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About Hourman

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  1. Hourman

    Propane Maintainance Tips?

    It's been several days since I first posted my request for tips and it hasn't generated much discussion. Can anyone else give me some pointers before I get out my tool kit and start experimenting?
  2. One of my troop's 2 burner Coleman propane stoves has only one burner which works right. The second burner only puts out a weak yellow flame and gives off much soot. We also have a 2 mantle propane lantern which is not working right. The mantles give a very weak yellow light when it is turned way down. If you try to turn it up, flames escape from the mantles and they never developes the white "balls" inside of them. I thought I would look here for maintainance or repair tips before I started experimenting on my own.
  3. I would wager that if a scientific survey on this subject existed, it would be widely circulated and frequently quoted. Lacking that, I believe that there is an abundance of anecdotal evidence which shows that national discriminatory policies do in fact supress membership. My own family came very close to not joining. I did not come from a childhood scouting background. I also consider myself to be very liberal and/or progressive in my political views. So when my son came home from Kindergarten one day with a cub scout roundup flyer, I was less than enthusiastic about having him join. Several of his school friends were going though and he really wanted to try it. I had a serious discussion with my wife regarding whether we wanted to associate with BSA. At that time our impression was that they were a very conservative, reactionary, discriminatory, and possibly militaristic organization. We did not think that we could fit in with people holding those viewpoints. Moreover, we were not sure we even wanted our son exposed to those points of view. However, he really wanted to try this and we decided that in our area there was no viable alternative youth program for him. So I somewhat reluctantly became a registered Tiger Partner. That first year was a blast. I learned that at the local level, at least, scout families were much the same as my own family. They generally made their kids their first priority in life and they were not knuckle dragging Neanderthals in their political and social opinions. By the end of that first year I had been recruited to be a registered pack leader and have been forging ahead ever since. Now, 8 years down the road, I am a Scoutmaster and don't expect it to end anytime soon. My point in relating this, is that both my son and myself almost missed out on this great experience because of the very negative public image that BSA had then and still has today. I have had several parents tell me that even though they know that I am not personally discriminatory, they would not let their kids belong to BSA. They feel that by turning a blind eye towards the discrimination they are in effect condoning it. I have to say that I admire their commitment to their principles much more than anyone who advocates a "don't ask, don't tell" policy. To further illustrate how bad our public image is, on any given day of storefront popcorn sales we will be subjected to 25 or 30 rude and nasty comments from passersby. Are Girlscouts subjected to this while selling cookies? No! Why us then? What don't the like about us? It's simple; they don't approve of our membership policies! This is not just some small handful of ACLU zealots who don't like BSA. It is lots and LOTS of people who sincerely hate our discriminatory membership policies. We will continue to have problems with both recruitment and retention as long as BSA National insists on alienating people with progressive or liberal values.
  4. Hourman

    Anyone else do no uniforms?

    Hello Drockspur My troop has a very lenient policy towards uniforms. We request that every member has a class A shirt with appropriate patches. We accept any pants/shorts that are fairly close to the right color. BSA belt and socks are never even considered. When we ask our people to wear full uniform, all we are asking for is class A shirt with green pants/shorts. Period! There are only four occassions when we insist that our version of full uniform be worn. those are Boards of Review, Courts of Honor, camporee flag ceremonies, and evening meal at summer camp. For all other events and activities it is left up to each individual to decide for themselves what they are comfortable wearing. Some of us, myself included, wear the uniform to most activies. Some wear it only when absolutely required to. Most of us fall somewhere in between. This is the only "Method of Scouting" that we substantially modify. This policy was in effect when I joined the troop several years ago and I see no reason to change it. In 1910, boys probably thought it was fun to appear in public wearing a military inspired uniform. Most of todays boys do not. A great many actually find it embarassing. I am proud to say that my troop does not recognize willingness to endure public embarassment as a membership requirement. An optional uniform for those boys or troops that desire one is fine and the concept has already been proven in the Venturing program. A mandatory uniform is every bit as anachronistic as close order drill with staves. On a lighter note, the following was overheard at a recent roundtable: "Why are the same guys who are the most anti-gay also the most in love with Oscar DeLaurenta's fashion sense?"
  5. When I was a kid (1970's), my 4-H club bought birdseed, wholesale, and sold it, retail, as a fundraiser. Once a month we took a small display table to the local Audobon Association meeting and did very well. My troop would like to try this now, but we have not been able to find a source of wholesale birdseed. Can anyone point us in the right direction? We are located in NJ, if that makes any difference. Private messages are welcome.
  6. I would like to trade or possibly purchase tie-dyed class B shirts. Size XL. Personal messages welcome.
  7. I would like to know who made the decision to place the tent in that location. Was it the contractors decision or were they directed to place it there by someone in BSA?
  8. Hourman

