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Location: Colorado
Joined: 02/27/2003
Posts: 394
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I think it's just an extension of what we see in pretty much all aspects of modern life in America. It's all about getting your 15 minutes of fame. It's all about hype. It's all about being extreme (or should I say Xtreme!). It's all about, not keeping up with the Joneses, but BEATING them! Vote them off the island! Buy the latest and greatest! Win the game through conspicuous consumption!

You see this kind of mentality in pretty much everything nowadays, and it is steadily filtering into the hunting world. I compare the hunting magazines of today with the 60-year-old ones I found in my grandfather's basement after he died and the difference is night and day. Back then the articles were about where to hunt, how to hunt, what rifle was enough, needed survival skills, and how to get into shape. Nowadays the majority of the articles are about where to bag a trophy, what outfitter has the best success rate, who's antlers are bigger than who's, which rifles will shoot 1,000 yards, and other such nonsense.

News, TV, magazines... whoever it is and whatever they're talking about, if it isn't the biggest, the best, the fastest, the strongest, the most expensive... then it isn't worth talking about. Hunting has suffered because of this attitude, but so has the rest of our lives.

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3207
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I'm gonna take a different tack here -- I don't think it's the sportsmen so much as it is the businesses marketing products to them. Everywhere you look it's somebody jamming some new gadget down your throat as the latest "must have" item. I doesn't help that guys are gadget-crazy to begin with. Ron Popeil made a killing with the "Pocket Fisherman", and it ain't because it was the greatest fishing device ever. Fishing shows, outdoor programs, magazines, etc, are pretty much underwritten by big business trying to get your buck.

This certainly isn't limited to hunting. Check out the world of ladies cosmetics or the overpriced snake oil in the body building world. It's not about the product, it's what people think about the product. Why else would people pay $300 for a shirt? It's business convincing people they've got to have this stuff.

The marketing people have folks thinking it's all about looking good in the shower.

The marketing message is simple: they tell you the key to manhood is to have the latest gadgets, and then peer pressure takes it from there. But think about the most successful hunters you've known -- what was their gear like? It ain't the hat that makes a cowboy.

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Joined: 09/23/2004
Posts: 137
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expatriate wrote:
I'm gonna take a different tack here -- I don't think it's the sportsmen so much as it is the businesses marketing products to them. Everywhere you look it's somebody jamming some new gadget down your throat as the latest "must have" item. I doesn't help that guys are gadget-crazy to begin with. Ron Popeil made a killing with the "Pocket Fisherman", and it ain't because it was the greatest fishing device ever. Fishing shows, outdoor programs, magazines, etc, are pretty much underwritten by big business trying to get your buck.

This certainly isn't limited to hunting. Check out the world of ladies cosmetics or the overpriced snake oil in the body building world. It's not about the product, it's what people think about the product. Why else would people pay $300 for a shirt? It's business convincing people they've got to have this stuff.

The marketing people have folks thinking it's all about looking good in the shower.

The marketing message is simple: they tell you the key to manhood is to have the latest gadgets, and then peer pressure takes it from there. But think about the most successful hunters you've known -- what was their gear like? It ain't the hat that makes a cowboy.

Ex I agree to a certain extent. Your explanation doesn't explain why My 13 year old asked me if the buck I was telling him to shoot was a 150 class. Hunting shows and the like have made it seem inferior to kill a doe or god forbid a nice buck. Its all about how much will it score. It doesn't matter if its a trophy to you then thats all that mattters.

