It’s the terrible conundrum of Humanity…  we don’t know what we don’t know.  It leads people to start businesses that falter, enter into relationships that are remarkably like previous failed relationships, and volunteer for things that can get our heads broke.

I knew, briefly, a firefighter who was all the usual things that firefighters are- tall, brave, well-trained, confident, and fit… whatever.  And he kayaked with us.  We took him to some smaller rivers to help him train up, but the old crowd of us went to a class 4 river later that Summer.  We told him to hang out, watch from the bank, meet us at the halfway point… all the usual stuff that newbies do until they’re ready for big water.  We couldn’t make him see that the little river we’d been training him on was, at absolute best, a class 2.  We tried to explain ‘pushy’ water, and how he hadn’t experienced it yet.

He didn’t know that he hadn’t experienced pushy water, and insisted that he’d paddle the Ocoee with us.  Well, he’s a grown person, and we’d tried to get him to understand that he didn’t know what he didn’t know, but he’s got the right to say what he’s gonna do.  …But there was also a highway alongside the entire river run, too. Makes it easier for him to quit. Or to have the body removed.

Which was good. After the first 100 yards of run, he knew a lot about what he didn’t know.  He wiped the blood off his face and got out.  Good man.

Which is all to say- Mrs. Nutley’s brood just learned a little about what they don’t know.