    BSA racism?

    Scouter Mom, Thank you for your insight into a scouting subgroup which we've all heard about but few have experienced personally. Prarie Scouter, Can you tell me which Time 2000 issue that quote appeared in? This theory has been talked about for years, but I've never seen any actual documentation.
  9. Hourman

    BSA racism?

    Wow, Scouter-mom, a Non-LDS Leader of an LDS troop. Have I got some questions for you! First, though, let me say that I have very little knowledge of LDS beliefs or practices. My suburban east coast council has 2 LDS troops in 2 different districts. They tend to keep to themselves and not participate in district or council level activities. Also, my son camped adjacent to the Utau National Parks Council at Jamb05. (subcamp 20, the "overflow" camp) According to him, most of those kids were LDS and when they were away from their Scoutmasters you would never guess they were any different from any other kids. If a Scoutmaster was nearby, however, they were uncomfortable socializing outside of their own group. The Scoutmasters themselves, he says, were "humorless, overbearing, stuffed shirts". So much for seeing things through the eyes of a 14 year old. Question 1. - Is your situation typical or even common? Or are you an exception to the general rule? Question 2. - Are you really comfortable with both your son and yourself belonging to a unit which practices double standards? One set of rules for LDS members and another set of rules for non LDS? Question 3. - Can you comment on a widely held belief that the LDS Church leadership has threatened to pull all of its kids out of BSA and start a different program of their own if BSA ever changes its policy of not allowing openly gay members? Question 4. - I've been using the term "LDS" because all of the previous posters did. Is the term "Mormon" no longer politically correct?
  10. The following is the clearest and best informed statement from a true insider that I have found: Boy Scouts of America, Jamboree: Somebody in a position of authority put appearances ahead of safety. A message from one who was there. ---------------------------- "The Jamboree had the necessary procedures and personnel in place to deal with such an emergency. Prevention was the key. Besides the frequent warnings, adequate supplies of water were available to everyone. Activities were limited or closed as the temperatures rose. Had the BSA not been prepared, this number could have easily been in the thousands. Doctors, nurses, paramedics, and other medical staff are on hand throughout the Jamboree and are backed up by military and local health care systems. That is why of the 300 or so treated, only several dozen had to receive further care in a hospital." Greg Shields - BSA National Spokesperson Actually, there were **many** more than 300 treated, helicopters to Richmond, Fredricksberg, and DC for the most seriously affected, every ambulance for 150 miles were in use, and the Civil Defense folks in VA have gone on record as calling this the greatest civil disaster in VA since the Civil War. Activities were shut down by the military, but not until they took over the responsibility after the "death march," noting correctly that the BSA was derelict in its duty to be prepared and protect youth and adults. I had occasion to speak personally to the military commander for Jambo and he was not too darn happy with the decision to march those kids and adults to the arena show without adequate water (whatever they told you, the water buffalos up and down Thomas Road and around Southern region/Mahone were empty during that time) and who was perfectly prepared to shut donw the whole thing if things didn't improve in a big hurry. At the time the units were mandated to begin the march to the arena show the red flag had been up for several hours, meaning no outdoor activity, seek shelter, and lots of extra fluids-- and the BSA hierarchy overrode the medical staff on whether or not to cancel. They cancelled later, at 6pm, after kids had been seated in the open arena for hours and were keeling over and being airlifted outta there in helicopters, saying it was because the President couldn't come due to thunderstorms in the forecast-- but not because it was a heat exhaustion/prostration epidemic. I know that Greg Shields is just a