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About Backwoods

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    Plattekill, NY
  1. By the way, the above advice was directed toward your friend, or anyone who is dealing with a similar situation.
  2. Wow, what a hard serious struggle to undertake as someone who obviously cares deeply about youth. What a horrible and desperate feeling for the lad to feel he only had one choice. I would advise a few key things, these things coming from my training as a psychologist and (previously) a crisis hotline director: 1) Talk clearly and openly about your concern about him with both he and his parent. 2) Elicit a "safety contract" from him. He must promise out loud that if he feels that hopeless again he will call you, or his counselor, or his mother and let them know. 3) Make sure he is in t
  3. Oh... and Dick Morris? he is a political hack, spin-doctor or strategist, take your pick of titles. He's not an economist, accountant, or even particularly gifted with numbers. Be careful where you get your facts!
  4. Well, what a dust-up! I think this is a great example of the hidden diversity in this legion of scout leaders that is often depicted as monolithic and blindly conservative. The debate so far has not descended into ad hominim attacks, which is great, but it has steered off topic, which is not. Obama-proof? thats a silly repetition of Cramer's nonsense (who not too long ago extolled the virtues of some now defunct companies like Lehman Brothers). But, I'll play ball. I, like most of the the country, will NOT be making more than 250,000 or even 200,000 dollars this year, I will continue to bu
  5. by the way,are there OKPIK courses offered in the Northeast?
  6. Well, I'd say that depends on your training and equipment. Most scouts have the general equipment to stay comfy down to 20 degrees, below that and you will need more than layers and and your Wal Mart bag. I'm in upstate New York, we Troop camped at a council event in October and the temperature went into the teens the first night. We all slept soundly. Thats about as low as we would go without some significant preparation and serious gear review. Its nice to know how to treat hypothermia and frostbite, but not to HAVE to treat them! I concur with the others, parents get to decide if the kid
  7. They can participate at a council sponsored event (Day camp, scout camp, or other event) if they are registered with the BSA. This would include Learning for Life members, making it possible and relatively easy for the female sibs to be a part of the activity.
  8. Oh... so it is for an Cell phone/Ipod/MP3/thingee thing thing. Thats great, just great. Just one more argument when we give the "no electronic devices at camp" speech.
  9. Wow. 8 uniforms! yikes, thats a lot of scouterphernalia! I bridged over into Boy Scouts in 1980, just when the DeLarenta Uniform change was made. I was lucky enough to get a hand-me-down olive uniform with the fold down pockets, collarless shirt, and envelope hat. I showed up at a meeting and... was totally embarrassed! Well, I got over it rapidly, but it put a small dent in me. Lucky for today's lads, the change is really minor. If the troop springs for epaulets and numbers, the kids can pretty much use whatever shirt they end up with. They will be tan, and will have collars and pocket
  10. Well, this post has been thoroughly responded to! Beavah, Lisabob, Twocubdad, Evmori, John in KC, SR540 Beaver, and OGE have all weighed in. SeaGull99 has certainly gotten her money's worth! As the thread has sort of concluded if not stopped, SeaGull99's son has moved on to a new troop and no longer has to deal with the old troop's leadership, I wonder if size has contributed to the problem. When I read that the Troop limits who goes on the campouts, I was like many of you kind folks, flabbergasted. Now there is a word I don't get to write much, but I think you all agree that it is appropria
  11. I read the book when it first came out. I took it as a major indictment of modern parenting and society's relegation of children to the shelf. I recommend it to anybody I can who works with children. It brought back a great deal of memories, and some dreams I had let go of. He mentions "Shelters, Shacks, and Shanties" by Daniel Beard, a book I knew of as a child, but had no access to. Well, he reminded me of it and I was able to find a copy on the internet. It is chock-a-block full of gritty basic fort construction techniques that I happily shared with my son. But I digress... It i
  12. Well... this is some post. As a psychologist I like to look at the "thing behind the thing", it really doesnt take much training, but it does take some interest and honesty. It seems like you have two forces at work here; the scoutmaster's needs and your son's/your needs. The scoutmaster seems to value his control of the process of the Troop and the boy's behavior. You seem to value much the same for your son. Your boy, I am assuming would like to please both of you while having a good time. Some things you said caused me to prick up my ears. "Last night the troop had a planning meeting
  13. Wow the things we navigate to get some boys into the outdoors and help them develop some positive personal attributes! DeanRx sure seems to stir the pot. The what ifs are really interesting to me in light of the repeated posts quoting G2SS and other rules and regs. They make pretty clear the types of behavior that is intolerable. The notion of the leader too fat to lead would, in my experience, lead to our council losing the majority of its most experienced volunteers. I think that the more interesting question is HOW you deal with behavior that is unnacceptable, or "intolerable". If i
  14. This is a fairly common dillemma in my brief experience. I know many leaders who hold dual positions in their cub unit. I myself was my son's Tiger Den Leader and Cubmaster. I think that in all actuality my son liked me being CM better than Den Leader. It wasn't that he didn't enjoy den meetings, quite the contrary, he just like the fact that I was the big cheese. DYB-Mike gave the best advice I think, that being what do you want to do. The worst case scenario involves you getting involved over your head and burning out, making the experience a net negative for your son. In th
  15. interesting question, good opportunity. As the father of multiple scouts, girl and boy, one thing that I have noticed in both organizations is the more involved the scout is in planning, the more fun they have. This goes equally for the successes and the mistakes. If I were the leader of your Troop, I would start by asking them what they would like to get out of a year of Girl Scouting. Of course I would have a coouple of ideas myself ready for the suggesting! Each of the girls may have some interesting ideas to offer for service or activity. You might be surprised at what they come up wi
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