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About ren-ren

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  1. ren-ren


    I recently (last year) found out that my drivers license was suspended. It seems that my daughter, got a whole bunch of parking tickets, and didnt pay them. My name is on the title of the car, so guess whose license got suspended. Stuff happens; just explain your self and every thing will work out. P.S. guess who lost her license?
  2. ren-ren

    Slippery Therm-a-rest

    Have you tried sexwax, a couple of stripes on each side of the pad and the pad doesnt slip on the tent bottom and the bag stays on the pad. Remember to use the right temp rating or it can get really messy! (I prefer the quick humps 4x firm in root beer flavor)
  3. ren-ren

    Safe Swim Defense - Safety Afloat

    Just a small comment on the G2SS, remember that these are the MINNIMUM requirements. When dealing with Safety [in scouts, at home, or at work] exceeding the minimum requirements is basically a no brainer. Its better for a scout to go home unhappy and in one piece, than to not go home again.
  4. Below you will find the response from the President of South Florida Council of the Boy Scouts of America to the United Way. I thought you might want to read it. ___________________________________________________________________ Subject: RE: United Way Crisis Gentlemen & Ladies: Let me add my voice to the chorus, to the extent you have not already heard our side of the issues about Miami-Dade United Way. The United Way continues to try to deceive the community, including its large donors, by a series of very disingenuous claims. The facts are that United Way broke its compact with the people of Miami-Dade and especially the contributors to the United Way. First they claimed there was an "agreement" brokered by United Way between the South Florida Council and SAVE Dade (the gay rights group) that we broke. When we said there was no agreement and if there was one, "show it to us," they then backpedaled and said we "agreed" to add certain sensitivity training to our program by participating in a news conference in the summer of 2001 in which United Way claimed that it had obtained "progress made through the "common ground" process." We have never, ever agreed to allow others to dictate our program and its content, including our training of our leaders! What the United Way and SAVE Dade wanted was for us to agree to require our adult leaders to undergo "sensitivity" training that specifically covered what to do when a youth member told the leader that he or she had some questions about their sexuality and/or sexual orientation. We already train our leaders to deal with a variety of issues that may arise, and some of those issues (such as sexual issues) mandate that our adult leaders refrain from substantive involvement and simply refer the children to their parents and religious leaders. But that was not good enough. They wanted us to refer youths who raise such questions to, among others, organizations known to promote or act as advocates for homosexual activities and "lifestyle." We have told the United Way that sex and sexual issues are not a part of our program, and we have more than enough to occupy our training time with youth protection, safety afloat, safe swim defense, the Scout Oath, the Scout Law, Scoutcraft, etc. Aside from the fact that we, as the South Florida Council, are not in a position to modify, add to, or subtract from, the Scouting program, probably the last thing we would ever be interested in doing would be to add any type of sex education or training to the Scouting program. We continue to respect differences and always encourage our members to respect differences and to teach tolerance for differing views. But that answer was not good enough for the United Way. But it was good enough for United Way to send us a letter in mid-2002, about 1 year after the famous press conference that the United Way radicals claim embodied our "agreement," formally extending their funding to us of nearly $500,000 through June 30, 2004, and requiring us to sign and return a copy of their letter (which we did) evidencing the "extension of our contracts" (their words in the letter from one of their board members who is a lawyer) with UW. The United Way radicals fail to address the fact that their own agency agreements prohibit a variety of types of discrimination, with which we comply, but further states as to "sexual orientation" only that the United Way "strongly recommends" (but does not require) that its agencies not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. In other words, it is not in our agency contract with United Way that we (or any other agency) must refrain from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation. The United Way radicals also fail to address the fact that at least two other UW agencies, which receive from UW significantly larger funding than we were receiving, are believed to "discriminate" against the participation in their programs of openly avowed homosexuals, but they are not being "defunded." When I personally pointed this out to Harve Mogul, the UW Executive Director (who, incidentally, admitted that he lied to us about the fateful UW board meeting at which we were to be defunded because, as he later said, he was required to do so by his "handlers"), he admitted that what I said was true. However, in the face of his subsequent admissions that he, in effect, lies