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SSScout last won the day on January 6

SSScout had the most liked content!

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About SSScout

  • Rank
    Luftschiff hoch

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  • Occupation
    Retired Transit Street Super. Bus driver, Sub teacher. Rough Carpenter.
  • Interests
    Quaker Jambo Chaplain, canoeing, Historic Trail Guide, RTCommish, Train Bus Drivers for Yearly Meeting Summer Camp.
  • Biography
    Born young, realized I had to get old, but did not have to grow up.

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  1. A lovely bit of troop history

    I am a firm believer in teaching history "on site" as much as possible. Book learnin' isn't as important as knowing WHO that person is in the old photograph. (any family albums out there need labeling? Once you're gone, no one else will know that's Aunt Mahitabel next to the old Buick...) One of my minor victories: There is a local restaurant, nice place good food, pleasant staff/company, that has lots of old historic photos on the walls. Garnered from a local museum and families. There is one that is of Finneyfrock's blacksmith shop. I grew up with my dad dealing with Dudley Finneyfrock, Jr. and this is a photo of Dudley's Great Grandfather standing in front of his barnlike shop, circa 1870. The coal fired forge inside was a part of Dudley's shop (updated and expanded tho it was) until it was torn down to make way for the intersection expansion in about 1970. This picture was rather iconic for the area, except no one noticed until I finally pointed out that the negative had been printed BACKWARDS. And yep, there it was, a sign in the background, backwards. We found a correctly printed version in a historic tome, so there was no arguing about it. Now, it's a conversation piece for the restaurant. Our kids are the less for not having the connection with where they came from. My Scoutson and others often ask me about when Georgia Ave. was only two lanes, instead of the six we have now.....
  2. Family Scouting Update

