The fall season equals hunting season and boy, oh, boy does that create some strange behavior in our neck of the woods. All of the outdoorsman are getting that crazy look in their eyes. On any given night, the peaceful serenity is broken by the practicing elk bugles and deer grunting. The bow shop has extended their hours. The hospital is full of new pregnancies as the outdoorsman pretend they are elk and deer in the rut. It is once again acceptable to wear camo 24/7 instead of just on the weekend. Is the outdoorsman in your life pretending to be an elk in rut? Is he running around like a squirrel hiding acorns, except he is hoarding articles of camo clothing in his truck? Is he sniffing the air and giggling like a school girl because it “smells” like fall is on the way? Yes? Well that is definitely what is going on around our house. Here are the top ten signs that hunting season is just around the corner…God help us it seems like a camo zombie apocalypse is upon us.
- There are men everywhere pretending to be bulls n’ bucks. Yes, they are running around with a crazed look in their eyes, grunting, bugling, holding shed horns on their head and ramming into innocent tree adversaries and fighting the branches with their antlers. I guess, I should be grateful they aren’t whizzing down their legs…YET.
- Life’s priorities have dramatically changed. No, the lawn doesn’t need to be mowed any longer. No, the garbage doesn’t need to be taken out. No, the wife and children do not need any attention- they are just FINE! What MUST be done? Archery practice. Bugle practice. Rifle practice. Scouting. Camo prepping. That is all and don’t bother asking for anything else.
- The outdoorsman’s place of employment calls. Is there any issues they need to be concerned about? The outdoorsman has requested 2 day work weeks for the next 12 weeks… Don’t worry honey-we have plenty of food in our pantry and the electric company won’t mind if we are late paying the bill. After all, isn’t that what emergency savings are for? Is this an emergency? I guess so in camo land…
- Suddenly the laundry room is no longer my concern. The outdoorsman hasn’t even given the laundry room a second glance since…well, this time last year, but suddenly it is his place of serious business. The door is overflowing with camo and air-tight bags. I am not allowed to touch any of his precious items with my perfumed, stinky hands or fresh scented soaps and I am not allowed to put everyone else in our home’s laundry in until he is done with his “project” for fear of contamination. All camo articles of clothing must be washed in no-scented or dirt-scented and promptly bagged.
- He has been receiving numerous “thank you” cards from Cabela’s online, Kuiu and Zamberlan Boot Company (he should never complain about my shoes after seeing what they charge for those things!) and numerous other outdoor gear stores. We have also been receiving packages from the UPS guy at least 4 times a week. I am starting to think I should ask him in for dinner as he is here so often. But the packages are whisked away before I can even bring them in the house. Strange, huh? This leads to #6…
- For some reason our credit card bill is missing and the online password is not working…I ask the outdoorsman and he just bugles at me and runs away like a wild animal. I am forced to call in and see what the problem is. “Well, m’am…a cardholder has called in and changed the information.” I change the info back and see that we are independently keeping Cabela’s, Sportsman’s Warehouse, the bow shop, and all sorts of online outdoor supplier companies in business…
- Who needs sleep anyways? The outdoorsman is staying up late at night frantically punching buttons on his Smartphone and studying on X-maps. He grumbles a lot to himself and then will call other crazy camo people, I assume, grunt a few times, then mark the calendar and a spot on the map. I wonder how they understand what the hell they are saying…Grunt…Grunt…Snort…Oh, yes, honey…I totally understand.
- The outdoorsman is now wearing a uniform of his hunting pack and his new hiking boots everywhere we go. I just pretend like I don’t know him when we go to the store. I am pretty good at veering off into another aisle like I forgot to grab something. Date night…Now that hunting season is upon us…there is no time for that crap. But, I have to imagine he would wear his pack and boots if I could convince him to take me to a movie instead of a date night consisting of watching him shoot. Oh, goody!
- Suddenly our diet is very structured. There will be no beers, there will be no treats, all there will be is meat and vegetables. I am mildly concerned that he is trying to become a wild animal so that he will hunt like one…but luckily, I am wrong. Apparently, the outdoorsman is hoping to be able to outrun the elk and deer instead of sneak up on them from a distance. He is constantly mumbling about being in shape for hunting and marches up and down the mountain behind our house at least 25 times per evening. Yes, of course, he has his pack and boots on.
- The outdoorsman’s truck has been transformed back into his command center. Gone are the fishing rods and tackle boxes. They have been replaced with camo-filled dry bags, sleeping bags, tents, bows and guns. His precious “animal spotting” paraphernalia has been taken out of the glove box and placed back in their special spots. The binos are now hanging from the rearview mirror and a spotting scope is resting upon the driver’s window. Yes, I suppose it is time for me to get out the helmet I wear when I ride with him in the fall. The driving gets extra scary this time of year. Who needs to look at the road when there are animals to be spotted, a rifle hanging in the window and a fresh new tag in your back pocket?
If any of these above listed items are occurring in your home or you happen to notice any camo clad men head-butting trees while holding shed horns on their heads, I can guarantee that hunting season is just around the corner. Now is the time to hide those cute little deer that you have been feeding all summer, lock up your dogs, contain your cats, and put hunter’s orange on all of your livestock. The hunters are coming and you better look out!
Kristen Berube lives a crazy, laugh-filled life with her outdoorsman husband Remi and their three camo-clad children in Missoula, Montana. A graduate of Montana State University and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, she loves being a mom and enjoys hiking, fishing, and camping. “Confessions of a Camo Queen: Living with an Outdoorsman” is her first book. –
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