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Everything posted by GKlose

  1. DeafScouter -- I think everyone needs to be on the same page. I know I still have some "training" to do, but most of our adults get it. The new adults coming in? Reports are some do, and some don't. So we'll start in on training them too. It's also common advice on this forum. Stosh, as I recall, taught his youth leaders to say "with all do respect, I will take care of that" in addressing an adult that was meddling a little too much. Guy
  2. Sorry, Deaf Scouter -- I've been away for a few days, and I'm just now reading this thread again. But I can't really answer your question -- meeting planning is one area we're still working on. Many meetings have been in the "wing it" category, and a few too many meetings (for my taste) have been group merit badge sessions. One recent example: PLC decides to feature cooking on a weekend outing (and I think they expected me, a Cooking MB counselor) to just sign off everything for everyone on the outing. I was asked to do some "classroom work" at the next troop meeting. And I did. But
  3. When my older son moved from Webelos to an adult-led troop-method troop, when I asked the SM about patrol method, he'd only answer "we're working on that." It took awhile to figure out what was wrong and how to approach fixing the problem. Now it is more than four years later, and we are much closer to a youth-led patrol method troop than ever before. It wasn't easy (in fact, all advice I read online was along the lines of "just find another troop") and we're not all the way there yet. Several things had to happen along the way -- for one thing, another like-minded adult joined the troop,
  4. By the way, a couple of years ago, in one of the "Scout Stuff" catalogs that was mailed out, there was a page that described a "small format" troop flag. I think it is around 16"x24". Had a small problem ordering it through the local Scout Shop -- they didn't know it existed, but were convinced after seeing the catalog. Anyway, we ordered one, and it goes on every outing with us now. We bought a small American Flag too that matches the size. The strangest part about that: try and find a similar American Flag that isn't made in China. Guy
  5. qwazse, now you're talkin'! That's the kind of attitude I like to see. :-) We need a BSA Paper Reduction Act of 2012. We can already recharter online, train (mostly) online, and file advancement online. I can reserve and pay for summer camp slots online (our past troop treasurer would have preferred that everyone in the troop log in individually to register for summer camp with our troop -- hey, that's possible, I suppose -- give someone an "event ID" then they could log on, enter the ID, and then pay online -- then they show up on the troop roster for a summer camp slot); we can also reg
  6. On a Scouts email list last week, there was a series of ongoing complaints about JTE paperwork, and other sorts of things that tend to get pushed down to the unit level. So I tossed in my own complaint, about the biggest time-waster I have: handling applications. In general, responses ran about 50-50; half agreed with me that there has to be a better way, the other half argued why things have to be done the way they are. As a straw proposal, I had tossed out the idea that registration could be done online, with an online payment to national. This is very similar to other organizations I'v
  7. I was involved with a very similar situation -- except that it really wasn't the Scout that had an issue, it was the dad. Here's a short version of the story: Adult-led troop method troop, with do-nothing PoRs -- new adult leaders some along (I'm one of them) and decide that it has to change over time. A new advancement chair starts to give warning at BoRs that Scouts have had their freebie, but they will be expected to have actually served the next time around. So all is fine until the first Scout is coming up for a board under the "new rules". The advancement chair brings it up at
  8. "a please of no contest"? Sorry, I really do know better than that. Sheepish Guy
  9. So I'll go out on a limb here, because life without highly-opinionated people is boring :-) Beav, I think you are so off-base that it isn't funny. You know as well as I do that ignorance (of the rules) is no excuse. Willful ignorance (or disregard) is even worse. I also think you're making an assumption here that wasn't supported by VentureMom: "but apparently an effort was made to ensure no one-on-one was adhered to." Where did that come from? We presumably have a real BSA leader here, right? Required YPT? If so, there is absolutely no excusing the willful disregard of youth pr
  10. Stosh -- I've spent a bunch of years at a dining hall camp, and the last two years at a camp with no dining hall. Here's exactly what I found: there is no loss of program time in the patrol-oriented camp. Nor is there any loss of free time (waterfront, etc). There is a slight loss of what I call "idle time". Idle time, just as you pointed out, is mostly that time before and after meals -- the goofing around and hanging out time. I call it a slight loss of idle time because of this: the cooks are busy for about a half hour to and hour before the meal is served, but have idle time after. Th
  11. I never would have done the competition thing on my own...however, of all places, on a Cub Scout hike, I met a dad that I kind of meshed with. He talked a little bit about barbecue, and so I asked him a few questions. Turns out he was well on his way to becoming a pitmaster. So we kept in touch, and the next year, he said that he was putting together a team to compete, and did I want to check it out? I said sure, and the rest is history...
