I have to say I was shocked at the death last week of Steve Irwin, "The Crocodile Hunter." In his TV shows and even his silly (and quite funny) 2002 movie, he was such a wide-eyed, enthusiastic, happy-to-be-alive kind of guy that it's hard to imagine he's gone.
And suddenly,too: killed by a stingray's barb to the heart. Talk about a freak accident! I had a roommate once who used to worry about dying. Not that she was afraid to die: she was specifically afraid that she'd die in some ridiculous way and she'd look foolish as well as deceased. I guess Steve Irwin didn't think about that much. I mean, a guy who wrestles crocodiles, I can't believe he'd be too worried about an appearance of dignity.
I am not much of a naturalist. My basic philosophy about nature is "get it before it gets you." And don't kid yourself, it's out to get you. Killer bees, sinkholes, tidal waves- it's a jungle out there. And in the end it was nature that did Irwin in.
I will never again encourage my kid to touch the slimy stingrays at the aquarium. The stingrays can touch themselves from now on.
I will miss The Crocodile Hunter.