Gimme Shelter

The outdoorsy life has never completely been for me.  A day at the park here, a day at the beach there, a nice walk – these are all things I can rock with.  “Roughing it,” though?  No gracias.  It has never seemed like my idea of a good time.  One might argue that I can’t speak on this, since I’ve never gone camping.  Well, I’ve never been hit by a car either, but I’ll bet it sucks.  But if you need further verification, I had one too many Strawberry Hills at the Lakefront once and had to pee near a tree.  I could live my entire life and not have to relive that.

Air conditioning.  Indoor plumbing (with hot showers).  Soft, comfy mattresses.  Satellite/Cable television.  Are these things available in tents?  Would I be in one of those tricked out Harry Potter tents?  Then, no.  I’m urbanized without apology.

Do you know that there are special rules for camping in “bear country?”  Bears have countries.  Do you know how large and territorial bears are? Bears are not in the business of stamping visas; at least not in a way you’d like.  You have to be cautious about scents of ANY kind.  So you’re answering nature’s call in the woods, you’re not having access to hot showers, and you can’t leave behind smells.  Is the fun at will call?  I’ve already got deer and chipmunks on my case.  I am not going to put my life further in jeopardy by getting mollywhopped by a bear because I needed an apple wine candy (read: Jolly Rancher) to soothe my nerves.  You know where I don’t have to worry about bears?  The mall.

On MomandDadCamping.com, there is a writeup with the title “How to Survive a Grizzly Attack.”  There are three scenarios: 1. If you just happen upon a bear, behave in the most punkass manner possible; 2. If you encroach on the bear’s space, flop to the ground and make sure it tires of kicking your ass; and 3. If it as a predatory attack you must first try to escape.  They suggested hiding in a car.  A 600 lb beast with paws the size of frying pans is chasing me, and my Hyundai Accent is what you suggest as protection.  Awesome.  You know what the suggestion is if that doesn’t work (which it won’t, because the bear is probably going to punch through the window and snatch you out)?  Fight.  A bear.  You want me to fight a bear.

Let’s play “Bear Fun Facts”:

  1. Bears are big as hell.
  2. Bears are fast as hell.
  3. Bears can climb trees.
  4. Bears can swim.
  5. It is imperative that I reiterate they can be 700 lbs, have paws like frying pans and sharp claws.

How about we just let them have their country?  The only reason I even read about surviving the grizzly attack is because, if the caca hits the fan and a grizzly rolls into Chipotle, I plan on living to gell the tale.  Of course, with all that barbacoa beef, what would a bear want with me?  Fleshy chubby me, who smells good and could keep a bear full for days…*crosses Chipotle off the list of places to visit*

Another thing: when did beds stop being awesome?  I’ve stayed in quaint hotels, with some of the most scenic views imaginable.  Nice places, with gorgeous mountain views, cocoa and danishes.  I was able to enjoy nature’s wonders without waking up to bugs in my butt.

And I really hate bugs (except butterflies, ladybugs, and roly polys – they’re awesome).  Bugs can get into anything.  Nothing on earth should be able to get EVERYWHERE.  Show me the sealiest seal, and there’s a bug waiting to grind its muddy boots on that seal’s cream, suede couch.  There are certain bugs that country folks call “no-see-ums,” because *drum roll* you can’t see them.  As luck would have it, those bugs are not also called “no-feel-ums.”  They’re some of the worst, they’re virtually invisible, and you don’t know they’re on you until you feel like you’ve been pinched in the arm.  The happen to LOVE the great outdoors.  I just imagine getting in my tent, and bugs are waiting for me, like a violent offender cell mate.  The type who says I can’t eat until they finish eating.  (Isn’t that how jail works?  I only watched Oz for two seasons.)

So, I’ll take a pass on camping.  For those of you who think that my stance will leave me unprepared for the zombie apocalypse, think again, butt munches.  Who do you think the zombies will take out first?  The kid on the fifth floor of a brick building, or the macho man in the tents who thinks he can fight a grizzly?  I’ve already survived this:

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“Damn nature! You scary.”

Wednesday morning, I walked into work like I would any other day: late.  I’d already had my coffee and was abnormally chipper.  I looked up to greet the fellow in the office across from my desk.

Have you ever seen something so strange that you ignore it for a moment, just to get your thoughts together?

“Jonathan…is…is that a bug outside of your window?  Do you mind if I come in and get a closer look?”

This is what I saw:

DUN DUN DUNNNNNNNN

AHHHHHHHH It’s a giant praying mantis planning to attack the city!! My friend the former Harlem Bon Vivant was ready to release Godzilla…or the Kraken! Barely escaped with my life.

SIIIIIKE. I’m only kidding.  There wasn’t a real giant praying mantis attacking the city Wednesday.  If it had, Liam Neeson would have come to DC and kicked its ass.  It was rather large for a praying mantis.  From forelegs to end, it was 4.5 inches.  Were this creature on the same side of the glass as yours truly, a change of pantaloons would have been in order.  Even looking at it through the glass gave me the most ridiculous case of jelly knees.  A friend told me about happening upon a praying mantis, then backing off as it spun it’s head around Exorcist style.

Nature fascinates and terrifies me.  As humans, with our big brains, opposable thumbs and Versace shades, we like to consider ourselves pretty badass.  Well, nature has this funny way of saying, “Hey…you…fuck your life.”  When I’m bored, I go to Cracked and let them entertain me — by scaring me shitless.  There are all sorts of great articles like “6 Animals That Just Don’t Give a F#@k!” or “The 5 Most Horrifying Bugs In The World.” I’m not speaking of the Pyrrhic victory that is the honeybee’s, where you’re in a few minutes of pain and they lose their guts. I’m talking ants that shriek as the fall out of trees to get all up in that ass.  And that’s nature.

I feel as though I’ve discussed the deer that seeks to claim my soul.  People are all, “Deer are afraid of you. They run from people.”  Okay, they might be.  But maybe, just MAYBE I’ve pissed off the one balls to the wall deer in the animal kingdom.  The one who doesn’t run.  What if I’ve roused the ire of the deer that leans on your car smoking  Kool Filter King and says, “Go back inside and change them shoes.  You only wear sexy shoes when *I* say it’s time to get sexy?”  What then?  I won’t be thinking about Bambi. Will you?  So  yeah. Get off my case about being scared of nature.  I feel your judgment.

If you’re wondering, “Hey, why didn’t she put up the links to those Cracked articles?”  Because…meh.  I’m feeling a little lazy today.  Plus it’s Sunday.*  And what are you doing that you’re so busy?  Michael Jackson Moonwalked so that you might Google.

I don’t know that for sure.  He probably just did it so that he could look awesome.

*I totally thought I hit publish on this yesterday.  *shakes fist at interwebs*  I’m still not adding links though. I’m bringing more hotness today.