Tuesday, September 30, 2008

If there is a silver lining....

In our search for our dogs we've met some of our neighbors and everyone's really nice and seem to be dog people themselves. Several have offered suggestions of places to check and where their dogs often wander to.

Though we are kicking ourselves for not making sure that we keep collars on our dogs. So, let this be my public service announcement to you: You think that your dog(s) will stay home because they're such homebodies and don't go very far. You worry that if they do run, they'd get hung up on something with the collar. Nope. Get collars. Dogs are dumb. They do dumb things. I wish we would've done that small thing to potentially help them find their way home.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Wait Wait Don't Tell Me

I didn't have a chance to blog about attending the recording (Thursday night) of Wait Wait Don't Tell Me, a news quiz show on NPR. If you've heard the show, I'm sure that you're a fan.

If you haven't heard the show, you should check it out and see what you think. It aired on SDPB Saturday at noon. You can still go online to hear it.

When Carl Kasell introduced the show Thursday night he accidentally said "Sioux City, SD". Everybody laughed and scolded him. He fixed the error by doing a retake. But I've just noticed that the error occured in the show rundown online too. Amatures. :-)

I haven't had a chance to download the podcast of it yet. They spend about an hour and a half recording the show. The segment with Senator George McGovern went a bit long. So, I'm curious to listen to how it was edited down. Peter Sagal pointed out that when George McGovern ran for office he didn't speak much about his time as a war veteran/hero. He didn't want to appear too boastful about that part of his life. And now, it seems as though in the context of the current presidential campaign, times have changed.

I got a couple of pics with Carl Kasell and Mo Rocca. I will post them another time. I wanted to chat with Peter Sagal, but the line was long and I saw the cast checking their watches a time or two. I didn't want to wait to be shoo-ed off, so we left.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Our Dogs are MIA

Ruby and Max went outside this morning to play, which is normal for them. We generally have to kick them out of the house in fairly short order so that they don't level the house as they play. That was around eight a.m. or so. By 9:30a.m. when Nick went out to check on the other animals, the pups weren't around. It's not unusual for Ruby to go off on an adventure a little bit. There've been a couple of times when Max was whimpering outside because Ruby had abandoned him. We were glad that she was able to ditch him because he's too small to keep up just yet. Though she's generally good about letting him hang with her when they're clowing around the yard.

The problem is that they hadn't returned by the time we'd left for a grocery run to Vermillion. They weren't home when we got back and they haven't returned yet.

I've been yelling for them all day. Typically Ruby comes running when she hears me. Sometimes it takes 10 minutes for her to come screaming out of the field, but not today. I think she's with Max and doesn't want to leave him behind. They shouldn't have gotten out of earshot, he gets tired and lazy after running/walking two thirds of a mile with me.

It may be slightly possible that they were snatched. I'd like to think it unlikely. I've never seen Ruby anywhere near the road, except if she's with me running. So, I don't know.

Who knows what stupid games they got up to. Silly dogs.

Now, Sketch (cat) can be gone for a full day or more and I don't blink if I haven't seen him. Sometimes I think in my head, "Gee, I hope that he comes back this time.It just seems different with the pups.

I've called around a little and put the word out with the immediate neighbors.

On the off chance that you were in the area and have seen the puppies pictured above email mhamersma79@yahoo.com. They would've been up in the area of 306th (Volin road) and Greenfield Road. Their names are Ruby Sue (the yellow lab) and Max (German Shepherd puppy). They don't currently have collars on.

Though we left them home alone Friday afternoon, Friday night and most all of Saturday. I imagine that they are generally concerned about our return then too.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Search for a Mountain Bike

I've been watching Craigslist for a mountain bike. I haven't *really* test ridden any yet. When I stopped by the bike shop in Brookings during the TDK a gal there suggested that I look at a 17ish frame. I'm pretty sure that my hybrid is about 19 inches and it's big for what I'd look for in a mountain bike.

Biking Brady's blog reminded me that I need to be vigilent about watching out at rummage sales.

I will extend my search and include the reading public. If you happen to know of someone selling a mountain bike and happen to think of it, would you toss me a note? I can't and shouldn't invest much money into it, I really doubt that I'll ride it THAT much. Well, probably not as often as my road bike. So, I figure that I'll keep my eyes open and the right ride will find me. :) Hopefully when I find it, the funding will be there too. :D I'm saving my quarters. Eventually the scales will balance out, or I'll lose interest.

