Friday, January 31, 2014

Friday Hound Blogging

Frequent reader(s) of this blog will recall how the lilting voice of youth brought forth on the spring scented breeze of hope and promise is now the razor winter wind of age and disappointment mocking our dreams...erm...we mean will recall back a few years ago when we opined on the decision by Eastern New Mexico University (Motto: All Our Majors Come With Fries!) to exploit a couple of greyhounds because that was their team name, and since their teams generally suck gravel through a straw they had to give the people some reason to buy tickets.

Well, to be fair we have to say that the football team went 7 -3 this year but that was mostly due to playing such stiff competition as the Air Force Academy JV team. We should also point out that they lost to the   University of the Incarnate Word (The What?) which, we understand, is a convent.

But back to our story. So president Steve Gamble (PhD, Angeline's College of Facial Massage, Class of '75) OK'd storing a couple of greyhounds on campus somewhere and trotting them out in front of a bunch of drunken fans from time to time to try and distract attention from what was happening on the field. Now, at this point you might think we are going to refer to president Gamble as an overlord. After all, he's engaging in overlord behavior, bringing a couple of innocent living creatures on campus to be marketing tools like free key-chain give aways, or 20% off coupons for the local tanning salon, and we would like nothing better than to do so. Unfortunately, president Gamble isn't smart enough to be an overlord. Say what you will about the overlords (and goodness knows we do) they at least know enough about greyhounds to recognize potential and can tell when a dog just isn't suited to their needs. Gamble, apparently isn't even that aware because one of the dogs he caused to be conscripted to the University never made it as a mascot.

So time passes as time often does and now the two original greyhounds have gotten to that age when they need to be dumped on someone else because they are no longer useful to the university. Perhaps president Gamble can reflect over these past years, and the ethics of animal exploitation. Perhaps the experience he has had opened his eyes to the fact that greyhounds are unique living creatures with rights and needs that supersede his desire to have a cute little conceit accompanying his sports teams. Perhaps president Gamble is dumber than boiled water on the moon. 
Nicknamed Deuce and Trey, the puppies will replace the male half of Vic and Tory, a pair of rescued racing greyhounds who were brought on as the school mascots in 2009.
"We think getting puppies is better than getting older dogs," said Yvonne Tillman, a member of a group of students called Hound Handlers who take care of the school’s mascots. "That way we'll get more years out of them before we have to abandon them like Vic and Tory. Sort of like buying a new car instead of a used one. You expect it will last longer before you have to junk it out."

The original Vic has been struggling with arthritis and vision difficulties while Tory never took to the mascot role. "That Tory would freak every time we brought him into the stadium," said Vice President of Student Affairs Judith Haislett. "It was kind of funny except he would pee all over the place and shiver like it was 40 below. Never did figure out what his problem was. And as for Vic, well, he's starting to cost us money now so it's time for him to move on. We're not a school of Veterinary Medicine here you know."
The mascots live in a house on Cherry Street, and have two student roommates who look after them while they are home. During the day, the hounds will be on campus, and Hound Handlers will handle them from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. everyday.
 "We figure if we set it up right the dogs will never have a moment's peace," Haislett said. "And since their handlers are all students there will be a constant turnover of people so they won't be able to get used to those caring for them, but that's OK because most of the people caring for them don't know anything about dogs anyway,"

“It is nice to be recognized with the dogs, and you get to tell the community about the dogs. Everyone thinks it is super cool,” Tillman said. "Well, except the people who think exploiting innocent living creatures for something as trivial as a third rate sports program at a minor university in the boondocks of New  Mexico is even worse than making them run around a track for a couple measly bucks."

Hmmm....mascot or racer. Which would you rather be Daisy? What's that? You feel like you've been used by others enough and you just want to be somebody's pet? Sounds reasonable, but stay out of New Mexico.

I am a very sweet, playful, and overall good dog. I love to play with my toys. I do really well when I go for car rides. I haven’t tried to go up and down the stairs yet so I’m not sure about them. I am housebroken. I love to go for walks and I don’t even pull on my leash. I need a little coaxing to go in my crate but once I’m there, I’m fine. I love the two other Greyhounds in my foster home. I have seen little dogs through the fence and I am fine with them but I would have to meet one in person to see how I get along. I cannot live with kitties. I love everyone I meet and I’m not afraid of anybody. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.

Cloud update: He's playful, obedient, and will lay with his head in your lap and get his ears scratched for hours.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Friday Hound Blogging

We're coming to you today from the Department of ReDUMBdancy Department here in the marbled halls of IM Central. The DORD is a division of the What Part Of Stupid Don't You Get Corporation, a wholly owned subsidy of Put Your Stick Away, That Horse Is Dead, NA.

