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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 7, 2007 / 19 Iyar, 5767

Please don't feed the tourists

By Dave Barry


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It's time for Part Two of my two-part series on the exciting, dramatic and — above all — tax-deductible Alaskan Adventure trip I took earlier this spring. As you recall, in Part One I recounted the events of my first day in Alaska, during which virtually nothing happened. This leads us to:


DAY TWO: I woke up in a nervous mood because I knew this was the day that I would boldly leave the hotel altogether and — armed with nothing stronger than Certs-brand breath mints — face a polar bear. This can be extremely dangerous. Polar bears are fiercely aggressive meat-eating hunters that weigh upwards of 1,000 pounds and can run down a horse. The only real hope I had for surviving this encounter was the fact that this particular polar bear lives in the Anchorage Zoo.


Frankly, it struck me as pretty strange that Anchorage even bothers to have a zoo, seeing as how, as I noted in Part One of this series, there are already plenty of large and sometimes hostile animals wandering around the city. You could easily have a situation where you'd be unable to go to the zoo to see the moose or bears because there was a non-zoo, free-lance moose or bear standing on your patio.


Fortunately, I had no trouble getting to the zoo, and I soon found myself face to face with the zoo's star polar bear, Binky, who, in terms of size, is basically a Winnebago motor home with teeth. Binky became a major news story in Alaska last year when, on separate occasions a few weeks apart, he attempted to eat two people. The victims, both of whom survived, had climbed over two fences to get close to Binky's cage. One of them was an Australian tourist, who said she climbed the fences because she wanted to take a close-up photograph; she wound up with her leg in Binky's mouth. I saw a videotape of the attack, taken by another zoo visitor, showing several men beating on Binky with sticks through the cage bars, trying to make him let the woman go. You can tell that the woman was thinking, "Next time, I am definitely going to Disney World."


If there is one fundamental unifying principle of human psychology, it is that everyone, everywhere, regardless of age, gender, religion or ethnic origin, hates tourists. So when Binky chewed on one, he instantly became a major celebrity, like Kato Kaelin, but with a higher IQ. Alaskans fell in love with a freeze-frame video picture, taken by a local TV news cameraman, showing Binky wandering around his cage, looking a little wistful — with the Australian woman's sneaker in his mouth. Entrepreneurs put this image on T-shirts, which still sell by the thousands, along with all kinds of other Binky merchandise (one woman showed me a pin she was wearing — a little white polar bear with a little silver sneaker in its mouth).


Binky was sleeping when I arrived at his cage, but after a few minutes he got up and started engaging in routine bear behavior such as yawning, pacing around, diving in his pool, phoning his agent, etc. I could not help but notice that Binky's cage still is not particularly well protected. It would be pretty easy for a tourist to hop over the two low fences, get to the cage and become Purina Bear Chow. It's almost as though the zoo wants this to happen (NEXT TOURIST FEEDING: 3 p.m.).


I myself did not get anywhere near Binky, because I wanted to stay in peak, non-mauled physical condition for the strenuous activities scheduled for the final day of my Alaskan Adventure, also known as:


DAY THREE: The big event of Day Three was a helicopter tour of some glaciers, arranged by — speaking of getting chomped by bears — Anchorage Daily News columnist Craig Medred, who, as you recall from Part One of this series, is an outdoorsperson so rugged that he makes Davy Crockett look like Martha Stewart.


After receiving a safety briefing from our pilot, Lambert DeGavere, we took off from the Anchorage airport and headed for the mountains. I am not a religious person, but as I viewed the spectacular panorama of breathtaking scenery below, I could not help but ask myself, "What the heck kind of pilot is named 'Lambert'?"


An excellent pilot, as it turned out. Lambert gave us a terrific tour, swooping along mountain peaks and valleys, giving us all kinds of fascinating information about glaciers, which are — forgive me if I get technical for a moment — giant wads of ice caused by geology. At one point, we landed on a rocky outcrop next to a particularly scenic glacier, and there, many miles from the nearest convenience store, we had lunch. As we sat there, contemplating one of the most overwhelmingly beautiful views I've ever seen, Craig said something — call it an insight; call it a revelation — that struck a responsive chord deep in my soul.


"I had this flight billed to The Anchorage Daily News," he said, "but they don't know it yet."


That's the kind of bold, "can-do" spirit that makes Alaska what it is today, and if you're the kind of person who enjoys nature, I urge you to visit "The Land of the Midnight Sun" so that you can experience, firsthand, the mountains, the glaciers, the rivers and — above all — the zoo. Binky's getting hungry.

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Previously:

Land of the Frozen Earwax
The birth of wail
Honk if you're married and can't cope with anger
Rabbit ears get poor reception
Percentage of frogs in food jumps
Night of the living roach
Mr. Language Person: Some words of wisdomality
Mind your P's and Q's and teas
Loose lips sink sequels
NOW WE'RE COOKIN'!
The right to Bear clubs
Science: It's just not fair
Road warrior specials
Where's the beef? (Low fat)
There is nothing like a male (guys)
MOTIVATE! THEN FAIL! NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS
Rooting for the midgets of the Midway
Revolt of the rodents
He can drive any truck named ‘Tonka’
All bets are off
How do you spell S-A-T?
Sour grapes and mud
Pro golf: A game of non-stop boredom
Guard-dog vigilance is nothing to sniff at
Warm and fuzzy Cold War memories
The funny side of ‘Beowulf’
HOLY HEAT WAVE, BATMAN!
Abs-olute madness
Beware of brainy bugs
I'm in a sorry state
The frog plague: The inside story
If she had a hammer….
Keeping an eye on crime
Camping and Lewis and Clark
When in Iowa, don't forget to duck
Junior takes the wheel
Growing old with Dave
Sites for sore eyes
Beware of sheep droppings
Ireland, land of bad Elvis
Mr. Peabrain's misadventures
When they're out to get you, keep cool
Mothers of invention
Kill 'em with kindness



© 2006, The Miami Herald Distributed by Tribune Media Services, Inc.

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