I've had a recurring debate with a friend of mine who has challenged me to go on some adventuring vacations (i.e., trips we've got about a 50/50 chance of surviving). Now my idea of a vacation is to relax on a nice beach with palm trees and clear warm water and have people bring me drinks served in hollowed-out fruit, but then I feel somewhat obliged to try these adventuring vacations since (a) I need some challenges in my life aside from the near death experiences of working in an office with all this asbestos which should really be checked out, and (b) I am convinced this friend of mine will get himself killed and I should really be there to prevent that since he does have a kid on the way. I suggested we learn how to use rifles and bring them along on some mountain trek, since there's always a chance of getting jumped by a puma. My friend scoffed at this, noting that a puma is only about the size of a dog. I countered that people get killed by dogs too, didn't he ever read Cujo? He said he didn't read Yankee literature, and that he could wrestle down a puma with his bare hands so long as he "brought enough attitude" to the arena. He proceeded to email me clips on youtube.com of people and chihuahuas successfully fighting off pumas, as though this is definitive proof that he will win every encounter with a puma. I wonder how many videos he had to scroll through that showed the pumas winning the battle before he found the ones he'd forwarded to me.
I think if we do take a mountain trek, I'll bring along a handgun--not so much to shoot the puma but to put myself out of my misery when the puma is done mauling my friend and comes after me for the main course.