Frequent reader(s) of this blog will recall the despicable face of eventuality which, for so many years hid behind the mask of idealistic youth...erm...we mean will recall friend of the blog and Donald Trump wannabe Phil Ruffin. Mr. Ruffin is the overlord who owns the Wichita Death Camp for Greyhounds. Well, owned is probably a better word since the track went belly up in 2007 when the voters of the area told him, "Hey Phil. You think greyhound racing is an actual thing a fully functioning human being should be engaged in? Go ahead then, we're not going to give you cover by letting you use the income from slots to subsidize the continued heartless exploitation of these poor dogs for no profit." Or words to that effect.

So Phil folded his tent and now presides over the mouldering remains of his once mighty money losing empire out there off I-135 next to the abandoned strip mall. Picture a dystopian scene of broken buildings and cracked pavement under a somber sky. A desultory breeze blows old newspapers across the empty parking lot which once held tens of cars. Somewhere in the distance a crow calls out. Locals believe the place has bad Juju and won't go near it.

Well, old Phil is not one to give up easily, or maybe he can only hold one thought at at time, but whatever, instead of actually trying to do something positive with the land, he's spent the last seven years trying to convince anyone who would listen--and believe us that's a pretty small demographic--that a bright future looms for the senseless injuring and killing of innocent living creatures--if they will just let him have slots to subsidize it.
Wichita Greyhound Park operator Phil Ruffin plans to try again to get legislation passed in Topeka that would allow him to add slot machines at the park so he can reopen it.
Ruffin would invest between $50 million and $100 million to renovate the facility on I-135 in Park City if he could install the slot machines, said his lobbyist, George Wingert, on Friday.
 Mr. Wingert would not comment on the report that the $50 million to $100 million was Monopoly money, explaining that he had just taken Mr. Ruffin on as a client after getting fired from his cab driving position and deciding to become a lobbyist. "He responded to the flyer I nailed to the telephone pole over on Cedar Street," Wingert said. "So we really haven't had much time to talk yet because my mom took the message."
Wingert said there is more optimism about getting a bill passed this time because of the success of the Kansas Star Casino in Mulvane, just across the southern Sedgwick County line in Sumner County.
 "Casino style gambling is where it's at," Wingert explained. "Slots, table games, the excitement, the big payoffs. It's what people want. It's why they come out, for the total experience. There's nothing that can compare. Oh, and greyhound racing, We want to do that too. No really. We do. I guess. Like I said, I haven't really had a chance to meet with Mr. Ruffin yet, although if you ask me doing over what closed your business down in the first place doesn't seem like the smartest business move, but I'm just a cab driver...I mean a lobbyist."
Sen. Ralph Ostmeyer, R-Grinnell, who chairs the Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee, where gambling issues often start out, said he doesn’t see such a bill succeeding this year.
“That’s been an on-going deal and I don’t see that going anywhere. I don’t think there’s enough votes in the Legislature,” he said. “I’m not getting any pressure to work it.”
 "And that's why were so excited and optimistic about this legislative session," Wingert said. "At least I think it is. I really need to talk to Ruffin."

Not sure that's going to help there Georgie boy. After all, old Phil has been "excited and optimistic" for seven years now and so far all he has to show for it is several acres of urban blight. What do you think Boom?

I am full of adventure. I am a very sweet and loving boy. I love people and to get attention. I am a very obedient and easy dog. Because I am young, I get bored so I need to have some kind of periodic activity. I get along great with kitties and dogs of all size. I am housebroken. I am learning to go up and down the stairs but haven’t perfected it yet. My foster mom and dad are working with me to help me get better at it. I love to play with my squeaky toys. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.

Cloud update: This sweet boy loves his toys! Cloud is a fast learner that strives to please.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Friday Hound Blogging

We're coming to you today from the When It Rains It Pours Department here in the marbled halls of IM Central. WIRIP is a division of the Chickens Returning to the Roost Corporation in association with Is That Karma I See Walking Towards Me With A Big Stick, LLC.
Here's what the last week has been like for the overlords in Iowa:
The possible end of live greyhound racing in Council Bluffs picked up support from the city council Monday evening.
As Batman might say BOOM!
On most days the grandstand is less than 10 percent full. Sometimes there are more dogs on the track than people watching. Officials said racing doesn't make enough money to pay for the track.
Or, as the Caped Crusader might opine POW!
If you've never seen a greyhound race, you might want to head to the tracks as they may not be around much longer.
 Let's give this last one to Robin. CRASH!

As our old daddy used to say, this is a situation in which you would like to have some bad news just so you could have some good news. Things are so bleak for the overlords in Iowa they'd have to light up a candle just to see the dark. We have to believe the overlords in Iowa are so low right now they have to look up to see down. If bad news was a puddle, the overlords would be swimming in a ocean of hurt. The overlords in Iowa are so disliked, even Al Qaeda won't recruit them. The overlords are so desperate for customers in Iowa, they'll even accept bets made with monopoly money. Last week three people turned up for a race at Council Bluffs and the track reported a 110% increase in attendance over the week before. Turns out they also counted a raccoon who ran across the parking lot just before the matinee. Last weekend the tip jar in the lounge took in more money than the whole track.

