Greed is a terrible phenomenon in all of it's forms (of which there are many). In this particular instance, I am not talking (or rather writing) about greed in one of it's most common forms: greed for money, wealth, etc. I am talking about a greed that many do not know. The greed for a buck. I was not lying when I said I was not talking about money, because in this sense of the word I am referring to a deer with antlers. As many of you probably don't know, the 2013-14 deer season officially ended on Sunday, February 2. On the other hand, by now most of you reading this right now probably do know what has prompted me to write this article. If you remember my article entitled 'distractions from webmaster duties', then you know of what I was covetous. In short, I fell ill with the common illness known at one point or another by every avid deer hunter: buck fever. In short, I became so dead-set on getting one particular buck (which I conceitedly reffered to as 'my buck') that I quite ignored other deer and refused to settle for a lesser deer. In times of discouragement (albeit they came few and far between) I plucked up my enthusiasm by singing (in my mind) this verse, set to the tune of the old hymn 'I Am Resolved':
I am resolved
no longer to linger
charmed by smaller buck's delights!
Buck's that are larger,
buck's that are nobler
these have allured my sight!
I was entirely relying on my cunning and a good slice of luck to help me down 'my' deer. But I can honestly say that I am ashamed of my decision, though my hope never failed entirely (though at times it came close, but I always plucked up my hope). Now I come to my inital point.
Greed comes in many forms, as I stated at the begining of my article. Greed for money, possesions, power, and yes, the greed for a buck. But those who give in to greed never come out on top. I should have known this, but I was entirely blinded by my desire for that buck (and his antlers; for those who aren't hunters, a large pair of antlers is a sign of prowess among hunters). I should have read one simple verse from Psalms to help me get over my greed, but I am ashamed to say it probably wouldn't have helped me at the time. The verse says that 'A greedy man stirs up strife, but the one who trusts in the Lord will be enriched.' (Psalms 28:25 English Standard Version). At the moment, the tenth commandment in particular is ringing in my ears: You shalt not covet. Unfortunately, I did not heed Psalms 28:25, and I have now felt the strife of not getting any deer, though I passed up many becuase i firmly believed that I would harvest my much coveted deer.
When I look back at the past hunting season, I think about what my greed has caused. The first thing that comes to mind is the hours and hours of time wasted sitting in my treestand for naught. I could have been doing otherwise worthwhile things with my times. I also spent much time gathering windfall apples from under my trees to bait in the deer with, not to mention the time preparing for the season by getting the stand ready, gathering supplies, sighting in my crossbow, etc. The next thing that comes to my mind is money wasted. I spent money on cracked corn to bait the deer in with, and sundry other necessary evils. In all aspects (ok, not all. I did see some pretty cool birds while in the treestand, including a few lifers) I lost out due to one thing: greed. And what hurts most is that I even turned down a nice six-point buck (once willingly, one not; my scope fogged up on me... grrrr!) Don't let yourselves be taken by greed, my friends. Greed is a terrible thing.