    OldScout448, you know where to find me, methinks.... PM me if you must. C&O sounds good, regardless. Scoutson will come. Woodlawn Manor to start?
  3. KiS MiF.... "Okay, Cubs, here are your ropes... Notice the different colored ends. These are the best, Peruvian Bi-colored, double ended ropes we could get. They were picked from the jungle plantations at the PEAK of maturity. Now remember --- when you go to the store to buy some rope, NEVER , NEVER buy single ended rope. ALWAYS insist on rope with two ends ! ! Trust me, single ended rope is inherently defective , and will cause you nothing but trouble ! ALWAYS buy double ended rope !! " ....about this time, your Cubs will be smiling and tilting their heads and looking at you sideways (?? Wha....??) and you will have them. ***Before the "class" (never call it a class, reeks of school. Session, Skilltime, Rigging, something , anything else), You have cut sash cord into 4 to 5 foot lengths and dipped the ends in glue or wrapped them in duct tape to prevent the unraveling. You have then layed the ropes on your driveway and spray painted about two feet of one end a contrasting color (one end red, one plain). This allows a better way to SEE how the knots tie. And you have produced enough so that each Cub may take home his " Peruvian Practice Rope". Then go on to tell them the "Jargon".... ""Right. Now, the men that use ropes all the time , sailors, riggers, crane operators, steel erectors, use a LANGUAGE, a JARGON, and we will learn that language. Here (hold up the rope ), this is a rope or LINE. the part that doesn't do much in the knot tying (throw this over your shoulder) is the "STANDING PART" say that ( they say it) What? (they say it LOUDER) . Good. The end that moves around, runs around (throw the rest of rope around alittle), is the "RUNNING END" (""running end""). Good ! If I make a U shape, that's a BIGHT, (they all say bight). If I cross the Running End .. over the Standing Part, that's a" LOOP" . Now, as YOU are looking at it, if the Running Part goes OVER the Standing part, that's an OVER LOOP. and if the Running End goes UNDER the Standing Part, that's an.... Right ! Under Loop, you kids a good... " Go on to teach the Overhand Knot, Figure Eight Knot, Square/Reef Knot, Clove Hitch, Two half Hitches, etc. Use the Jargon. Give them the pride of ownership and "inside dope". Use your Boy Scout Assistants . HANDS ON, if you have to stand behind the Cub and manipulate their hands, DO IT. Teach your Scout Assistants to do this. GET INVOLVED. "Great! Any of you Cubs know who Isaac Newton is? (some of the older ones may) Do you know his Three Laws of Motion? (Here you can repeat them , simply, for review. Look'em up). But did you know... When he sent them off to his publisher, there were FOUR Laws of Motion ! Yep, Seems that somebody spilled coffee on them and wiped out the fourth law, umm umm. We have recently discovered what that Fourth Law is... (throw your Big Rope out to a Cub to hold on) You Can't Push A Rope. (push on it ) Ropes are ONLY good in Tension (pull on it. Play with this for awhile. )" When the CSDC Director says "of course they learned these eight knots...." You can, with authority tell her/him, no, in my 50 minute session, They learned these four knots.... Learned and learned their use. The Den Walkers (Adults !) learned them too ! Insist on their participation ! Don't EVER let the escorts just sit there.... MiF KiS. "MR. SSSCOUT, MR. SSSCOUT ! ! (here the Cub holds up a tangle of rope) What knot is this?" "What's your name, Scout?" "Johnny Smith !" "Well, that's a Johnny Smith knot !" If it is a "class", if the Cubs HAVE to go thru it, if it's a CHORE,,,, do you really think they'll remember it? MiF KiS MiF.....
  4. Oh, I think my daughter might have accepted GS if Elsa had been her GSTroop Leader....
  5. I think I'll put this thread here, rather than Open Discussion. It is , after all , about "Working With Kids", yes? Or not working with them.... There is a new discussion in our District, about why our Cub Packs seem to be oozing life. not growing, disappearing. This led to some talk about why kids join (and depart?) Scouts. The Council is interested in the "Departure Interview", and there is a section on the Field Sheets that can record some of the reasons heard. But not all. Here is a list, anecdotal, for sure, of some of the reasons I have heard over the years from the boys, the parents. I can add another list of reasons why girls haven't joined (or left) Girl Scouts, for another time.... An "Exit" interview is always nice, if sad. "Why did you leave our Scout Troop?" Here are some of the things I have heard thru the years ::: * Our family moved. * The Scoutmaster is a jerk. * I was expecting a fun, adventurous time and we only got lectures. * I was put on the Varsity/Concert Band/Chorus. * Scouting is dorky. * I finally had enough backbone to tell my dad no. * Never did like dirt and bugs. * Our family does more camping than this Troop. * Meeting times interfere with my kung fu/Hebrew/chorus/pre-med/ class. * I can't deal with the bully. * No one understood/helped with/allowed for our autistic/handicapped son. * I can't agree with the religious requirement/allowing homosexuals/girls/leftist/rightist/militaristic/too liberal/not Christian as I expected ... tendencies of BSA * Don't see the need for all the "requirements". * Too expensive. (I never understood this one) * No leadership in the unit. What did we pay for if not "leadership"? * Summer camp was losey, bath house was filthy, merit badge classes were not well taught, food was poor. * They lost too many of my paper forms. *
  6. Thinking back, I now know part of what I became came from my dad and mom each insisting and giving me "manly" responsibilities as I grew up. I helped dad work on the car, fix things around the house, helped him in his business. He cooked sunday morning breakfast, so I learned to fry eggs and pancakes. When I went off to Boy Scouts from Cubs, I had a Troop where the older Scouts "apprenticed" the younger. As we got stronger, we went on the longer trips. Our Troop was fortunate to have "The Property", which was owned by somebody's brother's cousin or something. It was an easy 15 mile or so drive to the parking area, then a mile maybe walk into our campsite. It had a spring for water and a creek to put milk in for cooling. The fire wood came from a "dead" area of downed American Chestnut (!) that had died 30 plus years ago in the blight, but fallen and stacked up, it made for good axe and hatchet practice. Burned with a blue hot flame, I have never seen the like since. It is the Older Scouts, taking on the "older brother" role that makes a Troop successfully "Boy Led". If the senior Scouts are encouraged to go off and do nothing but Big Boy stuff, the Troop will inevitably become Adult Led, by default. Sure, the senior Scouts need to challenge themselves with Philmont and weeklong AT treks, but they cannot leave the "little kids" totally behind. Where is the encouragement to leave a legacy? Our society advances by learning from the past. Who teaches that past? Are there any Troop Traditions to pass on? I think I'll open anew thread....
  7. New from MD

