Blog Installment #2

July 1, 2009
By Megan Brincks

Week two at HAHS was a little tougher for me. I got a little homesick for Lincoln, but ironically I have absolutely no desire to go back to my hometown! Around midweek I started having a problem staying motivated at work but I really tried to stay on task. It became a little easier to take short breaks to check my Facebook, a practice not looked down upon at HAHS.
               
It’s such a laid back atmosphere that I doubt there is much I could do to truly upset anyone -- and I’m trying hard not to test that theory.
               
This was the final week for putting together Hoofprints, so there has been a little bit of a push to get things done, but thankfully my part in the magazine easily got done, and I even got to see the proofs for some of the pages! That is one of the most exciting things for me after working at the Daily Nebraskan for a year where you write the article, submit it and then see it in print. At a magazine I write and edit an article, submit it to my boss, who gives me comments. I fix the problems, and we send it to the company who does the layout and will eventually print all 5,500 copies. Bonnie, our horse-savvy layout friend, will e-mail the pages in PDF files and we make notes about anything we would like to change. The e-mailing goes back and forth until one big meeting in which everyone will get together and hash out the final revisions. Then we will get a final proof, pour over every detail and okay the printing of the magazine.
               
The longer process is great for my inner perfectionist because I get a say in every aspect of the article. If there is something that I don’t like, it’s only my fault if I don’t speak up.
               
Another aspect of my internship starting this week was working with the horses for an hour or two every day. I chose Molly, an 11-year-old bay Standardbred mare, as my project horse for this week. By the way, if anyone can tell me what all of those things behind her name mean, they get a horse cookie! Every day I went out and caught her, sometimes a lengthy process. Then I brushed her and talked to her and got to know her. As my mom likes to say about me and horses, I whispered in her ear and she told me all her secrets. Basically, it was my job to get to know everything I can about her so I can profile her in the magazine. Seriously, I fell in love with this sweet girl. When I was grooming her I found a brand on her neck and I was able to trace it to find out that she is registered with the US Trotting Association, but she was never raced.
               
No one had bothered to look up her brand on the free Web site for Standardbreds, and my supervisor was pretty impressed, especially since it helped us more accurately give her a date and place of birth. The veterinarian had previously thought she was pushing 15 years old, the horse equivalent of middle age, but the records showed she was only 11, which is more like early thirties for people.
               
One final note, please feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions about horses, HAHS, my internship or anything I write in these blogs. I would love a distraction right around 3 p.m. every day to keep me away from the candy basket! Also, the Web site for HAHS is www.hahs.org, so please check it out, especially if you are at all interested in horses.