September 22 marked National Hunting and Fishing Day, which dates from 1972 when President Nixon signed it into law. “I urge all citizens to join with outdoor sportsmen in the wise use of our natural resources and in insuring their proper management for the benefit of future generations,” wrote President Nixon at the time.
Alas, nothing was heard from our current President regarding National Hunting and Fishing Day. But then “people who cling to guns” are not particularly popular with this administration.
And speaking of President Nixon’s recommendation, long ago my family found that among the very wisest uses of our natural resources are Bambi Burgers and Bambi Nachos. Even the “Mamma Grizzlies” (and their daughters) get into hunting down here in Bayou country.
Some of us Bayou boys grudgingly admit that females make better deer hunters than males. Trust me here. I’ve witnessed it time and again. Women, on average, appear more patient than men in most matters. They also pay more attention to detail, and — seriously, according to medical studies — spot contrast and movement better than men.
Rather than decry this female advantage, rather than bewail this naturally-decreed unfairness– rather than stupidly bash my head against this glass-ceiling Mother Nature built against me, I decided to cash in on it. My chum Artie Boudreaux made me a custom deer stand that accommodates both me and my daughter Monica. We were in it the dawn after Halloween last year with the horizon already pink. Daylight seeped slowly into the swamp and the squirrels and birds came alive. It was nice — cool, but not cold. No bugs.
Monica was still, alert, and vigilant. Wish I could claim the same. First I fidgeted—and by 8:00 I was drowsing. “Wake me if you see something, honey.”…Then I dozed off…and dreamed…
… “This is Chris Matthews reporting from Thibodaux, Louisiana. President Obama declared a state of emergency in the Bayou State, where PETA was staging a demonstration against a local deer hunt. PETA’s activists followed the hunters into the woods and employed bullhorns to broadcast the teachings of Henry David Thoreau, Leo Tolstoy and Mohandas Gandhi.
“This serves to enlighten the hunters in the ways of vegetarianism and non-violence,” explained PETA spokesperson Paul McCartney, “and to frighten off, and thus save, the poor defenseless deer.” With his right eye swollen shut and 21 stitches in his mouth, the ex-Beatle’s appearance horrified his fans in the press.
“These blokes certainly take hunting seriously,” Paul sputtered painfully into a spittle-flecked microphone held by a snuffling Soledad O’Brien.”Nothing like this happened in New Jersey. Remember, friends, All You Need is Love!”
“We came in the spirit of Gandhi!” blubbered PETA board member Bill Maher, who nursed a grapefruit-sized ear and several facial welts, “and were met by that of George Patton!” Mr. Maher then collapsed in sobs into the arms of his friend Alec Baldwin, who tottered at his side on crutches.
“Get up – up!” Rachel Maddow and chum Ellen DeGeneres yelled while yanking Maher up by the collar and seizing Alec roughly by the shoulders. “You’re lucky we ran those yahoos off!” they snorted at the badly shaken celebrities.
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