Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Boy Scout Training- Not the Merit Badge kind either

Yes, I learned how to tie knots in the boy scouts...

Oh, before we get to knots there are several things I learned in Boy Scouts that probably should never be repeated (some of these I did participate in and some I was blissfully 80+miles away and only heard about it 2nd hand). These are also things that tend to make parents not allow their children to join the troop and rightly so:

Things I was present for but did not participate in:
- Snipes do not exist (however if you've hacked off the older scouts you might find yourself invited on a snipe hunt and tied to a tree for several hours about 1 mile from the camp)
- Tossing rotten eggs, burning hot egg shells or playing chicken with an ax (one unlaces the boots and spreads the shoe laces as far from the boot as they can then the other party paces off 5 steps, takes a sharpened ax and trys to cut the shoelace as close to the boot as possible--without hitting the boot or the person attached thereto - I will admit that this was an ill conceived game and one that was only mentioned to me once. It was never played after that--talked about yes. Played no.)
- Imagine that another troop messed with one of our younger scouts. Not a good idea. Because at night our older scouts would visit the offending party's campsite and would drop the tents in said campsite, grab the tent poles and beat anything that moves...

Things I was present for and did participate in:
- melting plastic milk cartons over the flames of a fire makes for very pretty flames (and also very toxic fumes- this practice that was quickly discouraged)
- it takes less than 10 seconds for a box of 5oo kitchen matches, once lined up, to burn neat diagrams into the tops of picnic tables - this occurred several times when I was not on the campout and once when I was.
- did you know that if you knock a hornets nest out of a tree with rocks, the little dears will chase you up to 1/4 of a mile. However if you are able to zip yourself into a tent before the swarm arrives then you'll be ok. It is advisable (i was later informed) to warn the people who were previously enjoying a relaxing morning, that something unpleasant was about to happen.

Things that happened when I was not present:
- During hunting season, many many hunters park their cars on the shoulders of the road. Sometimes passersbys might include boy scouts (you know, from the troop that had more street cred than most gangs). The cars might find themselves with 4 flat tires and might also be missing spark plug wires-...Might because a hunter might be leaving early and spot some of the felons-in-training and decide to introduce them to the barrel end of the Smith & Wesson that had been resting on his shoulder. I was told that one of the scouts dropped on his hands and knees and begged for sympathy while his co-horts scattered and ran for the woods.
- Picture fires, unopened cans of corn and a stopwatch. Explosive entertainment, so I was told.

How to tie a square knot:
- grasp the shoestring (one in each hand) cross the left shoestring over then under and through the right shoestring and pull snug.
- then make your bows and cross the right bow over then under and through the left bow and pull snug.

7 comments:

creative-type dad said...

Playing chicken with an axe?

Were you a scout with Itchy and Scratchy?

Mommy de Gallo said...

They sitll don't let girl's join the Boy Scouts right? I'm thinking Piko de G would enjoy all that stuff much more than selling cookies. But then again, I have no idea what the Girl Scouts do besides the cookies.

dennis said...

Tony: well, we did do other things like install culvert bridges/ditches, build stairs, collect/haul trash...but there was this edgy side to the troop as well.

MdG: Gotta tell you. As a parent, if I find a my boy in a troop like that...no way would I sanction girl members (re: too much opportunity for something bad to happen).

dennis said...

I really would also not let my boy stay in a troop like that...

Diana said...

ummm, that's how I usually tie his shoes. But maybe it's backwards since I'm in front of him...but I really don't want to stand behind him when I tie his shoes, because he tends to fart just to laugh...

Diana said...

OH! you would know this: is it true you can boil water in a plastic bottle without melting the plastic? I was told you have to fill it up all the way, leaving no air in it...but i'm never around an open fire to try it for myself...

dennis said...

Diana: Well you can cross right over left first then left over right and still get the same knot...

I do not know about the plastic not melting but I do know that if you made a bowl out of tree bark and tried to boil water, as long as the flames did not reach above the water inside the bowl then the bark will not burn...