When did it become unfashionable for dog owners to control their pooches? When I was young it was 'the mark of a man' for doggers to get their rovers to 'sit!' and 'stay!' from 100 meters away. If you couldn't get your dog to play dead, and still expect it to be there 6 hours later, you were immediately expelled from the Barbara Woodhouse Appreciation Society. These days it seems to be all about dog self-expression, and they mostly seem to want to express themselves by hurling themselves under my wheels or tripping me up when out running.
I reckon it became unfashionable about the same time as having well-behaved children became a mark of poor breeding. When I was a kid, there was no opportunity for me to negotiate the terms and conditions of acceptable behaviour; that was above my pay grade. I never needed to be cajoled, persuaded and bribed to toe the line, my old man had all the persuasion he needed and it also held his trousers up.
Anyway, today we had a top notch day on the Yetis, and proffed on the way home by finding an American Diner with burger heaven and some League of Gentlemen locals. The OffCamber XC series has always popped up on the dreaded big brother that is Facebook, and normally clashed with something important like dysentery or the Ski-Cross semi-finals. However, we are determined to get our card stamped in our Panini book of cross country race series.
Firstly, it was a tenner to enter! Ten quid! Being a Bargain Hunt afficianado, I felt compelled to ask for their 'very best price', but ten quid is incredible value, and should easily fetch eight quid at auction. This is quality, grass roots racing at its finest. Limited categories, limited prizes, mass, rolling start and a bloody great course. The lying Caines family had described it as flat, but the wear to my granny ring would dispute that. It's a properly rewarding course; every time you puked on a climb, you knew that the descent would 100% be worth it. 7 1/2 kilometer laps! The B.C. commissaires would soil their lycra! But it's what we want.
Couple of jumps, lots of tight corners, roots, bomb hole and home made cake. 100% rideable with none of this 'B' line b*ll*x. British Cycling clubs should all be duty bound to organize races like this or risk having their lady-shaves confiscated. Off Camber, we salute you!