Hunt Gather Talk 14: Enjoy the Silence


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Hunt Gather Talk PodcastIn this episode of Hunt Gather Talk, I talk about silence.

Our world is so busy — and buzzy. We are constantly bombarded with minor stimuli that prick us with needles of annoyance, and of validation. Oooh, someone “liked” my post! How can that person believe that? Another email. More text messages. I see it even when people are fishing, foraging or hunting. To me, this seems amazing, as a major reason for being in nature is to enjoy the silence.

But some people cannot let it go. And those are the folks who need it the most. I’ve had a lot of experience watching both the beauty of watching someone let go for the first time in ages — and the sadness of witnessing people squander a huge portion of what the natural world has to offer by burying themselves in the electronic.

That is what this week’s podcast is all about. Nothing to sell, no recipes. Just food for thought.

If you like the episode and want to read my other essays on nature, hunting, foraging and life in general, they are collected here. If you want to listen to more episodes of the podcast, they can be found here.

Enjoy this week’s podcast, and, as always, if you like it, please subscribe and leave a review. It helps me a lot. Thanks!

The gray ocean.
Photo by Hank Shaw

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About Hank Shaw

Hey there. Welcome to Hunter Angler Gardener Cook, the internet’s largest source of recipes and know-how for wild foods. I am a chef, author, and yes, hunter, angler, gardener, forager and cook. Follow me on Instagram and on Facebook.

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  1. This is off subject but maybe an idea for an upcoming podcast. FYI- love your podcasts and find them both educational and affirming. One thing I’ve noticed since I began supplementing our food with farmed, foraged, fished or hunted (no alliteration for hunted) foods is that I have a whole new appreciation for the wilderness. Not in just a kumbaya way, but in a practical or pragmatic sense. Just like I wouldn’t go to the hardware store to buy medicine or the grocery store to buy tools, I don’t go to my spot for crayfish to look for mushrooms. And the place I find shaggy manes is not the same place for morels which is not the same place for chicken of the woods which is not the same for medicinal turkeytail mushrooms. The point is that “the wilderness” is not monolithic and only by getting off the paths do you find what each spot has to offer. And once you find one thing in an area, you will probably find other useful things as well. It is that layering of useful plants and animals that gives you the full appreciation for that place. My guess is that no one appreciates wild areas more than those that have hunted or gathered within it.

  2. Man I must be old — I just use my overly-smart phone as a phone, and to text (and I basically just text my wife). It is never a distraction (and incidentally, given my use my battery lasts for days!)

    PS I realise I also use my phone as an alarm clock and as my watch, but I guess neither use qualifies as a distraction.

  3. Absolutely loved this. I am one of those rare people who rarely uses my cell phone. My family teases me because I often don’t notice texts or missed calls for days. I carry it largely for safety reasons.

    Enjoy the moment people.

  4. Nice podcast! You’re really onto something there. As a new hunter and fisherman, and a new student of Zen Buddhism (yeah, I know some see a contradiction there), I hear what you’re saying. There’s no better place to “be here, now”, than the outdoors.

  5. My buddy dropped his phone in Lake Erie at 5:45 am in December this year because of this. We were putting decoys on the water because he just had to check it compulsively for some reason. I can’t imagine how many people miss a deer because they’re goofing around on their phones every year!