when told to do so by the UW Board radicals, who can believe anything he now says or said then? They should be ashamed of themselves. If we were to allow others, including United Way, to dictate any aspect of our program, what would come next after sexual identity sensitivity training? Perhaps some of them will think we are being too hard on our Scouts by requiring that they complete 21 merit badges for Eagle Scout rank and that a boy who does not complete his Eagle service project will be scarred for life by remaining a Life for life- perhaps their committee of radicals should tell us how we should run our advancement program, or how to tie knots or pitch tents the politically correct way, etc. It severely strain credulity to think that Scouting, which fought for the right to uphold its own principles as a private organization all the way to the US Supreme Court, would reach any type of "agreement" with a local bunch of politically correct radicals to change our national training program to conform with what they thought we should be doing. We have not sold out, and we will not sell out. Our values are timeless and they are not for sale at any price! We had a contract with United Way for funding through June 30, 2004, and we planned and set our program and budget in reliance on the expectation that we would receive that funding since the UW campaign does not begin until this coming Fall. We have not broken any of our agreements with the United Way- it is they who have broken their agreements with us. The money that the United Way will be distributing after June 30 of this year will consist of, at least in large part, money that UW raised in the past, using our good name with contributors as one of the agencies that would receive funding from their gifts. If UW told us that they would not consider extending our contract and funding after June 30 of next year, we would have been disappointed but we could have planned accordingly. What they have done is simple- they have broken their contracts with us, they have obtained money from contributors under the pretense that we would be among the agencies benefiting from their contributions, and they have allowed their Board to be hijacked by a small but vocal group of radicals, who have no tolerance for views that differ from theirs and who certainly could not allow themselves to be constrained by contractual obligations and due process. They should be ashamed of themselves, but as I believe you may suspect, they have no shame. These are the people who are now apparently in control of the Miami-Dade United Way, and it vital that you understand the issues so that you can discuss them intelligently with UW contributors you know and might be able to influence. Please keep in mind that even if a UW contributor specifically designates the "South Florida Council Boy Scouts" to receive the benefit of its contribution, the UW can take a significant "administrative fee" off the top before they remit the contribution to us. Therefore, if someone you know wants to give to us and for us to get the full benefit of their contribution, let them give to us directly. South Florida Council will be running a large ad in The Miami Herald this coming Thursday in an effort to set the record straight, but we cannot cover everything in that (expensive) ad, and many people fail or refuse to read the Herald. I just wanted you to know. Please pardon me if you are offended by the tone or emotion of my message to you, but I simply cannot stand by and let their garbage and lies about us pile up and go unanswered. Norman J. Silber President, South Florida Council, Inc., Boy Scouts of America 701 Brickell Avenue Suite 1900 Miami, Florida 33131 Telephone (direct): (305) 789-2790 Facsimile (direct): (305) 537-3990 Telephone (switchboard): (305) 789-2700 Email: Norman.Silber@ruden.com
  5. I have to admit that I do ask scouts to tie a knot during an Eagle Scout Master Conference. But I do it for two distinct reasons, one, normally the scout is nervous so I ask them something really easy, that I know they know, (tie a bowline) to place them at ease. Two, I use it as a lead in to the following question, Who taught you that? This is to initiate a discussion about the fact that they have benefited from the experience, time, efforts, and knowledge of others. Talk about their personnel plans for there future in Scouting. To discuss my personnel feelings about how I have seen them grow and benefit from the program. Finally to strongly encourage them to keep active in the Troop. You may not agree with this, but so far its worked very well for me. Actually I did this two weeks ago on a campout, and the conversation lasted for three hours. The scout and I talked about scouting and reminisced about our last 6- years working together. This now ranks as one of my most memorable and enjoyable times in 35 years of scouting.
  6. ren-ren

    Training requirements for BW trip

    More questions. What is the specific level of experience of your adults? How far will they be traveling? What is the mode of travel? What is your expected entry point to the BW?
  7. ren-ren

    Training requirements for BW trip

    A few questions: One, who is your out fitter, or are you going threw Sommers? Two, how many scouts, there ages, there level of experience? Three, have you applied for and gotten your BWCA & Quetico permits? Take it from an old Charlie Guide, thier is a lot more to setting up a trip to the BW than meets the Eye.
  8. ren-ren

