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Posted: 11/22/2003 9:50:56 PM EDT

North Florida, USA [AP]

Here in the scrub land of North Florida, the most common of endangered species is the Gopher Tortoise. Locals call them "Gophers," but for one 13 year old dynamo, they're an obsession.

"Mary Sue has always loved gophers," says her dad, Bob Sweetwater of Sopchoppy. "Since she was a baby, she's been sticking her arms down gopher holes." It seems an innocent pastime, but only if you are unaware that rattlesnakes often dig their own scarcely perceptible lairs just inside the gopher tortoises' tunnels. "Mary Sue knew the dangers," said Bob, "but it's a great sport and she's a great athlete," speaking of the grim November 1 incident which led to amputation of his little girl's right arm after she sustained an estimated 11 rattler bites when she stuck her arm down an ordinary-looking gopher hole just a mile from her trailer home.

Recovering at a physical therapy center in downtown Pensacola, Mary Sue showed her spunk, proclaiming that amputation or no, she'll be back in the field sticking her remaining arm down gopher holes as soon as she's well enough to venture out on her own. "It's a sport that defines my life," she said. "I understand it took my arm, but I won't let a single bad experience keep me from doing what I love. I guess you have to stick your arm down a gopher hole to know what it's like. I know I will - soon."

One local observer said "The girl's got heart -- real heart."



We need more people like this.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 9:53:13 PM EDT
Darwin at work.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 9:54:06 PM EDT


Sport?!

She won't have to worry about getting bit by snakes anymore after she has 2 prosthetic arms.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 9:56:12 PM EDT
mmmmmmk.....that's more than a little weird
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:00:34 PM EDT
Heh. Good one.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:11:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/22/2003 10:17:58 PM EDT by sfcret]

Originally Posted By FLAL1A:

We need more people like this.



No and we don't need them breeding either. all this story needs is a "here bubba, hold my beer and watch this here" line



One local observer said "The girl's got heart -- real heart.".



about all she really has, because it's obvious she hasn't a lick of common sense, or intelligence.....




"when she stuck her arm down an ordinary-looking gopher hole just a mile from her trailer home.




that exsplains it.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:15:50 PM EDT
Just another rip on the surfer who got bit by a shark...

11 rattlesnake bites won't take your arm, may take your life if you don't have ready access to antivenin...
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:23:04 PM EDT

sticking her remaining arm down gopher holes



I guess you have to stick your arm down a gopher hole to know what it's like.






Dave_A
11/23/2003 2:15:50 AM

Just another rip on the surfer who got bit by a shark...

11 rattlesnake bites won't take your arm, may take your life if you don't have ready access to antivenin...



Actually, IIRC, rattlesnake poison rots tissue, making amputations where poison was actually injected quite common.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 5:44:02 AM EDT
FLAL1A, you're acting like an idiot.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 5:56:39 AM EDT
I bet her parents are related more than just by marriage.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 5:59:01 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DigDug:
Darwin at work.

Exactally!
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 6:48:16 AM EDT
"just a mile from her trailer home"

nuff said
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 6:59:32 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/23/2003 7:09:17 AM EDT by CS223]
Actually, that new prosthetic arm will bet better suited for "pulling gophers".

To fill you yankees's in, gophers are turtles about the size of a dinner plate. They dig large oval shaped burrows. They munch on grass. Before they were protected, you would hunt them to make stew & soup. The process for "pulling gophers" requires a long piece of aluminum rod about 5/16" in diameter and 15 feet long or so. It has a hook bent up on the end about 3/4". You stick it down the burrow and hook the gopher's shell and drag him out. Sometimes a rattler comes out too, that bonus serves as your appetizer for the turtle stew. Now we also use snapping turtles for stew, they are refered to as "cooter". So if you're in FL and see "cooter" on the menu, it isn't refering to your waitress.

To add:
We also have a local creature called a salamander. To most folks & yankee's, this would be a lizard but to Floridians' this refers to a type of furry pocket gopher. They live in burrows and push up huge sand piles in pastures. Salamader is supposed to have come from "sandy mounder". Anyway they are known as salamaders even though they aren't lizards. They have a really bad disposition and a nasty bite that usually results in infection. Some type of local snake is their natural enemy. Usually when the transplated yankee's see the mounds, they mistake them for fire ants and go about covering the mounds with poison. That's how us natives can spot a new yankee in the neighborhood. The mounds are all covered with white dust.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 7:26:50 AM EDT
If this is true, somebody needs to take the parents out and beat them.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 7:30:22 AM EDT
Its only a matter of time till we read...

