While the nation should have learned its lesson about being a douchecanoe to their friends in the wilderness after former Vice President Dick Cheney accidentally shot his friend in the face during a notorious 2006 hunting trip, it seems we apparently have yet to grasp the notion of basic human decency in the great outdoors according to an ominous warning from the National Park Service. Earlier this week, the agency shared a Facebook post detailing safety measures when encountering a bear in the wild, featuring several staples, like avoiding sudden movements, refraining from making loud noises, and fighting the urge to flex your mediocre improv chops by playing dead as “bears can sense overacting." 

Amid this list, the rangers nonchalantly slipped in a menacing message, begging tourists to avoid pushing their comrades into angry bears as they attempt to escape the animal. “If a bear clacks its teeth, sticks out its lips, huffs, woofs, or slaps the ground with its paws, it is warning you that you are too close and are making it nervous,” the post explained. “The bear’s nervous? Heed this warning and slowly back away," the agency continued. 

“Do not run up and push the bear and do not push a slower friend down…even if you feel the friendship has run its course," they warned. 

However, this is far from the first time the agency has advised against sacrificing friends in an attempt to evade a bear attack. Last August, the National Parks Service shared a post commemorating National Friendship Day, issuing a The Office-themed PSA against the evidently all-too-common practice. 

“'For the longest time my best friend was my grandmother. And then she met Harriet. And now she thinks she better than everybody,'" began the post, quoting Michael Scott, alongside a minimalist poster reading “friends don't use friends as bear bait.” “Better than others or not, be nice to friends, grandparents, neighbors, bears, and your fellow park goers.”

Now, reader, I know what you're probably wondering – “If I can't push my friends into an angry bear, what the hell am I supposed to when one attacks?” According to the original post, if faced with this alarming situation, the best course of action is to focus on “slowly putting distance between yourself and the bear," as that “may defuse the situation." If the animal charges, the agency also recommends having bear spray prepped and ready to go. 

So folks, although it may be pandamonium finding yourself in the midst of the bear attack, please refrain from shoving your friends in harm's way, lest things get … grisly

For more internet nonsense, follow Carly on Instagram @HuntressThompson_ on TikTok as @HuntressThompson_, and on Twitter @TennesAnyone.

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