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Location: Raleigh, NC
Joined: 01/23/2005
Posts: 36
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Hey guys, I'm new to the hunting scene, but wanted to add one of my main reasons for hunting. Simply put, fresh, organic, no hormone, "free" meat. I just turned 30 and last season I bagged my first whitetail. It was a 125-130lb. doe, and I was damn proud to have her.
I use to hunt small game up in NY, but never really got into hunting larger game. I actually felt bad for the animals, but I think this was because I knew I was just killing for killing. I ate a few of the squirrels, liked the rabbit, and loved the pheasant, but I took for granted the fact that my family owned a few thousand acres, and I could do what I pleased outdoors wise. Now that I don’t have access to it anymore (moved to North Carolina), I miss the heck out of it.
Unfortunately I tend to be a gadget guy, but with hunting, all of the gadgets in the world won't substitute for a skilled hunter, and the proper weapon for the environment. Because I am a novice, I watch OLN to try and pick up hunting tips, read these types of boards, listen to those more experienced than I, and just spend quality time in the woods (I finally found a spot here in Raleigh). The hunting shows definitely cater the trophy hungry crowd, while I think of the satisfaction of the hunt, and the enjoyment of the meat.
In all my life few moments compare to the pride I felt when my wife and I sat down for our first venison dinner, of which I hunted, dressed, cleaned and processed (with guidance from a buddy) and grilled. That's the feeling I crave, the pride, the meat, and the oneness with the woods. Thanks for showing that there are still true woodsman out there. Spread the word!
John-

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3207
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I will admit that there are some guys out there who unfortunately look at hunting as a competitive sport. You know, they're the ones that look down their noses at new hunters with disdain -- makes them feel good about themselves to act superior to someone else. There's a small percentage that think because they own the fancy gear or have been at it longer, they're somehow entitled to be king of the woods -- and it infuriates them when a newbie wanders into their area of public land.

They're in any sport -- at a gun range they're the ones with the customized M-1As or .45s, spotting scopes, etc and won't extend any courtesies to the lesser mortals on the firing line (you know, like holding fire so you can go downrange and mark your target). On the bowling alley, they're the ones with the $400 ball and bionic wristguard. In the weight room, they're the guys with the expensive wardrobe and 20 inch biceps who watch themselves in the mirror while they talk to you. At your son's Cub Scout Pinewood Derby, they're the ones with the cars that don't have any stock parts -- specially tuned axle/wheel combinations, a tool box full of tweaks and parts, digital scale accurate to .001 ounce, etc; you know, the ones where the kid maybe got to pick the color and finally gets to touch the car when he gets his ribbon. In golf, they have the expensive clubs, wardrobe to match, and postively go ape sh*t if they have to play with someone using rented clubs. I've had it happen -- the guy got so infuriated at having to suffer the indignity of playing with a hack like me that his game completely fell apart. It got so bad that I started beating him on the back 9 -- and then he really lost it. He walked off the course at the end of the round so frustrated and angry I wondered why he played the game.

I've seen them in every sport I've been involved in. From my experience, these guys are generally pretty bitter people. They'll get completely irritated to the point of rage if something goes less than perfect or somebody outdoes them with something cheap they got from Wally World. And if a mere amateur has any contact with them? LOOK OUT!

Personally, I feel sorry for them. They're so caught up in insecurity over their manhood that they've lost touch with the enjoyment of the sport. They keep chasing happiness with a credit card and elitist attitude, but they always seem less happy than the rank and file. Thank goodness they're the minority.

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Location: Raleigh, NC
Joined: 01/23/2005
Posts: 36
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expatriate,
When I bagged my first deer a few months ago, I was using a borrowed gun from my dad (old Win 32 special lever action), and borrowed everything else from the guy I was hunting with. He had some fancy .308 with a Leo. mega zoom stainless synthetic, range finder carbon scent lock super deer slayer setup. He even told me where to go and how long to sit, when to sneeze, how to walk etc. I got a little tired of his high-horse attitude, but it was his stuff, and he convinced me to go out hunting for the first time in many many years. He told me not to expect to even see anything, because he had come up dry for the past 5 years. Well, on my second day out I got my deer, and he came up empty handed yet again. Would you believe that I haven’t heard from him since?!? The only contact we have had is when I called and offered to share the meat, and help him take down his ladder stands. Now prior to going hunting we hung out quite a bit, but since then he wants nothing to do with my wife or I. It's too bad one damn whitetail bruised his ego so much.
Oh well, since then I’ve gone out and picked up a new rifle, a good field knife, some warm cammo clothes, and worked out a hunting spot with one of my coworkers. All’s well that ends well.
John-

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Location: NE Minnesota
Joined: 01/14/2004
Posts: 144
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I agree expatriate. I wonder if any of these folks would ever be happy at what they do. I think what makes them happy is the gadgets and the feeling of superiority, not the sport itself, whatever it may be.

