My name is Kristopher Boushie and I have a late-night television problem. It is an accepted fact that most people need a solid eight hours of sleep every night to stumble through life barely conscious of their surroundings. I, however, due to my unique genetic make-up and dietary intake, can stumble through my day on less than six hours of sleep. My reduced slumber provides me with additional time in my day to worry about an unending number of actual, potential, and imaginary misfortunes. I can also use this extra time more productively by watching marathon sessions of several “outdoor” shows – Naked and Afraid, Fat Guys in the Woods, and, the purest of the outdoor genre, River Monsters.
Naked and Afraid. Each show features two strangers, a man and a woman, who choose one survival tool (knife, flint and steel, duct tape). They are then dropped in some God-forsaken corner of the world where they have to survive for 21 days, then make it to an extraction point to be picked up. Lots of bugs, snakes, rain, leeches, ticks, and dirt. There is no romance in this show – naked or not. I particularly liked the guy who showed up in the jungle with duct tape. The first thing his partner had him make her was a bikini. The couple is supposed to have some survival training, but it may only consist of shopping at Whole Foods for a week. Here is the thing, these people are not fat. They actually need to eat and there is never enough food. Some get darn skinny. I’m thinking of trying to get on the show to shed a couple pounds myself. The show is on the Discover Channel.
Fat Guys in the Woods. “Survival is simple, just don’t die.” It is a great tag line. Unlike the “Naked” people, these guys can skip a few meals. In most episodes the grub is scarce (and may actually be a grub). The three fat guys are taught survival skills by “Creek,” the thin, blond-haired, pony-tailed guide. The goal is to survive five days in the mountains – four days with Creek and one night alone. The last night the guys have to build their own shelter and start their own fires. While they may not be naked, a good thing, most are pretty afraid. They clearly are not used to being away from TV, fast food, or a warm bed…and for that reason it is pretty entertaining. This show is on the Weather Channel.
|Where the real river monsters are!|
River Monsters. OK, the photo to the left isn’t from the show. It’s my dad, grandpa, and friend fishing in the Adirondacks. To hear those old fishing stories, there were river monsters back then!
This is the most addictive of the shows. I’m good for only a couple episodes of “Naked” or “Fat Guys,” but I can watch Jeremy Wade all night. I’ll watch an episode or two or three, then look up and it’s after midnight. Then I dream of how I can possibly get his job. I haven’t figured out a solution to this yet, but I am working on it.
|Jeremy Wade with friends|
This guy fishes all over the world, but spends most of his time in South America and the Amazon. He seems to speak fluent Spanish, so I will need to bring Karen with me as my fishing translator, but not my sound man. Jeremy Wade’s sound man got hit in the head by lightening, so it seems dangerous. The guy was OK – good thing since they couldn’t get him out right away. Except for the constant rain, bugs, sweltering heat, and fish that could kill you, it looks like a lot of fun. River Monsters is on the Animal Planet.
I’ve found another pastime when I’m not getting my eight hours of sleep…writing blog posts. I look up and it’s already almost 11 PM. It is almost time to turn to the work work I brought home from the office – more writing, but not as much fun because you have to cite everything…rather than just make it up as you go.
If you want to sleep well don’t combine dreams of naked fat guys and river monsters or you will certainly be afraid. Sweet dreams.