mouthpiece, but the words he was given were disgraceful and clearly chosen to avoid the appearance of liability on the BSA's part. ---------------------------- This was a totally preventable situation. Those of us who were very hard at work in H&S will be stunned if at least someone's head doesn't roll for it. Politics and appearance put our kids at real risk of renal and cerebral damage, and some weren't out of the woods for days-- the newpaper accounts of "most were not serious and treated with hosing down" minimizes it to an egregious degree. This disaster was totally foreseeable (based upon the well-established criteria for evaluating heat index and the BSA's own protocols for same). What if some of those mere "dozens" had died? NONE of that had to happen at ALL. The MD daily meeting was told that they would cancel based on medical opinion if heat was an issue-- the military was at condition BLACK, meaning THEY couldn't even go out for more than 15 minutes at a time. The MDs unanimously demanded that they cancel based on the conditions...and guess what? The BSA hierarchy said "The president is coming, the show must go on" regardless. This was a disgrace. Those who said lamely that it was the SMs' decision whether to go or not weren't in the subcamps when they were ordered to move out. Yes, a few SMs defied that, and looked like heroes later, but most could not resist the considerable pressure from the BSA to put on those class I's and go look good for the arena show. We did NOT have adequate supplies-- we got emergency supplies airlifted in from remote areas after the magnitude of the disaster declared itself, and no thanks to the hierarchy for that, either. Our "backups" were a large factor in canceling the replacement show originally scheduled for the next day-- we used up so many community resources that they weren't willing to be backups again on short notice. Nurses were told when they applied for Jambo jobs that they weren't needed in the medical areas and assigned to parking, merit badge midway, bikeathon, etc-- and at least one ER nurse left her parking job at Archer and spent the night at Jambo General sticking IVs in kids and adults, who were lined up BY THE HUNDREDS in chairs, on the floors, and on every available surface in "the Annex," a barracks near the hospital at Wilcox. Last time I looked at my nurse practice act, IVs were not considered trivial first aid level of treatment. BTW, the Annex was supervised by....a old guy who ran a Scout museum and had exactly zero medical experience. We ran short-staffed the whole Jambo at our area; the military hospital was 25% of capacity of the ones of previous Jambos, too, since most of their capacity is deployed in sandy places. For the death march day, kids were allowed to carry only one water bottle, and they had to empty it (prefereably by drinking) at entrance; there were supposed to be adequate water stations inside but there were not. There were supposed to be three med aid stations inside-- there were two, and the one earmarked for asthma care with manifolds for inhalers was forbidden. Our staff were supposed to attend as a free-roving team, but we were forbidden to carry anything more than the most inadeqate of supplies, and no extra fluids. Now that kids and adults are home I expect the email lists to be buzzing with particulars-- but I would caution everyone not to believe everything you hear from the BSA proper. CYA is a big deal with them; they never discuss their own failings (a basic no-no in risk management, where sharing errors helps prevent others from making the same mistakes) and I will be astounded if they even hint that someone screwed up hugely on this. For my money, had I been Frank Rubino, MD, the head doc, and they had overridden me on my recommendation to cancel, I would have immediately tendered my resignation rather than look complicit. I like Frank, we've had other dealings at a previous Jambo, he's a good fella, but perhaps that would have gotten some attention. But someone put appearances ahead of safety. Read that again: Somebody in a position of authority put appearances ahead of safety. Who will take responsibility for that? Anyone? yiS Auntie Beans Cape Cod and Island Council MA National H&S service NSJ 97, 01, 05 I useta be an Eagle, NEI-188 And a good old staffer too, NEI-209, 234, 244