Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Posts posted by SSScout

  1. Howzabout this:   ""Young Eagles (1934)""

    ***  When their around-the-world plane trip is halted by a crash in the Ecuadorian jungle, plucky Eagle Scouts Bobby (Bobby Cox) and Jim (Jim Vance) will need all their survival skills as they battle wild animals, hostile natives, and ruthless, treasure-seeking bandits to reach safety in this thrill-packed serial. Carter Dixon co-stars. 12 episodes; 3 3/4 hrs. on two discs. Standard; Soundtrack: English.  ((TCM Store catalog)) 

  2. Friend Fred:   I was in the Eagle Patrol in my Scout Troop  It had been the Eagle Patrol for some years previous, had gear collected, a "treasury bag",  and ribbons on it's Patrol flag (!).  I was in the Eagle Patrol until I graduated out of Scouts.  It was in existence for some years, I found out, after I left, but eventually dissipated when the Troop came on hard times.   Same Patrol, different boys coming in and out.  Different ages , therefore.  As I got older, I went from Patrol member, to Patrol Quartermaster (cook kits,  tents/tarps) and treasurer, and Patrol Leader.  Assigning chores on hikes and camp outs was the toughest part, I guess. That is my model in judging B-P's "traditional" Patrol.

    I had friends of my age and older and younger in it.  When I visit the Troop Meeting place/CO, I look at the Eagle Plaque and remember the faces.....

    The other two types I generalized about usually last only as long as there are Scouts of a certain age or rank.  Even the "new boy" Patrol is designed to disappear when the Scouts get too old.  

    If a Scout only has the one type of Troop/Patrol to experience, they may say "that's the way Patrols SHOULD work" and leave it at that.  If the Troop Adults don't worry about their interference ("we' have to control and make everything safe") in the Scout culture,  then that will be the Troop culture.  I still remember my stints as a sub teacher, and how hard it is to get today's middle schoolers to give out an original idea, rather than sit there and wait for the teacher's instruction..... 

  3. Rain:   Your comment about the Scouts forming informal groups is telling.   

    A Patrol should be a bunch of  friends to learn/go/do/see/hangout/camp/hike/movie/ together.    

    As you go thru Scouting, you will see three types of Patrols, which leads to three types of Troops:

    **The traditional Patrol is mixed age, the older Scouts just naturally gravitate to leadership positions.  New Scouts are assigned to a Patrol because their buddies are there, the Patrol has room (no more than eight), or the Scouts have gravitated there due to neighborhood.  The Troop may/may not have a ASM "Troop Guide" assigned to "advise".  Usually, this type of Patrol leads to a Senior Scout cadre, who go off to do High Adventure Stuff, too, separate from the original Patrols.  Troop may name Instructors, but the PL is expected to train "his" Scouts in the various skills, and often pass them for rank.  Traditionally, the Patrol MIGHT (!) have  "Patrol Dad" as a mentor, but not always.  Patrol only activities are expected, encouraged. Adult accompaniment may /may not be seen as required.  

    ** The Age Patrol has all the Scouts of the same age and general rank.  They joined together (crossed over Webelos?) and stay together.   This leads the Troop to have older Patrols and younger Patrols, which often makes it hard for any type of competitions.  The older Patrols rank out, become Venturers, and leave the younger ones behind. eleven year old PL?  yep. By it's very nature, the Troop assigns a ASM Patrol Guide to the Patrol, to "guide " them.  Yes, there can be Patrol Only activities, but the ASM guide must approve....

    ** New Scout Patrol (method)  has the new Scouts all in one Patrol for the first year at least, during which time they are encouraged/required/led/expected to gain First Class. After the first year, the Scout is re-assigned to another Patrol, which may/may not be one of the first two types, "depending".  The Troop that has this construct is seen as the "Adult Led" Troop.  Nothing is done without the permission and planning of the Adult ASMs.  There are no Patrol Activities, only under the aegis of the Troop (adult) leadership.

    The examples above are observed definitions.   Here's an example:

    If a Troop 666 has a campout  planned/held and the Patrols are small, oh, let's say the Stinging Nettle Patrol has 8 Scouts on the roster , but only three will be coming, and the Muddy Gumper Patrol has 7 on it's roster but only one will be coming and the  Rolling Laughter Patrol has 4 on it's roster and all 4 are coming,   the first Troop above would have each Patrol camp/cook/work as they come. One Scout is a Patrol here...

