welcome guest
login or register

Second year of blogging

It's already two years since I posted my first blog entry. At the same time it feels like first steps of a long journey - and a long way already travelled. I'm happy about all the comments and discussions the blog has sparked. At first I felt slightly uneasy about starting the blog while many things were still so unfinished, uncertain and messy; both in my own life and with the practical details of Enormous Elk site. Well, these things haven't changed so much, the site and my own life still lack a lot of organization and functionality I'd like to see (and what I can plan in my mind, but constantly fail to implement in the level of practical daily reality). Then, on the other hand, it has been actually very therapeutical to do it this way. Also, the stats say that nearly 33% of world's population suffer emotional disorders or mental problems at some point of their lives. So heck, why not to write openly about it.

This is so very typical for my personality. I tend to see simple little details connected to some deeper basic issues. Like, "why there isn't a "search" function in this site? You are using Drupal, right? Drupal offers tagging functionality out-of-the-box, with it you could easily mark your blog entries with different tags, and then allow users to sort out a list according to those tags - it is easy to do, just set up and configure the stuff and the blog will become so much readable!" - these are questions I sometimes ask myself, and then I reply: "Yeah, yeah, I know. My rational mind knows all that - but somehow I always find other things to do, I lack some self-organization in my life, I often find it hard to concentrate on such simple things. I've been trying to understand why is that and what should I do alter that tendency, and I think it boils down to the freeze-reaction. So, to tidy up and to better organize this site, I first have to solve my internal problems. As anything I do is anyway just reflecting what there is inside me - as long as there is a mass of messy laggy slow numb unsure disorganized feelings inside me, so will be everything I do. But then what? I have been working with this, and I will keep on going, be it slow or quick progress."

Also, I'd like to say that there are still a lot of thoughts and ideas waiting to be written about. Some ponderings about society and politics, feminism or and other -isms, liberalism and tradition. All that kind of theoretical stuff. Fictional stories and some silly humour. And then, of course, just those diary-like entries about my daily life in the woods. At the moment of writing this, the very first blog entry has 93 likes. That is about 9 times more I thought =) So a big thank you for everybody reading, commenting and participating. I wish you well - rock on!

Right after posting this, my academical mind kicked in. "Where does that figure 33% come from? Is it just gossip, or can you verify it somehow?". Alas, at the moment I'm already bit too tired to do any proper research into it. Instead I just did a quick search with duckduckgo, and picked an article from 2004 which quotes a study led by Ronald Kessler, a researcher from Harvard Medical School. And it says: "The most common ailments everywhere except Ukraine were anxiety disorders, which include panic attacks, phobias and post-traumatic stress disorder. In Ukraine, where unemployment is rampant as the country struggles with westernization, mood disorders including depression topped the list, Kessler said."

Well, this touches something in my heart. During these two years of blogging I've developed a special sympathy for people of Ukraine - for many different reasons which I'm not going to analyze here. And the stats show that of all the visitors of Enormous Elk site the top4 countries are USA, China, Ukraine and Finland. (Ukraine and Finland with about the same amount of visitor, China being double of Finland, and USA 8 times more than visits from Finland). No matter where you are from, no matter what is your political stance or emotional state, all in all, my personal feel is that deep down we are all brothers and sisters. And there is a problem somewhere - the mankind has been polluting both the planet and human minds, creating trouble and problems here and there. My sympathies are with everyone struggling to survive, to recover, and to seek peace, love and wisdom.

583 users have voted.


Hello again, Erkka! A happy new year to you! I quite enjoy reading your blog. It is cool that you share your way of life with the world.

In fact, you inspired me to start my own blog, about life in the woods and farmlands of rural Appalachia. I think that my and your lifestyles are at the same time both very similar and very different, but I thought you might be interested in reading mine as I read yours.

Our big winter hunting seasons just ended on December 31, and the small game seasons are still in through the rest of winter. So most of what I've posted so far is about hunting. But come spring I hope to be posting things about farming and fixing up my old house, too.

My blog is at http://www.mrpolecat.com . I hope it is not rude to post the link here. If so, I apologize!

Again, thank you for making your blog. I have a great deal of respect for the way you choose to live your life, and admire that you are unafraid to share it with the internet. Those of us who live similarly to this in the USA are often maligned by the mainstream US culture, and tend to keep quiet to avoid stirring up the haters, hehe.

Hey, this is nice, so nice!

I took a look at your blog, and it sure is interesting to read. Personally I have zero experience of hunting, but at a time I've been thinking about learning to hunt small game like hares (which is relatively free in Finland. Hunting big game is much more controlled and would require joining a local hunting group. I'm bit too hermit for that, if I imagine myself hunting I would like to sneak and stalk all alone.

Last night I slept only for 4 hours, now I feel my brain working on half speed, so I'll reply only with quick comments;

I always thought that my own life isn't nothing special to write about - I know there would be lot more experienced people to tell about what they do. So I have adopted a different approach; I always think I'm writing to inspire others, and just using my personal life as an example, to make it feel more real. So, posting a link to your blog is very welcome - this is what internet is for; to share ideas and inspiration, making people feel connected all around the world. Nice!

And this thing with haters and mainstream culture - I guess I know what you are talking about. I very much liked your idea of "And if we who hunt don't correct that misinformation, nobody else will." - keep up the good attitude! You are doing it in a good way; instead of launching a counter-attack, instead of mocking city dwellers you just honestly describe the things as they are in your life. Then it is up to the potential haters if they really are open to trying to understand other perspectives, or if they are just locked with their own mindset, unwilling to meet anything which is outside their own sphere.

Ah cool. I like hunting small game more than hunting large game, too. It seems like it is more relaxing for me, and less troublesome and easier when one has only a limited amount of time to hunt, or something. And more meal-sized I guess, hehe.

We only have the big snowshoe hares up in the very highest and coldest parts of the mountains here. Down in the lowlands where I spend most of my time, it is mostly gray and fox squirrels, and some ruffed grouse and cottontail rabbits. But the squirrels are most numerous.

I like to use a wire snare sometimes, too. Have you ever tried that?

In my area hares are rather common. In Finnish we call them "Forest hares"; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountain_hare

I took a short walk with the horses, and there were a lot of fox and hare tracks both crossing and following the path we walked. As the horses always have some hay in their pen, I guess the hares come to eat it as well.

As I have been keeping the sheep, I've had surplus of meat, so there has not been any need to learn to hunt. The only hunting I've done is trapping rats with a cage-type trap designed for raccoon dogs. (I guess the basic type of this trap is common everywhere - there is a bait inside a cage, the animal walks in, steps on a lever which triggers a mechanism to shut the cage door, and the animal is trapped inside.

Years ago we constructed small lever traps with Sami, just to see how the mechanism works. But we never tried them for real. And those primitive but traditional trap types are illegal in Finland, the only allowed use is in a real survival situation.


Add new comment

Please reply with a single word.
Fill in the blank.