Deer were elusive during trip to Big Woods

Published 8:23 am Friday, December 17, 2010

I have to tell you, trying to keep up with a couple of 16-year-olds all weekend is a challenge for me.

Last weekend, my twin sons, Robert and David, and I visited the Big Woods Wildlife Management Area in Surry County near Wakefield. We saw plenty of signs of deer, many scrapes and rubs, a lot of beds and tracks, but no deer. It is a beautiful area with full-grown pine forests, clear cuts and also areas with new growth. It should be holding some really nice deer, and I’m sure it is, we just didn’t see them.

The big story of the weekend was the discussion regarding our venison supply. The twins, Robert and David, were having a disagreement about who held claim to what cuts and how many of them. These guys love their venison. My suggestion was to fill their remaining tags, and there would be plenty to go around. I’m sure they were thinking that the season is winding down, and the chances of that happening are becoming less and less.

After much to-do, they decided to split the remaining bags and if there were an uneven number of bags of steak, I would even it out with one of my own. I think I lost out on this deal.

I have to take some time to ask a favor of you. Last week, in one of my paragraphs I wrote these few sentences: “Saturday, Robert and David hunted hard all day. Robert missed a buck around noon. David took a doe about 2 p.m., and Robert took one just before sunset. Their comments about Thanksgiving weekend: They can’t wait to do it again, it was great. My comment: I can’t think of a better way for teenagers to spend their time than in the outdoors, doing something wholesome and rewarding.”

As you know, our stories are posted on The Tidewater News website and people comment on them. For those of you who do not have access, someone by the name of “SandMan” posted the following comment: “Teenagers…doing something wholesome and rewarding”??? You gotta be kidding me…..slaying innocent animals being run down by dogs? The mentality of so called “hunters”…Sad.”

Now, I don’t know the identity of this individual so anything I may write would be purely speculative. However, this person wants to play with two young men very dear to my heart, then I say bring it on.

I could assume this individual’s shoes may have never left a hard surface, or that his weekends are spent playing video games or exploring websites that appeal to their fantasies. I could assume that this individual would be considered obese by the American Medical Association because of his lack of exercise.

I could make a series of assumptions about him in the same manner that they already made about me and my two sons, but that would be improper of me to do — as it was improper for him to do. Here is the one assumption I am going to make. I’m going to assume that “SandMan” allowed passion for his own views to overtake judgment about just who might read his postings and exactly who he was talking specifically about.

Posting a statement about the mentality of my sons, in the old days, “SandMan,” would be considered fighting words. Nowadays, the only people who make out from a fight are the lawyers who resolve it in the end so I won’t be fighting anymore.

I am, however, asking for a sincere apology for your inability to control your emotions and attacking my two juvenile sons. You can show me your sincerity by posting it just as you have your previous comment.

As for my favor, if any of you know “SandMan,” could you encourage him to step up to the plate and do the right thing? It will make everyone involved feel a little bit better including the “SandMan.”

Please let them know that going after adults is one thing; going after a couple of identifiable 16-year-old boys is a totally different road, and one that could lead to unthought-of ramifications. Slander is an ugly word, but one that seems fit in this case, at least to me.

Until next week, keep the painted side up and the bull in the pasture. Clean up after yourselves because we might be coming behind you tomorrow.