I received your sample copy (#7) recently, and was enjoying most of the
pieces until I got to "Whittling a Long Bow at Home." That was
the first red flag.
Nonetheless I forged onward, trying to shake it out like a centipede in
a sleeping bag. Then I read "Yurt Buck," and it dawned on me that
OYB is just another pseudo-hip rag for sadistic rednecks.
If I had a dollar for every acre of wild habitat destroyed by hunters and
their beer bottles and ORVs and noise pollution and so on, I would have
enough money to buy an island. Then, just as in that old movie, I would
invite hunters, equip them with antlers, and give them every chance their
victims had as I hunt them down with a rifle.
With neither starvation or self-defense at issue, the only reason people
kill animals is because it feels good or makes you feel 'excited' or 'spazzed.'
Killing in this manner is the essence of sadism.
Why do 'nature lovers' always have to love nature to death?
Anyway, I changed my mind about subscribing. Your type of zine is not for
me. I had to throw it in the trash because it's not even recyclable (with
that glue you use).
May you choke on your chewing tobacco when there's no one around to perform
PS: Any publication that lacks a sense of humor (i.e., no cartoons) deserves
Clever letter, but the fact that you insult me proves that you don't have
this sense of humor you talk so much about. Anyway, OYB happens to be so
loaded with humor that it doesn't always need comics. (See OYB back issues
for unrivaled cartooning about biking, animals and the relationship between
insects and dogmas.)
How old are you anyway?
OK, I'll mow through your complaints and see if I can get through to you.
Fine if you don't like hunters, but what does that have to do with the worth
of my mag? (Of course it's recyclable---maybe not 100% but gimme a break.)
So, you never like anyone you disagree with? Don't read a mag unless it's
all your way? Weird. OYB is neither pro- nor anti-hunting, as with every
other subject we just tell it like it is. Not too many mags dare to be that
Since you hate hunters you must've researched the situation, that's why
I find it odd that you miss the tiny detail that hunters pay for and set
aside from development more land than most any other group. So what's this
habitat destruction baloney? Hunters also finance much wildlife research
(which often fixes things like wildlife diseases). But I don't really care
about that techy stuff either. It's your lovely hate that's so enchanting.
I'm responding due to the offchance you sober up, change your mind and subscribe
to OYB like you know you want to.
Tip: It always helps if you're particular in your accusations. Show me where
in my hunting stories that I destroy habitat with an ORV as you say hunters
do? And I won't do it anymore! (Maybe.) Why associate me with others anyway?
Read the piece or don't.
Here's the poop: I'm sure hunters are bad-as bad as anyone else. But I can't
see them being any worse. If I hassle them, I might as well hassle surfers
or birdwatchers driving their polluting cars hundreds of miles every weekend.
Why hassle ORVs? ORVs zoom around all year, not just during hunting season.
And what's all this habitat they wreck, acreagewise a trail isn't that ruinous.
I've never ORVed when I've hunted, nor do I see em out there. I see em in
garages. When I'm afield, I really don't see anyone. Not much trash either.
No messed up habitat. (Logging? Subdivisions?) The most trash I see is alongside
roads--littering committed by motorists in general, but it hasn't seemed
all that bad. Oh yeah, party places out in the vacant fields also get trashed,
but that's just youngsters. You're probably a motorist. You might've been
young once. So screw you! Festivals and mountain bike races seem to be just
a couple things that I've seen truly shred the countryside. Actually, the
new subdivisions around here have ripped off my stompin grounds worse than
the wildest tree-hackin, trashin, bonfirin motocross yahoos we've ever had.
Subs turn the outdoor scene to zero as far as humanoids are concerned (but
funny how most other mammals adapt to them just fine). Anyway, generalizations
are stupid so I'll quit if you will.
How many zines do you see out there published by sadistic rednecks anyway?
I haven't seen hardly any. Hunting is scarcely mentioned in any zine anyway.
Indeed I've seen thousands and never once a hunting story. --Which is why
I publish em. Fishing, too! Zine firsts, get em here! Henry Miller said
he wrote 'that which is omitted from books.' I like that.
I'd say 'pseudo' means 'for appearances only.' That's what you see in OYB?
You also seem to be confused as to who you hate more: hunters or meateaters.
You say something about starvation being one of the only legit reasons for
killing something. Well, of course I hunt/eat meat so I won't starve. I
wear leather so my feet won't freeze. What you're upset about is that I
don't eat and wear **what you say I should**.
Say you change your mind sometime. Won't you be embarrassed as to how you
felt so free to harp? Just because presumption of license to be an idiot
is a popular and pseudointellectually respectable fad doesn't mean it's
right---and that you won't feel the shame of it if you ever wise up ('pseudo'
because it's all part of a powergrab---nada to do with thought.) Don't you
think there's just a little coincedence that so many anti-hunters and vegetarians
happen to be college age city folk? Whoops, now I'm making it harder for
you. Sorry. That's just a little OYB training for ya: whenever you try these
DIY things or read something new there's a chance for anxiety or regret
as your life is stretched and improved. Work thru it, dude. That's what
adventure is about!
