Category Archives: #Guest

bears, beets, battlestar galactica

I was sitting on my friend’s couch talking about our daily adventures here in dear old Columbia, Mo. when somehow our conversation turned to animal attacks, which turned to bear attacks. I love camping. It’s a favorite weekend get away in my family but I’ve always been a little spooked at the thought of waking up with a bear head inches away from my nose or of finding a wolf waiting for me near the bathrooms. Of course I’ve yet to have a run-in with any such wild beast, but aren’t most fears irrational?

Well anyways, this friend of mine made it clear that my fear was unfounded. I think he was probably trying to make me feel better but I’m not sure it worked. Most animal attacks are pretty rare. I’d venture to say that more people die in car crashes than are eaten by sharks, mauled by bears or attacked by lions. I might even guess that each year, neighborhood dogs attack more people than bears.

According to Grizzly Bay, each year,

1 are killed by bears

45 people are killed by dogs

17 killed by spiders

13 killed by snakes,

374 killed by lightning and 60000 killed by humans…. (that should tell you something)

So maybe my fear is irrational. The data would suggest that it’s more likely for me to die in a car crash on the way to the campground than for me to be eaten by a bear after I set up my tent. I should probably feel better, but I don’t.

The recent bear attack in Yellow Stone National Park, re-spooked my bearphobia. Reading about such an enormous quadruped rampaging through a quiet campsite, killing one person and injuring two others quieted my desire to go camping.

I guess all I should say is…..”bears, beets, battlestar galactica!”



The beauty of nick names

I figure the best way to explain myself is to start with the most complicated part. My name. Ettie. As you might guess, this is not my real name. Actually, it’s totally made up. Not that I dislike my real name, I just can’t relate to it. I was born Sarah Anne Berneking. I grew up in Midwest suburbia where it seemed parents during the late 80’s had tapped out of original names for their offspring. My classes filled quickly with Sarah’s, Katie’s, Jennifer’s and Matt’s. Us Sarah’s went from a first name basis to strictly first and last names. I was Sarah B. Unfortunately there were a few Sarah B’s. So in a desperate attempt to re-invent myself during the apex of coming to age, the big move to college, I made the decision to change my name. This was something I had been doing for years at summer camp. For three years, I moved invisibly between aliases; Stephanie, Trixie and Chasity. My hairstyle and color changed as frequently as my name and it soon became impossible to keep track of which pen pal went with which nom de plume. Eventually I decided to stick with Ettie. I alerted my mom who was not altogether thrilled but accepted my decision. It’s been nearly four years now, and I am still Ettie. Not Ettie B.