    Complaints of hitting

    You have quite a problem on your hands. This probably isnt the first time this has accorded, only the first time you have heard about it, and you will probably find other issues during your investigation, be ready. You need to get the TC involved ASAP! When I mean ASAP, I mean today. Have your CC call an emergency meeting of the TC. The TC will need to appoint a leader to investigate what has been going on; again they will find more issues that need to be dealt with. Try to find two leaders that do not directly work with these scouts on regular bases. These leaders will have to interview the involved scouts and all the scouts in this patrol or who could have been witnesses. Doing this will raise questions with the parents, so your going to have to tell them, and that means all of them, what is going on, and dont forget to inform your COR. You need to inform you DE of what is going on, he/she can be a great asset in dealing with this situation. The Leaders doing the interviews will need to gather all there information and present it to the TC, SM, and ASMs to determine a course of action, and you need to be prepared to find more problems than you know about. Remember, the actions you take need to follow the GTSS. Then inform the parents, the COR, and the DE of the actions taken. Good Luck!
  9. ren-ren

    Questions for a prospective Scoutmaster to ask

    Congratulations on being asked! The first question I would ask is, what happened to the last SM and can they give me contact information for him/her. The previous SM can give you a great deal of insight into what is going on in the troop. If you decide to take the job, then good luck! Also, the best SMs I have ever dealt with rarely left their chair at both meetings and campouts. They let the boys steer the troop, with occasional course corrections as necessary, but only when necessary. The vast majority of the times were to run interference between the boy leadership and meddling parents.
  10. ren-ren


    (This message has been edited by ren-ren)
  11. ren-ren


    In our troop we have a very structured set of minimum requirements for each leadership position. They are as follows: JASM: Eagle Scout, and has been SPL in the past. SPL: Life Scout, has been a PL in the past, and has been in the troop for at least three program years (September1 to August 31). ASPL: Star Scout, has been a PL in the past, and has been in the troop for at least two program years (September1 to August 31). PL: First Class Scout, has been an APL in the past, and has been in the troop for at least one program year (September1 to August 31). APL: Second Class Scout, and has been in the troop for at least 1/2 of a program year (September1 to August 31). I know this may seem very ridged but these requirements have been in place with our troop for more than thirty years. This creates a very orderly progression of responsibility, experience, and training for the scout.
  12. ren-ren

    Can't remember all the badge

    I remember when I went through scouting, a way long time ago, and at that time, all the way through my Eagle Board, I was expected to have a detailed knowledge of all my advancement requirements including what I did in merit badges, for service hour, and while holding positions of responsibility. I understand that this is not the current interpretation of a BOR, but a BOR is a test, of the program (I explain this to scouts when I sit there BOR). We use the BOR to verify that requirements are being properly presented and tested, that the scout is growing in the program, and that the scout is having FUN. Also, as training in dealing with adults, and to give the scout a chance to sound out any issues he has (both positive & negative). But in response to your original message, maybe, just maybe, the adults in you troop are trying to send the message that your scout needs to have a better understanding and memory of what he has done to advance. Maybe, they are using this situation to send him the message that his current performance is not up to par. Maybe, its time for daddy to stop fighting his battles for him and him to step up and tell them he doesnt like the ribbing (again a growth experience). Maybe, theyre just kidding around and he thinks its a joke also, and your oversensitive and need to step out of his way and let him grow up.(This message has been edited by ren-ren)
  13. ren-ren

    hand sanitizer fire starter

    How about this, has any one else ever-tried using corn chip as a fire starter? Between the corn and all the grease, they light easily and burn a long time, and they dont violate the G2SS.
  14. ren-ren

    Military Type Equipment

    If national is trying to avoid looking military, then why did national commission a French designer to create the current uniforms, which are patterned after French Foreign Legion?
  15. ren-ren

    Pocket Knife

    First, I carry a small pocket knife all the times possible. I find it to be a very useful tool to have with me. When selecting one for camping the leather man type tools are very useful, but I disagree with purchasing cheep replicas (you get what you pay for, and a good knife will last a life time). Stay with name brand knife manufactures. If you decide not to purchase one of these then here are a few things you should look for: Locking Blade (Almost mandatory safety feature) Stainless Steel Blade (easier to care for) Size (Big enough to do the job but not so large as to be cumbersome) Other tools (can opener, leather punch, second blade, est.) Finally, I recommend you find some one in you troop, or at your local sporting goods dealer to help you with your selection.