But cheer up overlords. There is a silver lining. We heard Walmart has just announced a new round of scholarships to Greeter School.

Oh, and let's not forget the dogs. What do you think their reaction is Ginger? Say what? Ask Richie Havens?

I absolutely love to play with toys. I throw them up in the air and catch them and I love to squeak them. I love my foster mom’s Greyhound. We love to play together. I haven’t seen any small dogs yet so I’m not sure if I can live with them. I am cat friendly. I do well on walks and don’t pull on my leash. I am quite the lady. I love everyone I meet and love to get pets from them. I am completely housebroken and I don’t mind being in my crate. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.

Cloud update: This sweet boy loves his toys! Cloud is a fast learner that strives to please. He's playful, obedient, and will lay with his head in your lap and get his ears scratched for hours.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Friday Hound Blogging

Janus, the two faced god for whom January is named. He looks both backward and forward. You know, we here in the marbled halls of IM Central have long found it amusing that in America, founded on biblical principles stated in the Constitution which was written by Jesus, eight of our months and five of our names for days of the week come from pagan gods and festivals with nary a Christember, or Jesusday in the lot. We blame Obama.

This concludes your lesson in the classics for today and brings us back to Janus. When last we met our Stoli infused gaze was cast back over the concluding year in which we highlighted for you our esteemed reader(s) overlord accomplishments which pretty much amounted to avoiding any kind of positive contribution to society, so this week we thought we'd peer into the future and try to discern what to burgeoning 12 months have in store.

It's not good news folks. We mean, when right out of the box, the first headline of the year reads Greyhound Racing Has A New Foe you have to figure the line of people pointing out that overlords are to a civilized society as grapenuts are to an internal combustion engine is just going to get longer. Oh, don't bother clicking on the link, it's one of those subscription only things, so we have unleashed our madd intertoob skillz to bring you all the juicy parts:
The Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce on Friday implored area state legislators to alter state law to allow Dubuque to end greyhound racing at the city-owned Mystique Casino. The City of Dubuque made the same pitch last month as part of its legislative agenda.
You see that overlords? The Freakin' Chamber of Freakin' Commerce is against the heartless exploitation of innocent living creatures for profit. The Chamber of Commerce man. The guys whose motto is anything for a buck are telling you even they can't go that low. And then, just when you think they're done pointing out that your occupation is a boil on the buttocks of the great state of Iowa, along comes the City of Dubuque to tell you that they don't mind owning the city dump where everyone leaves their garbage and they don't mind owning all the water treatment plants that take care of everyone's poop, but you have to go 'cause they can't stomach owning a greyhound track.

Dang, man! There are serial killers with more friends than you. OK, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration because you do still have one friend.

Longtime Iowa Rep. Pat Murphy, on the other hand, said he will vote against removing the requirement... "I've been opposed to the elimination of greyhound racing and here's why: I'm a twisted little man who has all the empathy of a wounded scorpion. I was raised by an ex SS officer and Lizzy Borden. My hobbies are pulling the wings off of butterflies and drowning cats."

Hmm...our advice? Don't ask him for a reference letter when you start looking for that next job. Well, for you it will be that first job, but still, not a good idea.
Iowa Senate President Pam Jochum on the other hand, remained supportive of the effort. "(Greyhound racing) just hasn't worked. It's just not something a lot of people want to do anymore, like it or not. It's just a reality," Jochum said. "There aren't enough people placing bets. Time to let it go."
Senator Jochum attributed the decline of greyhound racing to increased levels of adult literacy, improved child nutrition and assessable medical care. "I'm sure it was more popular back when people still ate tree bark," she said. "But we've just moved on, you know?"
Only one other Iowa casino -- in Council Bluffs -- has greyhound racing. That casino also seeks an end to the racing requirement.
 "You think we want to be the only place in the state that does this stuff?" said a casino spokesperson. "Cripes man, do I look like I have cauliflower for brains? Wait, don't answer that. The point is we want to be the last greyhound track in Iowa about as much as you want to be one of Chris Christie's hemorrhoids."

Yeah, well that is a point don't you think Mcconder?

Even though I am four years old, I am very playful and puppy-like. I am a very sweet boy. I am outgoing and love to follow my foster mom all over the house. I have so much fun playing with my stuffies and running from room-to-room to see what is going on. I don’t live with kitties at my foster home but I love the tiny dogs that live next door so I would probably be fine living with kitties if you have them. I get along wonderful with the two Greyhounds that live at my foster home. I am housebroken and don’t mind being in my crate. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.

Cloud update: This boy is a real pup, and by that we mean he's not quite two years old yet, so he's full off puppy energy. Also full of love, so if you have room on your couch this boy's for you. He's cat and small dog safe.