How Not To Survive In The Wild: 9 Essential Tips That Only Real Men Will Understand
Nudity, mushrooms, and absinthe...
Does that mean you should you go out like a damp candle? Or fade into the background like a boring song at a boring dinner party? No. It does not. The great explorers of our time didn’t die in a hospital ward; they died doing what they loved, out there in the wilderness.
Despite what Bruce Willis would have you believe, dying has never been easier. It’s just that there are so many safety precautions these days that many of us have forgotten how to do it. Well, here’s a reminder.
Don’t tell anyone where you’ve gone, or where you’re going. They’ll only end up following you and totally ruin your vibe. When people inform you that there’s “safety in numbers", ignore them completely.
Wear Inappropriate Clothing
Don’t let them suck you in. Wearing what you want, when you want, is a basic human right.
Still got that curry-stained t-shirt from the Carnage bar crawl of 2008? That’s perfect for a weekend in the woods. If you’re feeling particularly decadent, why not pack a cardigan and some trousers as well? Nature gets warm during the night, so make sure your layers are paper-thin.
In fact, I recommend you head to your local Ryman’s immediately and fashion an outfit from sheets of A4. Remember that paying for stationery is always optional.
You could probably build something out of twigs and leaves, but what are you going to say if the camera crew from MTV Cribs pops in for a visit?
“Yo MTV. Check out my ceiling. It’s not much to look at, but…"
Don’t be a boy scout, be a man. Nobody is going to give you a certificate for your innovative use of conifers, so stop trying to impress people. You’re not Bob the Builder, and this isn’t Grand Designs.
Put the construction tools and the architectural blueprints down, and sleep beneath the stars instead.
Open yourself up to nature, and let nature open itself up to you.
Approach Wild Animals
Sure, your average grizzly might weigh 363 kilos and stand two metres high, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be friends with one. Heck, next opportunity you get, why not take a bear-selfie? #YOLO
It’s not just bears we should be approaching. Wolves, sharks, wolves with shark-heads, and sharks with wolf-heads, you name a wild animal and I’ll give you a list as long as my prosthetic arm justifying why you should approach it.
The list will contain comforting words like “Dude, take a chill pill", “The animals have much to teach us", and “Relax. You’re acting like you’ve never seen a wolf-shark hybrid before."
Eat Everything You Find
You’re first in line at God’s all-you-can-eat buffet, a food critic at a restaurant called the ‘The Great Outdoors’. Handful of that, handful of this, mix it all together and stuff it in your face. No questions asked.
Don’t verify and cross check every single mushroom you come across. You’re an adventurer, not a librarian. Books are for nerds. Eat everything you find.
Start A Fire. A Massive Fire
Your pyromaniac ancestor, Calvin the Caveman, didn’t waste his time making small scented candles. He was a man, and he made fire.
If you’re feeling especially chilly, why not start an uncontrollable forest fire? You’ll find this idea to be particularly effective if the ground is dry and it hasn’t rained for a week.
Armed Yourself To The Teeth
If you’ve seen Deliverance, or read Lord of the Flies, you’ll know that the world is chock-a-block with dangerous people who mean to do you harm.
Another good reason then to pack guns, make spears, and set booby traps. Remember that nothing, absolutely nothing, can go wrong in the wild if you’re armed to the teeth and looking like an am-dram Rambo.
Get High On The Rocks
Never take the safest route to the summit; it’s normally the slowest and least interesting. Speed is of the essence here, so head straight for the crumbliest piece of rocky terrain and make like Edmund Hillary.
Hop, skip and jump your way from one boulder to the next. And don’t worry about getting crushed by one; this is real life not the opening scene of Indiana Jones.
Stay Hydrated With Absinthe
Absinthe, on the other hand, now there’s a beverage that knows how to kick things up a notch. So fill your canteen with the stuff, undiluted of course, grab your rucksack and let the good times roll.
When out in the wild, drinking an alcoholic spirit strong enough to anesthetise an adult hippo might sound like the worst idea in the world. And, to be honest, you’d be right to think that.
Absinthe is so potent it will make climbing up trees and kayaking down rivers feel like climbing down rivers and kayaking up trees. But, come on, doesn’t that sound like fun?
Drink it from a sandcastle bucket, drink it with colourful curly straws; drink nothing but absinthe. Confusion will be followed by dehydration; dehydration will be followed by death. Mission accomplished. You’ve died in the wild.
It’s a big bad world out there, so be safe and look after yourself.