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Brush with Death: How One Wisconsin Woman Nearly Got Eaten By a Sea Lion

Boy, I had fun with that title. My friend Rachel will get a kick out of it, I hope.

She came to visit me for an impromptu trip she managed to tack onto a work trip recently, and the weekend was a whirlwind of activity. I don’t mind; I like playing the tourist in San Diego.

Hello, Little Babies

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The highlight for her was going to La Jolla and getting up close and personal with the sea lions who live there. Almost too close.

If you’ve ever been, you know the sea lions loll about on the rocks, sunning themselves and generally ignoring the human population that inches closer to make baby sounds at them.

I imagine them in my head. For some reason, this one sounds like Chris Rock.

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Dammit, if another one of these humans calls me “baby” and coos at me, I’m gonna take a hole out of her. I’m a grown-ass sea lion! I can’t help it if I have big gooey eyes that make me look infantile!

At any rate, we’re not privy to what the sea lions were thinking, so we edged closer to take pictures. Rachel got a little too close. A few times, one of them raised his head in warning and barked aggressively at her. She says in the video she took, you can hear me warning her back.  The scenario flashed across my mind: Rachel gets mauled by a sea lion on her visit and her husband never lets her see me again. Somehow, I’d be the one to blame.

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We left unscathed, then continued down the path, where we found more sea lions on the beach at La Jolla Cove. Rachel wasn’t the only one who couldn’t resist the urge to get close. There, at least, the lifeguards were shouting down to people who crossed the invisible line and warded them away.

Good times, when people and nature mix.

And yes, Rachel, they do bite. When I searched “do sea lions bite?” this was the second result: Sea Lion Bites Boy at La Jolla Cove.

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