  12. We don't really go out of our way to seek publicity for our guys' Eagle projects, but we had a nice moment this last year. A member of our CO is also the town's conservation committee chair. So quite a few times he has given us suggestions for projects that our guys have picked up. It has been a nice arrangement, especially because some of them are funded by the town. Our town also started including a quarterly report in with our property tax bills -- we might get department updates from a number of different departments any given quarter. This last year, one of those updates from the tow
  13. The "eye-balling" statement was mine. Sorry, Eamonn, but you're reading a whole lot more into the situation that what was there. No problem with interpretation, and your sentiment is appreciated, but there was no "rubbing their noses in it". Actually, it hasn't really happened yet anyway -- it was a statement about how I recruited a BBQ team member, a good friend, into the troop. His first inclination is to want to feed everyone. The expense? Not even really an issue -- it would be if we picked up a Certified-Angus brisket, but a pork shoulder can be anywhere from $1 to $3/lb, which
  14. The only issue about the "dilemma" had to do with the context I mentioned. The "World's Oldest Senior Patrol Leader" was shopping for everyone, and was running around barking orders when it was time to cook. It was definite "adult-led troop method" type stuff. So, try breaking that pattern sometime. It isn't as easy as it sounds, when you've got Scouts and adults trained that way. Troop was definitely a "father-son camping club" deal. They aren't weaned overnight! Guy
  15. My KCBS badge number, from last year's training, is in the 60k range. :-)
  16. Sorry to think it was a hoax, but there were so many Youth Protection violations in the original note that it just didn't make sense. The violations, of course, were lack of two-deep, lack of co-ed leadership and non-separate sleeping quarters. Anyone who has been through BSA Youth Protection would know this. On top of that -- I'm not sure about the Venturing program, but in the Boy Scout program there is a youth protection pamphlet that a young Scout is supposed to discuss with his parents. This lets the parent know *exactly* what the BSA youth protection policies are, and hopefully it w
  17. My older son, who will be 16 by next summer, has already been accepted on youth staff. He is hoping for a posting to the Jamboree band. His second choice is to work "tech crew" for the Arena shows, although when job choice lists "Arena Shows" he doesn't know if that includes tech crew (which could, reasonably, be locked up by adult staff). He attended the last Jamboree and enjoyed it -- my younger son might go this time around, especially if his brother goes. We still have time to decide. Guy
  18. Couple of thoughts -- the context is that our former SM was a "World's Oldest SPL" and was pretty much in charge of purchasing food, and making sure that group/troop cooking was taken care of. It has taken a long time to break those patterns... Sometime in the last couple of years, in place of an ordinary "cracker barrel" on Friday nights, we have developed a new "troop tradition" -- we now call it "meat on a stick". Very popular with Scouts old and young, and adults. It takes some patience to roast an italian sausage over a fire. :-) Those with less patience might be roasting hot dogs. O
  19. Hmmm, in some ways, I'm wondering if all of you bit on a 4/1 posting. :-) If it is actually true, of course, then please ignore this message. Guy
  20. I was invited to the same workshop (I'm in MA) -- to me, it looked like a district committee training workshop (on steroids)...breakouts for finance, membership, training, commissioners, etc. After thinking about it quite a bit, I'm passing. It's on a date where I have conflicts -- if the program looked really good, I'd rearrange, but in this case, I don't think I will. Guy
  21. Stosh tells an interesting story about counseling a Scout in Bugling MB, but with a parent nearby. It reminded me of a story about one of my experiences, not long after I started as an MBC -- so I was pretty much a rookie. Turns out it was a teen, but a new Scout. Had just joined a troop and was working on his first MB. This was for Photography MB, maybe the first time I'd counseled it. I offered to meet the Scout at his home, because he said they were digital pictures and that I figured it would be easier to see his work that way. His parents were both there, and in some ways, it fe
  22. I'd say, "who wants Pi?" but that would be somewhat circular. Guy
  23. When my older son first joined his troop, not counting summer camp, they did a grand total of six "nights under nylon" in his first year. The average outing had 8 Scouts (out of 30) attending. Recognize a small problem? :-) It was hard work, and an eventual change in troop leadership, but this last year, the troop did 11 monthly outings, two weeks at summer camps and a 5-day canoe trip in northern Maine. Outside of summer camp, the average outing now has about 20 Scouts, out of 26-28. Guy
  24. There will be a bunch of answers to this, but start first with the idea that the advancement model is completely different in Boy Scouts. There are rank advancement requirements (which are typically signed off by someone within the troop -- every troop most likely has their own policy on this front -- in our troop, for example, Patrol Leaders and Instructors have this responsibility -- both are youth leadership positions). Merit Badges are a completely different system -- every Scout goes to a registered Merit Badge Counselor for instruction and sign off. You are welcome to register to be
  25. I know this is kind of a digression, and under the "old rules", but last October I observed a Scout's Eagle Board (I was an invited troop rep -- but did not address either the board or the candidate). I wrote about it in a thread last October. The project in question had been approved the prior spring, I think, and had been carried out over the summer. I don't think by the time the EBoR was held, in October, the board chair remembered signing off on the project the prior spring. The three Scouters sitting on the board did not review the entire application, letters of recommendation, and p
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