I'm not too particular regarding brand Giant, Trek, Bianchi or whatever. Though, I am watching for a front suspension and *maybe* disc brakes. I just want to bike minimum maintanance roads, gravel trails, perhaps horse trails at state parks/beginner mountain bike trails.

Grandpa update

He's doing much better. We're very glad that he perked up. My aunt from North Carolina was in town for the weekend, so it's nice that they had a calm weekend to hang out. The family went out with Grandpa for dinner at The Keg in Sioux Falls. Good chicken!! Plus, he was feeling up for a trip to Alcester on Sunday for church. Everyone at the home congregation were glad to see him and the family.

We stopped out of town so that grandpa could check out Nick bailing hay near Alcester. And the weekend was capped off with a lunch at Truck Town in Beresford before the rest of my family headed back to Sioux Falls.

Thanks for your well wishes!! I guess that my grandpa had a reaction to some of his medicine. It seems to be fixed now.

Cyclocross Video on Bicycling.com

Maybe this technique would help with crossing railroad tracks. It's crazy how fluid these guys are. I would fall over anyway, most likely.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Photography Blog

I have begun a second blogging page on which I will feature samples of my photographic work. I'll aim less for snapshots, but to display wedding photos and other artistic or photojournalistic ventures.

I will still post pictures on this blog too, of course. :D

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Dakota Life tonight

If you want to watch a segment about a different sort of bike...

Tonight's Dakota Life has a segment that I produced about Sabers Specialties in Mitchell, SD. They've done the raffle bike for the Sturgis Rally the last two years.

I didn't voice this one, I was sick when I started editing. Plus, I thought a masculine voice might be better this time.

There's also a segment about a quilter and Tyndell register of deeds Elton Rokusek on his book "The Unknown Star," about overcoming a facial deformity.

It should be a good show.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Fun at the PArk

Hubby and I went to church Sunday morning and had a yummy lunch afterward at Mr. Smith's bakery. If you haven't checked the place out while you've been in Vermillion, they have excellent sandwhiches and are located in the Jones grocery store.

We wanted to do something fun Sunday afternoon, so we loaded the pups up and headed over to Union Grove park. Ruby generally thinks that we're taking her somewhere that hates puppies, and is usually in a state of panic by the time that we get to the mailbox. I think that having Max along helped. Ruby seemed a little nervous, but did really well.

I wanted to go and walk along the horse trail to see how that is, especially if I ever acquire a mountain bike. But, there were horses and other dogs so we turned around and went elsewhere. We walked a few of the trails, maybe two miles or so. Maybe less? The dogs had their nose to the ground the whole time and were pretty well behaved.

The people and pups were all a little tired, so we didn't stay out too long. We wanted to get nap time in too. The dogs were asleep in the car before we hit the highway and were piles of mush at home.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Pics from Margarita Ride

I was running late on Saturday morning. I meant to be at Pro's by 7:30 a.m., but hit the snooze a couple of times and was tardy anyway. Then I stopped to check on Chad, he hit a deer with his truck. When I got to the start line, Kevin was talking to everyone right before the ride started. I hurried to unload my bike and pump up the tires.

I looked for my sunglasses and couldn't find them. Until I realized that they were on top of my head. Rats. I walked my bike up to the building, but forgot my helmet. Ran back to truck. Then poked my head in to tell KEvin that I'd write him a check when I got back. I'd seen Tez and company in the parking lot. They said that they were riding the 30. I decided that I'd try to catch Mary Jean, Bonnie and Sandy or Cathy or whomever. I was only starting 5 or 10 minutes late.

What a difference 5 or 10 minutes make. I was doing my best to hammer down the road. Though for me that's 16/17 mph. I did the fastest that I thought I could hold for awhile. I passed a number of people, but never saw the mob.

I did catch up to Cathy and Cindy, though I think that they stopped and chatted for awhile at the parting rest stop. They said that the others were just up ahead. I left the rest stop with them... But, lost them on the first hill. I wasn't far behind, but my sunglasses fell out of my camelback.

I caught up with Sandy at the turn north to Wakonda and chatted with her for a mile or so and then went on to meet the rest of the crew in town. That's where everyone regrouped.

Everything else went along as normal.

