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Book Review #3: They Call Me Panda

I now will never be able to read a book and not laugh when I get to chapter 5 no matter the seriousness of the title I am reading. I will explain later.

Bob and Matt Hunt set out to hike the Appalachian Trail on more of a whim rather than a dream and the result is They Call Me Panda, a waggish anecdote that will have you in stitches from the first page to the last. Father and son being at polar-ends of their lives in all aspects, journey together through 14 states for almost 2,200 miles. What started out as a flippant remark became the dream and goal of both men.

I will be transparent, this book is for only those who enjoy sarcasm on steroids, which I happen to. For individuals more sensitive to dry humor and brash undertones, this may not be the story for you. If you can get past that, you will be cured of all ailments if laughter really is the best medicine.

Spoil alert: Chapter 5 is all about how to go poop in the woods. It's funny and probably more funny to long-distance hikers because we can all relate. In fact, the process of emptying one's bowels is a common topic on the trail. I am not sure why, but it seems to fascinate hikers to talk about this bodily function as well as other natural processes. I guess, being in the woods for so long, the simplest of things will amuse us.

But don't worry, Chapter 5 is short and only one of sixty other chapters. All of which are filled with jocosity, taunting, flippant remarks, and true accounts of the weirdness Bob and Matt seemed to attract on their journey.

As Bruce and I were reading this, it became apparent how similar the Hunt's journey was to my hikes. Our stories and the way in which we share them are completely different but both have many paralleling incidences that makes us say, "Yes, I know, that happened to us too."

That brings me to a fundamental fact about life. We all are different. We all have different opinions, beliefs, world views, and stuff that happens to us. We go about things differently, but when it comes down to the basics we are all trying to do the same thing, to get from point A to point B. Even though we vary greatly in our outwardly ways, we can all relate to some degree in what the other person is going through.

We also all think our opinion is the only one that matters and if you don't hold my opinion than you must be wrong. While opinions aren't necessarily truth, we should at least be able to agree to disagree without all the discord and hate speech. Some of us like to be love, peace, and puppy dogs. Others like to drive home our views with a jack hammer. Still others are a combination depending on the day.

Anyway back to Bob and Matt, if you need a heavy dose of laughter to help you through your day. Pick up a copy of They Call Me Panda by Bob and Matt Hunt. Only do so though if you can handle a ride on the jabbing, ribbing, politically incorrect, and sarcasm on steroids train.

Happy Hiking,


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the books being reviewed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of Emily's Escapades.


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