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Everything posted by bigbeard

  1. On Perserverence . . "The best way to eat an elephant is one spoonful at a time." On Teamwork . . "The best way to eat an elephant is to invite hungry friends."
  2. We used to call this a Pisa Poll. It leans so far to one side that it stays unoccupied and is essentially useless. Tough issues deserve better treatment, not "have you quit beating your wife" questions. FWIW
  3. How about an online board @ National to review "field calls". Posters could ask for guidance/ rulings/interpretations on G2SS issues and receive a National-sanctioned decision. Responses could be archived for reference. Maybe limit it to boldface issues to keep it under control.
  4. Bob, There is no question in my mind you are seated at the right hand of Scout Knowledge; me 'ats off to ya, Gov. By the same token, after a couple of years and every training short of Wood Badge I could get, (and WB this fall, fingers crossed), I'm no ignoramoooose, either. Please don't insinuate that I can't/don't/haven't done my homework. I try. I try real darn hard. Deal? I'd like to submit the following: Seems to me that hazing requires both hazers and hazees. With our policy, there is not a single soul who has not graced us with a rendition of his favorite ditty, adult
  5. Gotta go with Rooster, with a few wrinkles. The current leadership decided to continue the singing tradition over my suggestion to substitute a good deed on the honor system. Thanks to Mr. Murphy, the first incident following this decision involved our most "deer in the headlights" scout. At the end of the loadout, his PL came to me with an appeal on how to deal with it and be fair to all concerned. Our solution, following a little strategic forgetfullness, was a nice rendition of Yankee Doodle for Trios, arranged for scout, PL and SM. Fun, supportive, instructive, fair. Th
  6. As the SM of a small Troop, I sometimes get discouraged. Too much work, not enough hands. My grass is always too tall, my oil needs to be changed, my wife is unhappy, my weekends spoken for far into the future. In the Troop, it sometimes seems that for every step forward, we take two back. I know we're getting better and making the right moves, but once in a while, the funk gets the upper hand. Here's a world-class funk-cutter. A week ago Sunday an F-5 tornado ripped through a town named La Plata, about 5 miles from here, in Southern Maryland. Few lives were lost, but the level o
  7. NJ, in brainstorm mode I was thinking of Den Chief for everyone, a National change to current requirements. Might be difficult to work out the numbers, Scouts vs. Dens. Might be dangerous too. Some Scouts might just not be cut out for it. On the other hand, if more Cubs get to know Boy Scouts better, maybe more would make the transition. Also introduces to concept of paying back at an earlier age. Just an idea. Most respected Bob White, help me out. Our program, long adult-run, is in a stage of transition to the Eight Methods. We are young, disorganized, a little helter-skelter, las
  8. IMHO, Irving needs to develop a stronger relationship with Madison Avenue. I can still remember that commercial with the dark street, a worried man, and two scouts. Boy Scouts ina nutshell. The modern one with the lost wallet on the mountain is also memorable. With all due respect, it is the parents who start a boy's path in Scouting. Reach them. Wouldn't you love to see a 60 second spot during halftime of the Superbowl starring NFL'ers who are former Scouts/Scouters saying all the right stuff? Or a father lecturing his daughter about the date she is going on, and the boy turns out
  9. Thanks for the advice. Am awaiting a DE response. Hunting is the primary focus of the club, but they are active in a number of areas, including Scouting. In fact, they recently hosted a Support Scouting dinner at their hall, attended by all the District wheels, and made a most generous donation. NJ, good point about potential prices/agendas. I'll keep that in mind during discussions. Thanks again.
  10. Posted this earlier today, haven't seen it. Pre-apologies if it doubles up. Our Troop was noticed by a VIP of a local sportsman club during a campout/service project this weekend. The Troop the club sponsors currently has mostly faded away, and he offered the oportunity to us. The organizations is very youth and outdoors oriented. Our current CO, a Neighborhood Association, is of the "sign here once a year" variety. We do not meet in their facility except for monthly Committee, we pay our own recharter, and receive no financial support. If we went away tomorrow, I doubt they wou
  11. Small Troops do have special challenges. You do the best you can. No boy is allowed to take on more than he can handle, but he is allowed to TRY. If it becomes too much, he is usually the one that makes the call to ease up. BTW, Historian and Scribe work well together. Strong attendance and good word skills make for a fine scrapbook.
