Throughout the 60s and 70s, cops hunted down key figures of the Dixie Mafia, including its enigmatic ringleader, Kirksey Nix. I'm interested in making money.
I'm not interested in hurting people. Fifteen years into Kirksey's life sentence, the Dixie Mafia was practically folklore, but that would soon change. I'm Jed Lipinski. This is Gone South, a documentary podcast from C-13 Originals, a Cadence 13 studio. Season 2, The Dixie Mafia.
Available now on the Odyssey app, or wherever you get your podcasts. Throughout the 60s and 70s, cops hunted down key figures of the Dixie Mafia, including its enigmatic ringleader, Kirksey Nix. I'm interested in making money.
I'm not interested in hurting people. Fifteen years into Kirksey's life sentence, the Dixie Mafia was practically folklore, but that would soon change. I'm Jed Lipinski. This is Gone South, a documentary podcast from C-13 Originals, a Cadence 13 studio. Season 2, The Dixie Mafia.
Available now on the Odyssey app, or wherever you get your podcasts. I have been promising you a special surprise guest. I don't think that I could come up with any better way to wrap up 2022 than to welcome back our friend, we call him Matt the Musher, affectionately. Matt Paveglio is his name. He's the After Hours favorite Iditarod racer.
At least he was in 2022 and hoping for an update as we turn the calendar to a new year. Matt, happy holidays to you. Thank you so much for joining us. Thank you for having me again, Amy, and happy holidays to you as well. How are you?
That's a loaded question, you know. Good. A little bit lost this year, but doing good, doing good.
Why are you lost? Well, you know, I mean, last year, I think when we were talking, you know, I was kind of looking at one of the biggest, neatest opportunities, obstacles, you know, athletic endeavors, just kind of looking at the Iditarod. And this year, I wouldn't say lost. I've stepped back in my role from like being the primary musher in the yard, and I'm kind of just a consultant, a coach, and helping a group of ladies that want to qualify for the Iditarod. And then my daughter kind of get ready for the races for the season.
So a smaller, a kennel with kind of less ambitious goals this year, I would say to a certain extent. I mean, we don't have a thousand mile race, but man, that weather has been crazy. And it's that's kind of been the big story up here as well.
But I think Buffalo and that those guys, they kind of they kind of take the cake. And, you know, I mean, it's, you know, our heart goes out to them. We understand the bad weather, but that's like that's that's next level there. So, yeah, lots of little obstacles. But, yeah, not running Iditarod this year, but having some fun, kind of a different perspective, I guess, on the whole sport. Well, I guess I had anticipated that your decision would be this one only from our text messaging, but also knowing kind of where you were.
But I'm sure people would like to know why, if you wouldn't mind telling us what made you decide not to follow up and race again this year. Well, I mean, it's, you know, you know, there's all these unlimited, you know, goals and lofty, lofty expectations on myself. But, you know, I've got limited resources and limited energy. And so it kind of boils down to, you know, kind of got a coat of work.
And, you know, if I if I could pull like an air Emirates type of sponsorship or, you know, something like that, then I would be you know, I would I would pay my mortgage that way and I would go out and run dogs all day long. I think economics break break it down. But I mean, furthermore, it's just to do it right. You got to put your everything into it. And that's I just it takes too much away from the family, the you know, the career and the you know, the important things in life. So it was a matter of stepping back because when I do it again, I want to do it right. So and I'm not saying if someone fell off of a team today and neither than I did or I'd race or I wouldn't jump in, but I probably wouldn't this year because I would bust up a family vacation to Maui. And that would probably not end well for me, you know.
But yeah, so there was it was a couple of complicated you know, it was just complicated decision. But I'll tell you, Amy, there's no way that I I'm not thinking about it every day. The hardest thing is to be on the sideline, watching other people prepare for races and be ready and talk about it. And just the camaraderie of the other mushers.
I've already been at one race this year that my daughter ran and another lady from the kennel ran and being on the sidelines like that, watching everybody take care of the dogs and do their thing. It is it's hard. It's very, very, very hard to watch that. So, yeah, it's definitely difficult. I can imagine. It sounds, though, like the door is open at some point that you would like to do this again if the opportunity presents itself. Oh, one hundred percent.