    Type two and three however, would say ,  meld the attending Scouts into ONE Troop Patrol for this campout. That's  efficient and  what the heck, the Scouts are camping, right?

    What is the difference between the two types of camp?  


  4. I guess times have changed.  I grew up in a family that went out of their way (looking back on it) to help in the community.  My dad was a Lion, club president for some years. My mom was deep in the PTA, other local clubs,  wrote a column in the local paper,  They just did stuff, and I tagged along, helped out where I could , I remember many of my friends were of the same sort, not just in Scouts. 

    Finding satisfaction in DOING and finishing a job.  We mowed the church lawn (now it's a pro outfit),  served at the church /VFD dinners,  variety show raised money for various charities,  the Lion's Club Horse show (I ran messages, watched the gate, led horses, ) school service club (Key Club? Leos?) were active.  I remember it was fun, doing "adult stuff" , with my parents' friends.   Have the kids lost the example from "millennial" parents who forgot what their parents did?  

    When I was elected/tapped for OA, it seemed to be another step in that growth. The ordeal was a camping test (it RAINED !), and the service just a continuation of what seemed to be an expectation.  Help at the Camporee?  The Salamagundi?  At the Scoutaree?  That's what we did for the other Scouts coming up. The OA were senior, older Scouts.  We taught. We led, but not so much with a finger point as with a glance over our shoulder, if you catch my meaning. 

    I still see some of that , but maybe this thread/discussion has made me think that such civic mindedness is not as prevalent as it once was?   The volunteer fire company cannot be staffed so easily any more by local businessmen and farmers who would drop their tools at the sound of the siren and come running to the firehouse.  Now, the county has a professional core of wonderful "first responders" that smile and nod at the volunteers that still work to equip the fire companies and keep up the training standards, all because they think they "should".  

    Perhaps the perceived OA "crisis" is another symptom of the friction between the Scout Led/Patrol Method and the adults who sign the check book  that are afraid the kids won't do it right the first time..... 


    • Like 1
    • Upvote 1

  5. 19 minutes ago, fred8033 said:

    When we get to troops, it's like we forget the fun and friendship.  It becomes "leadership" and "boy run".  We forget the scouts often just want to burn things, hang with their friends or just be away from home on their own for awhile.  

    Yep.   When I promote Scouting, I speak of "Safe Adventure".  We teach knots and ropes so the tents don't fall down and the backpack stays on the back and the canoe stays on the cartop. We teach camp cooking and fire safety so the kids won't be poisoned by their own cuisine and the woods will still be there next month. We teach map and compass so the Mountain Rescue Corps can sleep in over the weekend.   We want the Scouts to make Good Decisions, rather than have the SM hear "HEY ! WATCH THIS !"  

    The good decisions made are self rewarding.  The poor decisions may not have a second chance. Scouting, by it's design, allows for SOME poor decisions. That's where the SM comes in.... 


  6. Fascinating, Captain.... Start out discussing Fundraising/working on behalf of the unit's CO and end up debating the merits of particular spiritual leanings....

    Here are the choices I discuss in my IOLS section on "Scout's Own": 1) Nada. Religion is up to the family, not the Scout unit. Pack up and go home...  2)  If your group is of a particular faith, plan and execute your faith service accordingly. 3) if it is "mostly" Christian, or "mostly" something, (Interfaith, Non-denominational,  ) still tread politely and carefully.  4) What I call "spiritually mushy but suggestive".  Here we are in God's own cathedral /house of worship/etc. out in the woods....   

    When I became a Jamboree Scout Chaplain, I used Father Mulcahy as my tutor.  I learned a lot about other faiths.  The Golden Rule is common, in one form or another ,  in every faith I have dealt with. 

    I was once asked to organize a Interfaith Service for a camporee. I said, "do you mean a Scout's Own Service?"  and the PTB said "yeah, I guess that's what I mean".  I asked that they announce that all Unit Chaplain Aides meet with me at a certain time for 15 minutes.  Out of 35 Troops, I had eight  CAs come.  I handed them my "sample" Scout's Own from the IOLS course, said you boys are better at this than I am, we need a 15 or 20 minute spiritual, inspirational worship service. If you need me, I'll be around.  Those CAs had , I think, never worked together before. They hand copied some stuff, developed two "sermons" about Scouting and Earth Stewardship.  The Sunday morning service was sensitive,  thought provoking,  respectful and got thanks from many folks.  

