Monday, August 27, 2012

Can't You Shut the F*CK Up!!!!!!

Hey all,

I must be getting old.  Or maybe I'm just getting less tolerant.  Or maybe both.  But I have to rant about what happened to me yesterday.

As you know, I'm living now in Zurich Switzerland.  And since it's a big city, I often look for places out of town, in the forest to recharge my batteries.  And I found one in the Wildnispark Zurich Langenberg just outside of town.

It's a beautiful place, a wildlife park and hiking area, and something you don't often see here in's FREE.  Woohoo!!!

So, I headed out with my packed lunch and water, prepared to enjoy myself.  And for the most part I did.  The park is absolutely beautiful, with long sweeping trails, bubbling brooks and rushing waterfalls.  The open air zoo part of the park was amazing, with huge enclosures for the animals and platforms and hides to watch all the different creatures.  I loved it.

Until I ran into them.  The mouths.  The ones who don't get the fact that most people come to the forest for the silence...for the tranquility.  The ones that let their children scream bloody murder and then complain the animals won't come near them.  The ones that talk at the top of their lungs as they are crouching in a hide and then wonder--loudly--why they never see any of the critters.


No jury of my peers would convict me if I threw them all in the closest lake.  I know the animals would thank me.  The idiots would finally shut up!

But the fish in the lake would probably revolt.  Those kind of people would keep talking even as they sank into the mud.

I've seen this type of behavior everywhere we've been, and it's rude and irritating to those of us who did come to the park to actually LISTEN to the wind in the trees or actually try and SEE the animals around us.  It's even worse when you are out in the actual back country and there is nothing but silence all around're soaking it in, and then suddenly, Mr. Mouth and his family come shouting down the trail.

Any of you who are critter watchers know that once that happens it can be hours before the animals feel it's safe to creep back out and do their daily thing.

When our kids were little the first thing Jonathon and I taught them when hiking, was to be move silently in the forest.  And they learned.  No, they weren't perfect when they were little, and we lost quite a few opportunities to see things, but it was a learning curve and that's okay.  By the time they were five, they knew to be quiet and hear what was around them.

One of my favorite memories is being in Queensland, Australia and wandering around in one of the forests there.  The kids were 7, 5 and 3.  We were all silent, taking in the rainforest type of surroundings and watching the wild parakeets and parrots all around us.

And then, out of nowhere, a cassowary crossed our paths.  

Now these huge birds are not something you see every day.  LOL  And they can be dangerous, especially if threatened.  Instinctively, we all froze, even my youngest, and just watched as the bird stared at our family with it's unblinking eyes.  Then, obviously dismissing us as uninteresting, it walked along the path, nibbling on bugs and snapping at flies.  We crept along behind it, all as quiet as the proverbial mouse, watching the cassowary in it's native surroundings.

It lasted maybe five to ten minutes, before the bird slipped off into the bush, but it was one of the most rewarding memories of my life.  Not only did we get to see something not often experienced, but I was so proud of my children.  They didn't utter a peep.  And their reward was a memory they will never forget.

I wish the parents I ran into yesterday would teach their children--hell, teach themselves to be silent in the forest.  They don't understand they are their own worse enemy.  They don't see anything and then complain--loudly--how boring and stupid whatever park they've gone to is.  And that's sad.  They honestly don't know what they're missing.

And they don't understand that it's their own fault that they're missing it.

As for me, I've learned to walk away from Mr. Mouth and his family.  It doesn't do me any good to remonstrate with these type of people, even if I could speak the language.  They don't listen and get angry that you dare say something.  So rather than waste the energy, I just leave and find my own quiet place to enjoy the animals and the forest.

But I do feel sorry for the critters.  If they have to listen to that every day, it's no wonder some species are going extinct!

Until Wednesday,


CJ England
Follow Your Dreams


Anonymous said...

