Welcome to SBH
Thanks for stopping by the bear cave and checking it out. Being serious all the time is un-bear-able, so we have added a great comic strip at the bottom of page for your enjoyment. Please feel free to leave your thoughts,or shoot us an e-mail with the link to the right. We'd love to hear from all the creatures in the forest.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Daniel Boone

"I have never been lost, but I will admit to being confused for several weeks."

Looking back and seeing forward

As I look back over the many sunrises, I realize that the sunsets have become way points in a journey of ups and downs, happiness and sorrow, sacrifice and selfishness. I ask myself "did I show up?" and "did I bring my A game?"

Why am I never satisfied with yesterday's accomplishments? As some would say, I harbor unhealthy memories. Memories that would appear as ghosts for most. I have been ringside and seen the end of the great journey for way too many. Standing there helplessly as life slipped away. "Only if" echoes through my mind. This has fueled the drive to touch every soul I can before it is too late. Anchored to my God, I can only reach out to those who choose to grab hold. Why do people choose not to grab hold?

I can't change the past, this I am pretty sure of. I can change the future, this I know. Precursors, predictors, and probabilities formulated from the past tell us where and what to target tomorrow. Destroyed marriages, dysfunctional families and children growing up believing that some how this whole mess is their fault. Here starts the journey of suffering and anguish. Condemned to repeat this generational disaster over and over again. I stand on a thin line between hope and despair praying others will join me before I tire and fail another. Does not anyone see the harvest rotting in the field? Where the hell are the workers? I will tell you where most of them are. In a safe and secure environment protecting what is not theirs; their life! Complacency, mediocrity, and fear keep many bound to a belief that was born of the evil one! We chase foolishness for self and forget the real prize; another's life. Who will stand and fight the fight that wages in the shadows where no one cares who the victor is. Our country's government tracks the number of thrown away children while we sleep peacefully in our false sense of safety and selfishness. "Why do I risk" you ask? I risk, so your children may be free of such ugliness.

Psychology Today's article on risk

Here is a view on risk from some current researchers. For you "Type T" personalities you may struggle to get through the six pages of information. Trust me when I say it will shed some light on some of your personal struggles. I find it interesting how many areas of our lives this adventure drive effects. Enjoy the read!


Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Two stories of Risk Variation

I received these stories today via workplace e-mail. I do not know who is the original author, but it is good and I hope you enjoy them.

Many years ago, Al Capone virtually owned Chicago. Capone wasn't famous foranything heroic. He was notorious for enmeshing the windy city in everythingfrom bootlegged booze, prostitution and murder. Capone had a lawyernicknamed "Easy Eddie." He was his lawyer for a good reason. Eddie was verygood! In fact, Eddie's skill at legal maneuvering kept Big Al out of jailfor a long time. To show his appreciation, Capone paid him very well. Notonly was the money big, but also, Eddie got special dividends. Forinstance, he and his family occupied a fenced-in mansion with live-in helpand all of the conveniences of the day. The estate was so large that itfilled and entier Chicago City block. Eddie lived the high life of the Chicago mob and gave little considerationto the atrocity that went on around him. Eddie did have one soft spot,however, he had a son that he loved dearly. Eddie saw to it that his youngson had clothes, cars, and a good education. Nothing was withheld. Pricewas no object. And, despite his involvement with organized crime, Eddie eventried to teach him right from wrong. Eddie wanted his son to be a better manthan he was. Yet, with all his wealth and influence, there were two thingshe couldn't give his son; he couldn't pass on a good name or a good example.One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision. Easy Eddie wanted torectify wrongs he had done. He decided he would go to the authorities andtell the truth about Al "Scarface" Capone, clean up his tarnished name, and offer his son some semblance of integrity.To do this, he would have to testify against The Mob, and he knew that thecost would be great.So, he testified. Within the year, Easy Eddie's life ended in a blaze ofgunfire on a lonely Chicago Street. But in his eyes, he had given his sonthe greatest gift he had to offer, at the greatest price he could ever pay.Police removed from his pockets a rosary, a crucifix, a religious medallion,and a poem clipped from a magazine. The poem read:

The clock of life is wound but once,
And no man has the power
To tell just when the hands will stop
At late or early hour.
Now is the only time you own.
Live, love, toil with a will.
Place no faith in time.
For the clock may soon be still.