"Driven gopher girl says she will now try to dig up gophers with her toes after she lost her second arm in a gopher related incident"
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 7:34:31 AM EDT
Damn good one, yes a rip on the surfer twit, but neverless the same theroy applies.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:09:42 AM EDT
Sorry boys but I'm flying the flag on this one!



this WOULD, HOWEVER, make a great Onion article.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:40:00 AM EDT
Even though I feel sorry for the little girl but everyone has to say it happened because of stupidity.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:55:41 AM EDT

Originally Posted By RikWriter:FLAL1A, you're acting like an idiot.


Yeah - what exactly is your malfunction that you are unable to admire that young surfer's healthy attitude?

Her accident was tragic and of a freakish nature, not the result of stupid or overly risky behaviour. WAY more people get hit and killed by lightning in Florida, for example, than get attacked by sharks.

Would you mock someone who was crippled in a car wreck because they were stupid enough to drive to the mall - because we all know the dangers of driving, right?

Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:01:23 AM EDT
Cute. Get thee to the Onion.

But I think the original point made about the real story (the surfer) was that instead of griping and bitching, or petitioning the gov. for sweeping anti-shark legislation, she got on with it.

In that, we do need more people that don't bitch about the consequences of their own choices.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:06:04 AM EDT

Originally Posted By the:Cute. Get thee to the Onion.

But I think the original point made about the real story (the surfer) was that instead of griping and bitching, or petitioning the gov. for sweeping anti-shark legislation, she got on with it.

In that, we do need more people that don't bitch about the consequences of their own choices.



Thank you!

That was the point I was trying to make (had I only said it as clearly as you ).
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:14:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DK-Prof:

Originally Posted By RikWriter:FLAL1A, you're acting like an idiot.


Yeah - what exactly is your malfunction that you are unable to admire that young surfer's healthy attitude?
Her accident was tragic and of a freakish nature, not the result of stupid or overly risky behaviour. WAY more people get hit and killed by lightning in Florida, for example, than get attacked by sharks.

Would you mock someone who was crippled in a car wreck because they were stupid enough to drive to the mall - because we all know the dangers of driving, right?



Well, I see it like this. Surfing is precisely as useful, heroic, and necessary as sticking your arm down a gopher hole. Do you disagree?

If a person who loses an arm surfing vows to head back to the waves as soon as possible, he is no more or less admirable than a one-armed gopher-grabber. Do you disagree?

It isn't heroic for someone injured a car wreck to continue driving. It isn't silly, either. Driving is a practical necessity, which means that it actually makes more sense for an injured driver to continue driving than for someone injured surfing, gopher-grabbing, or rock-climbing.

Let me put it to you this way: would anybody (including you) write, broadcast, or post maudlin stories about the grit and can-do attitude of a motorist who vowed to return the highway as soon as he healed up from a headon collision? It simply strikes me as absurd for anyone to feel a swelling in his chest over the fact that a person injured pursuing a hobby intends to continue engaging in the hobby.

"Model Rocketeer will Soldier On With Remaing Eye"

"Bicyclist Vows to Hit Road as Soon as Testicles Return to Normal Size"

"Mumbley-Peg King Says 'I can Flip Just as Good with 8 Toes'"

"Moderate Electrical Burn Leaves HO-Gauge Railroader Undeterred"

"Heroic Fisherman Lands Mackerel Just 10 Minutes After Removing Hook from Own Thumb"

"6 Handicapper Returns to Links 3 Weeks after Back Surgery"

I haven't mocked the surfer, nor do I think her particularly worthy of mockery. What I mocked and find deserving of mockery is the kind of goofiness that finds something admirable and praiseworthy in the pursuit of a mere pastime in the face of its adverse consequences.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:15:09 AM EDT
This thread proves that there are those that can see and appreciate satire for what it is, ond those who can't.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:27:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DzlBenz:
This thread proves that there are those that can see and appreciate satire for what it is, ond those who can't.



"World class target shooter vows to carry on after loosing eye to bad ammunition."
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:30:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By FLAL1A:
Well, I see it like this. Surfing is precisely as useful, heroic, and necessary as sticking your arm down a gopher hole. Do you disagree?

If a person who loses an arm surfing vows to head back to the waves as soon as possible, he is no more or less admirable than a one-armed gopher-grabber. Do you disagree?

It isn't heroic for someone injured a car wreck to continue driving. It isn't silly, either. Driving is a practical necessity, which means that it actually makes more sense for an injured driver to continue driving than for someone injured surfing, gopher-grabbing, or rock-climbing.

Let me put it to you this way: would anybody (including you) write, broadcast, or post maudlin stories about the grit and can-do attitude of a motorist who vowed to return the highway as soon as he healed up from a headon collision? It simply strikes me as absurd for anyone to feel a swelling in his chest over the fact that a person injured pursuing a hobby intends to continue engaging in the hobby.

