Last week my coworkers were talking about a pair of fawns that have been hanging around the office park this summer. Their mother may have been hit by a car or may have abandoned them, but they seem to be thriving. The consensus about these two little Bambis was:
“So beautiful and so delicious.”
Hunting is a very, very big deal where we are living now. Last winter one of my husband’s students gave him some jerky made from a bear her father had shot, and almost all of the men and some of the women we know will hunt deer and turkeys in their respective seasons.
I have no moral problem with hunting as long as you’re going to eat what you kill (and assuming you’re not going after the Very Last of its Kind), and there is no denying that both deer and turkeys are overpopulated around here. I really respect that people who hunt are willing to own where their food comes from — it would be real hypocrisy, I think, to be squicked by hunting but have no problem with the conveniently plucked and beheaded chickens in the plastic wrap at the grocery store.*
Still, it’s a bit jarring to me to find that just about everyone I meet can shoot a gun.
Guns where we lived before meant gangs. Drugs. Dead kids in city parks.
It makes me think about how your place (and by place I mean the place you grow up, the one that imprints on you as The Way Things Are) can shape the way you think. If this IVF works,** our child will grow up in this place. More to the point, this will be his or her place. The world as it is/as it should be will mean mountains, rivers, deer (both alive in the woods and cooked on their friends’ plates, if not their own). Our child will not know what a ghetto bird is, but xie will be able to tell a turkey from a turkey vulture.
My husband and I are a little out of place here. As I have noted before, we are walking stereotypes — NPR-listening, fair-trade-coffee-swilling, Obama-voting, self-satisfied urbanites who don’t know jack shit about living in the country. There is almost no one else like us here, even given the fact that it’s a college town.
If we ever manage to spawn, we will have such an interesting time watching xir grow up. What is personality? What is taught by your family? And what do you just absorb from your place?
* Actually I spend a lot of time at the grocery store standing in front of the chickens and pondering the ethical weight of my possible choices. Factory farmed meat? “Hippie chicken” that is supposedly sustainably raised? Tofu, which was grown using pesticides and nonsustainable farming practices? I should really learn to make my own…It takes me a long time to shop for food.