Monday, May 20, 2019

Courageous Kids day at Great America

SUMMARY: A learning photographic experience
Backfill: From Facebook, posted May 12ish.

For families with kids with cancer. On Mother's Day. Courageous Kids sets up a whole special area of activities and music and celebrity visits and free food and free family portraits by pro photographers. I went along as an assistant photog and for the opportunity to learn more about posing groups of people so the group looks special. Learned a bunch; now I are a portrait photographist. (I wish I were that good...)

The photo organizer had 4 groups of photographers with 4 people in each group.  Our group photographed 50 families. I'm exhausted. But really an excellent experience.

For personal shots (like these), rule was, no recognizable faces. I didn't take many photos. Could've taken more, of just the clothing, for example, with permission. Quite a few families came wearing matching t-shirts such as "Sophie's Supporters" or "Jose's Team" or "Fuck Lukemia" (yes, really. I cheered).

Ever wonder what Great America stashes in its back parking lots? Well, here's a delightful sampling.



Hats for volunteers! In pretty much my favorite color!


Oh Em Gee! My retirement home, right here! Favorite *favorite* colors!!!


Where I checked in.



The team captain pro (Annie) in our little group of 4four came prepared with a couple of ways to try to draw kids' (and adults') attention to the camera. I like this. She even came prepared with tape for sticking it. (The camera gear belonged to the other pro in our group, Iryna.) The background overflows with the colors of parts of the obstacle course and the birdhouse-building tables.


My swag, such as it is. (I turned in the nifty zippered badge holder at the end of the day, since I have no other need for it.)


One of the stations for kids was building and painting birdhouses. Beautiful colors!


Loved the rainbow one!





Sunday, May 19, 2019

Sunday, Thunder, No Agility

SUMMARY: Missing Bay Team trial, plus scaredy dogs
Partially from Facebook: May 19, 2019 (expanded here)

All dressed up and ready for another visit to The Bay Team USDAA trial, but Chip is terrified by the thunder today (and Zorro is not too happy either), so I’m not going to take him outside, and I’m not going to leave him alone in the house. Sad face.

Thunder shirt has not helped. On the upside, Chip pointed out that when the dryer is running it muffles the sound nicely. So I can leave it running on air dry for up to 90 minutes while he huddles next to it. I moved a bed in there. Happy face.


Didn't seem like that's the way the day was going to go originally. Woke up early because the sun was shining (6:30 in the morning!? so wrong!) and I hadn't closed my drapes. Lounged in bed for more than an hour, mostly doing nothing. An hour after my wakey-uppy-- Somehow the wild beasts’ instincts kicked in and they had intuited that dark rain clouds would be rolling in?! Because no signs of life still— unusual around here by this time.


But when they do get moving: I start playing footsie with Zorro, who of course wags his tail during. Chip whines, groans, moans… “His tail is touching me when it wags, mommm make him stoooop.“ Such a grump, but such entertaining noises.


Spent midmorning to midafternoon dealing with Chip's issues:

  • Moving beds into laundry room for Chip and Zorro,
  • Chip not wanting to go outside so I drag him outside (literally the first time) to try to get him to pee and he's terrified of the sound of jets going by in the distance... which they do about every 3 minutes every day, all day, just now he's all sensitive, so he won't pee and just cowers and tries to go back into the house.
  • Then he pees on the carpet inside instead.
  • And of course when I yell No No No! And jump up from my lunch and try racing down to where he is to grab him and take him outside, Zorro starts to move into Boss Dog mode and so I have to tell them they're both really good dogs and everything is OK so he doesn't attack Chip.
  • So I take Chip out again and now it's pouring and he hunches off and hides under a shrub, so I have to get him out from there to take him inside again and I'm soaked through my fleece and shirt and dogs are sopping wet and muddy so I have to wipe them down while Chip trying to get away to go hide somewhere. 
  • Then while I'm trying to clean up the carpet pee (meanwhile my lunch is getting cold)... 
  • Chip starts ripping apart the doorframe to the garage again. 
  • So I get a leash this time and take him out through the garage into the side yard, into bright sunlight, where he does a very wee wee. 
  • Walk him up the side of the house and he suddenly realizes that he is actually in the same back yard as always and now he won't do anything but hunker and look scared. 
  • I walk  (so to speak) him around for several minutes and he does nothing, so back inside. 
Like that.

Good thing they're cute.

There's been no thunder for a while, and things are at the moment peaceful, and I'm exhausted (such a wimp these days), so I think a late afternoon nap is more in order than household projects and going to a movie as originally expected.

