Geocaching: The schnitzel of sports.

Let me begin on the defensive. I’m kind of cool. Not in a cool hipster way, but in a new-wave norm-core way. I’m a nerd but in a not-really kind of way. I like sports if they’re the rad ones and I think the Beastie Boy’s were a subversive juxtaposition to the hairbands of the early eighties — or at least that’s what I reckon sounds intelligent. I also like geocaching.

Geocaching to me is a torturous pastime. One part adventure — seeking small treasures across the land, hidden in unique places by people who have hidden them not only with devilish fervour but with passion for the place, the prize and the puzzle. The second part is to track these capsules while trying not to appear creepy in my black Para-Zombie hoodie — more on this later.

For the uninitiated, Geocaching is a treasure hunt where people hide a small container inhabited by a log for cachers to sign. The finders track the “cache” down by using the GPS coordinates provided by the hider through the intermediary Geocaching dot com site. Find the cache, sign the log, log on the site that you’ve found it and voila. Next.

This may sound simple. Healthy. Adventurous. But like the humble chicken schnitzel — there may be something amiss with the crumb. Remember the black hoodie?

Here’s the problem. Sometimes caches are hidden close to schools or playgrounds — far enough away is the agreed upon measure of distance, but this still makes me feel a little creeped out if I’ve left the geokid or geo-missus at home and struck off into the never-never alone. Sometimes I avoid these locations because you just don’t want to be that guy. The weird loner traipsing through the brush behind the playground — to me I’m on the hunt for that elusive Systema container, but to the mother with the pram I’m a potential threat. Understandable.

So like the schnitzel, I choose my battles. The crumbed delicacies I seek are more off the beaten track if I travel alone. I save the playground hunts for when I have my little geokid in tow. Anyone for a parma?

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