A few of the people who read my blog, know my nickname is Bear. It's a name I was given in the Air Force, and it evolved over time. The first time anyone called me "Bear," was in 1972. I was stationed in Michigan at the time, and was with some friends when I got an itch on my back. So I did the natural thing...I rubbed my back against a corner and scratched it. Someone said, "You think you're a bear now?" and everyone laughed.
A few week later, my girlfriend and I were with the same friends and she told them I was her cubbie bear. Someone jokingly said, "Yeah, right...a hairless bear." To which she replied, "He's got lots of hair...but it's blond and you can't see it."
Well, years went by and different nicknames came and went, until I landed in Alaska for a second time. It wasn't long that people who knew me there, started calling me Kodiak. Seeing that my last name is Sobkoviak, it fit. From there I transferred to Illinois and Kodiak followed me, but was one day changed to Grizz (for Grizzly Bear) due to my "nasty" disposition.
Months later, I was again reassigned, this time to Clark AB, Philippines. When I arrived there, I joined a couple of intramural softball teams and before I got my team uniform, I wore a jersey top from my previous assignment which listed my #26 and nickname...Grizz. Well, I personally never liked Grizz, so when I was asked the number and name I wanted on my jersey, I said, "Number 26 and Kodiak."
However, my boss, a lieutenant colonel, decided he like "Bear" better and started calling me that. I figured since he out-ranked me, he had the right. But when the two-star general on base, along with six or seven full colonels started calling me Bear, I decided I wouldn't attempt any correction. It even got to the point that the brass on base abandoned normal radio practice and when they needed me, they simply said, "Bear," and I would answer.
Well, I still go by that nickname. Many people around here call me that. Even a web author who did a webpage about me, called me Bear in it. You can see that page here.
So, naturally, when I started to get to know people online, I would tell them I am "Bear." Most people know me as either Bear, or my online moniker of Ashrunner. But Bear is what I prefer. So the other day while I was out on a fruitless safari, I came across an image I just had to take for this meme.
I found this wood carving sitting in front of all places, the newest restaurant in town, the Black Bear Restaurant.
If you liked my critter photos, head to Misty Dawn's Camera Critter page and check out some of the other entries. And if you have the time, join in on the fun!