It can go both ways though. You also have the purist crowd who can make you feel inferior. God forbid you actually go trout fishing with a spinning rod! I had this experience once in northern WI. A friend and I were fishing the Brule and my buddies' wader suspenders broke. Well, the only place nearby was a small fishing shop/lodge that catered to the "upper-end" fisherman. The proprietor was nice enough and very helpful, until she found out we were the dreaded spinner fishermen. She clammed up and walked away, no kidding. Needless to say we just walked out without buying anything, and just jury-rigged his waders.

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Location: Western New York
Joined: 10/18/2004
Posts: 13
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Hi Guy`s

I have a long time friend that I met in the woods when I started Bow hunting.This guy is from the city and has no wood wise knolage.his first year he would show up in the woods at 8:00 am well after sun up and is one of the most pain in the a$$ guys to get along with while hunting.But this guy knows how to shoot a bow and work on them.he shots dots and worked at bow shop for years and does the best work I have ever seen.I have learned a ton from this guy.He is now getting into rifles and shotgun somthing I have dealt with for years and no a great deal about but he still needs to have the spotlight and runs at the mouth and shows he knows nothing.Its a shame He could learn as much as I have learned from him if his know it all didn`t get in the way.

My brother in law is the same way.3 inch mag 12 ga loads in his 70 year old cheap single shot with a 2/34 inch chamber.shoots reloads with tape over the crimp to hold all of the extra shot he puts in them.A 222 remington he uses for Deer hunting.The list can go on and on but I am a dumb know nothing.Two years ago he used Remington 3 inch copper solid sabots in the 70 year old Full choked single shot.I didn`t say a thing.He ended up shooting a nice buck on the run at 75 yds dead center of the chest I mean you coudn`t do any better if you had all day and a scoped tack driver to do it with.Nothing but luck.I thought and hoped he didn`t see a deer so he wouldn`t blow up.I don`t hunt with this guy anymore.

I love shooting woodchucks and do a lot of long range shooting.I have learned a lot from guys that know more that I do and will ask if they will show me how its done.I have friends that can`t hit the broad side of a barn and are amased at my ability to hit small at long range.But when I try to help them and give them a tip They just ignore me and go on missing.I think we have a need to be top dog as males and It shows in our competitive nature.

Riflemen10x

Don Fischer's picture
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Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3183
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Quote:
.I have learned a lot from guys that know more that I do and will ask if they will show me how its done.

Ya know what, I',ve leanned a lot from guy's that don't know squat. Strange as it seem's, everybody know's something. It's just that we don't really find some of it usefull! :-?

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Joined: 09/23/2004
Posts: 137
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I took my 13 y/o step-son hunting this weekend. Its Youth Turkey season here in Missouri. Opening morning at 7:30am he bags a 22 lb turkey with a 10.5" beard. Nice bird! Actually bigger than anything I've ever shot myself. Well, when he told his older brother about it the only thing he could say was: "I'll kill a bigger one next week!" No congratulations, no nice bird, no good job, Nothing but spit and venom. Well, I told him that with an attitude like that he might well be hunting on his own. That I was interested in hunting with someone who is so self absorbed that he can't even say a single nice thing to his brother. I pissed his mother off, but Oh well. He turned a nice day of good times and enjoying the outdoors and the fruits of our toil into a pissing contest. I get enough of that kind of stuff in the real world, I don't need it in the woods.