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Attention: Only 50 will be printed. Pre-orders are being taken, get your order NOW.
Click link to place order: Silent Studio
Coming Soon! Like Silent Studio on Facebook, click link here.
I have been on break from writing the past 4 months as I have been concentrating on a fundraising project in which I chaired. The project consists of a hot calendar, cool t-shirt, a vintage classic cocktail party and an opportunity for a family portrait with the calendar photographer herself, Carolyn Lloyd of Carolyn Lloyd Photography.
Presenting: “Pitties, Pistons, Pin-ups and a Promise” for the benefit of Peace for Pits, Inc. a Chicagoland based rescue serving Illinois’s “bully breeds”.
Please consider a t-shirt or calendar purchase if you do not live in the Chicagoland area to attend the other scheduled events.
Thank you for supporting my writing efforts, but also my charity endeavors.
Note: Calendars and T-shirts are only available for shipping in the United States.
My first BASE jumper interview was at the mercy of Hank Caylor. I titled the piece, “The Man, The Myth, The Legend” after hearing the story of his mishap about a jump gone bad with him crashing through a buildings window and taking the elevator down to the lobby. That alone is legend worthy, but I soon discovered Mr. Caylor has building his legend since his first steps as a toddler.
From broken bones, to lacerations, to bruises and good old fashion scraps and minor burns he surpassed the amateur status in his early teen years.
A friend, the lovely and o’ so talented writer Annette O’Neil posted a video clip of Caylor from one of his early films “The Sharp End” on Facebook today and it put me in the sharing mood. Thanks Annette!
Extra featuring Hank Caylor from Sender Film’s “The Sharp End.” Sender Films has all rights to this video, please visit them at: Sender Films
You can check out my interview with Hank here.
All hail the man, the myth, the legend.
In part one of the series I introduced you to Henry’s introduction into Peace for Pits when he received a last hour reprieve sparing his life. This week I sat down with the little fellow and he answered my questions regarding life beyond the cages of Chicago Animal Control and Care as he prepares for his forever family.
Dog Name: Henry O’Henry Foster Guardian’s: Tom & Lisa Dog Age: 1 year Dog Breed: Pit Bull Mix Siblings: (human): Sage, 13, Amanda, 11 Harmony, 12 Classes attended/attending: will begin @ Narnia in April My nickname is: Hen
The type of family I am searching for to share my life with will be available to spend generous amounts of time with me, offer lots of petting, attention, cuddle time and love.
When I grow up I want to be: a happy family dog with good manners.
My favorite place to sleep is: on the couch with foster momma, but then she puts me in my crate for the night. However, I would sleep in the big beds upstairs if they would invite me to do so.
My favorite holiday is: St Patricks Day because that’s my 1st family holiday after being released from dog jail.
My best friend is: Alexa, I liked her right away, her lap was mine.
My favorite treat: carrots, spinach, olives, celery, cucumber, kale & lettuce. I am a veggie dog, living green keeps the body clean and lean.
My favorite toy: tire
My favorite season of the year is: warm weather, not a fan of cold, rain nor heavy winds.
My favorite trip was when we went to: so far it’s been whenever Aunt Cyn takes me in the car into town to run errands. My ultimate ride was when we left the city on my FREEDOM ride. My favorite quote is: “This is Henry’s toy!” My favorite pastime activity: sitting- I love to just sit on my own & look at my family & say “look what a good boy I am!”
I look really cute when I: hop toward my toys to fetch them, or run/gallop back with them in my mouth to share with my family. The biggest mess I ever made was: a little puke in my crate, but I was careful to move my blanket out of the way & politely puke in just the little corner of crate. The first thing I ate that I wasn’t supposed to: shoes, but I just nibbled on them. The one time I was a hero was: staying alive on the streets as a stray and then surviving at the shelter until my freedom day. I am really good at: getting attention, just ask the neighbors and all my fosters friends. Girls just can’t resist how handsome I am and ask to meet me and give me a petting.
I am sometimes afraid of: the dark, nighttime outside is scary, also an opossum or field mouse may startle me. The one thing I can’t resist is: snuggling on couch next to humans. I think my siblings are: Sage- loud & energetic, Amanda- loving & compassionate, Harmony- gentle & caring
My toughest challenge so far has been: going back into the crate when my family leaves the house. Please share something that you learned from your dog and what they have meant to your family. We have learned that the negative stereotype about pit bulls are untrue and that Henry is a calm & gentle pup. He is very loving and makes a great addition to the family. Henry enjoys joining in all family activities and wants to be in the thick of things constantly. How/Why the dog’s name was chosen: His name came about from the candy bar O’Henry which is chocolate and caramel. Also, because his foster Auntie’s said we’d be saying “O’Henry you’re too cute” or “O’Henry your’re so smart”, or “O’Henry you’re a little stinker”. He loves his name, his ears perk right up when he hears it and he comes running when called. Henry fits him perfectly. What is it about their particular breed that you are fond of? In Henry’s case, he is a pit bull mix. He is on the smaller size at under 40 lbs, very intelligent, quick learner, loves the kids, mannered baby boy who has been a great family dog. He has the build of his bigger family members but fits perfectly into our town home style living. Everything you love about the breed in a bite size package.
