Tuesday, 19 November 2002

November 19, 2002

We had a really good weekend of running. We did 29 miles on Friday, 34 on Saturday and 20 on Sunday. It’s really nice having Mark to train that second team again on weekends, that way every dog runs every day and the miles add up much quicker.

The dogs seem to be going through a little bit of a slump right now – the super, super attitudes I was seeing in Minnesota have toned down some, but they are still working well. I’m actually glad to see this happen now – training seasons are full of peaks and lows and the more lows I can put behind me prior to Iditarod, the less chance I will run into one out there on the trail (which I do believe happened in 2001).

As I hoped, I was able to convince the Millers to share Scott’s parody of American Pie – ‘Sled Dog Pie’ with everyone. I was going to cut a few of the verses out, as most are written for specific friends of the Millers, but then figured that everyone probably relates to one verse or another! So without further ado – here it is (remember to hum American Pie’ to yourself while reading this!)

Sled Dog Pie
Words by Scott Miller
A long, long time ago
I can still remember how our two dogs used to make me smile.
And I knew if I had one more, that I could make that dog sled soar
So we added three more dogs instead.
But five dogs wasn’t quite enough to fill our two four-dog teams up.
Bad news on the vet steps, we didn’t have enough yet.
And I can’t remember if I thought it true
When I said a dozen dogs would do
But now I know I’m really through the day 18 arrived.  And we were singing. . . 

Bye, bye all my money good-bye
Spent a half a million dollars and they still make me cry.
I should sell the truck and give them up while I have some pride
But that would be the day that I die.  That would be the day that I die.

Do you believe in circumstance and naming sled dogs after plants
And buying pups the Millers tell you to?
And do you believe in sharing dogs or are you the type that likes to hog
The fast ones so your partner goes real slow?
Well now I know you’ve gone and lost your senses.  You’re building more and stronger fences.
When you go buy a bigger truck, you’ll know that you’ve been stuck.
You’ll have a big old trailer with ATVs and you’ll feed three bags of food a week
And mix it all with bloody meat the day 18 arrives.  And you’ll be singing. . .  

Helter skelter in a summer swelter the dogs going crazy ‘cause Nimka’s out there
Breeding someone else again.
Well I’ve seen him mushing in a cast and Solon Springs where he kicked my ass
And the mountains in his bright red Jeff King suit.
Well I heard him say he had enough, and now he wants some Miska pups
Well that shouldn’t be so hard.  He’s still got a lot of yard.
He’s got a big old trailer and another truck, he might as well go fill them up
And buy a couple of Pangnirtung pups and run 18 dog teams. And he’ll be singing. . .  

I met a bearded man who looked so blue so I asked him for some happy news
He just smiled and turned away.
Then he pointed off across the lake where his team raced by at a break neck pace
But there was no one on his sled.
He looked at me with such alarm.  He said, “I help folks out and break their arms,
And when I give one dog away, I end up with two to take its place.
Oh I’ll have to keep Lori at home it seems or I’ll end up with half of Jamie’s team.
In Blaine I don’t know how I’ll survive the day 18 arrives.”  And he’ll be singing. . . 

Here we all are in one place and Kevin has a smug look on his face
‘Cause he thinks he has a plan.
But I can see it in his eyes and I wouldn’t be a bit surprised
If things change when his kids go off to school.
He’ll call to take a closer look to see if Kerry has more Anuks
And when the Millers can’t supply enough, LeeAnn will say, “Let’s have some pups.”
And then the kids will move back in, they’ll even bring their boyfriends then
‘Cause Mom and Dad are cool again the day 18 arrives.  And they’ll be singing. . . 

Did she laugh or feel like puking when her dogs left her out on the Yukon
That’s why they call her Karen Runs Instead.
And was it a ridge or just a hummock that helped lose her team and frost bite her stomach
And how’d that loaded gun get through the mail?
And she doesn’t have to ask what if she drives her dog team over a cliff
Likes the aches and breaks from the past, the paralysis doesn’t last.
And it’s nice to know your dogs are able to pull over porches and picnic tables
And have people wonder all the while if she’ll survive 18 more miles. And she’ll be singing
. . . 

Oh what a quandary Jamie’s in, She’s out there in a boggy fen
And she’s been training dogs for hours.
One dog’s nose is out of place and another dog it wants to pace
And we know how serious that is.
Max’s water is several hours old, Hurry’s fire is out, she’s getting cold.
What will Jamie do? She’s gonna see that dog team through
And when the rest of us are tired and done, she’ll hook up more dogs just for fun
There’s always time when Jamie runs to train 18 more dogs.
I thought it might be fun to see what the dogs were costing me
For every mile that I ran.
So I figured out the cost of food, the vet, the gear and my time too
And I found it would cheaper to take a plane.
And in the yard the dogs are screaming, it’s suppertime and I’m here steaming
They bellow and they holler and gulp down my last dollar.
Then they’ll look at me and wag their tails and the bitterness it can’t prevail
And I’ll look out with happy eyes the day 19 arrives.  And I’ll be singing. . .

Bye, bye all my money good-bye
Spent a half a million dollars and they still make me cry.
I should sell the truck and give them up while I have some pride
But that would be the day that I die.

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