World War II produced many heroes. One such man was Lieutenant CommanderButch O'Hare. He was a fighter pilot assigned to the aircraft carrierLexington in the South Pacific.One day his entire squadron was sent on a mission. After he was airborne, helooked at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top offhis fuel tank. He would not have enough fuel to complete his mission and get back to his ship. His flight leadertold him to return to the carrier. Reluctantly, he dropped out of formationand headed back to the fleet.As he was returning to the mother ship he saw something that turned hisblood cold: a squadron of Japanese aircraft were speeding their way towardthe American fleet. The American fighters were gone on a sortie, and thefleet was all but defenseless. He couldn't reach his squadron and bring themback in time to save the fleet. Nor could he warn the fleet of theapproaching danger.There was only one thing to do. He must somehow divert them from the fleet.Laying aside all thoughts of personal safety, he dove into the formation ofJapanese planes. Wing-mounted 50 caliber's blazed as he charged in,attacking one surprised enemy plane and then another.Butch wove in and out of the now broken formation and fired at as manyplanes as possible until all his ammunition was finally spent. Undaunted, hecontinued the assault. He dove at the planes, trying to clip a wing or tailin hopes of damaging as many enemy planes as possible And rendering them unfit to fly. Finally, the exasperated Japanese squadron took off in another direction.Deeply relieved, Butch O'Hare and his tattered fighter limped back to thecarrier. Upon arrival, he reported in and Related the event surrounding his return. The film from the gun-cameramounted on his plane told the tale. It showed the extent of Butch's daringattempt to protect his fleet. He had, in fact, destroyed five enemyaircraft.This took place on February 20, 1942, and for that action Butch became theNavy's first Ace of W.W.II, and the first Naval Aviator to win theCongressional Medal of Honor.A year later Butch was killed in aerial combat at the age of 29. His hometown would not allow the memory of this WW II hero to fade, and today,O'Hare Airport in Chicago is named in tribute to the courage of this greatman. So, the next time you find yourself at O'Hare International, give somethought to visiting Butch's memorial displaying his statue and his Medal ofHonor. It's located between Terminals 1 and 2.


Butch O'Hare was "Easy Eddie's" son

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Theodore Roosevelt

“Every child has in him an aching void for excitement and if we don’t fill it with something which is exciting, interesting and good for him, he will fill it with something which exciting and interesting and which isn’t good for him.”

Monday, August 28, 2006

Edmund Burke

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."

The power of Discovery

Why do I get so excited when I "feel" like I have discovered something? Whether it is some concept about life or some place I think no man has traveled to before. What is it that drives me so hard to discover? To stand on a mountain peak that few have experienced, or to unravel a concept that reveals how humanity thinks is so compelling to me that I have, and would again, risk being jammed up by communist officials in a country that confuses the hell out of me. Often times my adventure ends in disappointment. I only find out that what I have or already know is way beyond what was "discovered." But when I find that small gold nugget of new knowledge or discovering some ground breaking, paradigm shifting new perspective about who I am is exhilarating. Take for example the Franklin reality model, wow. The concept of two seemingly simple things called needs and beliefs drive our behavior. The concept that God created all of us with the same basic needs (identified by Maslow) and our life experiences supply us with various beliefs about who we are and that these two things predict our behavior. Or how about the concept that if we boil all emotion down we end up with just two primary emotions; Love and Fear. Or how about the fact that I can actually push past the 10% barrier of personal efficacy by simply telling myself that I am a winner and that I can accomplish what ever it is I am trying to do. The power of these concepts have allowed me to achieve far more than I have ever dreamed of, and I have only just begun. Discovering what holds you back is huge. Pushing past that barrier is Divine. Here lays the purpose of risk and adventure. To create an environment that allows one to see one's self in a whole new light. Maybe I am competent. Just maybe, I do have the ability to truly be a winner.

