If I Build It Will
They Come, If They Come,
10/04/2011 Sandy Herzon
On paper, ideas always look great. Blue prints are drawn and embellished with color and special emblems that make the presentation of the project seem dynamic and worthy of spending millions to build. Every single thought or innovation, invention or synthesis had a great eureka moment for the possessor of the brain that it resonated through! Even in the cartoon world, Felix The Cat had the light bulb that would light up right before he would implement the novel thought.
Just as all the above mentioned examples seem to shine bright for the person behind them, so to did the “Place The Best With The Best” emerge…….it created that “aha” moment and once transferred to paper…………appeared to be out of this world to me, the creator!
It was a wonderful idea for the Betterment of the Breed………….to spread the best puppies produced to the many and then have them come back and participate in the next generation of producing the best………………sort of like in the movie “Pay It Forward”.
Each new owner would benefit greatly with the puppy that they had been chosen for, then in a very Zen-like gesture they would in turn be more than glad to pay it forward to the next person that would come along searching for a puppy by allowing that great dog that they owned to perpetuate the breed and either have a litter of their own or in the case of a male, be able to be used for stud to pass on those great genes.
Wow………sounds great, Gandhi would certainly approve of sharing the good karma with others………….just like in the presentation of the blueprint project, this idea also is embellished with color and nice sounding audio emblems!
Ok, so what could go wrong? The saying “the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry” came to mind, because as much as an innovator I conjure myself to be, I also pride myself, right or wrong of being of the analytical mindset.
So, a quandary of epic proportions arises with the “great adventure”, this “Place the Best with the Best” idea. Of course we all know the polar opposite, time-honored tradition practiced by all dog breeders of “Keep the Best and Sell the Rest”.
What if I were to build a self-powered car, no gas, no electric, no nothing, just will-power and the car moves along from zero to sixty in zero seconds and then no one is interested in it.
What if Kevin Costner had built that baseball field in the middle of the Iowa cornfields and no one showed up to play ball, worst yet, what if no one showed up in the theaters to watch the movie?
Was my concept of breeding and placing my best puppies so far flung that nary a person would “get it” and then stay with the “dream”?
Ok, those of you that know me well…………………know that I can sell a dream that I believe in……………………………….I have heard that I can “sell cubes of ice to die hard Eskimos that own an ice plant”!
So, I knew without a doubt that like the Wright Brother’s plane……….that this idea could fly and that I could sell the idea with all the fervor that I have in something I believe 100% in.
Then the analytical “Sandy” emerges and sees a major flaw! Yes, there is an unsettling to the blueprint’s foundation! We all know that any and all buildings and structures must have an infallible foundation……….without a sturdy underlayment that edifice would surely be floating on thin ice or sinking into quicksand grounds!
Having the people come was not the hang-up, even losing some of the people that came and took a great puppy could certainly be overcome with some self wincing and grimacing……..maybe even with a few carefully chosen cuss words cast towards them, under my breath of course for messing up the master plan!
No, no all those eventualities could be covered and the feel good gravy train would keep on rolling………………so what was this earth-shattering show stopper that my analytical mind conjured up?
The huge hump in the road was not about others……………it was all about me!
Yes, the innovator………..the analytical one…………….me!
Would I really part with my best? Would I scale that Great Wall of China of actually placing my best produce with someone that could just walk away and never, ever return or worst yet, as with Darth Vader, go to the “other side”?
It could happen and unfortunately for those great puppies, it has!!!!! But back then, back then in the very beginning I didn’t know Adam from Cain! I had no semblance of a notion who was who and bottom line would I really place a future phenom with a total stranger………………a person new to the dog show world that had no clue the tremendous importance to the perpetuation of a well planned, totally thought out breeding program!
So much did I believe in the idea, the beckoning blue print, that I actually took the proverbial “leap of faith” and placed the very best puppy ever born up to 1997 with Martha Chisholm!
Of course now 14 years later history tells us that it was a rollicking success! Am AKC Ch/Int BIS Ch Chambrays Chisholm Chancey was to become the flagship dog to the great adventure of “Placing the Best with the Best”!
The owner and the dog served as the role model for the ambitious and avant garde program. The success generated by the partnership with owner/dog, Chisholm/Chancey would be the great blueprint presentation to the succeeding generations of owners-to-be and thus to the next generation of dogs that would produce the next generation of dogs that would be offered to those that came next! The great “Pay It Forward” at its best!
I built the baseball field and they came…………….they came in droves and together we hit it out of the ballpark! Not once, not twice but now hundreds of times………….14 years worth of not “Keeping best the best and selling the rest”!
14 years of taking the old faithful “leap of faith” and sharing my very best production with total strangers that eventually would become part of the Chambray Labradors Owners Community family!
Together we have paid it forward myriads of times, too many to really document now a days! One success story after another!
Today, October 2011, the proof is in the pudding at Chambray Acres! There now only exists one breeding age female on the property! One lone female that was a total unplanned keeper, she being AKC Gr Ch/Int BIS Ch/UKC BIS Ch Chambrays Charmed N Counter was actually being placed with Rosie Feeley, owner of Florida’s 1st and only Bred-By Exhibitor Champion Best In Show winner, AKC BIS Ch/Int BIS Ch Chambrays Out Of The Ruff.
Due to some unforeseen circumstances, Rosie was not able to take Charm home with her by the time she was 6 months old and ultimately she would remain at Chambray and become my daughter’s dog.
Now 14 years removed from that first plunge into the unknown, the program is on autopilot and has become the most successful breeding and show winning program anywhere in existence. It has propelled Chambray into the #1 breeder of Labrador champions in Florida history, there is a current 45 straight AKC Show weekends of winning spanning 3 years worth of shows! A record number of champions (5) that have qualified for the 2011 Eukanuba National Championships…………..way, way too many record setting feats to detail in this article…………………………all because there was a vision that was accepted by many..............many wide-eyed, informed..............accepting of new ways and wise people……………….the baseball field was built and the players came out from the rows and rows of disbelievers and today we harvest the bounty of the endeavor…………..we the members of Chambray Labrador Owners Community with great, loving companions and also the winningest show dogs in the ballpark!
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