  7. Dinosaur fossil hunt?   Nothing could be more Scouty….

    ""....Arlton Murray, who worked with fossils at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, hid his own time capsule in a dinosaur installation in 1947. The wooden box — containing Murray’s Boy Scout membership card and a note about one of the installations — was a surprise find five years ago as the museum’s Fossil Hall was taken apart for renovation....""

    ""...It took a bit of research to discover the significance of the Boy Scout card . . . Murray discovered his passion for fossils on a  Boy Scout outing. ""


    He was a Scoutmaster in 1945..... 

    • Thanks 1
    • Upvote 1

  8. On 6/2/2019 at 10:12 PM, John-in-KC said:

    I’d be careful of @SSScout‘s suggestion. I’ve seen a few toxic/vindictive leaders along the trail. Some of them had the ability to make other folks lives outside of Scouting miserable

    Yep...   A Scout is Brave....   It all depends on how untenable the situation is, and whether one either transfers out or tries to improve things where one is. 

  9. The well mannered kid wants to be ignored and the badly behaving one wants the attention. It is a learned behavior.  Too late for the parents to re-learn how to direct the child...

    As a sub teacher, I learned early on to call the kid's bluff. (he 's just a sub, he won't do anything..." yes he will and has).  7th grade science class.  Average suburban school, overcrowded class, tho.  Class was about volcanoes !  Neat video about Hawaii and Kileuaua, which I had happened to have been to.  Girl in back of class on cellphone, talking LOUD.  I continue my lecture, walk back and take the phone out of her hand, saying "you may pick this up after school", walk back to front of class and continue.... you never saw such a surprised look on a girl's face.  She later apologized, and I had no problems with any other class that day.  

  10. Definitions:   If the SM is THE SM, then he is a registered Scouter, has taken the required training, and is up to date in his dues (unit pays that?). If not....

    If the ASM's are all up to date and registered and trained, then any of them is "Qualified" to be THE SM. 

    If the ASMs are in agreement (sounds like it from this reporter), then they should form an Ad Hoc Committee to collect/document/write down the problems. Present these to the CO and IH and then as a sort of "intervention", as a group to the present SM.   He can either accept the truth and resign (he ain't gonna change) or he can realize he is going to be replaced and retired with the appropriate "thank yous". 

    • Like 1

  11. Back in the (ahem) good old days,  (Bobcat, wolf, bear lion, Webelos….), one Cub Scout cap, one Cub necker, one Cub slide/woggle.   Blue shirt thru Webelos,  khaki shirt when one became a Boy Scout . 

    My "activity " shirt was the t shirt for the Cub Scout softball league (Yep ! You heard right). 

    I often tell Cub Packs,  when I hear complaints about the expense of a new hat & necker each year,   if the Pack finds agreement in it,  decide to wear ONLY one necker thruout , one cap thruout.  When Webelos was made a twoyear program, and the AoL became the last "rank" rather than an "award",  the rank of Lion was eliminated. 

    THEN.... BSA looked at Daisy Scouts, said "wow" and decided the best rank for a first grader would be.... Tiger 

    Then Kindergarten needs a Cub rank, make that.... Lion. ..   So much for the  natural size/strength progression. Lost the Jungle Book reference. It used to be official, now only if the locals bring it up. 

    I could wax poetic about this stuff all night, but I have to help set up and run the Scouterhorn at the Sandy Spring Museum Strawberry Festival tomorrow, that is, if I have sufficient Scouts and adults to help....  Good night all.

  12. On 5/29/2019 at 4:23 PM, MattR said:

    And a number that are retired are in fine shape. Honestly, a way to swap out "gently used" flags would make for a nice eagle project.

    In my time as the Scout Skills fella at CSDC,   I always found a need for a dozen or so USFlags of various sizes to teach the Cubs Flag Etiquette and vexilollogy.   The history of the USflag is always interesting.  Make contact with your County and State offices.  They will have county and state flags that are still usable for ceremonies and gifting to Packs and Troops.  

    AND TOO.... you can make a Scout Camporee event with some old flags.       https://www.dropbox.com/s/dbxthcsx6330q22/FlagUSCampCompScore.docx?dl=0   

    Read thru the instructions.  Make a study of WHY the Patrol of four wants to choose the BIG flag. And smile as they attempt to fold it in 40 mph winds..... rather than choose the sure thing of the smaller flag.   In more calm days I have seen a Patrol of four do a very good job of the big flag, where a Patrol of eight struggles to work together to accomplish the task.  Patriotism?  More a demonstration of working as a team, rather than individually. 