Howard Hendricks

"In the midst of a generation screaming for answers, Christians are stuttering."

Through many dangers, toils and snares!

Sailing on the open seas is no picnic! I recently had the opportunity to sail on the "Lady Washington." You might know her as the "USS Interceptor" from the movie "The pirates of the Caribbean." She is a majestic ship, a reproduction of a ship that started out as a man-o-war. My little adventure aboard her was agonizing. I am no sailor. I do, however, love the idea of a vessel on the open sea able to sail where ever one's heart desires. Here is the key: " set sail!" I have always been amazed at how many ships stay moored in a harbor. Are not these master pieces built or created to set sail? Vessels are made to experience adventure! Ships and sailing have always brought to my mind visions of great adventure filled with danger, risk, and discovery. Without sailors risking sailing off the flat world the Americas would not have been discovered by Europeans.

Ships and the open sea also bring to my mind a great analogy of the Christian church. So many of the Christians I know spend a lot of their time making their vessel look pretty but never set sail. Why is this? I also think that the pretty vessel owners rebuke the ones that come into harbor with their vessels looking like hell after being out at sea for a period of time. This seems backwards to me. If God wanted us to hide in a harbor then why did He make so much effort on creating beauty in places men have never seen? I think churches are funny. I have a favorite song called "New Britain." This song was written by an old salty sea dog. This guy started his life of sailing at the age of six on a man-o-war ship. He grew up and became a captain of a slave ship. I am not sure, but, I think this guy was a raw, harsh, rude, crude sea dog. I am pretty sure he was not the tame, polite, passive, and cuddly man that today's Christian churches want their men to be. What is amazing is that many churches sing this guy's adventure song, often! I would wager big money that most of the people singing this sea dog's song have no clue about the passion, conviction, risk, saga, or emotion behind this song. On May 10, 1748 this salty sea dog got in way over is head. His vessel was caught in a huge Storm and even with his vast experience, he thought his vessel was doomed. I can only imagine the scene, yelling, screaming, and cussing. The old sea dog cried out to God. This place of fear I know all to well. I have made more than one deal with the same God. I will even go a step further and say if you have never been in a place where you are making a deal with God to get your butt out of some horrendous situation, than your ship , at best, has only sailed around the harbor. I would say that you have never experienced the dangers and risk of the high seas! I think God lives and breaths for those moments when we become out of control of our vessels. So today we have safe and polite people singing this song of adventure and yet they have no clue what true adventure is.

Today you may know the song as "Amazing Grace." The salty sea dog's name is Mr. John Newton. His song is about that place when our adventures spin out of control and our vessel seems to be doomed. The place where we meet God and he touches our soul. The place where adventure and risk is meant to take us to!

Amazing grace! (how sweet the sound)
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now I'm found,
Was blind, but now I see.
'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear,
The hour I first believed!
Through many dangers, toils and snares,
We have already come;
'Tis grace has brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.
The Lord has promised good to me,
His word my hope secures;
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.
Yes, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease;
I shall possess, within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.
The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,
The sun forbear to shine;
But God, who call'd me here below,
Will be forever mine.

Soren Kierkegaard, Danish philosopher,1813-1855

"To venture causes anxiety, but not to venture is to lose one's self....And to venture in the highest is precisely to become conscious of one's self."

