General Discussion, Sunday, March 12, 2023



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34 Responses to General Discussion, Sunday, March 12, 2023

  1. Lucille says:

    Good Sunday morning, Stellars!

    This is one of my favorite live feeds…an excellent selection of cities along with the music….
    THE WORLD LIVE ORIGINAL PROGRAM – original classic version since 2008 | earthTV®

    Liked by 5 people

    • Reflection says:

      Good morning, Lucille.
      You find the most interesting and beautiful websites.

      Liked by 5 people

      • Lucille says:

        Good afternoon, Reflection. Glad you’re enjoying them.

        The “obsession” started in childhood around age 8 or 9 when magazines and newspapers were popular media. I used my weekly allowance (25 cents) to buy magazines at thrift stores or new editions off the newsstands which would be a special delight. Any interesting articles would be placed in my “historical data” scrapbooks…several for the 20th century (at that time 1900-1950s) plus separate books for the world wars and the U.S. Civil War. Sometimes relatives and neighbors would save magazines for me to check out. Once Dad and Mom finished with the newspapers, they’d be available to cut up, too.

        I kept those scrapbooks for many years until they became too much to schlepp around when moving. So, now I just surf the net instead. LOL!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. WeeWeed says:

    Mornin’ kids!

    Liked by 4 people

  3. czarina33 says:

    I’m sitting on the front porch, watching the dogs enjoy the grass, and there are about a dozen dragonflies darting around madly just off the porch. Wonder if it is a mating dance, or something like mayfly madness.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. auscitizenmom says:

    Afternoon All. I don’t think we saved any daylight, I think we lost an hour. It is 25* and white overcast this morning. It obviously snowed again last night, an inch or more. My neighbor came over yesterday and cleared off a section just off my patio for Loki. The last time she did that, I appreciated it a lot, but I had no idea how much it would really help. She only cleared it once, but it never developed the snow, melt, freeze, ice situation on the rest of the yard. So I appreciate it even more now.

    Hope the rest of you stay warm and healthy.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Reflection says:

      Afternoon Aus,
      It seems the only thing we gain or lose is sleep.
      Good neighbors are treasures aren’t they?
      Warmth and health to you, too.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Lucille says:

      Good afternoon, aus! How lovely of your neighbor to clean off a spot for Loki again. So sweet of her.

      We’re having a sunny day so far, and it’s at 45 degrees right now. The snow has melted off the sidewalks and street. Now I just need to get the gumption up to take out the trash. Gee is probably getting tired of having the bags stored in his potty room.

      Liked by 3 people

  5. Lucille says:

    Let’s see if this gets anywhere past the talk stage….

    BOOM! Oversight Chair James Comer: “IT’S AS BAD AS WE THOUGHT – We Have In Hand Documents That Show Biden Family Was Getting Money from Chinese Communist Party”
    By Jim Hoft Mar. 12, 2023 10:15 am

    House Oversight Chairman James Comer (R-KY) joined Maria Bartiromo on Sunday Morning Futures this morning.

    This was an explosive interview. Comer dropped several bombs on the Biden Crime Family. According to Comer the House Oversight Committee is working with four individuals with close ties to the Bidens. Comer says the committee now has documents that tie the Bidens to the Chinese Communist Party.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lucille says:

    MI 6 Headquarters London

    How Could Western Intelligence Have Got It Wrong, Again? They Didn’t. They Had Other Purposes
    By Larry Johnson Mar. 11, 2023 7:15 am

    The West now faces the task of de-fusing the landmine of their own electorate’s conviction of a Ukraine ‘win’, and of Russian humiliation.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Stella says:

    I have been watching a series of videos produced by this channel, and they are informative and fascinating. Most are about physical anatomy, but this one is particularly interesting because it explains how physical anomalies affect mental disorders.

    PS: In the last one I watched, he displayed the placenta from his daughter’s birth, and explained the anatomy and function. Bloody, but interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. The Tundra PA says:

    Hello, friends. I’m late getting to it, but time now for your


    The race is really heating up now, and may be close to an all-out sprint to the finish line for the first 3 mushers. There are still over 200 miles to go, and you can’t call anything over 50 miles a sprint. This race will come down to team management and who can do the best job of it.

    Ryan Redington holds the lead by a slim margin of about 5 miles ahead of Pete Kaiser in 2nd with Ritchie Diehl in 3rd, about an hour behind them. All 3 made it to Shaktoolik during late morning. Ryan and Pete rested for about three and a half hours and then took off for Koyuk across the frozen sea ice. Ritchie is still resting in Shaktoolik and will likely leave in the next hour. All 3 are moving at a fast pace for this point in the race, just under 8 mph.

