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Have had just about enough!

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So brothers, can you tell me if I am overreacting?


Last chapter meeting our chief reported that we had received a rather desperate request from a neighboring chapter for belp on their callout ceremony in 11 days. Their team was down to 2-3 members, and their adult advisor had taken the job only few weeks earlier. So the scouts decided we should help, and have a joint callout, and if anyone from our chapter couldn't make it we would do another callout at our camporee four weeks later as was our original plan. All this was published in our district on line news letter as well as our chapter website.

So I met with the other advisor, rewrote the ceremony, texted and called back and forth with our ceremonies vice chief, agreed to all meet at their campsite at 1:00, and at noon having spent three hours loading drums,stands, torches, from garage attics we hit the road.


At 12:23 and email was sent out that we were canceling our callout. As I was driving I didn't look at it. Got there about 1:00 and started setting by 2 o'clock we were wondering why no one from our district was showing up for rehearsal. By 3:00 we started calling asking where are you? They said "umm it's cancelled right?" It was only then I remembered that my phone had beeped in route. I had figured it was just another sale email ffrom harbour freight or something.

Even if our district HAD canceled the other one was still relying on the help we had promised.

One of the four changed his plans and hot footed it up, two others couldn't make it the last one said "not my chapter so not my problem"

So we ended up drafting two brothers who had never done a ceremony before, and managed to salavage something.

One thing for sure we didn't impress anyone very much.


Frankly guys I'm still pretty angry. I'm tempted to wait untill four hours before our district's callout and send them an email saying " we decided to cancel. "

I sent off an email asking what the heck happened? last Saturday. No reply yet.

My ceremonies vice chief worked 10 hours straight trying desperately to make a disaster into something just barely acceptable. Now he tells me he has had enough, he plans to step down right after the ordeal. Can't say as I blame him much. Right now Im tempted to join him.

Edited by Oldscout448
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Oh, you should feel put out all right.


But, you should try to understand other folks' position. Why the last minute cancellation? Why by text and not phone chain? I doubt that there will be any satisfactory answers. But, it gives you time to think about what to do next.


Now, here is where we get into that "working with millenials" issue. First of all, a district that is two hours away would be completely alien in my day. (I know for some of you out West, this was always the case. But here it was different.) It would be a huge ask of someone's time to commit half a day's travel to help in a ceremony. Even so, the advisor would arrange a meeting point in the district and folks would car-pool from there. Secondly, you listed four different means of communication, the minority of which involved getting another person on the other end of the telephone. So a number of 21st century circumstances conspired to make this a failure-ridden situation.

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I have never been a fan of wasted time, especially when it's been my time.  I'd call it a day and notify the OA honor society scout that said, "not my chapter, so not my problem." and let him know that the call out for his district IS his problem now and he can stop by and pick up the drum any time it's convenient to you.

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Our time on Earth is finite.


It took me awhile, but I've finally learned to disengage from organizations that do not respect my time.


Regardless of the reason for the last minute cancellation, their lack of follow up afterwards is a clue:   they don't know what they are doing, and they don't care if you are inconvenienced.  


I too would resign and find something else to do.

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Let me understand this.

Chapter A  has too few members and a newbie advisor to do a quality call out at their camporee, in 11 days, and asks  Chapter B for help.

Chapter B has a camporee callout scheduled a few weeks after Chapter A's, so Chapter B muscles up and arranges to go to Chapter A's Camporee to help with the callout, with the understanding that if it can't workout, Chapter A will come with their candidates (?) to Chapter B's camporee to have their ceremonial callout there.  Is that correct so far?


While the OP is enroute to Chapter A's camporee with gear and fellow OA ceremonial team members,  SOMEBODY (who??)  texts (email??) everyone (really? Everyone?)  that the callout is canceled?  An hour before the agreed upon time?   Was hurricane predicted??

You picked up the pieces (got a crew together) and (forgive the Cub Scout mention) "Did Your Best".


 Oldscout448, you  and your fellow Arrowmen) "did your Duty".   You were "Trustworthy".  And "Helpful". And " Loyal".   You have nothing to be ashamed of and reason to be proud.


I would feel "put out " too.  I would beat those bushes and find out who canceled  and   why they thought it should be canceled.  Canceled?  Good googamooga, they had Scouts expecting SOMEONE to be Called Out (usta be "tapped Out", I know....). Tap out, call out, put out...


Chapter A MUST realize (and if they don't their DE or SE needs to make it plain), that no matter how small or irrelevant they may feel as a group, they have been  very unScoutlike to you.   If Chapter A is in the throes of a rebuilding, then here is a prime example of a chance to "make things right".  Understanding.   Apologies.  Cooperation..   Owning up to a very poor faux pas.


And Chapter B  has a chance here , too.   By YOUR example, give Chapter A a leg up.   You won't be sorry.


See you on the trail....

