Raphael had been sent to
The brilliant Shelley has an

Tre had a Cub Scout

Tre had a Cub Scout Pack meeting tonight. These things are going to kill me. Perhaps literally.
It started with announcements and awards. Tre’s den got their awards tonight, and I’m proud to say he earned one pin and six belt loops. I, being the “Awards Coordinator” (scout-speak for “sucker”), was the one to purchase and organize all the awards for this evening. I took all three boys to the scout shop. Tre and Max were fine, but Raphael…Raphael in a small shop crammed floor to ceiling with tiny pins and breakable mugs and carefully sorted bins of patches…
You’d think there’d be some sort of award for me. Like, say, a week at a spa.
Whoops, off track there.
Anyhow, after the awards they moved on to the presentation portion of the evening. Tonight they had some people talk about survival in the wilderness. They unpacked their bag of stuff you should have if you plan on getting lost. Which, I suppose no one does. So perhaps the bag was what you should carry whenever you set foot in said wilderness. Just in case.
Well, the kids fidgeted and murmured through the display of twine, reflective blankets, plastic sheeting, and signal mirror. They were somewhat interested in the LED light, but mostly just because one of the presenters threw it on the ground and stomped on it in a demonstration of its ruggedness.
For me, the demonstration was about 55 minutes too long. It only lasted an hour, so there you go. After the second item was pulled from the pack, I was hit by a severe case of the yawns. You know, the ones that attack you out of nowhere, leaving you hiding your face in your hands while you yaaaaaawn yet again, your eyes watering. The kind of yawning session that leaves you thinking that it might not be all that odd to lie down on the floor and go to sleep – after all the two year old over there is doing it! I yawned until one of the people doing the demonstration started giving me dirty looks. I felt bad. Ok, what I actually felt was sleepy. But I registered the fact that I should have been feeling bad.
Anyhow. After about seventeen hours of twine-and-plastic, they moved on to the part they should have started with.
They demonstrated several fire starting techniques. For instance, did you know that if you touch the contacts on a nine volt battery to some fine steel wool, it will catch fire? Oh, Tre sooooo wants some steel wool now. They also demonstrated a chemical, called calcium carbonate (I think. Who knows, I was practically asleep), that burns in water. They dropped a nugget of it in a snow ball and lit it. Pretty soon the snow ball was ablaze, and the Cub Scouts had all suddenly grown respect for the survival people. I mean, a flaming snowball. It’s just…so very cool. Tre looked back at me with shining eyes. “Did you see that?” he whispered. I nodded (yawning). “You know,” he pointed out helpfully, “they’re selling that stuff after the meeting.”
As if.
At least laughter seems to combat yawning.


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