Safe and sensible

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Kali L. Gradishar
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Safety is always an issue. Safety is the surrogate mother that stops people in their tracks just when they're about to do something risky.

"You'll shoot your eye out ... Let your food digest before you do that ... Don't go barefoot ... Watch out for poisonous spiders."

These are the warnings we have all heard, or at least I have, a dozen times.

Then there is the alter ego of safety. The side that says, "Yes, go for it! But, remember there are precautionary steps that eliminate a lot of the risk."

This is the kind of safety I prefer. The safety that produces awareness and understanding, but also commands action and excitement.

Surely there are Airmen who have found the perks to living in the lush wilderness of the Inland Northwest. There are those who step out their front door and the backwoods are at their feet. How convenient. Others may only have to take a short bike ride or drive to get to a destination that tests their outdoor techniques and abilities.

Somewhere in the back of everyone's mind, there must be safety. Any Airmen should know that as a beginning rock-climber, the nearest 300-foot, inclining rock would not be the best place to start. Why not try the Outdoor Recreation Connection's indoor climbing rock first?

What about going solo down the river in a makeshift raft, no life jacket? Probably a little more reasonable to hook a trip with the Outdoor Adventure Program. On a real raft. In a life jacket. With someone who knows what they're doing.

That's the side of safety that cries safety and sensibility, the side that allows you to let loose, but keep your body intact.

The weather has been pretty nice lately, encouraging exciting, but sometimes risky, outdoor activities. It has Airmen scurrying for the nearest lake, river, rock wall, pool, or whatever enticing location or activity.

I hope, just as your family, peers, and supervisors surely do, that you'll all be safe. Please keep in mind the goal of the "101 Critical Days of Summer" and remember what mama said, "If you pull that dog's tail, it's sure to bite you."