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Defining Risk

Risk is relative! One person's risk is another's folly. Defining risk should involve the identification of real and perceived risks. In the picture to the left a young teenager tries to exit an open book problem that would have best been solved by facing the exposure and stemming up the flaring rock. In his mind the risk was greater facing the exposure. I think that risk and familiarity are dance partners. Picture your Jr high dances. Boys, at first, are scared to dance with a cute girl. Once one becomes familiar with the activity that presented the initial risk it becomes no big deal, right? Rock climbing was the same for me. First it was climbing on a top rope. Once that became familiar I started to lead climb. Then it was leading harder and harder climbs. Then putting up first accents and so on. Now I look back and realize top rope stuff had a greater perceived risk than actual or real risk. Wilderness programing capitalizes on this difference. The client thinks or feels like they are hanging it all out there, but a liability conscious instructor will see the event as a mere walk in the national park. Lets look at the relative aspect of risk. I can take an inner city person into the woods and the risk perception is high. On the other hand I can take a seasoned wilderness leader into the inner city and guess what, they have a high perception of risk. Once both individuals return to the environment they are familiar with the risk perception drops. So I think risk has two elements, real and perceived. So one's perception of events , actions and environment play a huge role in this game of adventure. Another perception that I guess we should touch on is the perception the risk taker has about themselves. As my confidence grew in my ability or how I perceived my ability, I needed to raise the level of difficulty or risk involved.
Risk wears different clothes for different folks. I invested in a small business venture and to me that felt more risk filled than climbing a frozen water fall. In Goleman's book Emotional Intelligence he recall a very fearful moment of risk when he had a calculus final and had not studied for it. So outdoor adventures do not own the label on risk taking! They have however created the domain of extreme risk. May be that is because we all know that mother nature will kill you in a split second of she "catches you slipping" as they say in the inner city. I am not sure, but dancing with nature, or as one client used to say "sheer death" seems to be the extreme.

The scales of risk. For risk to, be there must be a weighing of the elements. The gain verses the loss. Here is where so many screw up I think. Is any risk taking worth the loss of life or the destruction of a marriage? Or are these mere by products of selfish and foolish assessments of the cost of ones journey into risk taking? Is the loss of life worth a paid and guided trip up the South Col? If one makes it, what was gained by such a wager of life? I mean really. Money? Fame? Your name on the monument at base camp? For me my own risk taking slowed way down when I got closer to high stakes adventures. The level of gain was out weighed by the level of loss. Many can see this concept much easier when we look at gangs. The reason gangs are growing in America is because the gain is out weighing the loss, and yes this includes the loss of life. When life becomes value void, which it has to many, any benefit from risk becomes worth it. If I can fulfill my innate needs through the affiliation with a group that takes asinine risks, than so be it.

So how can we utilize risk taking to restore or realign one back to a value filled life? Risk taking for the sake of adventure seems foolish to me. To take risk to restore our soul, to plow the harden ground, to equip and train seems to me like a much better gain.

Enduring one moment more.......

Where does that drive to fight for one moment more in the face of adversity come from? What is that internal mechanism that keeps one going when one's lungs are burning, when every muscle is screaming for rest, when sweat is pouring off one's exhausted body? Why does one repeatedly test oneself, against the forces of nature, in an apparent effort to find something hidden internally? What is this dance of agony, pain and discovery really all about?

People often times talk of courage, character, fortitude, and perseverance as if you can swing into Costco and buy a basket full. Are these traits not earned by enduring some sort of saga? Do we not have to prove to ourselves that we are worthy of such traits? Why do some people appear to thrive and excel in such hostile environments? I have come to believe that the answers to many of these questions lays in one's childhood. Deciphering one's encrypted past can become the biggest challenge one faces in life. For me, the journey has been very rewarding as I have begun to realize that many of the beliefs I harbored about myself were based on faulty perceptions developed as a child. My childhood fears have proved to be no match for the rigorous self determination developed through repeatedly testing myself in the wild outdoors. I have started to redefine who I am and who I can be.

Kool Music & Extreme Adventure Risk Video Search


What moves my soul lately

(use the widget scroll bar to view more strips)

Subscribe to SBH via email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Site Meter
Template Designed by Douglas Bowman - Updated to Beta by: Blogger Team
Modified for 3-Column Layout by Hoctro