I will ditto everyone else. It was great to chat with everyone, other bloggers and riders.

When I got to the store to dump stuff at the recycling bin, I noticed my rear tire was lacking shape and air. So, I didn't escape a flat either. I picked a little pink pebble out of the rubber.

I didn't take many photos on Saturday due to the weather and I didn't come across a lot of note worthy pics, except at the stop in Wakonda.

Please keep my grandpa in your thoughts...

Edited 9-15-08 6:30 p.m. to say:

I called the VA and the nurse there said that my grandpa is feeling a bit better. I don't think fantastic, but better. He got up to go to the dining room and eat lunch, so I'm taking that as a good sign. So, we'll see. My mom went to visit him tonight. I haven't heard from her yet.


Okay, I'm skipping the margarita ride and will post photos later.

I didn't attend the post post ride festivities because I was tired and just wanted to go home for a little bit. This worked out in my favor anyway.

My grandfather has been having some spells off and on since like February of this year. Unfortunately as people age, it seems like deteriorating health is a nasty side effect.

I got a call as I was laying down for a nap at 3:30 from my aunt in North Carolina. The Vets hospital had called saying that my grandpa was having chest pains and his blood pressure dropped into the 30s. They were wondering where family were, just in case. I call my grandpa, he asks if I and Nick were coming up. Nobody could get ahold of my brother. I contact Nick and then hop through the shower as I hadn't removed evidence of the ride earlier in the day yet.

I was able to get my brother, I met him in Beresford and we rode together to Sioux Falls. As we got closer my mom called and said that my grandpa was feeling better and was approaching normal again. My brother and I were walking into the VA at 4:40 p.m.

We were all able to hang out together. The blood tests indicate that there wasn't a heart attack. The doctor's thought he had a reaction to some medicine.

Yesterday I got a call from my uncle saying that my grandpa was having another spell, but didn't want everybody coming up since it tired him out. Ornery bugger. I'm sure that he doesn't want to feel like he's inconvienencing anyone either.

Today I call him and he sounds tired. And he says that it's not good. He's a little better than yesterday, but not great.

Now, we've had a number of scares. He tends to come back and feels better again. He's a feisty old guy. But, I also know that time isn't unlimited for a man of 87 years. He does have a sister who is 97 years and is still fairly mobile.

Watching loved ones age is difficult. But, I am thankful for every day that I have with them.

Mastercard Commercial

I really enjoy this commercial.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Before I Chat Cycling...

I was in Hot Springs to shoot a Dakota Life Segment about the Mammoth Dig Site. Yes, it is kinda large. (chuckles at poor pun)

That was really interesting. We also learned about the short faced bear that was also found in the hole. It was a sink hole at one time. So, the short faced bear came along and thought that he'd make a meal out of a poor mammoth stuck in the hole, but then he fell in too.

This bad boy could peer into your window, on the second floor.

The Dr. that we interviewed said that all 50+ mammoths, except maybe one, have been male. He explained that the females stay together and keep male young until they hit puberty. During that time the matriarch keeps them from getting into too much trouble. So then the bachelors all run in a pack because they don't have much hope for mating until they're maybe 35. Well, young males with hormones coursing through them sometimes find themselves in awkward situations, like reaching too far into a wet area to try to eat food... and then find themselves stuck.

There are a lot of bones left to find, so a person looks at the hole and thinks "mass crash into death". But, they say only one died there maybe once every ten years... The pack remembers and stears clear or moves on and then a new crowd comes into the neighborhood. It's still a somber vision though.

We also went to Wall to finish shooting for the Badlands Documentary. There's not much to note except that we were nearly finished when the HD Camera konked out on me. I still have to go back for a different project that I'm working on, so I'll pick up the last stuff for the producer then. It's going to be an awesome documentary, watch for it on SDPB in December. The Mammoth Dig site will air in OCtober.

This picture isn't from this shoot, but it's an images from a previous shoot for the documentary. I think that it's funny how accustomed the prarie dogs have gotten to people. Though some of them now have the plague.

OF course we had to have a donut at Wall DRug. Yummy.

We did see some deer when we were driving back from the South Unit of the Badlands.

I'd forgotten to bring my SLR along. :( My digital camera doesn't have a working zoom control, so I had to crop the above image. The deer were only maybe 20 yards away. They were fairly close to the road.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Driving Across SD

Heading for Hot Springs tonight, Wall after our shoot tomorrow, spending day in the Badlands and doing a shoot Friday morning in Rapid.