Thank you to Tom, Lisa and Henry for their participation in the interview.
This singing legend didn’t go for any purse puppy breed as her canine companion.
Name this Lady and the breed of her furry friend in the comments section below.
(1946 photo released by the Library of Congress)
The Power of One is a series of articles about canines and the people who saved them. One person, at one moment can make all the difference to one animal. The journey of a dog being rescued can be long, their path can be filled with many people taking on the role of that one person to assure they get their second chance at life.
Introducing A 102121: Part I
A 102121 used to identify him, PA028 is the kennel number he called home for the last days. He arrived at Chicago Animal Care and Control on January 26, 2014 as a stray picked up in the Englewood (Chicago) neighborhood.
A 8 month old, brown Merle and White Pit Bull Terrier. The percentages for A 102121 to receive a reprieve and second chance at life dropped with every turning of the calendars pages.
The reality is Pit Bull Terrier’s face discrimination through Breed Select Legislation (BSL), are saddled with a bad reputation through misrepresentation and suffer from over breeding due to ignorance of owners, backyard breeders and criminal enterprises.
A 102121 had the cards stack against him the minute he took his first breath in this world. He doesn’t know what Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) is, or why people fear him, or why his kind suffer abuse through forced breeding. And he’ll never understand what enjoyment can possibly be derived from forcing brother to kill brother in a ring for money. Or the evil of torturing his sister until her body gives out and her last breath drawn.
He only knows unconditional love – no different than any other of man’s furry best friends. He wants to give out kisses, cuddle up close for comfort, feel your hand stroke the length of his back, or tickle his tummy with belly rubs. He wants to have fresh water, food and a safe place to lay his head at night. He lives to be your best friend, your loyal buddy, your guardian and companion without ever questioning gender, breed, financial potential or misgivings.
A 102121 went from “adoptable” to “death-row”. Literally, he moved from one area of the shelter to another, just like the “big house” down in Joliet, Illinois.
The fine volunteers of the CACC transfer team had taken a liking to A 102121, as they do with all of the dogs they care for while pleading for rescues to come to their aid.
These people are the true warriors and heroes of rescue work in animal welfare. They are these dogs saving grace, the one person who uses their voice to start a dog on it’s journey to a second chance. They are also the one person often to give a gentle touch or say a kind word to a dog whose second chance didn’t come. Bless you for all you do when so many others do not.
They saw potential in the small brown Merle & White Pittie named Ramon Rampage. A Facebook plea went out by Peace for Pits rescue: “This brindle guy has 5 days to find a foster home or he’d be put to sleep. He is young, and lacks social skills. So he needs to be an only pet until we can build up his positive experiences with other dogs. If you can foster, please fill out an application online at www.peaceforpitsrescue.org”
I began sharing their plea on my personal page. A 102121/Ramon Rampage/Wild Child/Brindle Guy had that look that said, “I am too young to die. I have so much to see and do. There is garbage bins to knock over, mud puddles to roll in, car rides to take, cuddles to be had and kisses to be given; where is my best friend?”
Then came the day. His last hour. I didn’t want to look to see if he had been edited with the all now too familiar “RIP” on his listing. I felt as though if I didn’t look, it meant it didn’t happen.
I finally gave in and instead I sent Peace for Pits co-founder, Megan Lindberg an email asking. She replied she didn’t have the heart to email CACC as of yet, the news was probably not what she wanted to hear. And just as I thought to myself “at least I am not the only ignoring the inevitable…
Her reply email arrived, “He’s ALIVE” is all it said. It’s all it had to say. Christmas morning had come early.
I put out another plea; this time tagging a couple I knew didn’t own a dog and praying maybe they would spot my plea and succumb to his need. I offered to train him, be his dog walker, dog sit him, whatever it would take to enable them to home him as fosters.
At 6pm that evening, they responded with a Facebook pm asking what they needed to do to help. “Yes! There was the chance he could be saved.”
They completed the foster paperwork and sent it to Peace for Pits (P4P’s) rescue. I emailed P4P’s and asked them to please look for the application and to consider putting A 201121 on hold at the CACC until they reviewed the information.
