The Nature Of Things

Posted: May 10, 2013 in Humour
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Mother Nature can move us to tears by her sheer beauty. What with the advent of satellite television, and the enormity of channel selection, nature shows are enjoying quite the resurgence in popularity. The clarity of picture and the pureness of sound allow us all to experience views of nature we otherwise would never have the opportunity for.

That said, I do find some of the animal kingdom’s quirks to be a little bizarre. I know that we Homo-Sapiens hold the record for defying logic in all quarters, killing each other off, polluting, overpopulating, building funny-looking houses, and generally doing our best to destroy all that is good. But some of the stuff our animal cousins are doing is downright kooky.

Take the loveable duck. Everyone loves ducks. They sound funny, they walk funny, they look funny in sailor suits. They fly well. Yet, one thing about them bothers me. I’m told, by some duck hunters I know, that they never shoot the first duck they see. Apparently, one or two ducks check out a site for the flock, and if they return to the flock, it means it’s safe. If they don’t return, I guess they keep going.

Now, first and foremost, who amongst the ducks decides which ducks are the ones who go down in flames? Do they draw straws? Is there a hierarchy we are unaware of, a ‘duck-class’ sub-set that is decided upon hatching? ‘Well, Harry here was the last one able to fly in our group, so, Harry…. I guess your number is up!’, or perhaps ‘Daisy, your mom smoked, so YOU go down and see if there any surprises.’ I can tell you one thing, if it was me, and they said, ‘Bill, since you’re dyslexic, your turn, it is!’, I would land in a tree, wait a while, then fly back and give them the old thumbs up. Then I’d hang back and see if I’d be losing a few relatives and friends. ‘Oops!’, I’d say, ‘My bad!’. I don’t think so!

I was listening to CBC radio the other day, and bears were the topic of the day. The ‘expert’ was talking about what to do if a bear attacks you while you are in the woods. She said, ‘If it’s black, fight back, and if it’s brown, lie down.’ First of all, if I encounter a bear, his colour is not the only thing that will be brown. And, as far as to whether he is black or brown, I can just hear the interview: ‘Mr. Gingras, now that you are missing two legs and your left arm, just what were you thinking when you happened upon that bear?’ ” ‘Well, Jack,’ I’d respond, ‘I was just starting to fight back, you know, a couple of lefts and a right, when my last conscious thought was, ‘Hey, I think this black bear just may be a dark-brown….hmmmmmm.’ You see my problem here. And don’t get me started about being colour blind!!

How about the mysterious praying mantis? While it is common knowledge that the female kills the male after mating, careful examination of the facts points out that it’s because the male cannot perform ‘snoogums’ with his head still on his body. Excuse me? Now, I’ve heard of losing your head over a female, but actually losing your head hardly seems like a fine way to procreate (although my wife loves this idea, and is now starting a Facebook page on the subject…)

Did you know that all porcupines can float on water? This of course explains why my rubber dingy kept sinking that summer 20 years ago at Camp WannaFart.

Regarding the weirdest animal, the human, did you know that right-handed people live an average 9 years longer than left-handed ones? Poor lefties. We can’t hum if our noses are plugged….I know, I tried to hum while singing one night, and I had a cold, and that night has come to be known as the ‘Don’t sing ‘She’s Always A Woman To Me’ with a cold’ night….how embarrassing.

Did you know that dolphins sleep with one eye open? It was obviously a daunting task to sneak up on Flipper, although it explains why he was always so tired.

Rats multiply so quickly that, within 18 months, a set of rats can have over a million descendents!! I don’t even know what to say about that, except ‘Ewwwww!!’

At home, our exposure to nature is limited compared to our forefathers. We have Leroy, John, and Moonie, our shih-tzus, who together cause much laughter, and confound me. They have yet to laugh when they see me naked, although their eyes do appear to widen, and seem less inclined to see me naked after each episode. They also don’t seem to mind if I ate beans yesterday, or if I have a cold, or that I have less hair today than last year. Thank you, Mother Nature, for all you have given us (except for the bear thing)


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