Written by Harold
How he got into my pajamas, I don't know!
Have you ever found it necessary to use bear spray?
For those of you who have never had the pleasure of letting go with a blast of what can best be described as “nuclear waste in a can” – read on.
While at Great Bear, we usually spend three or four days camping, and although we have never encountered anything even remotely resembling a bear, Kenny Gold, who subscribes to the theory that you can never be too careful, always brought along a can of bear spray – just in case.
I have come to learn that when using bear spray, not unlike an inexperienced person wielding a gun, people are more likely to do more damage to themselves than what they may be otherwise aiming at, and while in this case Kenny was ostensibly not actually aiming at anything in particular, he nevertheless managed to create a “dead zone” within the confines of his room and much of the lodge that is still very much in evidence four years later.
Kenny and Art Ross normally share a room, and when the two of them are unpacking it is indeed a sight to behold.
Every square inch of the floor, beds, bathroom vanity and the small desk/dresser is covered in stuff, including, rods, reels, tackle, clothing (one year there was even a piece of wood, rod holder tubes and c-clamps), hair dryer, water pic, two way radios, candy, pumpkin seeds and of course – bear spray.
While there is still an unresolved dispute between Art and Kenny as to who was at fault, the story is that a can of bear spray somehow got knocked off of the desk/dresser and struck the edge of an open drawer at precisely the right angle, causing it to explode and fill not only their room, but a good portion of the hallway with a cloud of toxic fumes.
For reasons that are still unclear, Kenny came running into my room carrying a small garbage can containing the still hissing can, wondering aloud what he should do with it.
Several options immediately came to mind, but not really having the time to suggest the obvious – as in throw it outside – my roommate and I quickly shoved Kenny out of the room, slamming the door behind him as he stumbled back into the hallway.
Needless to say Kenny and Art moved to different quarters, and the entire area was put under quarantine.
I can’t imagine a bear – or anything else for that matter – continuing to charge, or otherwise stick around with a face full of that stuff, and I as mentioned earlier, you can still catch a whiff of it’s unique odour in that room four years after the fact.
Come to think of it, Art is a pretty hairy guy and maybe, just maybe, Kenny’s earlier explanation notwithstanding, it was simply a case of mistaken identity on his part.