Both of my children are involved in scouting. It has been a big positive in their lives, mostly because they've been around adults with basic organizational and time management skills other than their father.
I suck at time management. I'm perpetually late, and, as far as I'm concerned, if I arrive somewhere only five minutes late, I'm on time. I plan on being late to my own funeral. It's probably the only thing you can be as late as you want, and no one minds.
I'm not even bothering with organization. If you've ever seen my desk, you'll understand.
Since I fail at these things, the fact they've been able to accomplish what they have through scouts is mostly a testimony to their scout leaders' abilities.
I did go on a hike with the Cub Scouts once. I didn't die. That was a plus. There were no bears. Huge plus. I'm still not going back until I get a machete to ward off potential bear attacks. Since the Long Suffering Husband doesn't want me to have a machete, it's my guess I'll never have to go on another hike.
I did find some hiking socks for the Little Professor, which my father, Grampy Grumpy, swore didn't exist. They cost $12 for one pair, but they are guaranteed to be water repellent, breathe in the summer and keep his feet warm in the winter. (Keeping your extremities warm while hiking in cold weather is very important.) I had no idea socks could do all of that in one pair.
The Little Professor recently had his Blue and Gold banquet, at which he bridged over to Boy Scouts. He needed a new shirt, and I actually had the troop number on correctly. (Mostly because one of the older boys let me take several photos of him in his shirt, so I could get it correct. I sure hope his shirt is right, because it's now my go-to template.)
The Little Professor is supposed to earn his 50 cent weekly dues, so I told him if he fed Stupid Dog every morning and refreshed her water every afternoon, I would pay him 50 cents. Not only is he learning responsible pet ownership and earning his own way in scouts, but I'm getting super cheap child labor. That's a win-win. I wonder if I can get him to walk her for another 50 cents.
They're going to Washington, D.C., at the end of April. I'm guessing they haven't yet realized taking a history and presidential buff like the Little Professor to Washington is like taking an alcoholic to the liquor store.
Have fun with the non-stop stream of random historical facts, guys.
In the Boy Scouts, I'm promised more hiking, which I have deftly avoided with my machete request, and more sleeping on the ground in bad weather - also known as camping.
There really isn't a good reason to sleep on the ground when there are Holiday Inns everywhere, but the Little Professor can't wait to sleep in a giant cloth baggie and burn his food over a fire. He is all in with this, even though he doesn't know a tent from a toaster. I hope the LSH likes sleeping on the ground and eating charcoal.
I figure once the Boy Scouts finishes helping turn him into a knot-tying wilderness expert, when the zombie apocalypse comes, I'll have a survival expert on hand.
(Wallace-Minger, The Weirton Daily Times community editor, is a Weirton resident and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)