… and sometimes the bear eats you.”
Some say the saying comes from east Tennessee. Others will cite Elwin Charles “Preacher” Roe, who pitched for the St. Louis Cardinals, the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Brooklyn Dodgers. He was born in Ash Flat, Arkansas. So maybe it comes from there.
Most people probably know it from the Big Lewboski. But it was also used in the TV series Star Trek: the Next Generation by Wil Riker.
Last week I ate the bear. This week, in spite of feeling busy all week, I’m looking back and realizing that I got a lot of little fires put out and nothing much accomplished.
Of course, failing to put out little fires allows them to grow into big ones later on. So it’s not really insignificant. But the feeling of getting not much done remains.
It’s probably why the saying has persisted all these years. Even if it isn’t strictly true, it sure feels like it.