At 1am I received Megan’s email saying, “Brindle guy is on hold. Lisa is now approved as his foster.”
Amen. I can rest now.
The next day, Megan confirmed with CACC that A 201121 was a “save”. I received an email asking when would be a good time to “bust him out”. Like I said, “just like the big house in Joliet”.
She gave me the honor of joining her team on this special day. Ashley, one of A 201121 supporters, Megan’s husband and rescue co-founder, Mike and my sister Jill were there for the “busting out” party.
He came running out from behind the doors leading away from the kennels, pulling Ashley and right into Jill as she bent to greet him. This little dude was saying, “Hey ladies, let’s blow this joint and now!”
Megan, Mike and Ashley loaded us up with his new belongings courtesy of the rescue. Jill placed the little dude in his crate and we set off on his freedom ride.
He rested the trip heading out of the city and to his new life. Freedom looked good on him. This is when Jill named him Henry, “He looks like caramel and chocolate, like an O’Henry candy bar, she said, as we tested out names. “Henry is also a gentle name”, she added.
She called out, “Henry”, and his head shot up in the crate. She called it out a couple of more times, with his ears perking up and his eyes widening. And so, A 201121 became Henry.
We arrived at our home where he happily bathed, washing away the ick of kennel life. We picked out some new toys, bed and fleece blankets from our stash and played for a bit to chill before returning to the road for the next leg to his foster home.
Henry’s foster family couldn’t contain themselves and came out to greet him on the driveway. He immediately went for a walk around the yard for a chance to relieve himself before heading in for the grand tour of the main living space.
His crate, otherwise known as Henry’s Dog Cave set up and playtime commenced. Henry proved a quick learner and after all the family introductions, more new toys, tours of the house and some quick training, little Henry was ready for nap time.
But for the grace of God and the empathy of multiple people who chose to be that one person who said “No. Not today. I will not let you die.” Henry lives.
The power of one person at one moment makes all the difference.
Please don’t wait until “someday” to reach out and help, be that one person today. The Henry’s of the world don’t have the option of someday.
Find Henry on Petfinder
(foster-sister not included)
In Part II, you’ll read my interview with the cutie himself, Henry and meet the people who raised their voices for him.
March 1, 2014 marks the publication date of Edge Magazine’s first issue of their online “base jumping magazine, written by base jumpers for base jumpers”.
The first issue is filled with articles by the likes of:
With gear reviews by Dan Vicary of Valley BASE Gear and Chris “Douggs” McDougall of BASEDREAMS.
You can check out a preview of the magazine here.
Find them on FACEBOOK here.
On the web here.
By not being a subscription holder you missed out last month on…
Bounce Proof: by Matt Blank, One man’s thoughts on the risks of BASE jumping and keeping oneself alive.
63 Vertical Women: by Melissa Lowe and Amy Chmelecki, Women’s Vertical World Record account from Skydive Arizona.
Photo Interview: Jennifer Sensenbaugh: by Zach Lewis
Celebration of Erik’s Birthday: by Kandace Rawling, a story of remembrance.
Sky Couples In Honor of Valentines:
The Year of the Pilot, by The Fuckin’ Pilot
Turning Points, Shifting Skydiving World: by Kurt Gaebel, NSL
and of course all the good stuff packed into The Flyby and Dear SkyGod.
Play it safe and subscribe to Blue Skies magazine today so you don’t miss out on my upcoming article on Kjersti “Kitty Kat” Eide.
On June 27, 2013, a new female 16 way World Record BASE jump was recorded, below are the ladies that participated in the record.
Amanda Vicharelli,Erin Shutes, Holly Mailander, Lika Borzova, Maria McFly Steinmayr, Kjersti Eide, Susanne Lampe, Roberta Mancino, Daniella Curly Liaris, Tine Richter, Lori Butz, Christine Johansen, Rima El-Masri Baich, Livia Dickie, Jenny McZolla and myself :)
Women Base jumpers Lika Borzova, Kjersti Eide, Hege Ringard, Tine Richter, Livia Dickie, Rima El-Masri Baich, Roberta Mancino, Erin Shutes, Daniella Curly Liaris, Holly Mailander, Jenny McZolla and Lori Butz set a new record off Exit 6 in Kjerag, Norway.
Note: At the time of publishing, we were still awaiting confirmation on three of the jumpers names.
There are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit, no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect. Ronald Reagan
Alexander Polli is one such man who has removed all constraints from his mind and is free to achieve what others consider the impossible.
Published on Apr 16, 2013
Wingsuit / BASE-jump athlete Alexander Polli does the never before done—a tactical flight through a narrow cave on a rugged mountainside. The flight starts with a jump from a hovering helicopter, Alexander reaches speeds of 250 km/h (155 mph) while following a precise trajectory leading to the cave opening, he then fully commits and flies directly through the narrow opening of the “Batman Cave!”
