Hunterboy, my Norwegian hunting pal, sent me a weblink of two Swedish hunters who were attacked by a bear while out hunting birds. One of the brave souls captured the whole thing on his mobile phone. I would include the video in my blog but a) I am trying to stick to the written word b) it is in Swedish so most blog pundits will not understand it and c) I don’t have an effin clue how to do super techy and sexy blog stuff.
Luckily, there were no fatalities, but it was a sticky situation.
Scene 1 pans around a beautiful boreal landscape and focuses on a rustling noise in the bushes… “what is it, an elk… no… I think it’s a… it’s a… it’s a beaaaaaaaaaaaaa.”
Scene 2 spirals to the ground into blackness, cracking sounds of shotgun fire are followed by the sound of what I believe to be humans quietly submitting to molestation by a bear. I say this without ever having heard this sound before, or for that matter, any sound of human molestation where animals are concerned. Scene 2 is very film noire and mostly left to one’s imagination. Mine is insanely active. The moon is as close as it gets to the earth this week.
Scene 3 and it is clear that much time has passed. Hunter 1 is displaying signs of mild aggression as he looks on at Hunter 2 and the bear, who is dressed in a Von Furstenberg wrap and Manolo’s and sporting a Balenciaga, selecting a bedroom suite at IKEA, while eating waffles and brown goat cheese, only to discover that the bear, once it removed the head of its costume is in fact Hunter 1’s mother…
Scene 3 is a master class in coolness. The bear has clearly become bored and run off. In dulcet tones, one of the brave soles asked the other “is my eye hanging out?” “No,” was the cool calm and collected response. “Right.” The phone appeared to be worse for wear, and there was copious blood. A minor flesh wound. Unlike Hollywood films, there was no mindless screaming or shouting during the altercation.
I am off to the great climes of Sweden to hunt birds over the next couple of days with Hunterboy, who is also very cool. Coolness is the foundation of the genetic makeup of Scandinavians. I am touched by the number of colleagues expressing their concern for my safety, many of whom I know are wishing for my slow and painful death, or at minimum rape, at the claws of a carnivorous bear.
In Canada, we are taught bear safety strategies in school and require this qualification to obtain a hunting license, driving license, and marriage license. The two most important tactics in bear safety are 1) make loud noises to let the bear know you are not prey and 2) do not take pictures or videos of bears as they are notoriously device shy and are likely to attack. There is a third and well promoted tactic of playing dead which in my opinion moves quickly to being dead as bears generally do not understand the concept of “playing”.
Ironically, in this case, über-cool looses to un-cool. I am grateful to the gene gods as Canadians are generally un-cool and are genetically predisposed to scream and shout mindlessly when encountered by bears or Americans.
I will leave my mobile phone at home.