    The weather has turned quite cold, 15-30 below zero with stiff headwinds. Sled dogs don’t mind the cold so much but they really hate headwind. It takes a hard-headed leader to keep going in the face of that. The mushers, of course, will be suffering from the wind chill. I expect to see “glaciered up” mushers with frozen beards and well-frosted fur ruffs on their parkas.

    Behind the 3 leaders is a pack of 8 teams who all arrived within about an hour of each other, but 3 hours behind Ritchie; that makes it unlikely any of them can catch up to Ritchie (baring unforeseen circumstances, of course). This group jostling for 4th through 10th place includes Jessie Holmes and Wade Marrs, both of whom have held the race lead at some point; as well as two talented rookies, Eddie Burke, Jr. and Hunter Keefe, who are both pushing for Rookie of the Year award. Not many rookies make the top ten.

    A musher’s finishing place is the determinant of the size of the purse he or she will win. The amounts change every year, depending on the success of the Iditarod organization’s fundraising. Last year the Champion (Brent Sass) received a brand new Dodge full-sized pickup truck plus $52,000. Each of the next 19 places receive about $5,000 less than the team ahead of them, and no truck. From 21st place to the Red Lantern receives $1,049 (for Alaska being the 49th state). It is definitely worth trying to reel in a team or two ahead of you.

    Back to the 3 leaders. The race analysts for Iditarod Insider, Greg and Bruce, have spoken repeatedly of the speed of Ryan Redington’s team and how that is his major asset. But looking at the stats, Pete Kaiser is just as fast, and his team has a “deeper bench”–meaning they can go further on less rest than Ryan’s. When I spoke above of this race coming down to team management, that is it in a nutshell. Whichever of these two can shave off 5-10 minutes from the rest cycle without wearing out the dogs is the one who will win the race. Greg and Bruce seem to think Pete has the better shot at that. After 9 days of round-the-clock racing, it could all come down to a full on sprint down Front Street in Nome to the finish line under the Burled Arch.

    That has happened before. Iditarod has had some close finishes in the past, but it would be pretty hard to beat the record-holding 1978 finish: Dick Mackey beat Rick Swenson by 1 second.

    More tomorrow…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lucille says:

      Thanks for another fascinating update, Tundra. My respect to the mushers for their strength, expertise and diligence. May God keep them all safe!

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Sharon says:

    The details of the breeding and training, and the necessary logistics for both the preparation and the running of the race–leaves me wondering how on earth any individual can afford to do this year after year. Sponsorships and such, I suppose?

    I don’t mean that to be a totally naïve question–but it occurs to me that just because someone wants to be a competitive musher doesn’t mean they can be. Lots of money to be invested in equipment, animals, clothing, supplies, etc?

    Such beautiful animals! During our Minnesota years (1993-2011) my husband fell in love with the idea of having a husky–we had a Siberian Husky with beautiful blue eyes whose name was Sierra King. Oh, could that boy run!! The only way we could really satisfy his desire to run really fast….was to “take him for a walk” by us driving the car, holding his leash with long lead out the window, and we would head up and down the open country roads around our country farmhouse.

    I don’t assume that a Siberian Husky is the same as the sled dog breed–I don’t know about that. He was just such a beautiful dog and we loved him so much, and grieved much when he had to be put down in the midst of terminal seizures on a bitterly cold New Year’s Day evening when the roads to any vet’s care were blocked with deep, unplowed snow and completely impassable. Painful parting, but a gorgeous dog who was a mighty part of our family. Our other dog for most of that time was a Dalmatian whose name was Daisy, a rescue. Actually, her full name was Miss Daisy, of course. She had no idea she was covered with funny black spots: her air of dignity was beyond reproach. So Miss Daisy it was!

    Liked by 4 people

    • The Tundra PA says:

      Yes, Sharon, you are right; it is a costly venture to operate a kennel at the Iditarod level–about $100,000/year, I’ve heard. Having sponsors, both large and small, is essential. Many Alaskan companies donate large sums to professional mushers and in exchange, the mushers wear that company’s logo on their parka or their sled. Dog food companies, vet clinics, air cargo companies, airlines, Anchorage hotels and lots more all benefit from the high profile the Iditarod has acquired. Iditarod is big business in Alaska.

      There are also plenty of small donors like me. Last year I found a young musher just starting out in mushing, and he seemed promising so I gave him a couple of hundred to help out. He is not running this year’s race, but I hope he will be in next year’s. A musher’s family and friends usually help out too.