Bite the Wax Tadpole and other Translations

SUMMARY: Accuracy of language translations
From Facebook: posted this morning (5/19/19)

Automated language translation has come so far! Used to be assumed that it could never be done well (even assuming that the translation software/device knew both languages). Still, I'm amazed at how well it does.

Five comments:

1. In the early '70s I heard that one attempt had translated "hydraulic ram" to some other language as "water sheep." Might be apocryphal, as I've not found a definitive reference.

2. Another story was that an early rendition of "Coca-Cola" in Chinese characters meant "bite the wax tadpole." (Apparently real enough: https://www.coca-colacompany.com/stories/bite-the-wax-ta.)

3. Google Translate of text is surprisingly adept, almost always close enough to get the meaning. My first paragraph above, translated to Chinese and back, became
"So far, automatic language translation has arrived! I used to think that it would never do well (even if the translation software/device knows both languages). However, I am surprised by its performance."
(Note idiomatic challenge of "come so far" to "arrived", but it handled the last sentence OK.)

4. Even voice recognition is nifty nowadays (consider different voices' tones, vowel pronunciations, accents, slurring, etc.). Sometimes it writes the wrong thing as I speak but then corrects itself! But hard to understand why, when I said, "Chip whines, groans, moans," and I see it start out correctly (except "wines"... maybe chips go with wine?), it then changes it to "wine, ground, mountains..."

5. When Chip is super happy, he rolls around on whatever is soft nearby (bed, carpet, lawn) and makes happy little sounds while symbolically biting the thing. My built-in canine to human translation always comes out as "I bite the wax tadpole!" Clearly still needs some work.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

The Heart Is Filled with Joy and Pain

SUMMARY: An unexpected painful result from a photo search.

I searched for "tika"/"box" in my photo catalog to find a favorite of her doing the Get In The Box trick; I adore this shot. Always makes me smile--she was so good at this and of course loved the rewards. Standing there while I took the shot was another thing entirely, but she did it. ("Give me treat, stop photo doing thing.")


And it popped up with this immediately next to it. Tika in a box forever. No treats can be given.


It has been over 4 years now; seems like just last month, I can remember it all, and this slammed it all into my mind and gut.

To mitigate the sad with the happy, I re-edited the Amazon box photo to be brighter and sharper and clearer than my original edit nine years back, and to bring all the glorious golden life-light back into her eyes.


Friday, May 10, 2019

It's Polish Sandwich time, baby!

SUMMARY: Plus hamburgers for the boys.

It was a sudden urge. I hit Wienerschnitzel maybe once or twice a year, and Me Love Polish Sandwich. Nom nom.


I bought hamburgers for the boys. Plain hamburgers. No cheese. No sauce. Explicitly with nothing but lettuce, tomato, and onion. No sauce, no cheese. Cashier almost got it right.


Hmmm, there seems to be more than "only" on these "plain hamburgers". Dogs will just have to suffer with some bonus cheese.


The Head Chef prepares the repast according to the demands of the clients' dishes... the famous Mazes.

Plus, all those veggies? That's a side salad for me, not them! Ha ha!



Live action animals feeding in their natural habitat, a National Geographic presentation:




Nom nom time!




And for Human Mom: The big prize! More nom noms occur.





Sunday, April 21, 2019

Not Fond of Bathing My Dogs

SUMMARY: And they're not usually fond of it, either.

I seldom bathe my dogs. Chip and Zorro do, on occasion, get wet anyway (out in the rain, or Chip just loves to play in the hose spray), and they get a good towel rub-down, which always seems to be enough. If I think they've been in poison oak--or if they've definitely (there's no "thinking" involved here) been rolling in nasty stuff, then--yeah. But I and my knees and back would much rather be doing other things.

And that has been true forEVER. Have seldom bathed any of my dogs. Amber was the most often abused, because her coat was oily and accrued dirt like a magnet.  And Sheba's white coat parts would gradually turn brownish just from dirt gathering in that tightly packed husky coat, so she was forced occasionally to suffer.

My agility dogs, though--well, I hosed them down regularly at agility events if it was at all warm, which washed away pretty much everything. So not too many baths. Sometimes during coat-blowing season, to loosen the chunks of hair to make removal easier.

I've never worked as hard as I should have to ensure that my dogs love baths. Poor puppers.

Sadly, I have few photos of Amber, as much as I loved her. Here she is damp as a teenager. No idea whether it was after a bath or just being naughty somehow.

Nothing digital of Remington wet. This is closest I have. But I definitely have photos of him wet. Will have to look for and scan them in.


