There is a show. It airs on Animal Planet. It is called Finding Bigfoot. My husband loves the show. It is his guilty pleasure. Admittedly, we watch it together. I guess it is also partly mine.
Have you seen it?
It follows a group of four investigators. They are in search of the elusive Bigfoot, also known as Sasquatch. The terms are used interchangeably. The group consists of Matt, Cliff, Bobo and Ranae. The three guys seem to joust for position as the best, most knowledgeable Bigfooter while their female companion is the doubting biologist. The group is just all-around awkward. We spend a good portion of our time ripping on the show.
Last night, they travelled to Nepal. It was an international expedition. The show length was doubled. Hooray! A two-hour special. The Finding Bigfoot folks would be searching not for Bigfoot but for a Yeti.
Yeti’s advice? Don’t eat the yellow snow.
Sometimes the show is embarrassingly bad. Aside from a few kernels of information offered by the biologist, the rest of what is offered seems to be information straining to latch on to a bit of truth. Almost none of what we learn comes from actual (scientific) evidence. The techniques they use to acquire information and gather evidence are pretty basic and do not appear to be to be adding to any kind of biological study. Their two most popular tracking techniques are designed to both find and communicate with Bigfoot: knocks (this is when a member of the team picks up a large branch or piece of wood and whacks it on a tree) and vocalizations (which involves a big breath and then literally yelling or screaming at the top of your lungs). Often the team hears a response but no matter how loud we turn our TV volume up we have yet to hear what they do. Maybe you have to be there. Maybe Bigfoot communications do not translate well on to television.
After arriving in whatever small-town they are investigating, they usually do a bit of investigating and then hold a town hall meeting. They gather a group of eye-witnesses, have them tell of their experiences and then they all plot the sightings on a local map. After that the real work begins – confirm or debunk the eye-witness accounts.
Now comes my favourite part. The ‘scientific’ tests. These tests slay me. They typically involve one of the group’s taller members wandering out to the exact location of the sighting. Next that member holds up an arm or a stick until the witness says stop; this denotes the height of the Bigfoot.
There is almost always a night investigation too. Bigfoot is nocturnal. So the night investigations are critical. Complete with night vision cameras and FLIRs.
I ONCE WENT BIGFOOTING
Do you remember Harry?
It is true.
I went looking for Bigfoot. I was on a mission. I looked everywhere. I scoured the internet over and over again for more information. I was willing to do almost anything to get it.
Oh. I should clarify. I was hunting for Bigfoot. Just not the Sasquatch. Bigfoot the Monster Truck. The LEGEND.
The wee one, in all his Monster Jam obsession, desperately wanted Bigfoot. It is the original monster truck (It all got started in ’73…) and now there are at least 18 different versions of it. The little guy sort of fell in to this whole Monster Jam thing. If you know anything about it (or grew up in the 70’s and 80’s) you will know what a HUGE deal Bigfoot is, and you will understand that Bigfoot really is king of the monster trucks.
The best I had been able to do was find a video of it on YouTube. It is an homage to the legendary truck. The video looks like it was uploaded from VHS. Very cheesy. Very 80’s (I am uncertain of the year it was made, though I think it may have been 1984), and I guarantee my kiddo loves it for more than the truck. I think he has taken a shine to this particular video because of its Bob Seger quality. He is a sucker for Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band.
Anyways. For the time being we had video of the real Bigfoot. And occasionally Jurassic Attack would stand in during our Monster Jam.
That truck was almost as elusive as the cryptid-ape.
OUT IN THE OPEN
My husband joined my mission.
The wee one was with my folks. It was the day after his first sleepover there, my first night away from him. His birthday was coming up quickly so we took advantage of being sans child and headed out (again) in search of THE gift.
After breakfast, and some humming and hawing, we arrived at a very well-known toy store. I sigh slightly because they can be SO expensive. Painfully so. But, I have to say, we have also been economically successful. This was to be one of those times.
We had spent some time wandering the store. Looking all over. Finally we met up at the end of the rows of boys’ toys (please, do not get me started about their gender based store set-up; I thought they were changing that…), lost and disappointed. We had a quick meeting and figured another go through was in order. Pretty typical for us. Starting at the end.
We both turn to start navigating the rows of toys and I see it. I cannot remember but I think it may have actually glowed. Up on a shelf. Higher than I can reach. Right there. Out in the open.
Babe! Look – is that really what I think it is?
Hubby looks. His eyes light up. I knew it!
I FOUND BIGFOOT!!
Upon closer inspection, thank you hubby for your height and long arms, we had found two Bigfoots.
FYI: It is not Bigfeet. EVER.
THE PASSION IS WHAT UNITES US ALL
The lead guy on the show is the most annoying. So much so it is apparent on the faces of nearly everyone who interacts with him. He is a knows-nothing know-it-all. Believes his own hype. The other team members (and the occasional eye-witness) roll their eyes when he is talking. But, to his credit, he helped found the oldest and largest Bigfoot organization.
This is a very passionate group of Bigfoot trackers and experts. They are determined to find Bigfoot. For some of them it is a hobby. A part-time job. For others it is a life’s mission.
I can appreciate that. Passion is a good thing. Lord knows I have some passion. Especially when it comes to my wee one.
I made it my mission to find Bigfoot. My kid was desperate for that truck and we were equally so to find it for him. And, we had it. Right there in my hot little hands. A licensed Bigfoot play set complete with two trucks! UNBELIEVABLE! His birthday could not come fast enough. We were barely able to resist the urge to give it to him. But we did. He nearly crapped himself when he opened it.
He has since decided the one Bigfoot is Littlefoot, son of Bigfoot (not the dinosaur from The Land Before Time). Unfortunately, neither of the included trucks were the Bigfoot he was looking for, but you would never know it. Bless him. I knew it. I could tell. And I was sure of it because I had made him a Bigfoot truck during our long quest. It is pictured below and is terribly, terribly rough. But I had painted it the way he requested. A la original Bigfoot.
Not a hoax. This is a REAL Bigfoot.
The wheels move and everything! It is a multi-medium creation. Wire. Clay. Paint. And he loved it. So much it needed repairs twice. Once the dinky car Bigfoot arrived the homemade version hit the shelf. Now it is on the special shelf. Out of reach.
I wonder what will happen to Bigfoot if they find the Yeti. Hmm.
DREAMS CAN COME TRUE
To be fair, the cast of the show has endeared itself to us. In an inexplicably odd way. You almost want them to succeed because they believe so much. You can see it in their eyes.
Just like the wee one. He is quite passionate about this whole Monster Jam thing. He has the toys. He has a video game (well, the family has the video game – we have all been enjoying it!). We have tickets to Monster Jam in April. I can hardly believe it. We are a Monster Jam family.
We are currently working on the little guy’s noise tolerance. Since he was a baby he has been sensitive to loud and abrasive noise. He hates automatic toilets and hand dryers. Covers his ears with his hands and runs for it. We have explained to him that Monster Jam is much, MUCH louder. And he has assured us he is fully aware of that. He tells us he will be ready. So will we. We plan to acquire a pair of those special headphones.
The members of the Finding Bigfoot team never found the Yeti. And they haven’t found Bigfoot. Yet. Though it is clearly not due to a lack of effort. These folks are dedicated to their cause. Whether that cause is actually finding Bigfoot or the show itself.
But. Persistence pays off.
At least it did for me.