Thursday, February 17, 2011

Behind the Scenes at the Museum MSG

There and back again. We made it.

Here is my first attempt at encapsulating our latest NYC Flash Tour where we attended day 2 of the Westminster Kennel Club 135th Dog Show at Madison Square Garden.  This brief video is a compilation of pictures and videos we took of the benching area under the main floor of the Garden. It was pure chaos. And fun.

While three groups were judged on Tuesday, we seem to have missed the terrier group back stage completely, but got up close and personal to a few of the excellent breeds and fabulous individual dogs from the working and sporting groups at the show. I found a few new favorites (English Springer Spaniel, Curly Coated Retriever), and my daughters expanded their favorites (Huskies, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers). In person, my youngest even fell for the crated, dreaded, possessed hassock winner of the toy group, although she later recanted.

I would be remiss if I did not mention the effects of listening to Jack London's Call of the Wild on the way down to NYC.  I'm quite sure that's what spurred my daughters' affection for the huskies, and it definitely caused my complete delight with the dogs that I think perfectly represent Buck as described in the novel: the Leonberger.  It has the coloring of a shepherd and the massive body of a St. Bernard.  I can hardly imagine a dog more suited to the water rescue of John Thornton than this gentle giant. Admittedly, I did not see it act aggressively toward other dogs or men, nor did I hear it howl.

In fact, the lack of dog noises throughout not only the benching area, but the entire MSG was immediately noticeable. There didn't seem to be a drop of natural dog behavior left in these show dogs, but as some of them were actually still working, sporting, herding, dogs, that could not be true. They are just impeccably well trained to stand in the spotlight.

Soon, I hope to have a brief judging video, visiting the MSG "it's a sports arena, too?" remarks, and Moments from the Big Show.

I'd do it again in a heartbeat.  Next time I'll know which book to use when I'm trying to figure out who's who; It would really help my puparazzo work.

Check out this real photographer's work at the WKC.


Christina said...

Loved checking out the video--thanks for sharing it. Gorgeous, gorgeous dogs.

Cheryl said...

How fun! I particularly like your commentary and labels. How did you get behind the scenes?

Lynne said...

I think there may be a trip like this in your future . . .

Loud? Yes. Crowded? Hell, yes. But oh, so many wonderful dogs!

Lynne said...

Cheryl, it's a little known secret: any ticket, even the cheap seats like ours, will get you into the benching area.

While we were a little shy (apparently we were overwhelmed), the handlers/owners were more than happy to talk about their dogs - and you could touch them all.

That part was really cool. I think I left the area with less dog hair on me than when I came in!