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Posted by Ballpark Frank ( on 11:37:04 09/21/15

In Reply to: Missed Annual Trip Reports posted by Gregg McPhee

Hi Gregg,

I appreciate your inquiry, as someone who both enjoys reading trip reports, and occasionally posts his own trip reports.

I very much agree with you. I miss Kathy and Lynnette's trip reports.

Actually, Kathy and Lynnette are only the tips of the iceberg. I could generate an incredibly long list of individuals, going all the way back to 1999/2000, that either abandoned this chat page or, at least, stopped posting trip reports. Having had conversations with all of those who I am alluding to, I know that they opted out due to negative feedback they received from their posts. In a few cases, IMHO, these were overly sensitive people, who were overreacting. In the majority of these situations, these individuals were subjected to rather vicious personal attacks. One particular individual, who has been lionized by a few page participants after being banned from these pages and others, is solely responsible for an entire subset of Yellowstone locals carefully editing their trip reports, taking them "underground" (e-mail distribution or Facebook), or both. That was a net loss to a lot of chat page visitors who enjoyed those reports. The bully I am referring to actually called out a poster who is 20 or 30 years his senior, and challenged him to "dance".

I compare this chat page to a playground. On playgrounds, there are typically an assortment of children, including bullies. When there are lots of kids spread around, the bullies don't have as much impact. When kids slowly abandon the playground for other forms of recreation, the density of bullies tends to increase. The play can get rough. (I find it ironic that I know people on each polar extreme on politics and Yellowstone issues that have abandoned this page, because they felt personally attacked.) What can happen eventually, in this theoretical playground is that the kids playing basketball go find another game on another playground, leaving those who persevere with too few players to experience a rousing game. Instead, they are left to play Around the World or H-O-R-S-E. We have some survivors hanging around, but so many have abandoned this page. What typically happens when this subject surfaces is that those with thick skin simply blow it off, and those with less thick skin see their apprehension confirmed.

I have a lot of friends on these chat pages, so I have steadfastly refused to pull the plug. I also have fairly thick skin. I grew up in a fairly rough environment, faced down bullies, and got the crap kicked out of me a time or two. I also had the incomparable joy of facing down a few bullies who folded like a K-Mart tent!

I've been trying to get a discussion going on another page regarding the topic of trip reports, but the server connection appears to be broken.

Note to Kathy: I know that your reason for not posting a trip report this summer has to do with lack of material, but the fact is, your past reports were well-received by the Loon community, very much appreciated, and missed.

Note to anyone who likes to play rough: I recognize your right to play rough, but just like the older brother who keeps inflicting pain on his younger siblings, you have a choice. You can seize what you may see as the moral high ground, and much like a Marine D.I., insist that everyone else "toughen up", or you can be the bigger person, and stifle your aggressive urges. Being the oldest of 7 kids, I learned this lesson the hard way. It's no fun playing by yourself!


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