Poor abused Tika. In grooming truck owned by her foster mom. Tika was happy to see her, but the bathing part seemed sketchy.

Boost, same day. Such an expression of trauma. (See https://dogblog.finchester.org/2014/01/at-groomers.html for details about this day.)

Sheba. I loved the way her coat looked wet, but it did not appeal to her as much. Tika's coat did exactly the same thing. 



I have no Chip bath photos, but he looks like this wet; in other words, adorable. (From playing in the hose.)

Have no good digital photos of Jake wet (not surprising, since I had just started digital when he was old), but here he is doing agility after he has been hosed down a bit.

Yep, nothing with Zorro wet at all that I've found. We don't get out enough (e.g., no walking, hence no walking in the rain). He does love playing in water, so this is the closest I've gotten...

Related posts:

https://dogblog.finchester.org/2008/03/loveyerdog-aka-bath-day.html

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Is This Blog About Dogs, Training, and Agility? Or What?

SUMMARY: It's complicated. Plus: Clothing.

I have been doing very vague and random amounts of dog training lately. Not every day. In the last week I have taken Chip and Zorro out to the sidewalk in front of my house on leash, a couple of times individually and once together. With a pocket full of treats, I've been working on the ol' walk nicely at my side trick. So, works pretty good on the sidewalk in front of my house once they figure out that we're not going anywhere and that I'm giving them a lot of treats.

And that's about it for dog training today.

In other stories, I walked into a store today accidentally (I went to the mall to have a less hot, interesting place to just get more steps in, and suddenly there was this shirt in the window display...). And bought 3 tops that don't exactly fit my usual type, although in a way they do.  Here are some bad selfies of two of them. They were on sale for an average of 60% off, too, or I'd have never brought them home. Just think how much I saved! By spending all that money!



Lace and flowers, not my usual thing.
And embroidery But I like the styles and colors.







Wednesday, March 27, 2019

51 Point Snooker Runs for All Of Us! A Little Delayed--

SUMMARY: Wordless Wednesday

A little cheat on "wordless" and "wednesday": A new post that I somehow never actually posted when I created its Draft version--in March, 2007! Click the link for photos ↓


>>  Visit the Wordless Wednesday site; lots of blogs. <<

Monday, February 25, 2019

Crosswords as Trivia Games

SUMMARY: If I can't do dog agility, I gotta do something

I do a lot of crossword puzzles. (Well, not compared to some people.) Average 2 a day. To get through puzzles, you need not only a good vocabulary but also the ability to free associate, recognize puns, trust your instincts, and know a lot of stuff.

Note for fun: There's a whole world of vocabulary that seems to pop up almost entirely in crossword puzzles, so it helps to have done many many of them; they're almost conventions that one could memorize! For example, "mine entry" or "cave access" is almost always ADIT. "Kimono sash" or "Japanese accessory" would be OBI. Definitions that include "front" or "end" or "back" or "finish", especially with a question mark, often refer to the word itself, not its meaning (e.g., "Road's end?" is STER).  "Oreo" is a favorite word, used in so many ways, e.g., "sandwich treat" or "crumbled ice cream topping" or "favorite snack"...  

In this Sunday's New York Times crossword, just in the numbers 1 through 25 (both across and down, out of 124 numbers), here's some of what I figured out without any letters, or only one, already filled in. I'd classify 8 as trivia, 4 as essentially vocabulary, 1 that could be placed into either category (specialized knowledge), 1 as foreign language. (Answers are at the bottom)

How many can you get?
  • Parabolas, essentially (4 letters)
  • Trophy winner (5 letters, last is P)
  • He planned for a rainy day (4 letters)
  • Sled dog with a statue in Central Park (5 letters)
  • Jewish month before Nisan (4 letters, 2nd is D)
  • Result of a foul on a long basketball shot (15 letters, 1st letter T)
  • Band leader Shaw (5 letters)
  • Architect Mies van der ____ (4 letters)
  • Poi plants (5 letters)
  • Printemps follower (3 letters)
  • Yamaha competitor (8 letters, 2nd letter A)
  • "The Marvelous Mrs. ___ (award-winning Amazon series) (6 letters)
  • A sharps (6 letters)
  • Aer Lingus destination (4 letters)
Some I didn't get until I had more than 2 letters. Here's some of what I knew so far when I started this post; can you do better than I did with just this info?:
  • Start of Euripides signature (7 letters, starts EP)
  • Does, as an animated character (6 letters, last 2 ES)
  • Chaiken who co-created "The L Word" (5 letters, 1st 2 IL)
  • Source of a deferment in the 1960s draft (4 letters, 1st 2 RO)
  • Big fan (6 letters, 3rd letter O)
  • Tim ____, frequent collaborator with Adam Sandler (7 letters,1st letters H _ R)
  • Ancient Greek State with Athens (6 letters, 1st letters A _ T)

