Archive for the ‘survival instinct’ Category

a proud, determined mother

3 bobcats in broad daylight, a rare treat

The highlight of this morning’s 25 mile ride surprised me around 9:30am, on the back side of the fitness loop behind the Col Scott Fitness Center.  Momma bobcat stood firm in the middle of the trail, her two young closer to the tall grass and safety.  I stopped and eased off the bike, hoping to extract my camera from my pack in time.  She made a small but deliberate movement in my direction, but mostly stood tall.  Her young moved silently into cover, and while she gave me a long stare, she didn’t linger long enough for the photo shoot.  This shot from Ohio.gov (minus the thick winter coat) comes closest to what she looked like. A magnificent animal.

national focus guilt

Although born the same year as I, Andrew Breitbart earned his general officer stars, while I am but a (figurative) second lieutenant.  We strive to “take our country back”, beyond peeling and applying the hypocritical bumper sticker.  We each have limited time, from both daily and lifetime perspectives.  So I feel guilt as I often look past the local horizon and spend my time and modest earnings on national concerns.  I don’t deserve that audience, and there are plenty of problems closer to home worthy of attention.  But as I consider it carefully now, perhaps our nation was jolted from slumber in 2008, and we furiously engage in sleepless triage as untrained medics learning our trade and making mistakes on the fly.

"Need some triage?"

We’re desperate to keep our beloved nation alive, and she’s not out of the woods yet.  If we succeed in that short term exertion, I long for the day that we can exhale, rest peacefully for a couple of days, and reset with a longer term, less urgent view closer to home.

common sense in the NPS

Finally, some pragmatism regarding concealed carry in our National Parks.  An agreeable trade for the old Boy Scout joke about pepper spray, bear bells, and how to tell the difference between grizzly and black bear scat in the backcountry.

now you can leave the bells at home

now you can leave THIS at home

sleepy survival instincts

Today, many of us solve a slight pang of “hunger” with a waltz to the fridge or a slight detour to the drive-thru. We spend less of our time meeting basic needs, and more on discretionary activities.

Our next meal is rarely in doubt, and we can easily spend a lifetime without experiencing a true fight-or-flight response for fear of becoming a meal ourselves. So it’s understandable that our survival instincts are dulled. Understandable, but not excusable.

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