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It's deer hunting season north of here. So I hear.
My first copy editing job was for a fishing and hunting quarterly. When I took the job I was sad that unlike campus or advocacy work, I wouldn't be around queer people all day.
I met a number of hunters. Listened to their tall tales. I listened to learn what they wanted in a magazine, to what they wanted in Bass Pro Shops, and to what they wanted in a hunt. I learned how to shoot a shotgun, how to walk fencelines to flush quail, how to behave in a deerstand and in camp, and almost how to stay warm. I learned to discern between different patterns of camo and the mating calls of turkeys. I learned that some hunters approach hunting season as an art, others as science, others as escape, or as a mission, or as work, or as a spiritual practice, or as connection to conservation, or as an homage to heritage or as a thrilling hobby. They all had their reasons. They had tricks, too, most of them put time and money and thinking into tricks, strategies, superstitions, plans and obsessions.
I knew deer hunters who bathed ritualistically, to erase themselves by removing their man-scent. They carefully dressed in their special wardrobe and spritzed themselves with the scent of apples or with actual or synthetic doe urine. They moved cautiously, thinking like a doe, walking where she would walk, mimicing mating calls or the scrape of her hooves or the antlers of lesser bucks who didn't deserve her. Their entire focus was seducing a buck, the bigger the better, wanting nothing more for hours and hours and days and day on end to pass as a doe, to pull that big buck close close closer. Close enough to possess him.
That's when I learned that we're all pretty queer, just about different things.
You Won't Believe the Shocking Thing This Woman Did, and Then Didn't Do, and We Don't Know Which Is Worse
I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by selfies, liking autocorrect lists,
dragging themselves through the digital streams at dawn looking for an easy click,
curiousity-gapped headlines drooling for the pageview heavenly connection to the traffic peaks in their analytics accounts,
who buzzworthy and upfed and status-eyed and liked sat up Tweeting in the timezoned Tweetdeck of long-dead quips scheduled along with notes of contests and easy giveaways,
who broke their blogs to Pinterest or pledged TED and became inspiration spraying unneccessary advice like Iyanla illuminated
[stay tuned to view the rest in a 40 part slideshow gallery]