"Model Rocketeer will Soldier On With Remaing Eye"

"Bicyclist Vows to Hit Road as Soon as Testicles Return to Normal Size"

"Mumbley-Peg King Says 'I can Flip Just as Good with 8 Toes'"

"Moderate Electrical Burn Leaves HO-Gauge Railroader Undeterred"

"Heroic Fisherman Lands Mackerel Just 10 Minutes After Removing Hook from Own Thumb"

"6 Handicapper Returns to Links 3 Weeks after Back Surgery"

I haven't mocked the surfer, nor do I think her particularly worthy of mockery. What I mocked and find deserving of mockery is the kind of goofiness that finds something admirable and praiseworthy in the pursuit of a mere pastime in the face of its adverse consequences.



You have no idea waht you are talking about. I sure would have hated to grow up around you and I feel sorry for any kids you may have. In your eyes any sport, extra activity or hobbie outside of things only "neccesary" would be considered pointless. YOu are a classic example of and insecure, small minded, unable to function in a groups bigger then "one", kinda guy. You fear what you dont understand and mock the freedom you envy.

You can try to compare surfing to what ever you want, that is exactly whats expected from people like you. It is freedom beyond your ability to see or feel. A surfer, mountain climber, skydiver etc; for that moment are in control of your own. You know the risks and accept them. Not the govt or anyone else, just you. If you think that is frivilous, you are a sad, weak individual.
CH
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:46:07 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Cape_hunter:
You have no idea waht you are talking about. I sure would have hated to grow up around you and I feel sorry for any kids you may have. In your eyes any sport, extra activity or hobbie outside of things only "neccesary" would be considered pointless. YOu are a classic example of and insecure, small minded, unable to function in a groups bigger then "one", kinda guy. You fear what you dont understand and mock the freedom you envy.

You can try to compare surfing to what ever you want, that is exactly whats expected from people like you. It is freedom beyond your ability to see or feel. A surfer, mountain climber, skydiver etc; for that moment are in control of your own. You know the risks and accept them. Not the govt or anyone else, just you. If you think that is frivilous, you are a sad, weak individual.
CH



You have firmly established that your reasoning skills are on a par with your clairvoyance.

OK. You win. Surfing is (with the possible exceptions of mountain climbing and skydiving) the most important, transcendant thing a human being can do. People who surf are in every way superior to those who don't They are spiritual giants. They are gods. However, the only reason they surf is - what? They like to surf. No one has to surf, and one does not promote the welfare of others by surfing.

Doing what you like to do - whether it's surfing, skydiving, dozing through Logic class or leaping to uninformed conslusions about other people's lives and character - is just that: doing what you want to do. If you persist in doing what brings you pleasure or fulfillment in the face of disincentives that would deter others, you are still doing nothing more than pursuing your interests and following your own pleasure. No heroism there, nothing admirable in it, anymore than there is something to admire about Fugu-eaters. They pursue pleasure in the face of risk. Big woop. Carlos Hathcock rescuing his comrades from a flaming APC at the risk of his own life was heroic. Carlos Hathcock eating another catfish filet despite the bone he caught in his throat the last time he had one isn't heroic.

Link Posted: 11/23/2003 10:05:16 AM EDT

Originally Posted By FLAL1A:
You have firmly established that your reasoning skills are on a par with your clairvoyance.

OK. You win. Surfing is (with the possible exceptions of mountain climbing and skydiving) the most important, transcendant thing a human being can do. People who surf are in every way superior to those who don't They are spiritual giants. They are gods. However, the only reason they surf is - what? They like to surf. No one has to surf, and one does not promote the welfare of others by surfing.

Doing what you like to do - whether it's surfing, skydiving, dozing through Logic class or leaping to uninformed conslusions about other people's lives and character - is just that: doing what you want to do. If you persist in doing what brings you pleasure or fulfillment in the face of disincentives that would deter others, you are still doing nothing more than pursuing your interests and following your own pleasure. No heroism there, nothing admirable in it, anymore than there is something to admire about Fugu-eaters. They pursue pleasure in the face of risk. Big woop. Carlos Hathcock rescuing his comrades from a flaming APC at the risk of his own life was heroic. Carlos Hathcock eating another catfish filet despite the bone he caught in his throat the last time he had one isn't heroic.



WTH? You make no sense what so ever and completed avoided what I said. I never said that surfers are gods or what ever that babble your spewing says. Again your inability to see things outside your little world has shown. You further my point that you mock what you dont understand. Furthermore, that whole,


"one does not promote the welfare of others by surfing"


Shows how stupid you have become. Tell me that everything you does is to further thers ans I will call you a fucking liar!

