and here I thought it was because of the pups? Way too much in common...

  5. Wow, you must have a lot of walls for all those ribbons. Or do you rotate? Or have you figured out some creative way to hang them so that they don't take up too much space?

    I stopped taking all but the special ribbons years ago and I still have way more than I know what to do with.

  6. Dawn--look me up on FB. Ellen Finch. With the dogs in my photo in silicon valley.

    Saw Johann's mom's post the other day about playing the flute--OK, I saw it the other day but I don't remember whether it was actually posted the other day. So much to keep track of!

    I rotate the ribbons out. At Boost's and Tika's current levels of Qing and placing, and at my current level of trials, the huge wall next to my staircase has room for just about 2 years of stuff--some of which I have to use a ladder to get to, which I'm not thrilled about, but that's the price one pays for success. :-) I run up strings tautly across the wall and hang the ribbons, overlapped, from the strings.

  7. That was a fun read. I'd love to see a photo of your ribbon wall.

  8. I would too. I started hanging ribbons several years ago reasoning that it would be easier than painting the hideous salmon pink walls in my spare room. I did 2 rows, got fed up/distracted and learned to live with the ugly walls. And now I'm too lazy to take the dusty ribbons down.

  9. That's not to say that the ribbons don't get dusty. And taking them down is slightly tiresome, but not too awful since they're hung on those strings and just come off. It's only if you want to do something organizational with them when you take them down that makes procrastination seem appealing.