      You are also right that not everyone who wants to be a musher is one. Good mushers are just naturally “dog people”, and have a way with dogs. Mushing is an entire lifestyle, not just a sideline hobby. There are plenty of adrenaline junkies who come to Alaska saying “I want to mush dogs!” but what they really want is to step on the back of a sled team that someone else has trained, drive them in a big, well-known race, and then go home with another block checked on their adrenaline junkie bucket list. And if you know the right people, such things are for hire–usually with about a year’s commitment.

      To enter the Iditarod, a musher must complete 2 mid-distance races (250-500 miles each) successfully, demonstrating the musher’s ability to care for a team over long trails and handle them well. The “newbie” usually gets in and learns the basics of mushing and dog care by hiring out as a handler to a professional musher with a large dog yard. There are plenty of those, and labor is always needed; 50 to 100 dogs need a lot of care (and produce a lot of poop to be shoveled out).

      Most good dog people start out small: just 3-5 dogs and a sled (sometimes home-made), often donated from other teams. A few weekend dog runs is usually all it takes to get bitten by the Dog Bug and before you know it the yard has 10-15 dogs. Now you have more power and can go faster and on longer runs. But these are often older dogs you been given, and you start thinking about a breeding program for puppies. Maybe you buy a dog from a well known, successful musher to establish your bloodline.

      Now weekends are no longer enough. You want to run your dogs 3-4 times a week. They are your first consideration in all decisions. You start going out for night runs after work. Maybe you even cut back on your work hours to allow more time for running dogs. One friend said there needs to be an AA-type program for dog mushing. It’s like an addiction.

      How to feed the dogs on a shoestring budget is always an issue. You start asking the hunters you know to donate the parts of their beaver or moose or caribou they don’t want, like the lower legs, so you can throw them in the dogs’ soup pots. You start subsistance fishing for salmon and white fish so you can freeze fish for winter food for the dogs. The high-performance dog kibble that comprises a third of their diet must by purchased (and shipped out if you are in the Bush of Alaska (off the road system).

      As you’ve likely guessed, this is how I became a dog musher. I bought 5 dogs from a Native musher upriver and my bloodline-founding dog from Susan Butcher, one of Alaska’s best known mushers and winner of 4 Iditarods. By the time arthritis forced me to quit mushing, I had 26 dogs. And loved every minute of it==even the hair-raising minutes, of which there were a few.

      A word about Siberian versus Alaskan huskies. They are not the same, but the latter includes the former.

      In the old days of dog mushing, when it was about hauling freight and not about racing, Siberian Huskies and Malamutes were the dogs used for it. Sturdy, compact, and often quite large dogs with dense, heavy coats and tough feet, their job was not about going fast, it was about pulling big loads. These two breeds got the job done, survived the harsh winters in the Arctic, and could work long hours.

      With the advent of snowmachine and plane travel in the Bush, mushing was on the verge of disappearing by the 1970s. That’s when Joe Redington (grandfather of the current leader) and Susan Butcher and a few other folks decided to create a long-distance race for sled dogs. Thus was the Iditarod born in the early 70s.

      Over the years, mushing focused on faster dogs, ultimately resulting in today’s Alaskan Huskey. It is a smaller and lighter dog with longer legs that can look like just about anything. Many have the beautiful coloring of Siberians or yMalamutes, but without the heaviness of body. Because of the lack of a “breed standard” in appearance, Alaskan huskies are not recognized as a breed of their own, like Siberians and Malamutes are. The breed standard is simply performance. Does the dog pull hard and love to go out with the team? That’s what counts, not what my mushing mentor called their paint job.

      Most years of Iditarod there has been one or two teams that come from all-purebred Siberian Husky kennels. They are gorgeous to look at and cheered loudly by Native villages as “doing it the old way”; but they rarely finish in the top 20. They are referred to by other mushers as Slo-berians. But for pure beauty in a working team of dogs, nothing beats Siberians, IMO.

      Goodness, Sharon, did I answer your questions in all that rambling? I hope so, and thanks for asking.


      • Sharon says:

        Wow and thank you – I love all the back ground information you fill in, both narrow and broad. There is a history that goes with every musher…so much effort and commitment. If they have to scratch, are there penalties applied by their sponsors?

        The mother of our Sierra King actually did have papers, confirming his status in the line, but there was some kind of anomaly in a recent generation so the value that might be assumed because of the papers wasn’t the same. Which is probably why we were able to purchase him as a pup for $75.

        Liked by 1 person

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