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  • ARCS
  • CHAMP
  • NOAH
  • BALTO
  • ADAR
  • THREE FREE THROWS
  • ARTIE
  • ROHE
  • TAROS
  • ETE
  • KAWASAKI
  • MAIZEL
  • B FLATS
  • EIRE (OR ERIN, needed to see a letter other than E to know which)
2nd group, some of which I needed many more letters...
  • Epsilon
  • Voices
  • Ilene  (Never heard of her or The L Word--the risk of trivia!)
  • ROTC
  • Adorer
  • Herlihy (Never heard of him)
  • Attica

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Academy Awards 2019

SUMMARY: Just a diversion--I like what I like, and Oscars don't affect that...but I do like to see all the noms because in theory there's something excellent about them!

Update: Feb 24, 8:20 p.m., added winners (well, I got 7 of the ones I voted for).


Summary: As usual, a fairly small number of films make up the full list of films with nominations.

(Notes Key: M= Was on my list to see; missed it.
? = Don't remember seeing anything about it
N = New, just recently saw previews, not in theaters yet
0 for # noms means was nominated for Golden Globes but not Oscars )

        (Bah, I messed up the table once, so counts might not be complete...)

# NomsMovieSaw ItNotes
0A Private WarM
1A Quiet Place---
8A Star Is Born*
1At Eternity's Gate*
1Avengers: Infinity War*
3The Ballad of Buster ScruggsM
0Beautiful BoyM
6BlacKkKlansman*
7Black Panther*
5Bohemian Rhapsody*
1Border?
0Boy Erased*
3Can You Ever Forgive Me?*
1Capernaum?
1Christopher Robin*
3Cold War?
0Crazy Rich Asians*
0DestroyerM
0Dumplin'?
0Eighth GradeM
10The Favourite*
4First ManM
1First Reformed?
1Free Solo*
0Girl?
5Green Book*
3If Beale Street Could Talk*
1Hale Country This Morning?
1Incredibles 2*
3Isle of Dogs*
4Mary Poppins Returns*
2Mary Queen of Scots*
1Minding the Gap?
1MiraiM?
2Never Look Away N?
0The Old Man and the Gun*
1Ralph Breaks the Internet*
2RBG*
1Ready Player One*
10Roma*
1Shoplifters?
1Solo: A Star Wars Story*
1Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse*
0Stan & Ollie*
0Tully*
8Vice*
1The Wife*

Short Films: I don't think they're ever nominated for anything except best short, so I'm leaving them out of the preceding table.
  • Documentary: Black Sheep, End Game, Lifeboat, A Night at the Garden, Period. End of Sentence.
  • Live action: Detainment, Fauve, Marguerite, Mother, Skin
  • Animated: Animal Behaviour, Bao, Late Afternoon, One Small Step, Weekends


Key below: "GG win"= won Golden Globe; "P" = My pref for Oscar; "W" = actual Oscar winner

Best Pic: Lots of good choices. I think Vice is the least of them. I still think Bohemian Rhapsody is just a shallow skim on what could've been a deep story, but Golden Globes gave it to them for the Drama award. My own favorites are Black Panther, Green Book, and A Star is Born, but I'm giving it to Green Book again.

Pref/WinGG winBest PictureRelated info per wikipedia
"Black Panther" Kevin Feige
"BlacKkKlansman" Sean McKittrick, Jason Blum, Raymond Mansfield, Jordan Peele and Spike Lee
G (drama)"Bohemian Rhapsody" Graham King
"The Favourite" Ceci Dempsey, Ed Guiney, Lee Magiday and Yorgos Lanthimos
P WG (com/mus)"Green Book" Jim Burke (film producer)|Jim Burke, Charles B. Wessler, Brian Currie, Peter Farrelly and Nick Vallelonga
"Roma" Gabriela RodrÌguez and Alfonso CuarÛn
"A Star Is Born" Bill Gerber, Bradley Cooper and Lynette Howell Taylor
"Vice" Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Adam McKay and Kevin J. Messick


Pref/WinGG winBest DirectorRelated info per wikipedia
Spike Lee "BlacKkKlansman"
PaweB Pawlikowski "Cold War"
Yorgos Lanthimos "The Favourite"
WGAlfonso CuarÛn "Roma"
Adam McKay "Vice"


