Trick the Bear

It’s a big world out there, and it’s scary. I know, I’m supposed to say it’s a wonderful world, I should probably sing it with a familiar and charming hoarseness, but I’d rather not, at least not today.

Everything big is scary because it looks stronger than you and you know it can crush you, break you or make you disappear. Whatever IT is it can do it, just because it’s bigger.

Being idiotically optimistic from birth, I believe that the world doesn’t really want to hurt me, but still, just in case, I look for escape routes and wonder if there is a dodge one can use when feeling particularly small and weak. An old story from nineteenth century comes to mind. It taught how to deal with a bear if you were unlucky enough to meet one in the forest.

There are two ways to avoid unpleasant results of this awkward acquaintance. First is to lie quietly on the ground trying not to breathe and pretending dead: bears have no appetite for the rotten flesh. You have to be a really good actor for this, I’m afraid, or quite a phlegmatic person for the bear might have a wish to sniff you before leaving for another date.

The other trick sounds a bit funnier but also requires some guts. You need to stand up on your tiptoe and lift your arms as high as possible so the bear thinks you are bigger than him. Bears are just like us; they respect the size and are afraid of anything that is bigger than them. Again, some acting skills would be useful. If you’re an experienced showoff it also might help.

Now, if you think of the world as a very big bear you can use one of those tricks and play dead or play giant to convince it that you are not as small as it seems. Make your choice and use the trick, you will need it. It’s a big world out there, and it’s waiting for ya. I think I’d risk to go for the show-off competition. It seems to be more exciting this way.


The Daily Post

14 thoughts on “Trick the Bear”

  1. I have never felt that the world is a big bear out to get me or that I need strategies to avoid a terrible death. Buffeted, as one is, by life, neither am I optimistic, as you say you have been from birth though I doubt that since you seem to experience the world as a threat. Life is how it is experienced by as many people there are living it. I don’t think rules can be made about how to cope with it. Surely it’s up to the individual and from their own point of view?

    1. Thank you for your comment, morganp63.
      An optimist is not a person who can see only rainbows everywhere, optimist is someone who is hopeful about the future and looks for ways to get to the land of rainbows, so to speak. This post is not about physical death; the big bear is a metaphor for one’s own fears which we all have, this way or another, and which, an optimist you are or not, you can cope with, and everybody invents their own tricks and systems to deal with them. There are no rules, of course, it’s up to you and your personal experience. I simply offered my vision.

  2. I like the philosophical angle in this post- routes of escape from a fear. What i usually do when faced with one is turn tail and run.
    Neither of the 19th century methods endorse this.
    Your post is a reminder that I need to stand up and face the situation.
    Thank you for the life lesson.

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