Crazy with a splash of color: Meet Campus Celebrity, Moose Pulsifer

           

“You’ll never forget someone you’ve met who introduces themselves as ‘Moose’.” A statement that reflects an entire personality, Moose Pulsifer captures his presence on campus in a single sentence. The 20-year-old natural resources and environmental management major from Malibu, California gave us a glimpse into some of the shenanigans he gets up to on a regular basis.

A couple years ago, Pulsifer was known as the kid with the ever-changing hair color: the result of an impulse buy at Wal-Mart. “After that I was like, well, if I’ve dyed it one color I should really see which color I like the best.”

These days Pulsifer is more than well-known for being crazy. He attributes his adventurous side to his parents. His mother was offered a job as a CIA Field Agent. “She’s been the craziest influence on my life because she’s not your average woman… she likes to go out and do the craziest adventures.” His father, a sailor, also encouraged adventuring. “He always wanted me to go to the ocean and my mom always wanted me to go towards the land and hike, but they both loved that I was outdoorsy.”

A firm philosophy on life contributes to the risky decisions that have become common in his daily life. “You only get so many hours of sunlight and you should use as many as you can for discovering things so you can find out what you really want to do in life and what makes you happy.” His fearlessness allows a freedom to do what he really wants in life. “I almost died today before I came here. There’s this cave and you can look down into the water and I’ve always wanted to swim in it ‘cause it looks really fun and dangerous. I just jumped in and swam around and got battered around.” Pulsifer’s gravitation towards danger is why he has so many good stories to tell. “If you can just get hit by a bus one day why not take a chance?”

This spring break was spent on the Big Island, working on his pursuit of making it to all eight of the Hawaiian Islands. “It’s been my goal since freshman year… I’ve been to seven of the eight.” Niihau is the final island, soon to be accomplished. Last year's trip was to the Na Pali Coast on Kaua‘i, a hike he says fueled his desire to go on more crazy adventures. “I highly recommend every human being to do the Na Pali Coast before they die.”

Hawaii is a perfect fit for this explorer. “Everyone out here is so open to adventuring and there are all kinds of crazy hikes that I’ve still never done. Some people get island fever but my favorite part about this island is that if you know the right people and where to look, there’s all kinds of new adventures every day.” The ocean is a necessity as well, “Being born and raised next to an ocean I’ve always loved it. I realized that if I’m going to go to college I need to have an ocean next to me.”

His journeys have also taken him to Kaho‘olawe. “We went out there to do restoration work and hiking. It was a really special experience cause that island is restricted access, so getting permission was incredible and seeing all the untouched land and trying to help some of the bombed, damaged land was cool.”

When asked to describe a few of his escapades, Pulsifer chuckled and admitted, “a lot of my adventures are… less than legal, to put it nicely.” As he recounts several wild experiences, it becomes clear that he has had more than his share of crazy, and his tendency towards danger reveals itself to be instinctive. There was a case freshman year that involved a misunderstanding, cops, and a rooftop. “I was scared… but it was hilarious.”

Every aspect of Pulsifer’s life affirms his venturesome lifestyle. Most people relax by watching a movie or taking a nap, but Pulsifer says, “I hate-absolutely detest- sitting inside when it’s sunny out.” He chooses to “zen out” with photography and catching live animals and fish, “But only by hand. That’s my rule.”

His passions revolve around the ecosystem, sharks and other animals that are viewed as dangerous. He works for the Pelagic Fisheries Research Program, tagging sharks. “I want to go out and try to be an advocate and let people know why they shouldn’t hate them or why they should fear them less… I feel a lot of the fear is generated by not knowing about them.”

So what’s next for Pulsifer? “My job goal is to be a national park ranger.” This summer marks the start of his mission, as he will be working for the national parks with the rangers. “Rangers are a combination of police, firefighter, and EMT. It’s kind of the ultimate badass position.” All of his years of exploring nature have been in preparation for this job. “You’re going out there and getting paid to save people and show people hikes and get people stoked on nature. And I couldn’t ask for more than that.”

When it comes down to it, Pulsifer says, “I’m just an idiot who likes to adventure,” and, “a lot of people have given me shit in the past for just acting the way I want to act and doing what I want to do… I would just say don’t live your life for other people. Do what makes you happy and go outside every day.” We could all learn a lesson from Pulsifer. Whether it be follow your dreams, take risks, be adventurous or live for yourself, remember, “You’re never promised a tomorrow.”