Best actor--same comments as before the Golden Globes: They are all pretty amazing. Very hard to narrow it down to 2 (which I finally did), let alone one. I could agree with any of these 5 as the winner.
Pref/WinGG winBest ActorRelated info per wikipedia
PG (com/mus)Christian Bale "Vice" as Dick Cheney
Bradley Cooper "A Star Is Born" as Jackson "Jack" Maine
Willem Dafoe "At Eternity's Gate" as Vincent van Gogh
WG (drama) Rami Malek "Bohemian Rhapsody" as Freddie Mercury
PViggo Mortensen "Green Book" as Tony Lip|Frank "Tony Lip" Vallelonga


Best actress, tough choices. Lady Gaga did a great job, particularly considering that she's essentially a newcomer. Glenn Close's portrayal of a woman gradually coming into her own was wonderful. Aparicio had me believing almost that we were watching a documentary, she was so real.  Melissa McCarthy I also thought did very well indeed, stepping out of some of the characters she's done in the past. Colman was excellent as Queen Anne, but she was really just one of 3 women in the film.  So, dunno. Stymied. I'll narrow it down to 2.

Pref/WinGG winBest ActressRelated info per wikipedia
Yalitza Aparicio "Roma" as Cleodegaria "Cleo" GutiÈrrez
PG (drama)Glenn Close "The Wife" as Joan Castleman
WG (com/mus)Olivia Colman "The Favourite" as Anne, Queen of Great Britain
PLady Gaga "A Star Is Born" as Ally Campana or Maine
Melissa McCarthy "Can You Ever Forgive Me?" as Lee Israel

Grant stole the show every time he was on screen, but Ali and Elliot were even deeper. Can't decide. Any of the 3 would make me happy.
Pref/WinGG winBest Supporting ActorRelated info per wikipedia
P WGMahershala Ali "Green Book" as Don Shirley
Adam Driver "BlacKkKlansman" as Philip "Flip" Zimmerman
PSam Elliott "A Star Is Born" as Bobby Maine
Richard E. Grant "Can You Ever Forgive Me?" as Jack Hock
Sam Rockwell "Vice" as George W. Bush

The Favorourite noms showed their talents, and King was excellent in Beale Street, but for my money, Adams fully inhabited Lynne Cheney like a virtual reincarnation; in fact, her version seems more real than the real one.
Pref/WinGG winBest Supporting ActressRelated info per wikipedia
PAmy Adams "Vice" as Lynne Cheney
Marina de Tavira "Roma" as SofÌa
WGRegina King "If Beale Street Could Talk" as Sharon Rivers
Emma Stone "The Favourite" as Abigail Masham, Baroness Masham
Rachel Weisz "The Favourite" as Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough

Pref/WinGG winBest Original ScreenplayRelated info per wikipedia
"The Favourite" Written by Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara (writer)|Tony McNamara
"First Reformed" Written by Paul Schrader
P WG"Green Book" Written by Nick Vallelonga, Brian Currie and Peter Farrelly
"Roma" Written by Alfonso CuarÛn
"Vice" Written by Adam McKay


Pref/WinGG winBest Adapted ScreenplayRelated info per wikipedia
"The Ballad of Buster Scruggs" Screenplay by Coen brothers|Joel Coen & Ethan Coen, based on the short stories "All Gold Canyon" by Jack London, "The Gal Who Got Rattled" by Stewart Edward White, and short stories by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
W"BlacKkKlansman" Screenplay by Charlie Wachtel & David Rabinowitz and Kevin Willmott & Spike Lee, based on the memoir "Black Klansman" by Ron Stallworth
P"Can You Ever Forgive Me?" Screenplay by Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty, based on the memoir by Lee Israel
"If Beale Street Could Talk"Screenplay by Barry Jenkins, based on If Beale Street Could Talk|the novel by James Baldwin
P"A Star Is Born"Screenplay by Eric Roth, Bradley Cooper & Will Fetters; based on the A Star Is Born 1954 screenplay by Moss Hart and the A Star Is Born 1976 screenplay by Joan Didion, John Gregory Dunne & Frank Pierson; based on a story by Robert Carson (writer)|Robert Carson & William A. Wellman

Spider-Verse is hands down the best of these in every way.  GG agreed; I wonder whether The Academy will go with Isle of Dogs or Mirai because they're not superhero movies and are pretty stylish.  However, my 2nd favorite is Incredibles 2.
Pref/WinGG winBest Animated FeatureRelated info per wikipedia
"Incredibles 2" Brad Bird, John Walker (film producer)|John Walker and Nicole Paradis Grindle
"Isle of Dogs" Wes Anderson, Scott Rudin, Steven M. Rales|Steven Rales and Jeremy Dawson (producer)|Jeremy Dawson
"Mirai" Mamoru Hosoda and Yk ichirM SaitM
"Ralph Breaks the Internet" Rich Moore, Phil Johnston (filmmaker)|Phil Johnston and Clark Spencer
P WG"Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller


Foreign Language; I saw only Roma so far, so I can't vote.