    xj-boonie, welcome to the ecracker barrel. Here in Murlin, we have many Scouter.com'ers. You say you are "getting into hammocking." I see that as no problem. My problem has always been "getting out" of the hammocking .
  8. It does sound like a useful project that will ultimately be appreciated, if successfully done. My next question is, how do you show "Leadership"? Organization? It sounds very like a one Scout operation. Are there others involved in this? And I do not mean your parents....
  9. Positive Media for BSA

    These inspirational articles always bring me back to the one that I think may have "started it all" . . . This is always re-quoted in what some may see as "politically correct", but I still like the original: Within My PowerBy Forest E. Witcraft (1894 - 1967), a scholar, teacher, and Boy Scout Executive and first published in the October 1950 issue of Scouting magazine.I am not a Very Important Man, as importance is commonly rated. I do not have great wealth, control a big business, or occupy a position of great honor or authority.Yet I may someday mold destiny. For it is within my power to become the most important man in the world in the life of a boy. And every boy is a potential atom bomb in human history.A humble citizen like myself might have been the Scoutmaster of a Troop in which an undersized unhappy Austrian lad by the name of Adolph might have found a joyous boyhood, full of the ideals of brotherhood, goodwill, and kindness. And the world would have been different.A humble citizen like myself might have been the organizer of a Scout Troop in which a Russian boy called Joe might have learned the lessons of democratic cooperation.These men would never have known that they had averted world tragedy, yet actually they would have been among the most important men who ever lived.All about me are boys. They are the makers of history, the builders of tomorrow. If I can have some part in guiding them up the trails of Scouting, on to the high road of noble character and constructive citizenship, I may prove to be the most important man in their lives, the most important man in my community.A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove. But the world may be different, because I was important in the life of a boy.
  10. Iditarod Dog Missing in Anchorage

    Well, our district already had it's Klondike Derby (50 degrees in Maryland last month)...
  11. Good way to train for Philmont, AT treks

    In suburban Maryland, a lot of Troops/Crews hike around, up/down Sugarloaf: https://www.hikingupward.com/OMH/SugarloafMountain/ and http://sugarloafmd.com/
  12. Volunteer coordinator office.... Project/community service coordinator.... media/publicity advancement guy.... How does one Scout organize and "lead" more than himself in this effort? Posters, social media connections, newsletters, public libraries, referrals of willing John and Jane Q. Public to the various possible service organizations, connecting the Town Council into all of this and making something "Permanent" left behind (!) when you (the Scout) have moved on with your life (and your Eagle?). Volunteer Possibilities Catalog Cross reference of all the public service agencies and who to contact and what they need.... A lot of possibilities. A lot of nice possibilities. Useful, appropriate, complex... Might make building a bridge on a washed out park trail sound easy and straight forward.
  13. Minimal Effort Eagle

    ""What do you call the Medical School Graduate with the lowest GPA? == Doctor""
  14. Longest Family Line of Eagle Scouts

    Might start with our first Eagle Scout and trace his family? Ancestry dot com.....
  15. Eagle Scout neckerchief - quick question

    I collect such memorabilia, too. Packed away in plastic, I Show it off sometimes... Any Scout Necker is appropriate . Woodbadge, Eagle, Jamboree, Troop, District, old time. "Wear it as long as thee canst". .. I sometimes do a "Necker" talk at some BoRs, I like to compare the one I wore as a Scout (big, 36" on a side, bright (faded) red, big design "ALWAYS ON THE GO" with dusty boots), how it was designed by the Scouts, talk about how the necker was treated as an emergency tool (first aid, extra rope, signal flag, etc. That's how mine got the holes and edge tears in it), and compare it to the modern Troop necker (about 24" on a side, light blue, standard BSA issue), how today's necker is more of a symbol, a ceremonial thing.... How times have changed...