It just wasn’t supposed to end like this. Oh no, not even close. “The thunda from down unda”; “the great reptilian whisperer”; “the king of khaki”; “the crocodile hunter”; Steve Irwin. I for one, believed that the stars were sequenced perfectly, and destiny would have her willful way. Then again, I’ve always been a sucker for the storybook ending. If time didn’t get you, then we all hoped it would be a crocodile, because, we all know that’s how you would’ve wanted it. Hell, even that crazy-assed bear guy was eventually eaten by a bear; gruesome yes, but blissfully romantic in a sense as well. Instead Steve, it wasn’t a blood thirsty croc that closed your book several chapter too short; and it wasn’t age, or a car accident. It wasn’t even a gang fight with vengeful Aboriginies, or a Great White. Instead, it was a stingray. A damned stingray. As animalist Jack Hannah so aptly eulogized, “It’s like me getting killed by a poodle.” Thank you Jack.
The SportsCenter commercial where he takes down the Florida mascot getting out of the elevator is gold. Still makes me laugh, and here it is for you.
I too will never forget the episode where Irwin took us to into the depths of Madagascar. I learned two invaluable lessons that day: number 1, there are people in Madagascar. And number two, the Croc Hunter genuinely cared about these animals. He wasn’t a Hollywood tourist like his namesake Dundee, he was just a passionate bloak with gonads the size of stegosaurus eggs.
So one last thank you to the man who needlessly jumped on the backs of ferocious reptiles simply for our viewing pleasure/education. A man who made tan on tan en vogue. A man who ate venom for breakfast and ham and cheese hoagies for lunch. A man who forever engraved the word “krikey” into our verbal lexicon. Thank you Steve Irwin, you certainly deserved better…at least more than that bear guy.