One hundred percent. Yeah, I think I made a lot of good friends, a fairly good name for myself with the veterinarians and the race officials and then just other other racers where I had shoot. We had our not our pick of kennels, but we had a lot of different kennels that were that wanted myself and my daughter to come in and kind of train their teams up. We had proven they did our teams that were going to pay us and could have put us up in a house type of thing.
And then we had just friends that would have competitive teams that aren't able to do it this year. And in the end, you have to go to what is the best, you know, the best fit. And we wanted we wanted a place that we could make a difference that we like our skills. My daughter and I, our skills are validated. So we found we found a small kennel that did just that. So, yeah, there'll be a time when we go back and we find a team and we we do whatever we can to make it, you know, to do it right, do it the right way. Everything from nutrition to training, you know, to dog care. We want to do it all the right way. So we have to find the right system, the right place and the right opportunity for growth.
I know all that sounds cliche, you know. But it is I mean, it's I don't want to be a place where I'm, you know, trying to, you know, put a square peg into a round hole so that we found we found the right spot for us this year to grow my daughter. She'll be running her second junior. I did our team and then third junior Willow team.
And these are like 100 mile wilderness races where there's no support. You send your kid into the wilds of Alaska for two days with a tracker and, you know, all the perils, frozen lakes, frozen rivers, you know, moose mountain passes and things like that. And I mean, she's 15. So that's I mean, it's it's pretty neat getting her ready for that and having her grow from last year. It's it's it's pretty neat. Coaching's coaching's neat, but it's it's you know, it's it's it's kind of a neat way to stay with the sport.
I definitely understand lots of former athletes, they make that jump to coaching, too, because it keeps them close to the sport that they love. We're spending a few minutes with Matt the musher. Matt Pavello is joining us from Alaska for the first time in a long time. And I just want you to know we've had so many people who've asked over the course of the last, say, nine months or so and you weren't just with us for the course of your rookie. I did a rod which was early 22, but also you were a participant in the after hours chubby bunny championship. So, of course, we'll need to have you do that with us again coming up in late March or early April. Yes, because you are a reigning co champion along with producer Jay.
It's after hours here on CBS Sports Radio. Well, I want to ask then about your daughter and the coaching. You just kind of outline the fears for a parent and someone who's done it.
And you went through a lot of those perils last year yourself. What types of ways do you feel like you can help her? How are you coaching her to do this again?
Poorly so far. Tonight I'm finishing my shift in the emergency room and I kind of send her a text message and say, I want you to kind of get ready for a run. And this was going to be a serious training run, a 40 miler. And it's everything from gear for ourselves.
We call it mandatory gear. Everything you got to have in your sled that would keep you alive or you need to take care of the dogs has to be in the sled and then all the rigging and all of the things. And then I also wanted her to call and talk to the other girls in the yard and figure out which dogs are going and which trails we should run on.
We have three or four major trail systems in the neighborhood and we have had, you know, 48 inches of snow and just the craziness out there. So it has been finding trails to run her hard, but having her kind of seek that type of information out and then put it all together. That's going to be the next step because then she's, you know, she's making her list.
She's checking it twice. She's kind of going through all the things. And the thing is, I didn't give her quite a great list. I kind of fragmented my thoughts and I came back and some of the stuff was done and just kind of learning that to give someone good directions.
You've got to give them a good checklist and then they can then they can succeed. But she kind of just, you know, I was just a little vague. And so once I kind of get that stuff around, I think it just it, you know, she'll be much better off seeing her work with the dogs and perform the sport itself. She's a natural. She's wonderful. She's wonderful in cold conditions and harsh conditions and wind. And I mean, just in the 11th, she competed against adults and she did wonderful.
She was just nice, clean, easy, breezy. But the back end of it, preparing for the expeditions and that type of stuff is in making the list herself and kind of putting it all together. She knows the stuff. She's done it. But, you know, just actually having her do that whole processes. That's the next step.
Yeah. And she's she'll do it. She's a very organized woman and lady. And she's, you know, much smarter than I am.
So it's fun to watch her come around. Well, I know last year. Yeah. Last year she did the the junior. I did a rod and I just remember the videos and your your pride as a parent. I think I remember asking you about you watching her compete and waiting for her to show up at the finish line versus your own competition.