People are just plain disrespectful these days. Yelling and screaming in the forest, talking loudly on cell phones in the middle of restaurants, and similar activities make me wish I could simply hide in my lair and never come out. It's sad, really.
I hope the next time you go out into the wilderness, you'll be able to enjoy it properly...without the loudmouths around!

The Whistler said...

My favorite part of this story was "But the fish in the lake would probably revolt. Those kind of people would keep talking even as they sank into the mud.". LOL!

Phylis said...

Those type of people are the same in public places as well and then wonder why they get lousy service, etc! And you are right, you can't talk to them either. Glad you still found quiet but I do feel sorry for the animals as well.

Anonymous said...

They were lucky they were in an area with no large predators. Making noises, squealing…hmmm sounds like prey to most top of the line predators. Bears, mountain lions, you name it would have been heading their way to check out the sounds the kids were making at least. Some people take their idiotic ways with them everywhere, that way they don't need signs!
retired Park Naturalist

Carrie Lynn Barker said...

There's too many of these types of people these days. And if you ask them politely to be quiet, they look at you as if you are the rude one!

CJ England said...

Thanks, jswayne. And you're right. Rude people aren't limited to those in the forest!

CJ England said...

Ha, ha, ha, Robert. Thanks. I'm glad you got a laugh out of it!

CJ England said...

Phylis, I'd forgotten about those jerks in restaurants. And there are way too many of them!

CJ England said...

You're right, scattered. I agree. Another reason I taught my children the way I did.

Ray said...

I ran into one of those rude restaurant jerks today. I was trying to get back to my table at Starbucks and this woman just stood blocking the path texting to someone who is probably glad he isn't with her to see her antics.

The two people I went with to Jean Lafitte Park with in the Bayous were real jerks about the wildlife. They found a cottonmouth and went off the boardwalk to tease it with a stick. Too bad it didn't bite one of them. The snake bit the snake a couple of times and then moved into the underbrush to get away from these idiots.

CJ England said...

I know, Carrie. The one time I did make a comment, I was looked at like I was an alien from outer space. LOL

CJ England said...

Ray, your friends sound like the kids I ran into in the park who tried to chase the pigs. Idiots. Or are their parents the idiots? Yeah. I think so.

Fiona McGier said...

My kids used to cringe with embarrassment when I'd lecture people at Brookfield Zoo about how they were acting around the animals. We were and still are, zoo members, so I taught my kids we "own" the place and expect others to be respectful in "our" house. When people let their kids throw snack wrappers into the ostrich area I told them the birds could choke to death and they would be responsible. When their kids threw food at critters, I explained that feeding them people food isn't good for them...not that the crap they were eating is good for people either! But when they let their kids chase after geese or peacocks, or try to get them to get close enough to pose with them, I kept quiet, hoping the birds would snap at them, thus explaining better than I ever could, why wild animals should be viewed from a distance and respected. People can be so ignorant and rude and it appears to be so catchy that it's difficult to avoid matter where you go!

CJ England said...

Oh, Fiona, I know exactly what you mean. I've been known to snarl at people who toss things at animals. I have to admit once I asked some parents who were letting their kids throw stones at the lions if they'd like me to throw their children at the big cats.

For some reason it didn't go over well. LOL

ELF said...

We were at an outdoor concert last night...had trouble hearing the music because the people were talking so loudly around us and couldn't see well because the people 4 rows up stood the entire time and chatted. Makes you wonder why they came to the certainly wasn't for the music!

CJ England said...

That is so maddening, Elf2060. I mean you spend 100 dollars for a decent seat and can't hear a lick of the music.

Ray said...

In Virginia you wouldn't dare say anything because of the concealed carry law.

Kelley Heckart said...

Hi CJ,

I love your rants. LOL
It's really sad how inconsiderate people are. I hope you do find your quiet place.

CJ England said...


And that is an excellent point. People DO back off due to that very thing. Who knows who might go postal? Over a simple request to just shhhhhhh....

CJ England said...

Thanks, CC. I'm glad you like them. I know I have fun with my rants. They keep me from getting ulcers. LOL