Friday, June 10, 2011

Lost and scared in the forest in 2011: Why?

      Some problems shouldn't exist anymore. Like all those people that rangers have to rescue from getting lost in the forest. We have technology for that now. It's called GPS, and it is a wonderful thing. For as cheap as seventy bucks you can find your way back to your car from the deepest of wilds. Most nature centers will even let you rent or borrow theirs. So there we go, end of problem, for eternity.

     This goes also for other technological devices that should have solved lots of problems that, for some unexplainable reason, still exist. Like, for instance, the calculator. How long has that been around now?  I say if a kid can't do long division or fractions for three years in a row, give the kid a calculator and let him do it that way! Why keep him in remedial math classes for the rest of his academic life? We have inventions now that lets him try the hard stuff! Maybe it's just to keep the remedial math classes going.

     Which finally brings me to my point, why do we insist on doing things the hard, traditional way when there is a better option? So along this line of reasoning is a thing called orienteering. It is where you get some hideously ridiculous map of some wild place that looks like this;


...and you get something like this to put on it to tell you where you're going:


 Apparently it is a big skill that survivalists tell you that you should have just in case. And you can take classes on it. And it is a gigantic migraine-producing pain in the a**. But you may say:

But what if it is dark and my flashlight doesn't work? (The GPS screen lights up and adjusts to accommodate your night vision)

But what if I run out of batteries? (Bring extra batteries with you) 

But what if the GPS tells me to go where a big obstacle now is? (Walk around the obstacle and the GPS will instantly correct itself)

But what if I lose the GPS?  (Well, you can lose a map too)

But what if I step on it, or someone steals it, or we fight over who gets to hold it? (Don't be a dumba**)

     The GPS is our forever friend now. There is no need to revert to those atrocious forest maps ever again. Of course the constant doomsday argument is, someday we might need those skills again! No! We won't! I can't stand doomsayers!!! These people need to spend less time concocting end of the world scenarios and more time improving their own lives. Then they will actually like their life and the world, and they will maybe spend more productive time dreaming up ways of improving the world. The only way we are going to have to revert back to orienteering techniques is if a giant meteor or comet from outer space hits us and knocks out all the satellites with it.

     So again, problem solved. Except for the problem of getting out of the forest, with your handy-dandy GPS of course, and it is getting dark! And you're afraid of the dark. And you're afraid of the forest in the dark! The sun has already begun to set and your trusty GPS tells you that you won't be back to your car for another hour! Immediately, your head begins to race with all the frightening possibilities, and suddenly images pop into your mind such as these:

    So what do you do, besides walk or run faster? Well I don't know. I'm not a trained survivalist and so I'm not going to pretend to be one. I will say though, to not make the most obvious mistakes, such as these for instance:

     And the rest of my advice is not to worry! What is going to happen to you really? You know those eyes that light up at you at night?

     They are cute little forest critters just wondering what the noise is when you walk by them. The worst thing that could probably happen to you in the night forest is that you could trip and fall, and your mouth could land on a poisonous mushroom and swallow it.

Never eat poisonous mushrooms
Don't try this at home.

But there will definitely not be any of these guys:


     If there ever are, I'm sure someone will develop an app on your Android to deal with that someday. And speaking of getting lost in the forest; copy, paste, and print out this cute little forest maze.


Who knows what you'll find at! And remember, you never have to get lost anymore!


1 comment:

  1. Very good post :) I like to read your posts they make me laugh but have good ideas.


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