I think many parents can identify. It's far more nerve wracking, if I remember correctly. That's what you told us to be watching and waiting for her then to actually do it yourself. Oh, yeah, absolutely. Yeah.
Yeah. I think about was it Raisman's parents in the Olympics? I think I said it last year, but like her mom and dad were just so nervous, concording their bodies and just like, you know, and that's that's what you feel like. I mean, we every five seconds we're watching the tracker to see where she is and the GPS trackers that follow them along. And and then, you know, trying to be there for her at the beginning in the end without overstepping, you know, keeping her like it's her job. It's her race.
It's her stuff to do and not like overstepping because at the point you the competition starts, your coaching is pretty much done. You're just there as support. And she needs me there, but probably is just kind of a quiet in the background. You know, no, just just a pillar. If she needs me, she can come to me. And nothing says quiet and in the background.
Quite like you, Matt. You know, we all feel well after just, you know. Yes. Yeah.
That's kind of my M.O. Nice. Well, I know that it was a tough decision for you because I can hear it, but also know how much you feel like you grew as a person and as a team leader and as a driver and all those things over the course of your own experience. So we will be rooting you on whenever it is that you decide that you're ready to jump back in. But I know our original conversation with you started over something as simple as best dog breed. And you called us up from Alaska over a year ago to tell us that Huskies were by far the best dog breed out there. And so being around the dogs, is that still therapeutic for you? Oh, yeah.
Oh, yeah. There's, you know, every yard you get to go into, it's there's all the you know, I I have a fondness for the underdogs. So we every yard you go into, you find these dogs and I just always gravitate towards them. And so, yeah, working with this team, there's, you know, the bear litter that we have. We have Chicago and Grizzly and Kodiak.
And yeah, there's Yogi. Oh, Eddie, those those are all the you know, they're all the different types of bear. This litter is amazing, right? So they kind of carry the yard.
You don't have to worry about them. There's a few scrappers in there. And then Lewis and Clark are two just wonderful dogs and few older dogs. We've got walnut, spruce and then my boy Birchwood, who's kind of on the he's in the back of the pack and I just love him. He's a little bit growly with other dogs, but doesn't fight. And he I really want him to come on strong, but he's just he's probably kind of fallen off a little bit. And then we get a new guy, Rango, that's young and a little bit spastic. And he's also hard, but he doesn't have that self-preservation for like distance running. I'd bet you would be like a wonderful mid distance guy or like, you know, you know, an 800 meter runner or something like that. But he's not that marathoner. And so, yeah, it's being around the dogs.
It's great. And then like in just running them like tomorrow, my daughter and I will go out for 40 miles and in all your problems go away. Last year, every day I was at the hospital, I was running dogs.
And that's not necessarily the case this year. And you find out that that is. Yeah. I mean, you've got to be doing my my makeup, my genetic makeup. I got to be moving forward and I got to be, you know, competing somehow.
I don't know if it's checkers or darts or golf or whatever. I got to be doing something. But dogs definitely I've found my, you know, my number one like outdoor endeavor, I guess. And and when I'm doing it, I'm just I'm in a better place. Matt, the musher is with us from Alaska. And after his rookie, I did a rod man did life change for him. So I want to get an update on some of the various adventures he has going on.
But forgive me for not knowing this. I don't know how it works or how far, you know, the training and the kennels and the terrain, all that is and what it's like. But do you ever see any of the dogs that you ran with last year? Have you had a chance to to catch up with any of them? Yes.
I mean, bits and pieces. So a few of them, your boy Louie and a few of them went with Matt Peterson. He is like a long time. I did a router and they live in Norway now. So I think I think he's in the galley, the galley park or something like that. And so, yeah, I think eight of them. Yeah, they were they were scooped up.
Kathleen, the owner of the kennel that I worked with before, was kind of downsizing. So she sold the core of her race team pretty well right after the race. I just maybe maybe a month after the race. And then the rest of the dogs competed in some of the local races, the dry land races, which is like you run with the dog or the dog.
Two dogs pull a bike and it's kind of a way to train pre snow. And then we'll start seeing them now in the next week and a half. We'll be at the same races for the rest of the season. So I'll get to I'll get to bump into all the girls again.
And yeah, you know, that is that's it's difficult. I think about them often. They're very sweet.
