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hops_scout

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About hops_scout

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  1. hops_scout

    What "was" your first car?

    My first car was a 1989 Pontiac Bonneville. That thing was a tank! When we traded it in my junior year of high school, I think we got $1500 for it. Tires were old, one passenger door didn't even open, and the gas gauge did not work. And the CD player that my sister had put it in was taken out the day before it got traded in. Then I drove a 2001 or 2002 Chevy Malibu. Great car that was previously a rental vehicle. It lasted a few years before dying during my sophomore year of college. My brother was driving it in town the night after I got back from college for winter break. The radiator was cracked or something like. Now I'm driving a 1998 Chevy S10 extended cab. My dad has had the truck since 2001 and now I've had it since 2009. It's a great truck, but starting to show its age. Third door is broken and the AC doesn't work. Rust is also starting to show up.. My first purchased vehicle may come in the next year or so. I'm hoping to save up working and living at home so I can purchase a new vehicle with cash..
  2. hops_scout

    Education and Teacher Unions

    I'm sure you've all seen this before. I still think it has some merit in the big picture.. I've grown up with both parents being teachers my whole life. My dad has coached which provides (a little) extra money on top of his regular salary and my mom works a part-time job from April-October. People would think that we should be living high, but we're definitely not. We're not downright poor, but we can't spend like people believe teachers are able to do.... ---------------------------------- Teachers' hefty salaries are driving up taxes, and they only work 9 or 10 months a year! It's time we put things in perspective and pay them for what they do - baby sit! We can get that for less than minimum wage. That's right. Let's give them $3.00 an hour and only the hours they worked; not any of that silly planning time, or any time they spend before or after school. That would be $19.50 a day (7:45 to 3:00 PM with 45 min. off for lunch and plan -- that equals 6 1/2 hours). Each parent should pay $19.50 a day for these teachers to baby-sit their children. Now how many students do they teach in a day...maybe 30? So that's $19.50 x 30 = $585.00 a day. However, remember they only work 180 days a year!!! I am not going to pay them for any vacations. LET'S SEE.... That's $585 X 180= $105,300 per year. (Hold on! My calculator needs new batteries). What about those special education teachers and the ones with Master's degrees? Well, we could pay them minimum wage ($7.75), and just to be fair, round it off to $8.00 an hour. That would be $8 X 6 1/2 hours X 15 children X 180 days = $140,400 per year. Wait a minute -- there's something wrong here! There sure is! The average teacher's salary (nation wide) is around $50,000. $50,000/180 days =$277.77/per day/30 students=$9.25/6.5 hours = $1.42 per hour per student--a very inexpensive baby-sitter and they even EDUCATE your kids! ----------- Obviously this idea has its flaws and I'm sure some will be able to name plenty of them. I wonder, though, how close to something like this a taxpayer pays each year?
  3. hops_scout

    Obama refuses to sign Eagle certificates

    Bando, I'm sure there's many reasons people at the Hill don't want him at the Arena in the next couple of weeks. Politics could definitely be one. But also some of them flat out just aren't interested because of the mess having the President creates. I was there in 2005. Yes, I WANTED to see President Bush speak. But the security fiasco that went along with it led to a less than desirable experience. For one thing, trying to get 75,000 through security just created havoc. And then the rules were different depending on the gate you were sent to. If I were to have attended Jamboree this year (would have liked to) then I would have likely chosen not to go to the arena show just to avoid all the hassle.
  4. hops_scout

    Perception of interpreter strip

    Eamonn, how many time do I have to tell you speaking English is illegal in many places in the USA? ***The official language is AMERICAN:)***
  5. I would get a hydration pack-- Camelbak, Source, etc Trying to think what else.. I went as a staff member so things were a little different..
  6. hops_scout

    Where have all the posters gone?

    I'll take some dump cake! Or pie. whatever you got
  7. hops_scout

    troop tent purchase

    Our troop uses the Eureka Timberline Outfitters as well. Then we have 6 backpacking tents of another brand as well I believe. We have a bunch of the Timberline 4 Outfitters-- they're great tents..
  8. hops_scout

    A Taxing Situation

    E, those people that know they have to pass a budget wait until the last second because then THEY get paid more. Yeah, that makes sense... they can't find a way to responsibly spend money, but they get a raise every year. Or maybe that's just Illinois politicians at work? I want to say that in Illinois if the legislature has to come for a "special session" then they get like $100/day or more. If they are there during their "normal session" then they don't get that extra money. I love how California is giving out "IOU's" to everyone now. You think if you or I had a bill to pay to the state of California or taxes, etc you think they'd take an IOU from me?
  9. hops_scout

    two man backpacking tents

    I've got the Zephyr 2-man from Alps. It is just a tad small for two people. Another 6 inches wide would be great! My only other complaint is that the vestibules aren't quite big enough either. My pack (an Alps pack) doesn't quite fit in it along with my boots. Really great tent though and can't beat the price!
  10. hops_scout

    The real cost of camp

    Couple items you've included that may or not not be included in the budget.. --Ammo--> One camp I've been to you had to pay a fee to shoot. I don't know what ammunition costs, but I think we paid about $10 for rifle shooting.. Another camp I've been to, all the ammunition was donated. That council has one of the major rifle companies in their council. Also, the camp would then take the spent shells and sell the aluminum! --Merit Badge books--> Camps I've been to sure didn't provide these. They sold them in the trading post, but I would imagine they weren't losing much if anything on having these in the trading post for sale. --Blue Cards--> Our troop has always provided our own; I don't quite see this as a camp expense.
  11. hops_scout

    Scouting in our Youth

    I joined Tiger Cubs way back in 1st grade I guess. Was in Cub Scouts, Webelos and then onto the Boy Scout troop. Stayed in the troop through my 18th birthday and ended with the Life Scout rank. I served as nearly every youth leadership possible available including SPL and JASM as well as serving on the 2005 National Scout Jamboree Youth Staff in Action Center D on the rappelling tower. As many here probably know, I wasn't much for advancement and merit badge stuff, but I love(d) Scouting and always enjoyed the camping and hiking stuff. Water not so much Now I am an ASM with the troop, but I don't make it around too often due to college and such.
  12. hops_scout

    Alps Mountaineering vs. REI

    I used my Alps tent and backpack for the first time this weekend. I have the Zephyr 2 and it is absolutely awesome. The only thing I would really say is that it could use to be just a tad bit bigger. Really for any price, I'd say this is a great tent for high adventure. Not something I'd want to share with another person for 3-4 days, but definitely a solid product!
  13. I was alerted to this and I am working to move the posts so we can ban the user. Thanks
  14. hops_scout

    Cash? Who carries cash?

    I typically carry between $20 and $40 in my wallet for little things at the gas station, fast food, vending machines, concession stands at games, etc. For gas, shopping, etc it's all debit card.
  15. hops_scout

    What are you doing to "Obama-proof" your future?

    BadenP, thanks for proving my point. Kahuna, I'm with you...
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