I pass a sign every morning that encourages me to drive carefully and provides an update on the number of deer strikes "this year." I grew up in a part of the world where there were deer strikes nearly every day so when we entered November with a grand total of 18 here, I was not especially impressed (or encouraged to drive any more carefully.)
This morning the total was 23. It's only been three days since the last time I drove by and that’s quite a leap. I immediately began to wonder if five deer had been hit over the weekend or if a single animal - perhaps part of some elite Special Forces unit - was responsible for striking all 5 vehicles. I flashed back to the movie Kung Pow! (with the cow that was a Kung-Fu master). But then, as I suffered along through the traffic, I began to suspect that they only update the sign once a month or so. My image of Deerbo, or RoboDeer, or John McDeer (former NYPD Cop) was shattered.
|They don't make many movies dumber than this one.|
The cynicism of daily life can do that to you. The part of me that has come to understand how the world works is convinced that the monthly update is the reason for the sudden spike. But the writer loves the idea of a Jedi Deer. Bambi Strikes Back. The Deer Hunter. V for Venison. The writer is much more fun. No Country for Old Deer. See? This can go on forever.
In junior high school I was subjected to many things and one of them was Robert Frost. Specifically the "Two Roads" thing. I thought it was the dumbest poem in the world for many reasons -- not the least of which were the endless poster variations that always showed the woods and two paths. I grew up in the woods. I spent most of my free time wandering the woods. It was a very big woods. There was nothing inspiring about the posters or the poem. In my experience, both paths in the wood led to interesting things and I took them both quite often.
So I changed the poem to read, "Two paths diverged in the wood and I took the one on the left and it has made all the difference."
Wasn't nearly as profound to the world but it actually meant something to me. I was making a decision based on the journey, not the destination. Suddenly the poem made sense. I'm older now and I realize just how fortunate I was to grow up where I did with the freedom that I enjoyed. I can understand why so many people needed a poem like that to encourage them to move up out of the ruts and do some exploring.
I hope that the next time you find yourself at the proverbial fork you'll pause to consider taking the path on the left. Who knows? Maybe you'll run into SpiDeerMan.