in an effort to be both amusing and cute, J. posted on his facebook wall his list of fears regarding our camping trip to the BWCA this weekend. allow me to share both his post here, and my rebuttle.
"This weekend my girlfriend ... is taking me camping (way) up north. I have not been camping since High School. While I am very excited and have been looking forward to it all week, I do have a few reservations. The following is a list of my concerns.
1) Rattle snakes.
‘Hope I don’t get bit by one. Believe me, I will be. Guaranteed!
2) Bears. ‘Hope I don’t get eaten by one.
3) Tics. ‘Hope I don’t become home to one.
4) Swimming in the Lake. I can’t swim. While flailing around I hope I don’t attract a gigantic muskellunge who considers me any easy meal. And Ashley, no dunking!
5) Family style BBQ. Hope we don’t become unwitting participants in one (and yes, for those keeping track at home that is a Butthole Surfers reference).
6) This is the sound of an Elk mating call: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNVx10VF9ss
Surprisingly and not without a teeny bit of irony, this call is very similar to the sound Ashley makes when she snores. So, what happens if, in the morning, I unzip the tent only to find a herd of Elk have made our campsite their nesting grounds? What then? Show me the camping survival reference guidebook that has a chapter on that, you can’t.
7) Cliffs. Hope I don’t get vertigo and fall off of one.
8) I forget what 8 was for.
9) ‘Hope I don’t come back a hippy.
10) ‘Hope we don’t encounter the Blair Witch. Hey, it could happen.
11) Lastly, I hope I don’t come back loving jam bands like phish, the Grateful Dead, etc. To prevent this, I’m going to load Ashley’s IPod with Husker Du
, Daft Punk, Slipknot
and now, for my rebuttle.
1) you needn't fear snakes in minnesota, for only three snakes are native to the north country: the eastern garter snake (thamnophis sirtalis), the northern redbelly snake (storeria occipitomaculata), and the northern ringneck snake (diadophis punctatus), none of which are poisonous. however, should the one and only displaced rattlesnake in minnesota happen to make it's way into our tent? i offer the following from bear grylls: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WzMHVbQc0rA
2) black bears have been known to be a nuisance in northern minnesota, and their tales are many and legendary. and although i have been known to torture my friends on previous BWCA trips with a somewhat unwarranted fear of black bears, if one should wander into our campsite, they are most likely looking for food scraps or perhaps a warm cuddle.
in bill bryson's book "into the wild", he tells the tale of a family picnicking along the eastern seaboard who encountered a black bear during their joyous meal. thinking the bear was harmless and seeing a photo opportunity, the matriarch dipped her infants hand in a jar of honey and held it out to the bear while smiling for the camera her husband was operating. the bear thusly ripped off the infant's hand and forearm. and still, another story in the same book tells a tale of a boy scout who fell asleep in his tent with a snickers candy bar in his sleeping bag. later in the night, a black bear, obviously mad from the scent of caramelly-noughatty-goodness, ripped the tent apart and dragged the boy into the woods. by the time the scout leader stumbled awake to rescue the boy, both the snickers bar and the boy were half digested.
because of these stories, i am not bringing either of my infants, a snickers bar, a boy scout, or a jar of honey.
3) tick's can be a nuisance, this is true. but i have been bitten many a time and survived with my sanity and limbs generally in tact. of the things to fear in northern minnesota, tick's are not high on my list. being a good and native new yorker, i fear a crazy murderer on the run from the law who just might happen upon our happy campsite before i fear anything nature can induce.
4) swimming is a necessity in northern minnesota, especially when there are no showers to be found. if J. refuses to swim, he will not be sleeping in my tent. this is a very simple equation. swimming in lake + no available showers = happy J. sleeping in warm tent next to beautiful girlfriend. refusing to swim in lake + no available showers = J. sleeping on the cold, hard ground while beautiful (clean) girlfriend sleeps soundly inside tent.
5) i am surprised that J. and i have made it this far in our budding relationship, as i know nothing about the butthole surfers, husker du (pronounced "husker do", right?), slipknot or mountain biking. i digress...
6) i think facebook is an unnecessary place to disclose the nightly habits and/or rituals of one's partner. and because i care deeply for J., i will spare you all of his nightly habits and/or rituals.
7) cliffs? this is minnesota. i think the biggest cliff we have in these parts is the stone arch bridge
8) nice reference... "10, 10, 10, 10, everything, everything, everything, everything..."
9) hippies are not the only genre of person to take to the woods. but it is, primarily and unfortunately, a caucasian-dominated recreational activity
10) yes, 'tis true. i saw the blair witch film in theaters when it first came out WHILE ON A CAMPING TRIP. we thought it a good rainy-day activity versus sitting in a stuffy, drippy tent. i do not recommend seeing this movie before embarking on a camping trip. which brings me to my top five things NOT to see before camping:
sean penn's adaptation of 'into the wild'
michael jackson's "thriller" music video
any of the friday the 13th movies
stand by me
11) see #5.