Pref/WinGG winBest Foreign Language FilmRelated info per wikipedia
"Capernaum" | Arabic Directed by Nadine Labaki
"Cold War" |Polish and French language|French Directed by PaweB Pawlikowski
"Never Look Away" |German Directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
WG"Roma" |Spanish and Mixtec language|Mixtec Directed by Alfonso CuarÛn
"Shoplifters" |Japanese Directed by Hirokazu Kore-eda

Documentaries: I've seen only Free Solo and RBG. Latter was excellent. Former was amazing.

Pref/WinGG winBest Documentary FeatureRelated info per wikipedia
P W"Free Solo" Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi, Jimmy Chin, Evan Hayes and Shannon Dill
"Hale County This Morning, This Evening"&nbsp;RaMell Ross, Joslyn Barnes and Su Kim
"Minding the Gap"&nbsp;Bing Liu (filmmaker)|Bing Liu and Diane Quon
"Of Fathers and Sons"&nbsp;Talal Derki, Ansgar Frerich, Eva Kemme and Tobias N. Siebert
"RBG" Betsy West and Julie Cohen

NOTE ABOUT SHORT FILMS: I don't usually get to see these unless some theater plays a collection of them after oscars are announced. This year some of them are playing at local first-run theaters, but sadly only while I'm stuck at home post-surgery. Most likely to see Animated ones along with animated features. UPDATE: I found all the animated shorts online, so I've seen them all now. Others, didn't look yet.

Pref/WinGG winBest Documentary (Short Subject)Related info per wikipedia
"Black Sheep"&nbsp;Ed Perkins and Jonathan Chinn
"End Game"&nbsp;Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman (filmmaker)|Jeffrey Friedman
"Lifeboat"&nbsp;Skye Fitzgerald and Bryn Mooser
"A Night at the Garden"&nbsp;Marshall Curry
W"Period. End of Sentence."&nbsp;Rayka Zehtabchi and Melissa Berton

Pref/WinGG winBest Live Action Short FilmRelated info per wikipedia
"Detainment"&nbsp;Vincent Lambe and Darren Mahon
"Fauve"&nbsp;JÈrÈmy Comte and Maria Gracia Turgeon
"Marguerite"&nbsp;Marianne Farley and Marie-HÈlËne Panisset
"Mother"&nbsp;Rodrigo Sorogoyen and MarÌa del Puy Alvarado
W"Skin"&nbsp;Guy Nattiv and Jaime Ray Newman

Pref/WinGG winBest Animated Short FilmRelated info per wikipedia
"Animal Behaviour"&nbsp;Alison Snowden and David Fine (filmmaker)|David Fine
P W"Bao"&nbsp;Domee Shi and Becky Neiman-Cobb
"Late Afternoon"&nbsp;Louise Bagnall and Nuria Gonz·lez Blanco
"One Small Step"&nbsp;Andrew Chesworth and Bobby Pontillas
"Weekends"&nbsp;Trevor Jimenez

Pref/WinGG win*Best Original ScoreRelated info per wikipedia
W"Black Panther" Ludwig Gˆransson
"BlacKkKlansman" Terence Blanchard
"If Beale Street Could Talk" Nicholas Britell
"Isle of Dogs" Alexandre Desplat
"Mary Poppins Returns" Marc Shaiman
* Won by "First Man"

I like the Mary Poppins Song, but although Shallow's lyrics feel at times shallow, still, it pulled me in emotionally.
Pref/WinGG winBest Original SongRelated info per wikipedia
"All the Stars" from "Black Panther"
Music by Sounwave|Mark Spears, Kendrick Lamar|Kendrick Lamar Duckworth and Anthony Tiffith; Lyrics by Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, Anthony Tiffith and SZA (singer)|Sol·na Rowe
"I'll Fight" from "RBG"
Music and Lyrics by Diane Warren
"The Place Where Lost Things Go" from "Mary Poppins Returns"
Music by Marc Shaiman; Lyrics by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman
P WG"Shallow" from "A Star Is Born"
Music and Lyrics by Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt
"When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings" from "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs"
Music and Lyrics by David Rawlings and Gillian Welch

