Monday, November 26, 2007

On Bear and the Geat American Hoax

Well I am currently flipping through the channels and upon stopping on the Discovery Channel I see the Man vs. Wild, previously one of my favorite shows is still on. Why previously, you ask? Well my greatest fear about the show came to fruition a few months ago: I found out the whole thing is rigged. At first I didn't want to believe it. I wanted to believe that host and former British military man Bear Grylls was really toughing out it out in the Australian Outback, eating bugs and drinking his own urine to stay alive. The truth is, a helicopter was picking Bear up every night and was taking him to the other Outback, where he could order a juicy steak and a Bloomin' Onion, and then on to the Sydney Holiday Inn Express for a good nights sleep. I can't tell you how disappointed I was to find out the truth.

Bear, how could you lie to me? I watched you climb down waterfalls with your bare hands, ride a log down the Amazon river, and even roast a sheep eye in a hot geyser and then eat it. How many times did I sit on my living room couch on a Friday night and watch you as you would tell me how deadly it was to get caught in quicksand, only to have my heart jump out of my chest when you jumped in anyway? Oh Bear, how could you toy with my heart so?

The thing is, Bear, you hid the whole charade so well. On certain nights you would film some shots of something waking you up in the middle of the night.....rigged. Clever, but rigged. Remember that time that "black bear" chased you through the Colorado Rocky Mountains? Well we never saw the bear, Bear. It was a hoax. A HOAX. Remember that time that you were in Alaska and you kept talking about how much easier things would be if you had a boat, and then you just happened to stumble across a deserted cabin with an old rowboat in the yard, and then you stole the boat and used it to float down the river? That was awesome, except for the fact that The Discovery Channel put that boat there for you. Either that, or some guy in Alaska just got back to his cabin only to find that his boat has been you. That's a felony in my book. And hey Bear, remember that time that you took a wooden stick and chucked it at that rabbit and killed it in one shot? That was awesome too, except that I bet it took you 50 tries, they just didn't show them.

Look Bear, I'm not questioning you manhood. I've seen you do some crazy things that couldn't have been staged (i.e. when you jumped off the 30 foot cliff into the river). You are one tough, crazy dude. But I resent the face that you led me to believe that you were really being dropped off in the woods alone with virtually no supplies, where you would find your way out with relative ease. Granted you did have your cameraman with you, and I'm sure he had some emergency supplies just in case you were on the brink of death. But still, staying at hotels? Eating real meals in between segments? I must say, you've left me bitter and longing for naivety.

Yet amidst all the lies, I did learn one valuable lesson from you, Bear: If you ever get lost in the wilderness, try to find a river, then follow it downstream until you reach civilization. I'll always keep that in my heart.

Even as I write this, Bear is free falling 50 feet from a helicopter into shark-infested waters. Impressive Bear, but I have to ask.. are the sharks real, or are they mechanical? I wonder.....

Monday, November 19, 2007

On New Thoughts

One of my favorite bands, Sanctus Real, just released the first single from a new album coming out in February 08. The song is titled We Need Each Other, and I absolutely love it. I just wanted to share the lyrics briefly:

I think I caught a glimpse of Life without friends
Bitter, empty, hollow, dark and lonely
We never meant to hurt each other
So Can`t we trust again
And take it as a chance
To keep on growing

I don`t know why it doesn`t come easy
But I know that we could be happy
If we`d only learn to love

Oh oh we need each other
So what`s the fighting for?
Oh oh we need each other
Please don`t close the door
Oh oh we need each other
Through all the highs and lows
Oh oh we need each other
Cause no one`s meant to live alone

Life revolves around the need
Of having someone
Causing every complicated feeling
Oh and I don`t want to loose you

And there is nothing wrong with
Telling me what you need
To keep our love strong

It`s just a part of being a family
Taking the good with the bad and the ugly
If we could only learn to love

Oh oh we need each other
So what`s the fighting for
Oh oh we need each other
Please don`t close the door
Oh oh we need each other
Through all the highs and lows
Oh oh we need each other
Cause I don`t want to be alone

Oh Oh we need each other
Fathers and Mothers
Oh oh we need each other
All your sisters and brothers
Oh oh we need each other
We need friends and lovers
Oh Oh we need each other

Well I need you
You need me
Cause that`s the way
It`s meant to be
I need you
We need each other(I don`t want to be alone)

In a way these are cheesy lyrics, and when I first saw the title I was skeptical. Yet this song is perceptive in that it reveals something we all struggle with: trying to make it on our own. Many times have I fallen into the arrogant trap of believing I was to strong and to proud to need others, but it's just not true. I need others. Other need me. And, as the song says, that's the way it's meant to be. Striking, isn't it? God created us to interact, to share, to help, to befriend. How often do we get to lazy in this or just forget about it? Little indifferences mean nothing and can be overcome, don't let them detract you from being a friend to someone who needs a friend. We are all hard to get along with in some capacity, don't use that excuse. It's lame.

Moral of the Story: Make new friends. Call me a hypocrite, but I don't think God wants us to make 10 friends and then call it a life. Talk to lost people at work. Talk to saved people at work. Talk to your lost classmates. Talk to your saved classmates. Show interest in their lives. Genuine interest. And then back it up. You may think "But Wes, they might think I'm weird". Who freakin cares. You'd be surprised what people are willing to share with others they don't even know that well. Ever seen those Kleenex commercials? Be the guy with Kleenex box, handing out tissues and lending an ear to complete strangers. People are searching for friends. Just let them find you.

P.S. The song is available on iTunes. Just buy the single, it's a dollar.