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Hold that line

wolf-519226_640No, I’m not a lone wolf. Wolves aren’t soft and cuddly. Wolves don’t have big and lumbering figures that take three years to make a turn. They’re agile, they’re swift, decisive, always going in for the kill. At least I’d like to think so; if not the better. Oh no, I’m not a wolf. Maybe a bear. Thick. Warm. Makes porridge for the family. Protective. Likes honey. Yeah, something like a bear alright. Would make an excellent coat.
Thing with bears though; they have really thick fur, braving even the longest of winters. That fur isn’t easy to sink teeth into. Or claws. It would take a great deal for a wolf to bring a bear down. A lone wolf surely can’t take the bear.  That’s why he brings friends.

But what did the bear ever do. I’m guessing all the guy did was become extra clingly to a pot of honey. Or probably the wolves weren’t even targeting the bear. They were just out looking for something to chew on and this “monster” decides it isn’t having any of it. For some reason, the bear decides that those “creatures” are its responsibility, and are worth protecting?

This isn’t the first time the bear is taking a last stand. He probably is the patron saint of the last stand. He’s used to it by now. He knows it’s gonna sting. He knows it may not end well. But he plants those trees he calls feet into the ground; and with his most excellent Gandalf impression takes all the punishment and holds that line. No wolf gets past here. Not on his watch.

During battle, the single thought in a soldier’s head is the difference between life and death. Between going home with decorated clad or in a body bag. I’d sure like to know what spurs the bear on. What’s keeps his resolve strong. What makes every scratch, swipe and bite worth it.

Is it that the others get to safety and and live happily ever after? No that can’t be it; they probably aren’t even concerned about him, and may never see him again. Is it the honey pot he’s left at home or the zingy feeling of the snow nursing his wounds with a slight yet addictive sting? Maybe. But I think it’s something more. I think the bear knows the strongest and most fragile force on the planet, and is ready to die if it means he has to protect it. And that force is nothing other than hope.

Hope for a new tomorrow,  hope for a better tomorrow. Hope that this is not the end. Hope that life suck, just for now. Without hope we’re already dead; we’re circling the drain. But with hope, with even the smallest bit of hope, strength is born. Hope is that light guiding you out of the tunnel, without it you’re better off in a hole.

The thing with  lone wolves is that they go into hiding when injured. Too proud to show weakness. It matters how others see them. But not bears. There’s no time for a bear to hide. There’s too much at stake. If they’re breathing they’re dancing with the wolves. They’ll stop when they’re dead.

But does the bear have hope then? Wait, who protects the bear’s hope?

This isn’t about the bear.

The Battle Series: Teamwork

//The Battle Series is a collection of posts on what I feel is the best way to challenge situations in life. Applicable anywhere and everywhere. Part one is here

Part two of the Battle Series:

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Chances are if you’re going into any battle you’ve surrounded yourself with some good companions; people who you trust with your back. If you’re alone then good for you. You’ll have less annoying issues because people will always be a pain when the heat gets cranked up. If you’re smart and strong you will manage.. for a while that is. The greatest single-person last man stands have all ended in the person dying. You can do a lot alone; and you can do way more with the right comrades.

One shall chase a thousand…

Two shall chase ten thousand…

The potential value of bringing a comrade on board isn’t calculated by addition or multiplication. It’s by exponentiation . It’s huge. But that’s just it. Potential. The actual value can be less, which happens most of the time. And by less I mean you may actually lend your enemy a helping hand. No, seriously ask Rome. When they had two consuls governing the same army. Hannibal ran rings around them. Figuratively of course, because the actual battles were so overly one sided that saying he ‘ran rings’ just doesn’t cut it.

So what is this ‘teamwork’ that people talk about. Rightly dividing the load equally between your colleagues? Giving each person a chunk as per his or her abilities? I’d say teamwork is whatever works for you when it’s not only you involved. Personally I’d define it as doing as much as you can and then tell your comrades, “there, that’s my bit. Let’s see how far y’all can take it”. And the grind continues.

That being said, ‘dream teams’ are few and are rarely large, because an extra brain is an extra complication you have to handle.

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