  13. "Threshing Crew" Breakfast, for sure.  Start early, make sure you have LOTS of publicity, signage out front weeks before. coordinate scheduling with other community events.  Too many breakfasts, too close together, means no one earns what they could.   Maybe catch breakfast on the way to the church bazaar? The Fire House Open House? etc...  


  14. Thank you, Petey091, thee speaks my mind. 

    I was shown/taught a version by my IOLS leader.  He would take a old flag or two or three, depending on the size of our class, , cut out the Union,  tear the strips apart so each attendee might have a significant piece to hold.  We never mentioned the grommets, some flags don't have such. The Unions were handed to IOLS Staff or someone "special" (for whatever reason).  At the evening campfire, after the skits and songs,  he would speak about his Italian father and his coming to America,  his service in WW2, and then invite folks to add their piece of the flag to the fire and , if they were so moved, speak of their connection to America.  This always elicited many moving stories. "It is, after all, only a colorful scrap of cloth. It is we who give it history and significance."

    • Thanks 1

  15. On 4/30/2019 at 11:27 AM, jr56 said:

    Of course, I don't wear my religious award square knot anymore, because with the new restriction to 9 square knots, I am forced to choose and eliminate some.

    So?   Must pick and choose, I guess.   Go to the Scoutshop, buy some extras, put a mix on your "extra" Scout shirt.   Or on your Campfire Blanket.....

    I have two uni shirts,  slightly different patches on each.    My pride in awards/accomplishments need not be so important to the Scout I pass on the trail, only the stories I can tell around the campfire.....

    • Upvote 1

  16. Howdy,  fifthGenTexan…..

    Whoever  ends up being your  CM,  it all takes cooperation.  The Scouts, no matter what age, see and pick up on "what's right" in inter human behavior by being around other humans bigger and more powerful than they. Parents, Scout Leaders, do they argue, or discuss?  Do they INSIST and REQUIRE?  Do they cooperate and get things done or sit around and (shudder) drink beer at inopportune times?

    The best Scout Unit Committees in my experience have no "guidelines", if only the Scout Promise and Law.  These folks just know  what needs to be done how and talk and work and cooperate to get it done.  Some folks call it "consensus". 

    The best operating units , the CM or SM have a very good relationship, open and working, with the CCh. 

    Good luck to you.

  17. "Pockets?  You had pockets?"    Our West Point style shorty jackets had ONE chest area pocket, as I remember.  None in the trou.  

    And these were umpteen years old when we were in them.  We were issued our particular band uniform because it was closest to our size, our mom(s) (!) were  instructed to NOT cut any material, but ONLY slit stitching and resew as appropriate.  Suspender buttons.... 


  18. """Dinosaur lunchbox, hidden in Smithsonian museum, features family and work mementos.""

    ""....Arlton Murray, who worked with fossils at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, hid his own time capsule in a dinosaur installation in 1947. The wooden box — containing Murray’s Boy Scout membership card and a note about one of the installations — was a surprise find five years ago as the museum’s Fossil Hall was taken apart for renovation....""

    ""...It took a bit of research to discover the significance of the Boy Scout card . . . Murray discovered his passion for fossils on a  Boy Scout outing. ""


    He was a Scoutmaster in 1945..... 

    • Upvote 1

  19. Hydration.   My high school band uniform was worsted wool. We had no "seasonal"  uniform.  Dry clean after every parade in the summer months.   Sweat and sweat.  Long cotton or nylon pants aren't a problem.  

    Uniform means "uniform"  so the Scouts at least in the color guard should all be uniformed the same.  Same long pants, same type of Scout shorts,  same caps,  same socks, same type of shoe/boot.  


    • Upvote 1

  20. Wow, just getting caught up with my  'net stuff.  We just had our combo IOLS/BALOO course up near Harpers Ferry, this past  17-18 May also !   Well attended, rained on,   campfire was both outdoor and under cover.... 

    All good reviews.   The BALOOvians came away with the BALOO cert (they all had the online stuff done !)  AND the SMS stuff , so when the time comes, they will not need to take IOLS again !  Only the indoor SMS material. 

    Every Council/District training committee needs to consider, the BALOO and IOLS curriculum are VERY similar. Almost identical.   Why not combine them , with some Cub philosophy sections as necessary.   It works for us....  

    I only wish "they" had approved the idea of the SMS folks receiving the BALOO cert too.  Why couldn't a ASM accompany a Cub Pack camping?