Friday, March 10, 2006

A Dangerous Course



I took a field zoology course during my first attempt at college. The prof was a cartoon character somewhere between Fred Flintstone and the Wile E. Coyote. I think he was out to show that Field zoology wasn’t for pussies, because his field labs always involved wading through streams or messing with animals best left alone.

The one lab that stands out though was when he decided to show us how to turn a small spring into a pond for waterfowl. He dug a up a couple of local ex-miners who had some how bought or stolen a license to use dynamite. Thinking back they may not even have had a license and probably stole the dynamite. I think he gave them a bottle of cheap whiskey a piece to help with this project.

We wound up out in the woods – no water to cross this time because it was only a small spring. Clem and Jeb, the miners planted the explosives while we moved back to what the prof thought was a safe distance. Just note about the lay of the land. The two chuckle heads were planting the dynamite in what used to be a stream bed. The stream had run out of an area full of glacial deposits, that is to say lots of rocks ranging from the size of your noggin to Mike Tyson’s fist. We had backed up against a stand of trees when Clem and Zeb came running up to our group, which was followed by the blast heard ‘round the world. Well, at least into the next county. The horrendous bang was followed by a shower of the aforementioned rocks, right over the top of us. Moving into the trees offered slight protection as the rocks were basically coming straight down. The pond for migrating waterfowl was a total flop, unless the ducks were really, really flat. To this day I am not sure where all those rocks came from because the spring didn't look all that different.

Somehow no one was hurt and the professor kept his job. I guess he may have been right about one thing; his course definitely wasn’t for pussies.

3 Comments:

At 7:28 AM, Blogger Tea and Books, etc said...

ROTFLMAO!!

Glad to hear no one was hurt, although I really have to wonder how a field zoology prof wouldn't have known that using dynamite with anything would require quite a lengthy distance. Maybe some thousands of yards of twine or wick even. I mean, what, he'd never seen a Wiley Coyote or Daffy Duck sketch? ;-)

Seriously, would have loved to have taken a field zoology course. :-)

 
At 3:40 AM, Blogger SC said...

Add all these stories together and you have one very nice book. I won't stop saying it until you do it!

 
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