Came up. They you know, we we came a long way together and we spent a lot of nights together. And yeah, I think they're doing good. There's there's a another nurse from the lower 48 that came up.
And she is attempting qualify for I did right. So Kathleen and a couple other the kennel owner and a couple other I did rotters are helping this young lady get qualified. So the team is doing what it is in very, very good hands again. Although they are there's so much snow up there, I think everyone's kind of having problems getting training miles in right now because it's there's just tons and tons of snow. So, you know, I worry about them like that, but only because I can't be there to help them. Yeah, but I've I've got a group of dogs I can help. And that's that's what we're that's you know, from here on out, we are we're full bore.
We got about six weeks before he's first race and the focus is bringing their speed up and keeping them healthy, healthy and fat, healthy and fat. I can't even imagine the attachment that you have formed with them. And that will always be one that's really emotional, too.
But you relied on them in the wilderness and some of the conditions that you pointed out. If you did not ever hear Matt the musher story, as told on After Hours, not only do we have that preserved on our YouTube channel, but he was kind enough to give us exclusive access to some of his photos and videos that we also producer J put together with his story of his I did a rod his rookie I did a rod experience. So again, that's on our YouTube channel, one of our most popular guests of 21 and 22. Now we have to take a quick break. But then I want to get an update because I know you've been working on some kind of new adventures.
If you wouldn't mind hanging on, we'll get right back to you. Matt the musher is with us from Alaska, a little bit of a different shift in 22 and 23. We were so glad to have him with us and getting an update here on After Hours with Amy Lawrence CBS Sports Radio. You are listening to the After Hours podcast. I swear I had nothing to do with that.
That was all Carlos. But it fits for our special guests to have been waiting a long time to get an update from Matt the musher who joins us from Alaska. We first connected over a year ago over best dog breed and Matt really had an answer that no one else could Trump, and he's with us for a couple more minutes here after hours on CBS Sports Radio. So you are not going to run the Iditarod in 2023. But that door is still open. And I can hear it in your voice though. I am pretty excited for your daughter to continue in this adventure.
I know that she will rely on your expertise, as well as just your, your confidence in her, which you definitely have. But you've been busy connecting with a lot of others in the community, the mushing community. So over the past few months, like even going back to April, what's it been like for you now to be part of that club, Matt? It's, it's pretty neat. You know, we, we, we know what each other, you know, we know what we've been through and, and, you know, it's, it's hard to hard to completely understand. There's, I mean, everyone has their own take on what we did and how we did it. But it's, it's just, it's a neat fraternity.
And it's been, it's hard to get into. And it's just, it's super sweet. I think it's, you know, you can cry with them, you can talk to them, you can politic with them, you know, and we all, we all know where we've been, but it's been, it's been very neat. It's kind of the whole thing is opened up a few little neat opportunities.
Get to speak at my professional nursing associations annual conference up here. And I'll get to do that again later on in the year. I get to do, I've got the MC for, I got to tell my story in front of, I don't know, there are four or 500 people at an event, kind of like the mock on NPR.
But it's our version Arctic entries. And so I'll, I'll go back during the, I did a rad time when we do another show where we kind of, we fill one of our bigger event arenas here. I mean, and I get to help MC with one of my good friends, so we'll have seven storytellers and yeah, it's the whole thing is opened up a ton of opportunities, but I think you're kind of alluding to it, but I've been taking pictures, selfies with every finisher I come across. And, um, I have, um, uh, out of the 823 finishers, you know, I'm, um, you know, I'm working my way through there, uh, now and, uh, I meet people all the time, uh, that refer me to someone or I kind of meet a friend of a friend and I've taken pictures with people's, uh, family members. Uh, I did rod finishers that have passed away and, um, started kind of, at first it started, I would just post me in a picture of them with our finishing numbers. And then I started putting their names and adding stories to them. And, um, just fine. I mean, I've taken pictures with finishers from 1974.
Um, people would have passed away in the last, uh, just couple of years. I've, they're, you know, a daughter or a grandson or, and just hearing all these amazing heroic stories of these people or, you know, sad stories of how they pass or just kind of just wild stories that, you know, you know, nobody in Hollywood could write these stories. You know, these are just to be told, you know, around a campfire type of thing. So that, that project's been pretty neat. Um, and it's just, that's just because I'm a social media junkie and I like taking selfies with people, but, uh, it's, I mean, there's some really neat people running around, uh, the neighborhoods up here for sure.
