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Weekender

Prickly pear cobbler and the run away rooster

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Just got back from a great campout with my scout troop. We went to a local property (we call'em ranches) in order to teach our scouts some survival skills. We started Friday night with Beef jerky for supper that the scouts had helped to prepare the previous week and river water to wash it down with . When the boys got up in the morning we had a discussion about turkeys and how they nest. We told them there were two simulated turkey nests in the area with their breakfast in them and sent them out to find their food. Breakfast was scrambled "turkey" eggs and prickly pear cactus pads (picked last spring) on warm tortillas. For lunch we had 4 live roosters for 8 scouts. They had to figure out (with a little parental guidance) how to take them from on the claw to on the grill. They did well except for the one that got the idea something was up as the boy put a knife to it. That bird decided he was worth fighting for. He pecked at the scout, somehow untied his own legs and ran for cover with eight scouts in hot pursuit. The bird was caught and dispatched humanely and all settled down to clean there lunch. The adults had a hen which, in addition to lunch, also provided an unexpected egg and a good nature lesson on the various stages of egg development. All the left over bones went into a stew pot. Dinner included chicken soup with dumplings and wild veggies culled from the field (mostly watercress, snot grass, and spinney lettuce). Dessert was prickly pear fruit cobbler with wild mint, we used our chiken egg in the dough for the top of the cobbler. Added to all of this were a few fish caught in the concho river, three or four varieties of acorns, and all the pecans anyone would want to eat. It was a great time. The boys learned some valuable skills and all wrote thank you notes to the owners. We've been invited back out next spring so the owner can show us some additional ways to live off the west Texas landscape.

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Excellent outing, I believe these skills are a great example of how Scouting can teach those willing and interested how to be responsible for the game taken when hunting (i.e. one objective for the rifle and shotgun merit badges) and as well as the self-sufficiency of our ancestors. One meeting we paid (reasonably) a local fishmonger to bring in enough catch to teach the troop how to clean and fillet for the fishing merit badge, many of the adult leaders participated as well. It turned into a great dining event with a variety of home recipes, and the fishmonger made many new customers.

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I understand that some folks could have concern. We did a similar camp about two years ago. At first the dads were concerned about kids "killing things" and the effect it might have. What surprised me was the response of our moms...without exception they were for it. One of the things we leaders had to be sure of was to control the "Buck fever" tendancies this activity can invoke. There is a bit of adrenalin flowing and the boys need to be guided through the experience. Our job was to keep the boys focused and to help them understand that, yes, they were taking a life and that it was their responsibility to do so in the most painless and humane way possible. We want them to understand that this is the purpose of these animals and that the food on their tables at home come from this type of activity. I think it was a valuable learning experience for the scouts and one that will help them be more confident in their abilities to do whatever needs to be done in life.

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People eating tasty Anima...sorry, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. A nobel pursuit if not not taken to extremes. Unfortunately many PETA activists place more value on the life a chicken or frog than on the life of a person.

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Hello Again Martha,

 

PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) is an active organization in the United States that seeks the elimination of meat in humanities diet. They want everybody to become a vegetarian. They hold every life to be sacred and see it as morally wrong (!) to kill another living creature.

 

PETA has/is trying to get the BSA to declassify both the Fishing and Fish&Wildlife meritbadges as PETA beleives this teaches scout to kill.

 

If I am off base on PETA fellow posters let me know,

 

And Marhta, it will be interesting to get your views on scouting from down under, the broader expanse of experience can only enrich us all as the Irish Troop's website (WHO ARE THESE GUYS) proves

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Just to clarify...I have no problem with this outing. I was making an attempt at humor (see my Username). By the way, PETA is insane. They don't even like people referring to their pets as pets...They prefer companion or something along that order. They harass hunters. They try to get sports teams to change their names (because it demeans the animal)...its long list of craziness.

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Here in Babylon by the Bay, the animal activists recently changed the city's codes to relabel pet "owners" to pet "guardians" or something like that. A number of lawyers are still having heart burn over this out of fear that the word change impacts rights and responsibilities of human pet guardians towards the pets. Haven't heard much about this lately. 9 - 11 seems to have eclipsed a great deal. Of course we have the Taliban of Marin County to talk about now. Treason as an alternative life style choice ... but I digress.

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Rooster7,

 

Sorry, I'm afraid you were just too subtle for me. Next time try a 2x4. :o)

 

BTW, I never shared how my dad helped me learn to swim...One day he took me out in his boat on one of the local lakes. Without any warning he just threw me over the side of the boat into the water. It turned out that swimming really wasn't all the hard after you get out of the burlap sack.

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I don't think PETA should get involved.

It's more a parenting issue.

 

The badges only teach scouts how to do it properly and not for 'violence'.

 

Martha, your oviously not from the US. OGE says your from 'Down Under??' I met some Australian scouts 'on tour' in the US. They were a great bunch. Lovely uniforms.

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well, I assumed Martha is from australia since in another posting she has melbourne mentioned. Then when I saw she didnt know what PETA was I assumed she was from Melbourne Australia. I could be wrong.

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ArbitrarilyEnumeratedMachoFowlI too was thrown off by your stealth humor, glad to see you havent swallowed the Kool-Aid of political correctness. You are correct about PETA though, they wish to equalize man and beast.

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