18 July 2012
Everything is a gamble.
Otterpop may want to privatize her agility, but I thought I would show you one of her gambles. It still is remarkable to me that I can go out there, walk a gambler's course, and rarely break a sweat that we won't be able to handle the gamble. Me and Otterpop, we like to gamble.
My non agility pals, in gamblers, you go out and run around any course you want for 20 or 25 or 30 seconds. All of the stuff out there is worth points, and you greedily grab as many points you can. Because the most points Wins!
The catch is, when the buzzer goes off, you need to do a portion of the course exactly how the judge has envisioned in her head. And do it while standing behind a line. And do it before another buzzer goes off, which is going to go off very quickly. You mess up, off with your heads.
Nobody is actually holding a gun to your head or waiting with a guillotine at the end for screwing up, but that would actually be a fun and additional feature that USDAA could consider for the future. Or make you hold a snake. Or empty a trash can. If you are not utterly prepared that your dog understands how to do agility when you are really far away, you are pretty screwed in gamblers unless your dog enjoys blasting away from you really fast and will hopefully take obstacles if point hopefully. This is how Gustavo generally gets gambles.
Otterpop though, had to learn how to do these. We were just about the worst gamblers, me and her, in the whole United States of Dog Agility. But we worked hard. We did everything Jim said, and then some. If Jim can't help you gamble, you may be beyond hope and should perhaps go sit in the car and crochet during gamblers class. We proofed gambles like no one else. Or like everybody else who sucks at gamblers and becomes obsessed with unsucking. I made crazy, insane gambles every time we practiced. I learned to send her to things from the parking lot. From sitting in a chair 50' away. Hula hooping. Arm flailing. And then, one day, it became Our Thing.
We stare those gambles in the face, and laugh. HA gamble. Not scared of you anymore. And will never, ever have to learn how to crochet.
by team small dog at 6:35 AM