What she did will however, give some insperation, others fear and you, a laugh. So the direct action of surfing my not, "promote the welfare of others", but it will provide lessons to alot of people. Whether "Be a puss and dont go in the ocean" or "I can overcome this injury", it will have its effects.

One more thing, I agree that hero may not be the best term for a person like this surfer girl, but amazing and dedicated are two that come to mind. Like the climber who cut his arm off with a pocket knife. That to, Ama-fucking-zing! Not heroic, amazing, and dedicated. Nothing he did furthered others, directly. but like the examples above, will have effects.

Yes "Carlos Hathcock rescuing his comrades from a flaming APC at the risk of his own life was heroic", but continuing on after those injuries and doing everyting he could to stay with the corp, that was amazing, and dedicated.

CH
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 11:16:11 AM EDT

Originally Posted By FLAL1A:
No heroism there, nothing admirable in it, anymore than there is something to admire about Fugu-eaters. They pursue pleasure in the face of risk. Big woop. Carlos Hathcock rescuing his comrades from a flaming APC at the risk of his own life was heroic. Carlos Hathcock eating another catfish filet despite the bone he caught in his throat the last time he had one isn't heroic.



Tsk. Tsk.

You're one of the brightest guys on this board, for sure. But sorry FLAL1A, there's a problem here.

See, you're condemning others' admiration for this girl, citing a standard nobody actually used. Nobody but you. Did anyone actually contend the girl was heroic? I looked over the other threads. I didn't see the word used. Nor any allusive comparisons to Audie Murphy, Alvin York, or even Sgt. Pepper, for that matter.

They call that a straw-man, they do.

So naturally, yours is the only valid conclusion about her "heroism". Of course she's not heroic; nobody said she was. On a board whose most highly regarded are typically combat vets, you really think the term's thrown around casually? Nope, that's why you shifted the question in that direction. Playin' to the home crowd? He'll, I'd have done it too.

Like I said, she didn't complain about the consequences of her own choices. That's the admirable part. Now you might say admiring that is praise for what should be by default. Fine. That's the only fair criticism I can summon.

I know, I know, some people don't articulate that well, and their praise comes off a bit, well, exaggerated. But you can't read so much into it. You'll go nuts.

My admiration for this girl is solely a function of her attitude. She accepted her fate, blamed nobody, and didn't complain. I like that. In a society that increasingly blames tragedies of history on those yet unborn, I'd expect a little thankfulness for it, if anything.

But apparently, I'm wrong.

The chance to riff with Darwin is just a little too enticing. Blood in the water, so to speak.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 11:46:46 AM EDT

Now we also use snapping turtles for stew, they are refered to as "cooter". So if you're in FL and see "cooter" on the menu



i have never been, nor ever plan on being in florida. i swear....
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 12:05:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By the:
. . . Nope, that's why you shifted the question in that direction. Playin' to the home crowd? He'll, I'd have done it too.



I didn't mean to, but on reflection it appears I did.


Like I said, she didn't complain about the consequences of her own choices. That's the admirable part. Now you might say admiring that is praise for what should be by default. Fine. That's the only fair criticism I can summon.


I think that's my point, better stated by you than by me.


I know, I know, some people don't articulate that well, and their praise comes off a bit, well, exaggerated. But you can't read so much into it. You'll go nuts.

My admiration for this girl is solely a function of her attitude. She accepted her fate, blamed nobody, and didn't complain. I like that. In a society that increasingly blames tragedies of history on those yet unborn, I'd expect a little thankfulness for it, if anything.

But apparently, I'm wrong.

The chance to riff with Darwin is just a little too enticing. Blood in the water, so to speak.



I will only reiterate that my amusement derives not from the surfer, her injury, or her decision to surf again, but from what seems to me an overly effusive response to that decision. Otherwise, your point is well made, and well taken.
Link Posted: 11/24/2003 12:39:31 AM EDT
Recovering at a physical therapy center in downtown Pensacola, Mary Sue showed her spunk, proclaiming that amputation or no, she'll be back in the field sticking her remaining leg down gopher holes as soon as she's well enough to venture out on her own. "It's a sport that defines my life," she said. "I understand it took my arms and left leg, but I won't let a few bad experiences keep me from doing what I love. I guess you have to stick your limbs down a gopher hole to know what it's like. I know I will - soon." One local observer said "The girl's got heart -- real heart."
Link Posted: 11/24/2003 10:05:50 AM EDT
Well, she obviously has a bright future as a Democrat.
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