Rina and I were discussing the olympics and the marathon. I don't remember what the specific times were, though the commentators called the women's pace pedesterian - which would still be faster than I'd hope to run any distance at.

Then I was reflecting on a radio segment I heard last week about the ultramarathon in the Black Hills.

Whicj leads me to ask: Which is crazier, biking 412 + miles in 48 hours (Gut Check) or running 100 in 24 hours.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


Friday night Nick and I had a date. It's his weekend to work and I go out to the hills on Tuesday, so it was nice to have a little time to hang out and have fun.

We headed to Vermillion to catch a movie, so we got there early enough to get some food before hand. I'd forgotten that it was Ribfest weekend, since I hadn't thought that we'd be taking it in. I'm not much of a rib fan, but like pulled pork sandwhiches. The stand that I got mine from had a sweet and spicy mustard sauce that was good.

Part of Poker Alice was playing at Carey's, so of course we had to stop by and listen to them for awhile. :D They'll always have a special place in our hearts. We met at Carey's for our first date, I knew that Poker Alice would be playing. And the full band played at our wedding.

Step Brothers was our flick of choice this weekend. It was crass, vulgar, had juvenile humor, and was dumb.... But, I was laughing out loud for much of the movie. No, I hadn't had much to drink before we went. There were times where it was a bit over the top and wasn't quite as funny as one would like, but that was the point. I still like Talledega Nights better, but this was fun.

Today I knew that I'd be working pledge at night, though I also needed to go into town in the morning for bell choir practice. I didn't want to drive both times, so I rode my bike in for bell choir. I didn't get on the road when I should've. I busted my tail to cover the 16 miles to town, though my average was only just shy of 14. Blah. My driveway and the hills brought me down a little, but I just never got into stellar cycling shape this year. I had a little head wind, but not much.

I was 10 minutes late for bell choir. As a result, I got the picked over role and only have 4 notes to play in the song tomorrow. Ah well, I just like to participate when I can.

I ate a small snack after practice and before heading north. My ride home wasn't much better. I'm not sure what the breeze was doing, there wasn't much for one and I think that it was supposed to be a tailwind. My legs just didn't have a lot of smoke in them today. I was okay, but my legs were tired.

Oh well, it was nice to get out. This time of year, one really doesn't know how many rides are in the cards yet. Plus, I did a LOT better riding this year than last.

Max, the puppy, is getting quite the belly and is starting to put on some weight. He rode with me on a bike down the driveway the other day. I figure that I'll carry him now, but when he's big he'll pull me. :D

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

My silly puppy

So this morning I went for a short run. Now, however, I have two four legged monsters to avoid while I run. I've not fallen over a pup yet, but I think my time might be coming.

Ruby tends to follow along, but does her own thing running around in the fields next to the driveway. Max decides that though he's small, he doesn't want to be left behind. I'd gone for a two mile walk up and down the driveway last week, and had to carry the puppy a couple of times. I wasn't going to carry him while I ran.

Max did well, but was whimpering around a mile and a half. I didn't have a leash to drag him along, he could've stopped whenever. I did try to carry him a little bit, but he didn't like the jarring motion and whined then too. After I finished running for about a mile and a half, I wanted to walk the last .5. Max, was going to come along still too. So, I picked him up, he settled in and I carried him for a quarter mile. Silly puppy.

Our plan had been to not spoil him. We may be foiled again. Though Nick tried to pick him up last night to snuggle with the puppy. Max is a loose cannon and a biting machine. He's a wild puppy and it is difficult to chill out with him unless he's on the verge of exhaustion. Any other time, he's 16 pounds of crazy in an 8 or so pound sack. He plays HARD. We like him.

I will have to post a current picture eventually. Both of his ears are popped up and he now looks even more like a small german shepherd instead of *just* a puppy.

As far as cycling goes, I was out of town for most of the weekend. I got out on Saturday for a quick ride before we headed to Iowa to visit Nick's family. I biked over to Union Grove park and made a loop through the campground. I'd never done that before, I don't know why. That'd be decent hill training in the future - doing repeats through the park, it's not a solid hill, but a few hills gradually increasing to the top of a large hill.

Today I'm off to Mitchell again. I'll be back on Friday.