Pref/WinGG winBest Sound EditingRelated info per wikipedia
"Black Panther" Benjamin A. Burtt and Steve Boeddeker
W"Bohemian Rhapsody" John Warhurst and Nina Hartstone
"First Man" Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
"A Quiet Place" Ethan Van der Ryn and Erik Aadahl
"Roma" Sergio DÌaz and Skip Lievsay

Pref/WinGG winBest Sound MixingRelated info per wikipedia
"Black Panther" Steve Boeddeker, Brandon Proctor and Peter J. Devlin
W"Bohemian Rhapsody" Paul Massey (sound engineer)|Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin and John Casali
"First Man" Jon Taylor (sound mixer)|Jon Taylor, Frank A. MontaÒo, Ai-Ling Lee and Mary H. Ellis
"Roma" Skip Lievsay, Craig Henighan and JosÈ Antonio Garcia (sound mixer)|JosÈ Antonio Garcia
"A Star Is Born" Tom Ozanich, Dean Zupancic, Jason Ruder and Steve A. Morrow

Pref/WinGG winBest Production DesignRelated info per wikipedia
W"Black Panther" Production Design: Hannah Beachler; Set Decoration: Jay Hart
"The Favourite" Production Design: Fiona Crombie; Set Decoration: Alice Felton
"First Man" Production Design: Nathan Crowley; Set Decoration: Kathy Lucas
"Mary Poppins Returns" Production Design: John Myhre; Set Decoration: Gordon Sim
"Roma" Production Design: Eugenio Caballero; Set Decoration: B·rbara EnrÌquez

Cinematography: Again, have seen only 3, and none of Favourite, Roma, or Star struck me particularly in this area--in fact, Star did way too much herky-jerky video for my taste.
Pref/WinGG winBest CinematographyRelated info per wikipedia
"Cold War" A ukasz
"The Favourite" Robbie Ryan (cinematographer)|Robbie Ryan
"Never Look Away" Caleb Deschanel
W"Roma" Alfonso CuarÛn
"A Star Is Born" Matthew Libatique

Mary, Queen of Scots' costumes, hairstyles, and makeup put me into their reality more than any others. I know that it's a costume film so more obvious, but I'm going with it.
Pref/WinGG winBest Makeup and HairstylingRelated info per wikipedia
"Border" Gˆran Lundstrˆm and Pamela Goldammer
P"Mary Queen of Scots" Jenny Shircore, Marc Pilcher and Jessica Brooks
W"Vice" Greg Cannom, Kate Biscoe and Patricia Dehaney

Pref/WinGG winBest Costume DesignRelated info per wikipedia
"The Ballad of Buster Scruggs" Mary Zophres
W"Black Panther" Ruth E. Carter
"The Favourite" Sandy Powell (costume designer)|Sandy Powell
"Mary Poppins Returns" Sandy Powell
P"Mary Queen of Scots" Alexandra Byrne

Pref/WinGG winBest Film EditingRelated info per wikipedia
"BlacKkKlansman" Barry Alexander Brown
W"Bohemian Rhapsody" John Ottman
"The Favourite" Yorgos Mavropsaridis
"Green Book" Patrick J. Don Vito
"Vice" Hank Corwin


Visual Effects: Still haven't seen First Man at time of voting. They included Christopher Robin but not Black Panther? Interesting.
Pref/WinGG winBest Visual EffectsRelated info per wikipedia
P"Avengers: Infinity War" Dan DeLeeuw, Kelly Port, Russell Earl and Dan Sudick
"Christopher Robin" Chris Lawrence (visual effects)|Christopher Lawrence, Michael Eames, Theo Jones and Chris Corbould
W"First Man" Paul Lambert (special effects artist)|Paul Lambert, Ian Hunter (visual effects supervisor)|Ian Hunter, Tristan Myles and J. D. Schwalm
"Ready Player One" Roger Guyett, Grady Cofer, Matthew E. Butler and Dave Shirk|David Shirk
"Solo: A Star Wars Story" Rob Bredow, Patrick Tubach, Neal Scanlan and Dominic Tuohy

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Crunchies! (is Humans Peoples calls "bottle")

SUMMARY: The best toys are the cheapest and come from the recycling bin.

Note: Another post rescued from the Drafts pile in my Blogger account, started in Sept. 2016.