What are a couple of the more popular questions that you get asked when you speak or when people want to hear about your Iditarod experience? Um, I think they, you know, one of the more, how do you, how do you deal with the sleep deprivation? Um, and the dogs really like to do it. And, um, yeah, the dogs really like to do that, do it. I think, um, any, anytime you do anything with positive reinforcement and, uh, meaning treats. Treats.
Yeah. I mean, nonstop and, and they, they always went for them. I found the rhythms, you know, I knew what they wanted and if not, I had another type of tree. I mean, we, I was down to, I had, they could have, I don't know, Buffalo. They could have beef, they could have chicken fat, they could have, um, King salmon, they could have cat food, they could have crap like old Roy dog food.
I mean, there were, you had to flip. I mean, most of their dog food is like high end, $70 bag type stuff, but these guys had just about anything and they had their rhythms. And, uh, uh, once they started eating, they just wouldn't stop. I couldn't feed them enough.
And so, um, yeah, they, they love what they were doing and they, um, yeah, and they just enjoyed it. But, um, and then the sleep deprivation say, I mean, I have no idea how I did it. It's that's, that's the, that's one of the reasons I'd like, it scares me to ever do it again is like, I, I have no idea how I did it. I think I just kind of woke up and I was a gnome at a certain point, you know, I just kind of, for, you know, for two weeks, you exist on the trail and this kind of trance like state. And then you just kind of, you know, come over this Hill and they're like, oh shoot, there's the finish line. How about that?
I think adrenaline, adrenaline, but also I would say probably your time as a nurse, especially working in the ER prepares you for that as well, because there are long hours and there are times when you're exhausted on your feet and yet you keep going because you have to. Right. I mean, you know, if your mic comes unplugged. Back in low blow, low blow, no matter what, you know, it's, it's tough. It's tough. Yes, yes, absolutely. 25 years of doing radio and I've never walked into studio where the mic was unplugged ever in 25 years.
How does anyone ever unplugged the mic and not plug it back in is my dumb question, I guess. Who knows? It is. It's awesome. It's flip-flopping schedule too. It's so hard to do that.
It is. So nights to days, days to nights, you, you end up losing days and Amy, I, as much as I love you in this slot, like we want you to, I want you to have normal natural lip rhythms. Some people pretend to like nights for a long, long time.
I don't know what you're talking about. Yeah, yeah. I've done my nights and it was fantastic nights for me. If I did night shifts, I could coach during the day so I can coach and this is just pre racing stuff. I was, I was able to work my night shifts, get a couple hours of sleep, go and coach and then make it to my next shift. So there's, there's definitely reasons to be there, but man, it's, it can be very hard when you're making those switches over. You're like, I'm not going to sleep today. I'm just going to go to bed at a normal person's time and it, I don't know. It's a, yeah, I don't know how you do it.
I don't know how, I've done it for times, but night shifts are hard. They definitely are. It won't be forever though. I tell you at the end of this contract, it'll be 10 years on this particular time slot and I'm thinking that's probably enough.
So we'll see. I'll cross that bridge when we come to it. Before I let you go, I know that I talked to you over the summertime, you were in Michigan, so you're home and you were spending time with the family, which was great. And you asked me a question about starting a podcast. Now I told you that I would help. Apparently as it turns out, you don't need my help, but whatever happened with the Matt the Musher podcast? Well, it's, it's very neat.
My, a very good friend from Norway, Peter Varga, who's followed the race and a photo journalist and he's been all over the world. He works for a company or, well, it's his place, uh, tying that studio. They, he taught, he approached me about it. Um, he said, why would you consider starting a podcast and interviewing people one-on-one? So this is how, this is how far we've gotten.
We've gotten our, uh, some basic equipment because everybody says, don't go buy the thousands of dollars worth of stuff, just get basic stuff. And then I've gotten yeses from a lot, uh, from a few top mushers, like Jesse Holmes, uh, from Life Below Zero. He's, you know, you know, 80,000 Instagram followers, huge following. He would be an interesting guy to talk to. Um, but I haven't done, I haven't been able to get an interview. I'm still working on all the tech stuff.