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SSScout  - I don't think it was Chapter A that was un-scoutlike - they reached out for help and were told they would get it from Chapter B.


The problem is Chapter B - someone in that chapter sent a text cancelling the call-out, not someone from Chapter A.  I think the first thing I would want to know is who sent the text cancelling the call-out?  That's a question the Chapter Chief should be able to answer - at least in the chapter's I've worked with, the only one that is cancelling a chapter program or obligation is the Chapter Chief.


Old - I would be absolutely livid that someone cancelled this without giving me as the advisor the courtesy of a consult.  I would reply to all on the text message demanding an answer as to who made that decision and why (a good rule of thumb on modern communications - if a message is sent by text, respond by text, not e-mail - they may not read the e-mail for a while).


These boys made a commitment and they failed to honor it - it sounds like they may not have even told the other chapter they were cancelling. 


I would be done giving any more time to this chapter - I'd let the Chapter Chief and the District Chair know that I was resigning as advisor effective immediately and that the chapter has 1 week make an appointment to get the equipment before I put it to the curb for trash collection. 

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Aha!   I missed that item.  Someone in Chap A canceled their arrangement?    Even more strange.   Why accept the request to help, make all the plans and arrangements and then try to cancel the event?


In my pre-retirement life, part of my job was investigating accidents and trying to determine HOW it happened.  It  was not my "official" duty to determine who was at fault or to find blame , only to collect evidence and testimony, etc.  Even so, I realized that in the finding of evidence, I would very likely end up pointing to  the cause and who was to blame, even tho I would not be the one to pass judgement, so to speak.


Oldscout448, be open and honest in expressing your disappointment and angst.   Help to make this a learning experience for your Scouts, and remember, they are ALL your Scouts, no matter which side of the border they live.

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Yea, I think an situation autopsy needs to be performed before you make a decision about your involvement going forward. 

When volunteers quit suddenly, the real losers are the Scouts. If your scouts (or theirs) caused the screw up, it's a learning opportunity, a coaching opportunity. If the other chapter, or one of your chapter advisers caused it, I'd be creating another learning opportunity, which is, don't waste my time. 

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:)  My boys are all taught that from day one when they join.  My pet peeve is having my time wasted.  Because of that focus they quickly learn that wasting their own time isn't a good policy either. 

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First off,  I think I'm the new OA Advisor of the chapter you helped out.  If not very eerie similar to my chapters Callout.  In my instance,  I could not have asked for any better help at the Callout.  Both the advisor and youth members from the other Chapter were great.  The youth arrowman told me that he would help any brother that need help!  He said he would stay for the callout and lead my chapters youth new to the ceremony team.   I had to leave because my son had emergency Surgery but I was told by other adults for my district that it went well.   I hope to see all my OA Brothers that helped out at the joint OA Ordeal in a few weeks.  The reason is I want to recognize them and give them a small gift being such great brothers and fellow scouts.  Please do not quite because I know you help out and are very valuable to scouting program.  That is whether your the Advisor that helped me or another great Scouter. 

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No Matter how Hard you try.... these days just don't compare to the old days...

Hard to tell where it went wrong...


When I left the Lodge..We had a Great Dance team..We had Tepees..We built Arbors for the Drummers and Singers. ...Guide  would lead the Visitors along a Trail to the far end of Camp through the Woods...to be Challenged by Spirt Warriors along the Path...in the distance Drums and singers could be heard...They would be welcome to the Circle..Scouts sat in a Half moon on the Ground...Elders and Siblings sat on log Benches. Chief would welcome everyone...Medicine man would offer a prayer....Dance team would perform....just before sunset Medicine man would offer a blessing to the Spirits to welcome new members...Fire would magically light... Dancers would be out in the Scouts...and On Drum Beat...Candidate would be swooshed out of Crowd and Tapped out...Receive a Block of Wood and a willow wreath...To Bring Back to ordeal ( to be burned...Block of Wood was to be carved into an Arrow..) At Ordeal if you Violated silence you got a Notch...3 you were out of Ordeal..


We had Pre-ordeal memorized. We had Ordeal Memorized, We had Brotherhood, Memorized Vigil...We had Regalia. As Soon as a Ceremonies team member made the Next Level they started learning the Next Ceremony to step in...We knew all Parts...


When I came Back..everything was gone..No Dancers, No Regalia, No Tepees, No Arbor...not even a Tap  Call out ring anymore

They were not escort from Closing Camp fire before Call out Ceremony any more..Now They Danced for a few minutes...Then Called out the Candidates..No Swoosh..just called out. Given No Wood no willow wreaths


And the Worst Part...They were reading everything...

And then the same thing at the Ordeal....and Flash lights to read by...

Ordeal went from Friday Night to Sunday Evening to Saturday Night to Sunday Morning..


:( :( :( :( :(


And it was allowed because OA is Boy Lead...

Edited by jpstodwftexas
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