Thursday, May 31, 2007

Helmet Safety

I am totally, absolutely; convinced that everyone should wear a helmet when riding horses.

It's like a seat belt, sometime it WILL be a matter of life & death.

Among the daily equine forum members I am not alone. In a recent poll an overwhelming percentage of members wear helmets. How do we convince the general public that helmets are cool?

Poll results:
I use an approved helmet every time I ride [57%] 41 votes
I use a helmet occasionally when I ride [7%] 5votes
I own a helmet but almost never use it [10%] 7 votes
I do not own a helmet but am considering getting one [17%] 12 votes
I do not own a helmet and have no interest in getting one [8%]6 votes
Helmets are only for kids [0%]0 votes
Helmets are for sissies [0%]0 votes
Real horse people do not wear helmets [1%]1 votes
Poll Status: Open »»
Total Votes: 72 counted »»

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day, Troops and Horses

The unofficial start of the summer is one of the most anticipated holidays on the calendar, mainly by adults. By the number of requests to have their saddles ordered last week to be delivered by last Friday, this is a start to the trail riding season for many equine enthusiasts. As a side note, if you purchase an item using 3-Day Select on a Wednesday, don't expect to receive it on Friday. That would require 2nd Day Air. Despite a few disheartened riders getting their new saddles after the holiday there are many horse riders on trails as I write this. They are taking in the sights and smells of the great God given nature scenes found on many trails across the country. In my neck of the woods, the weather is extremely pleasant and I am anxious to get outside myself.

I dare not do this until I pause for today to remember the many that have died for this great country and those that are currently putting their lives on the line for us even today, another day I'm about to enjoy. My thoughts are drifting to the soldiers in Afghanistan, in particular those that are patrolling the land on horseback. There is a little concise write up on the history of horses in warfare at A few years ago, I was able to correspond with them as we shipped them 10 Billy Cook saddles . I admit to occasionally fantasizing of the valor found in mounting your horse, with modern day gear going off to battle like the brave troops are doing on a daily basis. I'm sure that as the bullets are buzzing by their heads, they are desiring of being some place other than in battle, possibly spending a a nice day on the trails. We need to pray for these soldiers. Let's make a conscious effort to seek an old veteran out and express our gratitude for serving this great country.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Kudos to the Revere, MA Police

Occasionally I do lack due diligence in vetting large purchases. I experienced one of those times this week. We sold one of our excellent Billy Cook show saddles to a fellow in NY, NY and he had us ship to a fellow in Revere, MA. This all happened online and we did verify that the NY, NY fellow's credit card billing address matched with what American Express had on record. It all was good, so we shipped the saddle on Monday.

On Wednesday, we received yet another order for an expensive Reinsman Show Saddle. We did not have this saddle in stock, and were starting to wonder of the legitimacy of the whole order. After talking to the fellow in NY, we soon realized that he did not make any purchase. In short, someone in Revere, MA just stole a $2600 saddle from us.

I immediately looked up the UPS Tracking Number for the saddle sent out on Monday, and unfortunately I saw the saddle was delivered earlier on Wednesday (right before the purchase of the 2nd saddle). I then called the Revere, MA Police to see if they could help. Initially I was told that I needed to file a complaint locally and work through my local sheriff's department. I explained that the saddle was just delivered a few hours ago and that working locally would take too long.

God gave me yet another mercy when the operator told me that he would pass this on to be checked out and I would receive a call very shortly. I then hung up and called UPS to see if they could send the driver back to retrieve the package. We sent the saddle insured and the UPS driver left the insured for $2400 package on the front porch with no signature. That little act would have made UPS responsible if they could not prove the saddle was delivered, which they couldn't.

Detective Sgt Pisano from the Revere Police Department called me to ask the details of my complaint. I explained all I could and he said that I should have filed locally, but since it was a down day "because we usually are investigating rapes and murders." he would drive out to the Lynnway Rd address the saddle was shipped to.

The Revere, MA UPS driver called me back and said that he would go back to retrieve the saddle in an hour. Right after the UPS call, Sgt Pisano called again. He was at the address and from what I could guess, had a set of older parents that did not speak English and a younger adult son, that spoke very little English. Sgt Pisano was carrying on a a three way conversation with us. Revere is in the Boston suburbs, so Sgt Pisano had this excellent Boston accent and attitude. He let me know privately that he did believe they had the saddle because "I can see it in their eyes.", but it was doubtful he could get the saddle without a search warrant. I was listening as he was giving a very persuasive argument to the young man and his parents as to why it would be to their benefit to give up the saddle now, rather than later. Sgt Pisano then told me he would call me back and hung up the phone.

Half an hour later I received a call from Sgt Pisano who said that they were able to get my saddle and it was sitting in the police station - UPS then went there and picked it up for delivery back to me. He didn't think much could be done to the guy that stole it, but they were definitely going to pursue the case. He said that they were going to get with UPS to see what else had been delivered to the house for further prosecutions.

I need to find a good legal way to express my thanks and gratitude to Mike Dellorusso(sp?) and Steven Pisano from the Revere Police Department. They could have had me stick to normal procedure, which would have guaranteed the saddle being offloaded before anyone could show up. Rather than that, they acted expeditiously.

I'm also thankful for the last Sunday message of "Do not worry about anything."