I’m sorry, but we both knew this was coming. The rut is almost on and love is in the air…mostly in the woods, maybe not so much at home, but that’s why I needed to write this.
You know we each have our chores we do around the house to keep the place from looking like we let the kids play with a leaf blower. Those things that I take care of may be delayed just a bit. It’s not that I don’t think about the broken dishwasher or the clogged gutters. I do. Often. But to actually do something about it, that may take a little longer than both of us would like. Know this, I commit to you that at some time in the future, those things will be addressed in some fashion and with zeal; so much post-hunting season zeal.
Please realize that being a provider is something innate to me and hunting is its purest form. Just think how jealous your friends will be when you tell them you only feed your family free range, organic, hormone-free red meat? That totally tops our gluten-free friends. And then there’s the cost factor. Do you know how much we’re saving not having to buy this high end meat at the store? I know there’s the argument about the cost of all my equipment and licenses and fuel and so on, but I’d like to borrow a line from our former Secretary of State when she was faced with a similar question, “What difference at this point does it make?”
There may be late nights with my buddies in the garage processing someone’s deer. You may find blood on my clothes, in my beard or on the driveway. Did you know that in some ancient cultures, blood was a symbol for life and health? That’s the kind of real life history lesson and cultural exposure the kids can’t get from some stuffy textbook in school.
Also, if the trash man seems less friendly towards us, it may have something to do with the garbage can of legs and organs I’ll leave him. Landfills need organic materials though. You don’t want just a huge pile of plastic bags and milk jugs. That’s environmentally irresponsible. And, (as if that wasn’t a compelling enough point) lifting heavier cans is a better core workout for him and everyone knows how important core strength is.
When I do get time in the stand, fulfilling my role as a provider, I’ll be coming home exhausted. It’s not that I don’t want to spend time with you and the kids; it’s just that sitting for hours in a cold deer stand is way harder than you think. There is no one position a person can remain in that won’t get uncomfortable eventually. Did you know that? You’re constantly trying to find new contortions that’ll relieve the soreness, allow you to get a shot off and do it all slowly enough to not spook a deer. It takes a lot of mental and physical exertion to do this. In fact, I was thinking about suggesting they make it a component of the Ninja Warrior challenge.
Despite what my vehicle looks like, there will always be a place for you in my shotgun seat. I might need to move the binoculars and beef jerky wrappers and grunt tubes, and doe urine bottles out of the way, but that’s always your seat. Cleaning it off will only take a second.
Unlike the Autumn leaves, my love for you does not fade. It grows daily and is not the kind of superficial infatuation that requires direct presence with each other. It spans wooded hillsides and creek bottoms, food plots and draws. The rut may change our daily routine temporarily, but it doesn’t change how much I love and adore you.
(write your name in cursive, maybe draw some hearts with arrows too)
Tim Kjellesvik is an outdoor writer for hire on a mission to promote and protect the interests of the American outdoorsman. If he isn’t getting something to bite or sticking it with an arrow, he’s writing about it. Find out more about him and his work at thethinkingwoodsman.com and follow him on Facebook.