Death of animals is tied somehow in everything we do in life. No one can
hide from it. Round and round we go. I hunt to NOT get disconnected from
life. I take responsibility for my meat and veggies. After all that work
I appreciate the grocery store more! Hunting is food and ritual.
I try not do anything *just* to get excited or spazzed. Don't know many
adults who do. Real life is too risky. You could get hurt! Most fun or cool
stuff is just pretend anyway. But hunting involves serious obligations that
every hunter I know respects. ---I *have* heard about arrested adolescence
that cripples all types of people, but it's a sad story we don't want to
pin to any one group. Your clever misreading of the obvious mood of the
piece reveals the heart of a kneejerk. Excitement was one of the *effects*
of shooting my deer, but it surely wasn't a goal. The very next lines mention
'quiet,' 'sober,' and 'serious business.' C'mon, you gotta open your eyes
a bit more or the main point just keeps passing you by. OYB isn't a term
paper to critique or a side to get on. OYB is training--toughen up!
You say 'killing in this manner [for excitement] is the essence of sadism.'
Don't be so quick to judge. You might get bit. I suspect that doing anything
for reasons of excitement can quickly turn into sadism or masochism. When
the fun wears off and one still persists, a twisting can occur. Ask a vegetarian
marathon runner if he's feeling pleasure or pain. Camoflaged love of pain
I think I relate to animals just fine--all us critters are somewhere on
the Graduated Animal Scale. "Animals are people, too" whining
misses the entire subtlety of life. Also, your presumption that you know
whether or not game animals 'have a chance' when hunted and your confidence
in knowing how important this is one way or another reveal a surprising
disconnection with the subject and plenty of ulterior motives, like an itchin
to judge and find fault. It's fantasy and doesn't work except around the
backslapper's table. C'mon, get real---send in that check!
You wonder why nature lovers love nature to death. Nature handles death
just fine. We *naturally* handle death just fine. It's these illusions we
get into that mess us up. One of them being that Nature or Wilderness is
separate from us. The loving-to-death syndrome is a result of greed, consumerism,
and objectification--and it filters down to harm against nature wherever
it occurs. When we treat nature or anything we 'like' as a thing to be experienced...we
destroy it. That's why eco-tourism is dangerous. That's how bicycling as
'recreation' encourages driving. That's how cross country skiers can use
waxes that emit deadly smoke while being applied. No one is exempt from
wrecking what they love when they pursue the thing they think they see.
Ritualistic participation in mysteries helps keep us humble. --I'm more
humble now that I've carried a 200-lb deer carcass a mile to my bloody redneck
yurt. It's a start.
You wouldn't hate OYB if you didn't love it so much. It's a religious thing.
The fear of the death of your preconceptions causes you to demonize those
who disagree with you. Only those with no sense of humor refuse to be mellow
about it and follow the pointing arrow wherever it might lead. A strong
reaction is actually a good sign. -You're one of my few hate letter writers,
which is why I'm so worked up. How 'bout you?
I for one won't pander to any mentality. I'll keep running stories that
I'm amazed by, stories that you won't find anywhere else close to hand,
and that describe something of life from the point of view of the writer,
a human bean, a non-professional, someone who represents only themselves.
Re: your wish for OYB to fail. Heck, I even get lots of subs from the web
site lurkers: they can get it for free, but they choose to support. Hey,
I'm slow, but I'll keep standin up for those folk!
Note that I haven't mentioned your cutesy deathcurse. I know you're probably
packing as you read this to head over to join the fun in Bosnia with your
other buddies who wish for the death of others.
Best wishes for your quick recovery, JP
PS: I read your letter to my aquarium of fish, terrarium of local herps,
3 cats and 2 dogs....they all laughed so hard! The squirrels outside on
the feeders and all the little birdies at our heated birdbath also overheard
me and cracked up. Heck, even the rabbits in the next field over who stay
plentiful even after I've been shooting and eating them over there for 20
years mighta been laughing for all I know.
PSS: Nowadays there's respect for Native American culture. I'd say it's
largely due to the idea that they were connected to their lives and many
insisted to the death that that was all that mattered. Now, this respect
has also inspired a new interest in hunting and gathering in some quarters.
Oddly, many who respect NAC seem to be city folk who loathe hunters. As
such, they're being racist and elitist to boot. I have the same right to
access anything NA's do. They could've lived domestic lifestyles and spared
wild game animals at any point after the US had cities, after learning of
alternatives. The hunting tribes could've moved south and planted more to
avoid killing game as much as possible. Their culture was based on both
necessity and freewill, like ours. I'd like to have my choice of eating
game be just as respected.