November 16, 2006

Big Ol' Deer Sighting

Thursday morning. I am sitting in front of my computer that has twice as many gigabytes than it did just a mere 15 hours ago! Thanks George for working on my computer this week, and thanks to Kristen his wonderful wife and my good friend for missing out on time with her husband while he sooopped up my Mac. Can't wait to take ya'll out to dinner!
Yesterday afternoon Jack's best buddy in the whole world came home with Jack on the school bus yesterday, they had so much fun hanging out. Last night after church I was driving him home which is a bit out of town, in the country. As I was driving back into town, on Buffalo Gap Rd. right before you get to the Lack's furniture store I had to slam on my brakes to stop from hitting a running deer. This deer was huge, it had 4 points on each side of it's antlers. It was so cool to see it run, and it ran across a somewhat busy two way street and didn't get hit or cause an accident.
I myself am not a hunter, my dad and 2 brothers were and are. But not to the extent that we have here in West Texas. It is not unusual to go into a restaurant or a convenience store and see a field of camoflauge on men, women, boys and girls alike. They are getting their last home cooked meal before they head out for the hunt, or sometimes on their way back in. The scene I see at the convenience store is a bit more disturbing, I have seen this twice this last week, Dad and son both in head to toe camo walking out of the store, kid with a bag of candy and dad with a twelve pack of beer, headed out to hunt. The way people hunt around here is to sit still for a very long time and wait for the deer to walk by, I would imagine it can get a bit boring, but I think that hot chocolate mixes with ammo better than budweiser.
My dad was a drinker, there was never self-control involved, he never had just one, the bible says all things in glass of wine, one bottle of beer, no problem, but 12 by the time lunch is served is definately not moderation. I remember one time when my dad took my brother's hunting and my dad drank too much and I think he almost shot my littlest brother by accident. I don't think my mom ever let my dad take my brothers hunting again. My personal opinion is that alcohol and hunting do not mix, too many guns around. But I am sure there are hundreds maybe thousands of West Texans that highly disagree.
Now just to clarify all the West Texas men I know that hunt do not bring any alcohol, nor would they ever consider it. But I don't know if that is the norm or not.
So the deer spotting goes up, one in a Walmart, one in a business office, and one on the streets of Abilene. They are everywhere.


Sarah said...

Yeah, no doubt, hunting and alcohol definitely do NOT mix. I will send my hunter-hubby over to weigh in on the subject, but I have to say his relatively limited experience is that people who drink while around guns (I'm including the local gun range policy) are NOT the norm and are not encouraged or accepted. My observation is that the die-hard hunters and gun-lovers are all about safety and responsibility and it's the "weekend warriors" who just need a new way or place to play that bring along the alcohol.

Aren't they beautiful creatures, though? I know it is dangerous for deer and human alike when they wander onto the road, but I LOVE to see one!

Troy M. Stirman said...

-You are, unfortunately, entirely accurate in your guesstimate about those who imbibe while carrying a weapon. I've seen it time and time again- and it blows me away. I refuse to hunt with ANYONE who drinks before or during a hunting or shooting excursion. There is nothing worse, in my opinion, than someone who is so callous and stupid who feels that there is "no problem" with putting a few away while enjoying a great pasttime. Many the time I was invited on group hunts, far from home or office, and upon arriving see a few guys drinking away before taking the field. I leave the gun sheathed and turn to my guest and politely tell them that I will be returning home. If they bother to ask why I tell them over my shoulder as I'm walking back to the truck. (What they don't see is the absolute disgust on my face while doing so.) I won't be caught anywhere near that type of "hunt".

The worst part about what you saw, aside from the personal safety of the little one who tags along with Dad, is that this same little one is looking up to Dad and equating alcohol with the hunting experience. He only needs to see it once or twice and that memory is burned into that trapdoor little mind and becomes a permanent part of his/her conscience that for the most part is going to be remembered as the norm when he thinks of hunting and fishing.

These are not "sportsman", these are idiots who hung out with the wrong crowd sometime back or who had dads like this one who didn't know better- or worse- didn't care.

No, sir- one piece of lead in the back of my noggin' is enough. I don't need to invite some beer guzzling jokester on a hunt who will inevitably add to that particular collection of bad memories!