According to the Urban Dictionary, a dick move is defined as “an action by one male to another male friend which violates understood social expectations, especially where the transgressor obtains a slight advantage in comparison with a relatively large inconvenience imposed upon the aggrieved party.”
Example: Tom and Bill were both interested in the same girl at the bar; when Tom falsely insinuated to the girl that Bill had erectile disfunction, that was a dick move.
Unfortunately, dick moves are not relegated to the barroom alone. The world of hunting is full of them, and here are some of the most egregious examples.
This one is best explained through a short story. A buddy of mine from Fairbanks had an acquaintance who kept asking to be taken along on a grouse hunt. When the time came, the acquaintance insisted on driving separately. He then followed my buddy to his secret grouse area along an obscure 4×4 trail just outside of town. As they geared up to head into the woods, the acquaintance got a text message announcing some “emergency” that had summoned him to work.
The next day, my buddy drove out to hunt a nearby area and noticed that the acquaintance’s vehicle was in the exact spot that he’d shown him the day before. Dick move.
This is a variation of spot stealing, and happens almost as often. You take a buddy to one of your hunting spots a few times, and eventually he gets the hang of the area. Since you’re going to be busy for the next few weeks, or out of town, you tell your buddy to go ahead and hit the spot while you’re away. No problem.
Then you get home and you realize that your buddy has been hunting the spot with his buddies, and now that guy’s doing the same thing with his own friends. This dick move leads to hunting spots that aren’t good for anyone. Of course, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t share your spots with your friends, but that you shouldn’t think that exclusivity agreements are implicit. Be clear.
If you don’t want your buddy to tell his friends about your spot, say something sensitive and tactful. I find that the following sentences work well: “Listen, dude. Never take anyone out here. Ever.”
Not Cleaning Game
Because I’m such an ardent proponent of eating wild game, and have such strong opinions on the issue, I’ve been stuck with the cleaning duties more times than Cinderella. This dick move always starts the same way: you have a great day’s hunt and get a limit of geese, squirrels, pheasants, quail, rabbits, or whatever.
Your buddy is totally gung-ho during the hunt, but afterward you notice that his enthusiasms are beginning to wane. He looks sleepy and distracted. You start skinning rabbits and your buddy gets a slightly queasy look on his face. He seems reluctant to touch the innards, and tries to remove them by scraping them out with his knife rather than pulling them out with his hands. He suggests that you should maybe just keep the back hams, because that’s where most of the meat is. You remind your buddy that the state’s wanton waste laws prohibit you from discarding the remainder of the meat.
He now checks the time and realizes that he’s running very late. He says that his girlfriend is going to be pissed as hell at him. He says to go ahead and keep the rabbits in your freezer for now. He’ll just pick some up later when he has time. You then spend an hour cleaning game, alone.
This was a much bigger problem for me back when I was a college kid in Montana whose only interest beyond hunting and fishing was drinking. You’d be out at the local watering hole downing beers and/or cocktails and you and a pal start talking about how the lakes and ponds are beginning to freeze up and the ducks are really starting to congregate on the river. You agree that it’d be a great idea to get up really early and do a float for waterfowl and maybe set up some decoys—even though “really early” is just three hours away.
You go home and load everything up: the canoe, paddles, decoys, some food, extra clothes because your buddy never packs properly. Then you get two hours of sleep and wake up with a splitting headache. Never mind the headache, you hop in your truck and drive to your buddy’s.
You wait. Then you honk and wait some more. Then you knock and wait. Then you pound on the door and wait. Then you pound on his window and wait. He finally comes to the door and says, “Man, I forgot that I have something I’m supposed to do this morning.”
“I Know I Got That One”
This dick move is more generally the realm of bird hunters, where there’s a good chance that multiple guys are gunning at the same bird. It usually goes like this: You and a couple buddies are pushing a patch of pheasant cover. Throughout the morning, one of your buddies misses a number of easy straightaway shots. He gets a little annoyed and discouraged.
Later, a bird kicks up far out and off to the right. The bird does a quartering away cross-over. You draw a bead, calculate a huge lead and the bird drops from the sky just as your buddy’s gun goes off. He then cries out, “I know I got that one! I was right on him.”
While your initial tendency might be to call bullshit, and cite the number of easy misses that he’s racked up so far, it’s better to treat his claim with little or no acknowledgment. Try saying, “Well there, sharpshooter, you best run over and get your bird.”
Brand New Boots
This problem has caused more blown hunts than bad weather and angry spouses combined. You make plans to pack into an elk spot that’s eight miles into a designated wilderness area for a week-long hunt. You urge your partner to get into shape, do some jogging, and for God’s sake, make sure his new boots are broken in. Really, really broken in.
You suggest that he wear his boots to work every day, however warm his feet might get, to take some long hikes and even do some jogging in them. When he shows up at the trailhead, you see that his boots are still so new and shiny that he’d be able to return them without any hassle from the sales clerk. You mention this to him, and he says, “Yeah, but they’re really comfortable. The guy at the store said that they’re kind of built to be already broken in.”
The next morning, it takes forever to get out of camp because he’s dinking around with band-aids and duct tape as he tries to pad his mutilated heels. That day, you cover a third of the ground you might have. All the while, you listen to him bitch.
Complaining With No Action
This is perhaps the biggest dick move of them all. It happens when a guy loves to complain about losing his hunting spots, or not seeing much game, or finding that the good areas are too crowded with other hunters, or that his state’s hunting laws seem to be coming from PETA rather than biologists.
But then he doesn’t belong to a single conservation organization; he votes for political candidates who want to drill or develop crucial pieces of wildlife habitat; he’s afraid to argue the proper side of controversial environmental issues for fear of looking like a tree-hugger in front of his co-workers; he doesn’t give financial or volunteer support to sportsman’s groups such as Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation or the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership because he blew all his time and money playing golf over the summer. What a dick.