I Heart Indies

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Existential Crisis of Rob Mark

Full Disclosure: The Beavers Were Normal Size
Rob Mark, 44, an adventurer and member of The Explorer’s Club of New York City, became the first person to visit the world’s largest beaver dam located in godforsaken terrain of Canada’s largest national park 124 miles from Fort Chipewyan, from where he began his (nine-day) trek. - David Strege

So people keep asking me, "How big were those beavers, anyways?"  Full disclosure here, the beavers were ordinary size.  The dam is what was big.  When I tell them that, they kind of stare at me, like "You hiked nine days to see a giant dam?  I can see doing that for giant beavers, maybe, but just to see a giant dam?"  Frankly, I'm starting to see their point.  I mean, what was I thinking?  I guess, the fact is I'm kind of blue.  It's a big let-down after you've seen the world's largest beaver dam, it's like what else is there to do?  

Ever since I was a kid, I was fascinated by seeing really large animal structures.  When I was seven my brothers said, "Come outside, there's the world's biggest wasp nest hanging from the eaves!"  And I went outside, and there it was.  It really was impressive, and I thought, now my life has meaning, now I am fulfilled.  But then it turned out it wasn't the world's biggest wasp nest, just the biggest one my brothers ever saw.  I can't tell you how depressed I became.  I wouldn't speak to anyone for days.

I promised myself I really would see the world's biggest wasp nest one day, and I did, too.  In the Orinoco River Basin, Summer of '09.  It was magnificent, but I remember thinking, "Yeah, well, James and Scott said their nest was the biggest, too.  I wonder what else is out there?"  So I went on a quest.  I've seen the world's largest ant bed, the world's largest termite mounds.  The world's largest prairie-dog town, I've seen that, too.  Each time, the thrill left me less satisfied than the one before; each time I went on another search for the next big thing.

But the world's largest beaver dam tops them all.  And now I've seen it.  I keep asking myself, so what?

I hear there's a ginormous beehive in Africa no human eyes have ever laid eyes on.  I've got my plane ticket and my hiking gear.  Maybe it will be the thing I've been seeking all along.

1 comment:

  1. Where's the world's biggest cow patty?
    Behind the world's biggest cow...Wakka! Wakka!