I know that this is a humor blog, but sometimes life just isn’t funny.
Like when I was on vacation and realized that Husbandrinka was out to kill me. First he went the white water rafting route, then, as my friend Peajaye pointed out, he tried to kill me with boredom by making me tour all the Lewis & Clark sites and when I somehow survived, finally he settled on Homicide by Bear.
No sooner did we get to Yellowstone than he started dropping hints how we should All Go for a Hike. Naturally I assumed that he’d picked up some kind of yellow fever that led to that inane rambling, but he wouldn’t let it go.
“A hike?” I asked in a gentle yet firm tone that’s recommended for dealing with the deranged. “Really?”
“Well yes,” he said, “what did you want to do?”
Obviously this was one of those questions that doesn’t require an answer, but rather a one-way ticket to NYC and possibly reservations at my favorite restaurant. But I could see that this isn’t exactly where he was going.
“I don’t know, read maybe?” I suggested.
“Read?” he asked, as though he were the head of the Society for an Illiterate Society, “you came to Yellowstone to read?”
“No?” I tried.
Incidentally, from the Shit I Couldn’t Make Up If I Tried category, here is a sampling of Husbandrinka’s reading material for our trip:
But for some reason he rejected my proposal that we all stay put and read and maybe color a bit, with a few word searches thrown in for good measure, so we headed out for a hike.
Here is what I like about hikes: Telling people that I went on a hike.
Because when you tell people that you went on a hike everyone looks at you with admiration and goodwill. Who doesn’t like a hiker? Hikers are fun and athletic and appreciate nature.
Look, I get it. It’s nice to be admired. But I found that the same admiration can come my way if I lie as much as possible. Like the time I hiked most of the Appalachian Trail.
What I don’t like about hiking is being killed by a bear.
I call this The Writing on the Sign That’s Affixed to the Board, or THE WRITING ON THE WALL, of short.
Am I prepared to avoid a bear attack? Funny you should ask! Because I was so prepared to avoid an attack that I was ready to get on the plane, train or helicopter and get the fuck out of there.
But, since Husbandrinka’s life goal by that point could be summed up by the word HIKE, I decided to read on.
Be alert for bears! Now how do you read this? As someone who is ESL, I read this to be “A bear can be absolutely anywhere at any moment, so while you’re casually hiking, a bear could be watching you! Have fun!”
So every scenic moment, which ordinarily would induce peace and Walden-like reflection
becomes the most terrifying game of Where’s Waldo? you’ve ever played.
Make Noise- Ok, I’ll have kids with me, so this one is in the bag. Except after an hour or so, they seemed to really quiet down. Something about being scared shitless.
Carry Bear Spray Husbandrinka was in charge of that. Yes, the same Husbandrinka who asked me if we should be spraying ourselves with it in order to repel bears.
Do Not Run Consider the Not Running done, since I assume it’s hard to run and have a heart attack at the same time.
As we begin our hike, I talk privately to my husband, not wanting to alarm the children.
“Listen, if there is a bear attack, I’ll stay back and …sacrifice myself,” I tell him, “you just get the children and yourself to safety.”
I say this because I think it’s important to have a plan and also because I want him to recognize my heroism and say that he couldn’t possibly accept my suggestion, but that he will tell everyone that I made it, and while I’m composing a press release in my head about my selfless bravery, he says, “oh, ok.”
Later, in the safety of our hotel room, he will tell me that he wasn’t even listening to what I was blathering on about when he said “oh, ok” (this is called the Insanity Defense, by the way) but I spend the rest of the hike thinking of how to take back my selfless sacrifice and direct the bear towards him instead.
I need to stop the story of the hike here. Not because it’s over, but my doctor is here and it’s time for my special pill. I’m excited because it’s the blue one today and that’s the one that gives me nice dreams.
I’ll tell you more about the hike later, when it’s safe.
And remember, a bear could be watching. The bear is always could be watching.