  12. Bob, You have probably forgotten more about the Rules and Regs than I will ever know. I stand in awe. If we had a dollar for every BSA rule I've bent or broken, the Troop would be on the NYSE. Ignorance is not an excuse, they say, but it happens. I wear the Trained badge, took SALT, and am taking the new training course with adults in the Troop (lead from the front, right?). I learn more each week, but I still lack your range of knowledge. To be honest, if I gotta learn it all A to Z, then we're doomed. In our small Troop, we've done our best to follow at least the Big Ticke
  13. Values are based on what we value, as an individual, family or society. If we valued those twelve character traits, and ONLY those twelve traits, would we be missing anything? Well put, tj. Values, almost without exception, have practical roots, refined over time to perpetuate the species. Family values are no exception. To the Law's list, I would add a requirement to nurture and teach our children. There is no greater charge we as parents have. It is the charge we as Scouters have taken to ourselves. My wife (whom I married only after rigorous scientific analysis ) is a wor
  14. I have a 14-year old son in BSA and a 9-year old daughter in her first year as a Brownie. The subject of father participation is one near and dear to my heart. When my daughter saw my BSA involvement with her brother, she exacted from me a promise to "do Brownies" with her. The people who run her Troop are good folks, but they do have a pronounced anti-dad bias. Neither leader has confronted me with a "you're not welcome" speech, but the disapproval is sometimes overwhelming. I guess I can understand it, but it's something I would like to work to change. My daughter has friends i
  15. Long Haired Eagle(almost), Please read all the posts above carefuly - finer counsel you will not find. Dedicated Dad makes some interesting points. Making Eagle is a significant milestone in a young man's life. It implies you are capable of thinking for yourself, able to start steering your own course, deciding what "right" is. Many years ago, hair became an issue in a choice I had made. In a nutshell, my mid-back locks were left in a pile on the floor, revealing an unattractive, smooth-skinned melon. To this day, it's not when I signed the paper to go to work for Uncle S
  16. Kind of off topic, but what the heck. Several of the posts on this thread have discussed the traditional marriage as the ideal family. Tend to agree; got myself into one many years ago, like it fine. As a Scout age kid, I was a big fan of science-fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein (still am). In his book The Moon is a Harsh Mistress one of the characters has to explain his lunar family structure to Earthbound reporters. The so-described "line marriage" required that the adults (8 or so) vote unanimously to "opt" in or marry a new spouse, children were common to the group, the ma
  17. The 13th Point: A Scout(er) is Busy. cj: Do your Scouts sing? Mine are too young and embarassed or too old and way too cool to do so with any enthusiasm. Got any tips? scoutmom: Thanks. Dedicated Dad: Three observations. An opportunity to stretch the mind in a different direction should always be savored. Thanks. Flagellating an expired equine is rarely productive. Can be addictive, though. Here's one I think we can both sign onto: "With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us st
  18. Thanks for responding, DD. I suspect after nine pages this thread may be getting pretty stale to it's contributors. Anyway, couple of points: Words DO have meaning, of course (more on that below). There is a fundamental difference between universal and absolute, for example. Do I propose that there are no universal moral imperatives? Alas, correct. I have been hard pressed to think of a single inhuman behavior that has not been considered acceptable by some culture or another throughout human history. I'm not an expert (a good carpenter, though!), but from genocide to infantcide, h
  19. Wow. Sometimes read here, never post. (Too scared!) Steady on; remember a Scout is brave. For what its worth, from a small fish is a small pond perspective, more fuel on the fire. I signed on to BSA rules and regs, and I'll stay signed on. In the absence of a clear cut policy, I'll do the best I can. (Where IS a directive on how to implement the non-specific policy?? No question, the chain of command could do a better job of supporting the rank and file on this hot issue.) Through discussion, I know the parents of our Troop do not want the boys exposed to the homosexual
  20. Bob, Saw your offer above concerning essential publications list. I've been the SM here for 2 years, had SALT, and I try hard. I would love to see a list of pubs (maybe divided into Must, Soon and Eventually, due to costs involved). Seperate thread, maybe? I have been amazed and humbled by the scope and depth of experience on this forum, and would find advice on publications invaluable. To steal a phrase, there are so many books, and so little time.
  21. I've resisted being a merit badge councilor for any badge for a variety of reasons (SM fills all of my hour a week!). When our winter camping theme of Emergency Preparedness was chosen at the PLC, I had to step up. Did my homework, laid out a schedule for the Troop-wide activities in the requirements, set aside time for discussing the bookwork aspects, made 20 copies of the MB book, handed out a worksheet to help the boys through the material, made a dummy for the search, etc. Materials and expectations were handed out before Christmas. The program was made quite clear. Everybody on t
  22. jmquillan, your point on checking school calendars is a good one. Our District scheduled the Fall Camporee on Homecomming Weekend, and the Spring Camporee is slated for the same weekend as the Prom. Go figure.
  23. When a new scout joins our Troop, one of the goals we stress for the parent is to take advantage of a unique opportuinity to spend time with their son in a non-parental environment. The parent(s) are told that for the first year, they are invited to every event/activity/outing we have, without taking part in the management of the Troop. The Scout is introduced to Troop structure for all their questions and instruction, and the parent stays on the sidlines. Nobody asks them to volunteer for anything, commit to ASM or Committee or anything else. This provides time for everyone to get comfor
  24. Anybody know of a recorded collection of Scouting songs? Trying to get my Scouts to sing is tough enough without knowing the melodies. I've inherited the songbooks, but lack the tunes to many of the best ones. Anybody got a source for a CD or downloadable files? Thanks
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