I told my jokester
brother-in-law, Ned, I was doing an Ididarod article and he quipped
“Isn’t that an event featuring all the girl friends of Alex Rodriguez?”
I told him “No, this involves dogs.”
To which he replied… actually, there was no reply,
just a headshake.
“They race dogs for 1100 miles,” I told him. “And
then they feed ‘em mush.”
“I know,” nods Ned.”The sled drivers announce the
meals in advance.”
“The most popular sled dogs,” I said to Ned, “are
the Siberian huskies and the Alaskan malamutes”
“And the least popular…” he says, “the Chihuahuas!”
“Why,” I ask, “because their hair is so short?”
“No,” Ned says. “It’s because they can’t find
someone to make their little booties.”
Actually Ned knows more about this than I think.
Plus, my brother-in-law thinks he has an answer for everything, usually
a punny one:
“Did you know,” I throw out. ”This year’s race has a
Jamaican musher by the name of Newton Marshall?”
“Sure,” he says, “A Jamaican is fast. When the dogs
slow down, he can jump out and pace them, I FIG-ure… since he’s a
“So you’re saying he could make a slow dog fast?”
“No,” Ned says. “I already know how to do that.
Don’t feed him.”
“It gets down to 50 below,” I set him up. ”Sometimes
with winds making it feel like minus 120.”
“Oh, yeah,” Ned grins. ”Exhibitionists are just
describing themselves. Al Gore should be up there, hitching a ride. Of
course, he would just be holding up a picture of a thumb… and then
complain of the inconvenience.”
“Did you know the dogs were racing to Nome?”
“Yeah,” Ned answers. “I heard they were Chomsky-ing
at the bit.”
“Don’t you love all the names of the towns they race
through?” I offered.
”Like Yentna Station?”
“That’s where a bunch of old Jewish ladies come out
and get all up in your business.”
“And then on to Skwentna,” I point out.
“That’s where some of your dogs got up and Skwent.”
“Then you run beside the Tatina River,” I tell him.
“That’s where it’s so cold,” he grins, “your tattoos
freeze off… and then go floating…”
“Why didn’t you use that pun earlier, when we were
talking about how cold?”
“I don’t know. Why didn’t you spell Iditarod
correctly in the first place?”