a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Flash!

Monday, November 18, 2013


SUMMARY: Mob, that is.
Updated Dec 4 (see end of article).

Never let it be said that dog agility is all about dogs. Oh, no; it's all about dancin' the night away!

Back to the beginning: Saturday night, October 5, at the Nunes Agility Field (NAF) USDAA trial. Big potluck, birthday party, and then the weather was just too nice to go rushing off to bed. Somewhere, somehow, Laura started teaching us to dance to  "Pause" (by...Pitbull?).  Except for Laura, most of us were having trouble remembering to wiggle our butts, stop, drop it, and pause in the right places.

"Now don't...stop, drop it, pause..."

She showed us the steps--mildly complicated, definitely involved getting down, WAY down, which my back and knees really weren't all that down with. So I snapped a few photos between trying to find my long-lost rhythm (I'm a marching band type, not a school dance type).

(Clockwise around the circle from the left: Bettina K., Dee H., Sue D., Michelle P., Karey K., and Laura H. showing us ... OMG is that *twerking*???)

There was a bit of discussion about showing off our new-found skills at a future USDAA trial, although most of our skills were pretty skanky.

Next I heard : On October 30, I received this top secret email email, appropriately titled "Top Secret Email", from Wendy Vogelgesang:
Laura Hartwick, Karey Krauter and I are planning something fun and a bit wacky for the November SMART in Morgan hill and need to gather a brave group of people.

If you like to dance and don't mind a little silly fun, please reply to this email and I will put you down as a participant and follow-up with more information.
On November 5, Wendy followed up to we secret conspirators with:
The Flash Mob will take place during the Championship DAM Relay Walk Through on Sunday. The song "Wild Thing" will play right before the Fox song to prompt us to get ready. We have created an instructional video to help you learn the dance moves.
(See how professionally organized this is? I was impressed!) The dance moves-- to the viral song "What does the fox say?"-- were, I was grateful to note, simpler than the original attempt back in early October.  Here are some important instructional clips from the video.

It is OK to share now--our own video has gone viral.

All the moves were "paw" moves...

I, for one, as a former marching band expert, liked the easy-to-follow instructions
to complicated moves such as the following:

In this part of the song, they are looking for the fox--
notice fox head has popped briefly out of the tunnel on the right!

At the VAST USDAA trial (also at NAF) on Nov 9, while we enjoyed yet another potluck (November in California! love it!), Wendy hauled us all out to the agility field to give us personalized in-person details about the steps and to help us practice.

A lively email discussion ensued about how and where and what exactly we needed to do on the fateful day, including more informational secret plans in the 30 assorted emails that flew back and forth among us mobsters..

THEN we received these final excellent motivational training videos from a "top secret mystery dance instructor" who is obviously not  Laura in a fur hat:
1. Demo
2. Detailed step by step with personal agility-style encouragement. Look! Now you, too, can dance along!

I played the video on my computer in my home office and practiced. Boost thought it was exceptionally exciting, or else a little scary, she couldn't decide which, so mostly she barked and kept a safe distance in case my clumsy pony paws dancing went out of control.

So now, we were all prepared!

As Hatwoman, I, also, came prepared!

Then Sunday afternoon at the SMART trial rolled around and... here is how it went! (Look for me--I'm wearing the muted teal fleece as you see above and, near the beginning of the flash mob, I don my fox/wolf hat. I'm between the front of the dogwalk and Aframe early on, but back behind the blue tunnel at the end.  Me, near right side, donning my hat:)

Video by Agility in Motion. Thanks!

Ah, yes, sigh of pleased sense of accomplishment and gratitude that Wendy and Laura and Karey planned everything and all I had to do was sit back, enjoy the messages and the videos, and then try not to look like I was having a seizure out there among all the actually talented dancers. A big thanks to the SMART trial committee for letting this happen, too!

Hope you all get a chance to do an agility flash mob someday.

Update December 4: Laura's write-up is now posted on the USDAA web site! http://usdaa.com/article.cfm?newsID=2477


  1. Great behind the scenes footage! Everybody did an awesome job learning their dance steps! Nobody got decked by any unamused course walkers! We were sad that our friends Tori Self and Anthony Clarke (as The Fox) who helped us make one of the videos couldn't be there for the real thing. And thank you so much to Silvina Bruera and Agility in Motion for taking the official video! Wendy and Karey did all the hard work, I just danced around some! Laura

    1. Such modesty from the world champion of all Bay Teamers and SMARTers of dancing!

  2. And here I thought it was all spontaneous jocularity! Who knew so much work went into it? If you look carefully you can spot me waaaay in the back waving my arms and trying to look like I know what I'm doing. Great job, mobsters!

    1. It's cool when a flash mob is so friendly that everyone can join in!

  3. It was a most awesome flash Mob. My only regret is that I had to go back to the booth to fix the music and wasn't out front with you. LOVED it!!! Made all the work so worth it. Thank you for being part of the fun.

    1. Thanks, Vici--did you get to watch it from your perch?

  4. FUN! Have never done this, there was an opportunity this past summer, a new family grocery store wanted the community band to do one, one person starting with one instrument..etc. I was out of town and I don't think it ever happened...but would have been fun.

    1. Dawn--No excuse is necessary--all it takes is an organizer! ;-)

  5. I hope everything is ok at your house. You haven't posted in a while. Maybe you are just doubt Facebook now. Diana ( 4digcrazibess)

    1. Thanks, Diana, we're all doing ok. I keep meaning to post more here... have been busy. I'm hoping to do at least another update over the holidays.