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Re: [at-l] Computers and courtesy

> At 10:05 AM 3/10/00 -0800, you wrote:
> >     This post will probably piss some folks off, because of its content,
> > tone, and wording.
> I've picked up a heck pf a bug and seem to be sleeping about 20 hrs a day
> I hope this makes sense.  And of course I'm not a thru hiker so I am
> Persom A wants to hike without seeing technology
> Person B wants to keep his palm journal without having to slink off
> into the woods to do so.
> Person A wants to use her whispernot to cook her meal.
> Person B wants to eat her meal without hearing or smelling Person A stove.
> Why do the As get their way and the Bs don't.  All desires seem equally
> to me. Is it the power of numbers which sorta means might equals right ?
> Why isn;t person A's technophobia considered an imposition on person B's
> Person B is expected to limit his peaceful enjoyment of an important facet
> his hike (keeping his journal in a manner he finds convenient) so that
> Person A
> doesn't have to see a Palm Pilot......sheesh.  Who's hike is intruding on
> who's here?
> Ok.....fair warning to all you white gas stove users.  They reek of petrol
> and make
> an unwoodsy sound.  They remind me of the real world.  Please use them
> in the same manner and with the same discretion you would use if using a
> palm.
> Is that OK with you Jack?
> >I wish this were avoidable, but I'm afraid it can't be helped.
> >
> >     That being said, I wanted to thank all the folks who've written,
> > publicly, and privately to me, in regards to my recent "survey" on
> > computers in the woods, their use, and how hikers view them.  Nearly all
> > of the comments I read or received were thoughtful, sensible, and
> >
> >     However, one comment really bothered me.  I won't embarass the guy
> > naming him, but I will comment on his remarks.  In discussing the
> > propriety of computers on the trail, and the etiquette involving their
> > use, this fellow made it very clear that he intended to carry and use
> > computer throughout his trip, wherever and however he wished, and that
> > didn't give a rat's ass how others felt about this behavior.  In no
> > uncertain terms, he said, and I quote, "I don't feel I should have to
> > hide in the woods to use it."  As far as the etiquette surrounding the
> > use of electronic gadgetry on the A.T. he said "Each person should
> > for themselves."
> >
> >    I know this guy has yet to thru-hike, so perhaps he's merely speaking
> > out of ignorance, but he has absolutely no idea how wrong his mindset
> > attitude is, particularly as regards the feelings and considerations of
> > other hikers.  There's a curious, and completely false mindset about the
> > Trail regarding that timeworn, overstated, and frequently mis-used old
> > chestnut, "hike your own hike."
> >
> >    HYOH does not now, nor did it ever mean, that one can do as they
> > damned well please when hiking the A.T.  What it means for most people,
> > and after 10,000  miles on the Trail and having personally met more than
> > a quarter of all the people who have thru-hiked, I think I know what I'm
> > talking about here---what "Hike Your Own Hike" means for most folks is
> > that how you view your hike, why you choose to hike, what you hope to
> > out of your trip, is your business.  What you carry, how far or how fast
> > you go, is your business.  Northbound, or south, flip-flop, sectioner,
> > blue-blazer, whatever---is YOUR business.  Your are pretty much free to
> > hike as you please, as long as your actions or behavior do no damage to
> > the Trail, the thru-hiker community, to the environment, or to other
> > hikers.  You are essentially free to hike and live as you please,
> > provided your actions or behavior do not have a negative impact on the
> > Trail, or on those with whom you're sharing it.  In other words, your
> > "right" to Hike Your Own Hike stops flat when it interferes with others'
> > right to hike theirs, and obviously, such behavior as improper cell
> > use, playing video games, listening to a radio or tape deck without an
> > earplug----all of this is clearly unacceptable, rude, classless,
> > offensive, selfish, boorish, inconsiderate behavior.  I don't think any
> > of us would argue that the tradition of Hiking One's Own Hike would
> > permit the indiscriminate, thoughtless behavior I've just described.
> > to state that proper behavior in this regard is something that "Each
> > person should decide for themselves" is absolutely wrong.  It is a
> > comment so manifestly self-centered and ignorant that it could have ONLY
> > been made by someone who has spent little time on the A.T.
> >
> >    And here's the news:  An awful lot of folks view computers, and other
> > high-tech links to the outside world in the exact same light.  Don't get
> > me wrong.  I am not, and never would tell someone what they may or may
> > not carry.  I obviously don't have that right, and wouldn't want
> > it.  It's not my business what other folks bring with them.  But it is
> > EVERYONE'S business how these things are used, and there is a very
> > very well understood etiquette involving the use of these toys.  It's
> > realy very simple:
> >
> >    1)  Most people go into the woods and mountains, in part, to leave
> > this sort of thing behind for awhile.  They do not need, or want,
> > permanent reminders or electronic umbilical cords that would remind them
> > of the world they've left, and will have to return to so soon.  In
> > most folks DO NOT welcome the sight or public use of these items.
> >
> >    2)If computers and phones must be carried, they should be used
> > discreetly, and PRIVATELY.  Nobody goes out in the woods to see other
> > folks yakking on the phone, or tapping away in a shelter or while
> > at a scenic vista.  The public use of these items, their noise, their
> > very presence, even, is viewed by most folks as intrusive, unnecessary,
> > and absolutely destructive of their "wilderness" experience.  It is not
> > behavior that others should be compelled to witness.
> >
> >   3)In that it's very clear how most folks feel about this, then it's
> > also clear that anyone who willfully and purposefully disregards this
> > established etiquette is selfish, thoughtless, and rude.  People like
> > this should rethink what they're doing in the woods.  If this is your
> > attitude and mindset, then a well-travelled, public Trail, especially a
> > highly social one such as the A.T., is NOT for them.
> >
> >   4)If, after knowing all this, one still continues to use one's toys
> > wherever and however they see fit, without thought as to the felings or
> > concerns of anyone else, well, this to me brands one as an asshole of
> > truly extraordinary proportions.  Happily, tho, in my experience, people
> > of this sort are easily recognized by other hikers, and are treated as
> > though they were carrying typhoid.  They generally don't last very long,
> > they tend to be whiners and very high-maintenance types, and they
> > can't hack more than a few weeks on the Trail.  They tend to slink back
> > home, telling friends and family about some spurious injury that ended
> > their trip.  But in any case, they can't hack the Trail, and they don't
> > last.  And if they do stick around, they tend to hike alone.  People
> > this are poison and everyone knows it.
> >
> >
> >
> >     Whew.  Strog stuff, I know, but it needed to be said.  If you're
> > going to spend any real time on the A.T., you MUST be aware of the needs
> > and considerations of other hikers, and you must be willing to adapt or
> > compromise your needs and wants to conform with the desires of
> > others.  If you are unable, or more likely, unwilling to be considerate
> > of the needs of others, if you genuinely feel that matters such as those
> > discussed above are something that "each person should decide for
> > themselves," well here's the news:  Anyone that truly feels this way
> > not belong on the A.T.  The me! me! me! philosophy so prevalent in
> > life is the exact opposite of what life is like on the Trail, and anyone
> > who puts their needs and desires so far ahead the concerns of their
> > fellows simply doesn't understand what the Trail is all about.  Hike
> > Own Hike, by all means---but when Hiking Yours starts interfering with
> > other folks' right to Hike Theirs, then we've got a problem.
> >
> >
> >                                       Jack Tarlin
> >                                   (AT 95-96;97;98;99; and
> >                                       hopefully '00)
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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