Like do I have my settings right on GarageBand and do, um, am I sending the right type of file? And Amy, I am not, I'm not that guy. I mean, I need a producer James or Carlos or whoever you quit, you know, that's the stuff because I'm going to send Peter the raw files in Norway. He'll put it all together and then we'll, we'll do our show. Um, he lets me kind of do my chitchat and like, and that's probably what I'm good at, but the tech stuff and making it sound good. So we have a decent product is, uh, that's going to be, that's the part we're working on.
So, um, slowly but surely, because there's not enough time in a day to get everything done. Um, but I would like to get some of these stories out there because extraordinary stuff like this Ben Jacobson guy that I, I met his, uh, family. Um, he has an amazing story and then met another fellow's, uh, grandson that had passed and this guy, this, his grandfather had done, had been in this race called the great Alaskan sweepstakes.
It's every 25 years. And he was a couple in a fourth place finish. And then the way home, his plane crashed with him in another musher and a bunch of dogs. And it's just, there's, there's these amazing stories of, you know, survival and winning and loss. And, um, and I think if you, I, yeah, I want some cool, fluffy information from these guys, you know, like what's your favorite dog breed, but that's gonna, that's gonna start the, uh, that's gonna start the conversation and hopefully we get some really cool, neat stuff. Um, and I don't get too serious and I keep it quirky because that's what I like. Uh, so, uh, it should be, we it's slowly, but surely I've got some yeses on the interviews. Um, got to work out that tech stuff.
Um, because, uh, uh, you know, I just got to make sure things are plugged in. Okay. Okay. Okay. No, I totally understand though, because it's not my area of expertise either though, after as many years as I've done it, uh, I could, I feel like I could fake my way through a conversation, but yes, we all need a producer.
Jay, he's really good at the tech stuff. So I am confident that he would be happy to help you with any of that if, uh, if you need it. And of course we're here.
If you would like to launch your podcast, we'd be happy to help you promote it too. And you have to promise us that you'll return, uh, when it's time for the followup to the chubby bunny national championship. Oh, absolutely.
Absolutely. I think we, uh, it should be hosted possibly at some sort of like special golf event around Easter time, say the masters or something like that. And it would get someplace warm and golf and do all of that because second, when I give up mushing, I'm, I'm, I'm going, you know, I'm definitely senior amateur type of guy.
That's where I want to be in the golf world. So, but you're not giving up mushing yet. Just to confirm, even though you're not racing in 23, you're not giving up mushing yet. You will be mushing again. Oh yeah.
Everything sucks compared to mushing. Yes. That's true. Nice. I like it. Well, thank you for making your announcement here on the show and thank you for spending a half hour plus with us. Thank you for giving me crap about a microphone cord that wasn't plugged in. No, don't be sorry. And I would love for you to come back and let us know how your daughter's doing as she goes through this process. I know that you're a proud papa, but really you're welcome back anytime.
Even if you just want to practice your podcasting skills. I appreciate it. And thank you for the offers to help.
It's definitely going to be needed. So thank you. Perfect. Happy new year to you and your family. And we will talk soon. Matt, be safe. Thank you, Amy.
Bye-bye. Matt, the musher. He is one of your favorites and I've been saving him as a bit of a holiday surprise. So I wanted to make sure that you heard from him. He's had some kind of a crazy year.
You can hear it in his voice though. Definitely misses having that adventure on his plate for the upcoming spring, late winter, early spring, but he's not done. He's not retiring. So we're going to continue to follow his career. And again, if you missed his story of the 22, I did a rod. He was a rookie. He finished. It was harrowing. It was crazy.
There were animal encounters. There are also videos and photos on our YouTube channel after hours with Amy Lawrence throughout the sixties and seventies cops hunted down key figures of the Dixie mafia, including its enigmatic ringleader. Kirksey Nix. I'm interested in making money. I'm not interested in hurting people. 15 years into Kirksey's life sentence, the Dixie mafia was practically folklore, but that would soon change. I'm Jed Lipinski. This is gone south, a documentary podcast from C-13 originals, a cadence 13 studio season two, the Dixie mafia available now on the Odyssey app or wherever you get your podcasts.
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