Thanks to Squink's Human Mom for the summary line and the idea for the post. Dogs love plastic bottles!  Well, mine always have, anyway.


Squink - September 2016  (Photo by Squink. Or maybe his Human.)



My first dog, Amber - 1981


How could I not have photos of Sheba, Remington, or Jake with bottles?? Well, maybe I do in a photo album somewhere.  


Tika - 2011


Boost - 2009 (can't find bottle photo, but still, nice recyclables toy)


Chip 2015


Zorro - 2015


And just happen to have one of a friend's dog--



Future World Champion Dash (TBD) - 2008
(He has been national champion in multiple venues several times and was on the World Team representing the US in 2016.)

Friday, February 22, 2019

Hit a kitty cat with a brick bat and sing nonsense songs

SUMMARY: And I don't mean the ones that I make up.

I often sing to myself, and also to whatever dogs happen to be around at the moment. The other day I started singing:

"...hit him with a brick bat
sing song kitty cat chi-kymeo
Chikeemeo chi-kymeo my deereo my dell
Hi ho income paddywinkle
something something something something
hit him with a brick bat
sing song kitty cat chi-kymeo"

I thought:

  1. Where did that come from?
  2. What does it mean? 
  3. It's so garbled! Maybe something from when I was a young child and I've completely forgotten the real lyrics because most of that makes absolutely no sense whatsoever?
  4. I should look it up on the "interwebs"!
  5. What did we ever do before the WWW?

And, so, I found out:

  • It *is* just nonsense, because, after all, kids love nonsense songs... or at least I know *I* did. And, OK, still do.
  • It's an old Appalachian folk song, origins unknown, meanings unknown. This is cool, because my home territory from most of my childhood includes the Appalachians (northern).
    Lyrics similar to what I remember.
    Web site with many versions.
  • (And because this is an educational blog [???], if you want to know *really* what Appalachia is--you're out of luck, because it's pretty nebulous.)
  • Wow, so where did I learn it?  Didn't find it on the couple of childhood records that I still have, but my recollection is a male voice on a record. I perhaps will never know...

    BUT... I'll keep on singing it!
Gratuitous kitty cat, not singing a song (Los Gatos Creek trail, February 2010)

Thursday, February 21, 2019

About teaching tricks

SUMMARY: Do I work on more than one at a time?

(Started this post back in 2018 sometime in response to someone's question and left it as a draft. I have over 40 draft posts that I never finished! Maybe I'll keep working on clearing them out and queueing them up for weeks in advance!)

I work on more than one trick at a time for various reasons. This includes keeping me from getting bored and keeping them from thinking that Trick Time means only [whatever we’ve been working on in recent days/weeks]. If the tricks are different enough from each other, dogs shouldn’t get confused. For example, I started with crawl backwards with Luke while he was still learning left and right (which he’s still a little iffy on). I started blowing bubbles in a water bowl while working on other things.

Like anything else, I try not to do more than 3-5 minutes or maybe 20 treats for one dog, depending on where I am in the process, then switch back and forth with maybe 4 or 5 turns for each dog. Other dog(s) are supposed to wait quietly on their bed or in a down while I work with that dog; this is good training for staying in one place even with distractions. So I'm training two dogs at once! (Early in the wait/stay/go to your bed stage, I need to reward that dog periodically, too.

I might work on the same trick all 4 or 5 times in a session if I’m looking for some kind of breakthrough or if the dog is progressing rapidly and I want to reinforce or push it just a tiny bit farther. If dog looks confused or starts seeming stressed, I quickly go back to a couple of trick that she already knows well (often a hand touch and a Shake) and let her lie down to relax while I work with the other dog. I usually finish with a play session at the end, which is, of course, always a little bit of training (Give, Down, Bring It, do a trick and get the ball again, etc.).

I will concentrate on more repetitions of things that they’ve more or less started to grasp to build the skill, and possibly fewer repetitions of something that’s completely new (so not to stress them out or to give myself a chance to think about how i can chunk it differently or present it differently to help them) and of something that they know well. But, still, I'll mix in a few instances of more familiar tricks.

I always try to end with things that they know. (Anything, even if it’s just at the “I know how to Sit and nothing else” stage—then it would be a couple of sits (with rewards, of course)and done.)


Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Confined to Quarters After Receiving a New Hip

SUMMARY: [Mostly] Wordless Wednesday 

Tip: There's rollover text on photos for those who like words.

First week: Confined upstairs

Feb 5





Feb 7






Feb 8



Feb 10




Feb 11: OK to go up and down stairs!

Feb 11




Feb 13




Feb 16









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