Shot in full HD, this extraordinary flight exceeds the level of commitment most fliers would ever consider—there can be no attempting, the only option is success!
The narrow cave, no wider than Alexander is tall, is located in Roca Foradada Mountains in Montserrat, Spain—a location that has inspired this professional Italian Norwegian athlete’s flying dream his whole life. Alexander hopes his success will inspire others not only to ‘climb over their mountains,’ but to also fly right through them!
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Edit: Morals Arrivederci
Music and sound design:
For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.
Leonardo da Vinci
|Daredevil Pulls Off ‘Jason Bourne of BASE Jumping‘ Inside a Hotel
U.S. News & World Report
The jump may be one of the most technically challenging BASE jumps ever attempted. Miles Daisher, who has more than 2,700 jumps to his name, stood on the 19th story balcony of the Gaylord National Hotel, jumped and fell for six stories before deploying…
See all stories on this topic »
You can read more about Miles in an article Cynthia did with him for Blue Skies Magazine here.
And check out today’s post by Clair Marie “Learning How to BASE Jump”. or at least, do that first jump. :)
In case you missed it…there are lots of photos on Instagram of the jump as it took place.
414m fall into the history books and hearts of the Kuwaiti people…
~from Chris’s Facebook Status Feed
Holy Shit…..we did it :) Kuwait’s first 2 base jumps ever and achieved in perfect Aussie style :) I am so proud to have a whole country support me in our joint dreams! I really hope i can be appreciated in my home country of Australia one day but in the mean time…… I am happy to make the rest of the world happy while my country is busy being ultra gay!…..Oz is missing out. Lucky you like cricket Aussies!!!!
I am so happy and Proud of base jumping right now and the fact that East VS West means absolutely nothing to the real human being!…… fuck the Governments and may happiness and love rule the universe and adventure sports :)
Today my 24th interview began landing in readers post boxes around the globe, as my 10th BASE article appears in the February 2013 issue of Blue Skies Magazine.
My latest is ESPEN FADNES SMOOTH OPERATOR. If the opportunity to meet Mr. Fadnes, “Fast-Dog” of Midget BASE fame arises, take it.
In fact if you are new to BASE jumping I guarantee that you will learn something about the sport, about the interviewees and yourself by reading from my body of work about BASE. And again, if you have the opportunity to meet or speak to these people, take it.
These people embodied the essence of my blog tagline,”Everyone has a story to tell…some people use more exclamation marks than others.”
Thanks Mom for making us part of your family and in some cases looking past our faults, our disabilities, our illness’s, our odd combination of mixed breeds and our dark pasts.
Thanks for reading the ingredient labels on a dozen different bags of dog food in the store before choosing one for me and then going back and reading them all again, when my tummy grumbles that night after dinner.
Thanks for telling me to “sshhh” two dozen times without a timeout when I bark at the same rabbit in the front yard and only giving me a 15-minute time out when by accident I knock the lamp off the table in the living room when I spot a squirrel instead.
Thanks for holding my paw when it is time to get my shots at the vet’s office.
Thanks for patching up my favorite stuff toy repeatedly each time my little sister tears it open and spreads the stuffing all around the family room.
Thanks for not becoming hysterical when I ate the padding out of your shoes or when I ate the laces out of dads.
Thanks for all the cuddles when I am having a case of the blues and I just need a hug from my mom.
Thanks for all the awesome toys, soft blankets, warm beds, gentle collars, harnesses and leads.
Thanks for wonderful human siblings to love, protect and have as playmates.
Thanks for washing out my feed bowls, remembering to change my water, and keeping me well groomed and up to date at the vet.
Thanks for replanting the flowers after I pull them up from the garden, filling in the holes when I dig and not banishing me from the yard, because I act like a dog.
Thanks for the walks, swims, running, playing catch & fetch, going to school, competing in trials, competitions, shows, having play dates and socializing with friends and family.
Thanks for understanding that although I would love to be all that you dream, “the perfect dog”, in reality I am not. In the end, you love me with all my faults. The barking, licking, tail whacking sniffing, sneezing, scratching, squirrel chasing, puddle pouncing, grass rolling, drooling, toilet bowl drinking, poop eating, counter surfing, shoe stealing, sofa hogging, hole digging, and nose and paw printing, get into everything and anything whenever possible dog.
On the other side, I will be your never leave your side, loyal to the end, breath my last breathe for you, be part of your family like no other, best friend, love you to my end dog.
Thanks Mom, you are the best!
PS) Thanks for not minding that we shed a bit more than your human kids do too.