As Ranger Rusty raised the flag at the crack of dawn, he thought it was “just another day. Little did he know his day would turn into a 3-book odyssey, plus an abridged version on the way. Buy Books | Our hosts | Our venues | Our topics
Intro - Birth of a trilogy
It was only supposed to be a 30-minute campfire talk
By Robert V. Sobczak
The origin of the trilogy ...
Is as improbable as it is absurd.
In December 2014 Rudi was trying to get back in the groove of civilian life after returning from a nine month tour overseas in Kuwait while Bob was on the mend from a procedure to get his heart to beat right. But for one night everything was right, perfect in fact. Big Cypress National Preserve was celebrating its fortieth birthday at the Collier County Museum. As the festivities wound down, Bob found himself entering the ember glow and crackle of the campfire to take a brief respite when a lumbering Rudi stepped forth from the shadows.
“Can you help a fellow American down on his luck?” Rudi asked with a slightly brooding look on his face. The flicker, aroma and sound of the campfire also made him simultaneously relax as he approached.
Bob told Rudi to ditch the powerpoint
South Florida’s winter tourist season was just about to begin. Three weeks and it would be in full swing. The kickoff for Rudi was January 9th. That’s when he was scheduled to give an evening talk around a campfire at a remote campground ― halfway the distance between Miami and Naples ― in the epicenter of the swamp preserve.
“I love the idea behind the campfire program,” Rudi lamented as he settled in around the orb of light and reached for a slider sandwich that Bob offered from his paper plate. “The problem is, nowadays, the actual campfire … munch munch … is almost an afterthought. It’s the giant outdoor screen that gets all the audience’s attention. I just sit in back … munch munch … and let the Power Point do all the work … munch munch.”
“A POWER POINT at a campfire? Apocryphal!” Bob stammered in disbelief. He flicked a pebble toward the pulsing embers. “—That doesn’t seem right.”
Fast forward a week later to the edge of town where Bob greeted Rudi with a proposition he couldn’t turn down. “What do you say you forget about the Power Point?” Bob suggested. “We’ll partner up to do a campfire talk ‘on the campfire,’ just you, me … and my guitar. We'll make it a theatrical production -- part off-Broadway, part Vaudeville and part Shakespearian.”
Rudi nodded his head as the concept slowly soaked in before calling it a "capital idea."
What is the Nature Folk Movement (NFM)? It's where we go about fixing nature (and our connection to it) one campfire talk at a time. If you think that's far-fetched, don't forget your talking to a guitar. Guitar (shown above) also is the host of the Firelight Radio podcast.