Who is a touron?

Tourons Of Yellowstone

The term “touron” is a combination of the words “tourist” and “moron. It refers to a person committing an act of pure stupidity while on vacation in the wilderness or in a zoo. There’s even an Instagram feed of Tourons of Yellowstone, where a stream of cautionary videos makes it impossible to look away. One tries to scare a mother bear as she walks by with her cubs. A second jumps over the Bryce Canyon fence, stumbles, and miraculously doesn’t fall from a great height. A third gets her baby’s feet wet by having a picnic on a wet rock, at a steep angle going into a mountain stream. A fourth strolls carelessly among the geysers of the sea, as if they were city fountains and not jets shooting down everything in their path. The fifth decides to take selfies with an African elephant, for which he and his 2-year-old child climb a double fence. What drives them all? Idiocy bordering on suicide. I wonder who they vote for in elections.

Although, perhaps, the cause is not so much a craving for self-destruction or a low IQ, but a disconnection from reality. Life in the city is like walking along smooth paths in a well-kept garden, from which dangerous animals have been banished and weeds uprooted. Wild dogs don’t attack passersby, and the claws of cats don’t scratch children. Garbage is removed, hot water flows from the faucet, the streets are lit at night, and all this happens automatically, unnoticed, by itself. A person has the illusion that safety and comfort are the norm, a given, the original state of things. It does not even occur to him that a colossal amount of resources has been invested to clear and ennoble this “Garden of Eden.

In addition, thousands of people-military, firefighters, police, janitors, doctors, elevators, electricians, etc. — make significant, often heroic efforts every day to keep entropy from destroying this status quo. Moreover, this infrastructure saves people from their foolishness like a safety net. No matter what happens, a professional will be there to warn, protect, heal or bring back to life in time. So, just like on the children’s trampoline, you can bounce around and have great fun, without regard to the solid ground and sharp corners. But once in the wild, the citizen naively continues to believe that he still has the safety rope with him. And so he exposes himself to exorbitant risks — he feeds a bear cub, takes pictures over a boiling spring or turns his back on a moose.

It’s funny that the same phenomenon can be observed in business. For example, when a “terry” top manager tries to launch a startup. Or a large corporation decides to rejuvenate itself radically by pompously launching a venture capital fund or R&D department. They forget that their skills are only good for “civilization”, where 1 scales to 100. But in “Wild West” territory, where 1 is born from 0, not everyone can survive, much less thrive, but only the entrepreneur.

Yours sincerely,

-Alexander

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As a business therapist, I help tech founders quickly solve dilemmas at the intersection of business and personality, and boost company value as a result.

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Alexander Lyadov

As a business therapist, I help tech founders quickly solve dilemmas at the intersection of business and personality, and boost company value as a result.