My thoughts on everything from albacore tuna to zebras
| Last night I sat down to watch TV with Linda (my wife). Typically, we do this around 9 PM and we really don’t watch TV. What we watch are recordings of programs Linda has made that we both want to see. Sometimes it’s a movie, sometimes it ‘s a program from the history channel, but rarely is it ever your run of the mill sitcom type show. Not that I have anything against sitcoms. I just have a limited amount of time to sit in front of the TV and I want to watch things that stimulate me mentally and that (hopefully) I can’t predict the “surprise ending” on five minutes into the show.
Well, last night, we ran out of tapes. My wife has tapes of some shows that she watches that don’t particularly interest me so she popped one in the VCR and we started watching. I don’t know the name of the show. (If someone does, please let me know, I want to fire off a missive to the producers.) I can tell you it was some sort of medical based show and it revolved around the Thanksgiving Holiday and some interns/doctors preparing the Thanksgiving meal.
At first it didn’t interest me and then some guys showed up and started talking about going turkey hunting…and well… you know me, I got interested. But much to my disappointment and anger, what was to be an annual father/sons turkey hunt, a family tradition turned into a beer drinking, mishandling of firearms, misrepresentation of the hunting tradition. My wife asked, “Do hunters really take alcohol with them in the woods?” I had no choice but to reply truthfully. “Yes, unfortunately, some do.” I quickly added. “But I believe the number is a lot fewer today than what it was twenty years ago. This show does nothing to help matters. It just paints hunters and hunting with a broad brush.”
Was it funny? Sure, on some level, like a caricature, it was. But more important than humor was how would it be viewed by the non-hunters out there, a good number of whom are also anti-hunting? It gives people a one sided, unbalanced view of a tradition (I won’t call it a sport. I don’t hunt for sport) that has been in my family and many others for generations. I watched in horror as these camo – clad, beer guzzling buffoons, a father and three sons no less, effectively gave a blackeye to the hunting community, no, the hunting family, that I love so much.
Am I bias? Sure I am. Do I have blinders on? Not on your life. I’ve walked the walk and I can talk the talk. I’ve stood on mountaintops and watched hunters pull flasks from their pockets. I’ve politely told them that if you drink, that ends the hunting trip for today. And I meant it. Thing is, that was twenty-five years ago. I see and hear less and less of that these days. If we are going to hold up examples for our children to follow, and believe me, they will follow our examples, they should be positive examples and not ones created to satisfy the mania for good ratings on TV.
In closing I will also offer this. Turkey hunting accounts for a large number of the injuries that occur to hunters. It must be approached with a deep regard for safety. When you are in the woods and trying to imitate a turkey, guaranteed somebody’s gonna think you’re a…turkey. Every state has its own regulations concerning the wearing of fluorescent orange during turkey season. I’m not sure what state these hunters were in but I do know in what state the writers and producers reside…stupidity.