That’s right, I’ve started a boy band cover group. It was either Out of Sync or We B 3, but the former won because there are five of us. I was inspired because as I write this my wife is swooning over the creepy pelvic thrusts of post rehab, over rogained, middle aged men of Boys to Men (or just “Men” now I suppose), 98 Degrees, New Kids On The Block (Or just “Men” now I suppose) and The Backstreet Boys (or just “Men” I supp– you get the idea).
Okay maybe that’s a terrible plan after all.
Actually, what I am actually trying to write about today is how absolutely out of rhythm I feel with the world when I get back from any time spent in the outdoors. When I am on the job I spend most my time with my eyes glued to the ground, because that’s where most of the critters I squash live. I see a lot of shoes, pavement, garbage, vomit, dog shit and awfully unpractical footwear (yes you Adidas with the stupid wings)
Before I worked in pest control or “Micro Assassination Technology” I was an outdoor guide for about a decade. It was a job that was full of spirit, adventure, soul, poverty and debilitating injury. I retired because I grew tired of giving doctors my hard earned pennies to reattach digits and mend my weary bones.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my career these days but sometimes I feel like Crocodile Dundee did in New York. Outside, in the bush, my encounters with nature are magical. Birds chirp and I understand they mean “danger” or “I need to fuck another bird STAT!”. I can smell when a bear has woken up in the springtime and I know what plants I can eat. Often an ungulate will saunter by and give an understanding glance as he shits some bad berries. The sun dictates my sleep cycle and the wind hitting the leaves gives me clues to the weather ahead, if I didn’t notice the rain or lightning.
When I get home everything changes. Yesterday I parked my truck under an oak near city hall. When I got out I was bombarded and unmercifully attacked by falcons. Fucking falcons. What the hell are all these falcons doing in the middle of the city? As I’m running across the street clumsily ducking and weaving in my steal toes I wonder how I got so out of touch with nature so quickly. Before I even have time to pontificate the matter I’m sliding in dog shit the last 5 feet. The tree I stumble against is covered in sap. The falcons are still, falconing…or whatever.
Then it hits me, I know exactly what has changed, nothing. I catch myself completely romanticizing my old job. I now remember cutting my thumb partially off. I remember being yanked out of a tent by a bear and I clearly recall being hissed and scratched at by martins trying to steal my food while I slept in a snow cave. I’ve been stung by jellyfish, reacted to poison ivy, thrown up in my own hiking boots and frozen my tits off in weather even Tauntauns have no right being in.
Nature has always been trying to kill me, it’s just the geography that’s changed. I will say this though, fresh air and quiet does wonders. The wilderness isn’t for everyone though, clearly it isn’t for me either but I never learned a god damn thing. Perhaps I should have gone with my wife to see “The Package” boy band extravaganza concert. As far as I know they don’t employ falcons in their show.
So, here is a picture for my wife as a salute to her boy band escapism tonight while I nurse the mosquito bites and wipe dog poop off my boots: