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KenD500

No more Bubble Ball

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For my next S.T.E.M. project

 

Bat guano, sugar and rotten eggs!

 

C+KNO3+S

Edited by Stosh
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Just waiting for some kid in STEM to get burned by a Bunsen burner or get some material in his eye before they shut down the baking soad volcano making.  :rolleyes:

Yes!  

 

By 2020, the BSA will be nothing but Cub Scouting, ages 5 - 18.  Third graders and HS seniors sitting around, gluing macaroni to tin cans.

 

Makes a nifty pencil cup, you gotta admit.

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For my next S.T.E.M. project

 

Bat guano, sugar and rotten eggs!

 

C+KNO3+S

Stosh, what the....? :)

 

I think our patrol had that for dinner on night at my first camporee.   Probably not intentional, but that what it tasted and smelled like.

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Aww, C'mon @@desertrat77  I thought everyone knew what that was!  You definitely had a deprived childhood.

I understand the science...but am I missing a cultural reference?   Or am I just overthinking a perfectly good post?

 

The first camporee, that memory remains quite clear!

 

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For my next S.T.E.M. project

 

Bat guano, sugar and rotten eggs!

 

C+KNO3+S

Bang on!

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I don't know about anyone else, but I don't want to be there when some Scout is rolling down a hill and runs over something that punctures this ball and causes it to collapse around the Scout as if he's been wrapped like a mummy and not be able to get there in time to get the Scout out of it before he suffocates.  Oh - let me guess - "that'll never happen".  Maybe not on a regulation soccer field, but do you really want to be that Scoutmaster that has to tell a Scout's mom that her son died in a stupid accident like that?

It's worse case thinking like this that gets us all the silly stuff like "scouts can't climb trees", "must be 14 to use a little red wagon", "no pioneering project can be over 5 feet tall", etc. It's doesn't matter how unlikely the worst case is, that is what we base our rules around.

 

More and more studies are showing a childhood without risks is unhealthy. We have to allow the kids to take reasonable risks.

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Statistically it has been proven that it is far riskier for children to get to today's playgrounds than play on the equipment they have there.  I'm sitting here right now with a brace on my knee because of a playground accident that happened 50 years and 2 surgeries ago.  I still got in my 110 miles of Philmont without a problem.  How many of us out there have football knees?

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My daughter is a Venture scout in an outdoor-driven crew. 

 

When she comes home, the stories:  backpacking trips that included tornado watches after they were already on the trail...refilling canteens from a lake, slowly filtering it, with water moccasins happening by...a camp out with a busted tent flap and a broken sleeping bag zipper on a freezing, windy night....

 

Risk?  Yes.  But these are her scouting experiences, and she's darn proud of them.   She's more mature and confident as a result.   Her leaders are smart.   I trust them. 

 

Scouts don't grow sitting in folding chairs, listening to lectures.

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Stosh, While the basic elements are present, those materials also have a lot of other things that would preclude formation of black powder unless there was a LOT of refinement beforehand, lol.

 

JoeBob, that quote was interesting. I haven't read something as passive aggressive as that in a long time and it makes me think there was a lot of disagreement on the topic. They didn't come out and say, for example, "...bubble ball is therefore prohibited from official scout events"

 

There are two things running in this thread. One is the idea: "I (do or don't) like bubble ball". The other idea is: 'This is one more (good or stupid) rule from National'. I'm with desertrat and have no interest in bubble ball. At the same time, this is a silly action on the part of National. Sometimes they should just keep quiet. Better for them to sit quietly and be thought to be fools than to speak and confirm the suspicion.

Edited by vumbi

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That's quite a sweeping ban isn't it?

 

I've seen most of the zorb ball type activities, and they surely have vastly different levels of risk....

 

We hire the little runaround ones, and everyone bashes into each other, sometimes there's the odd strain or tweak when a leg meets floor in the wrong way, or there's a a few tears from the little ones as they get jolted unexpectedly, mostly they just run out of puff in short order, as it's pretty physical. If you were going to ban one of them, it would be this one.

 

The one where it's like a hamster ball on water? I've seen it running, always in a large paddling pool type affair, I really can't see any significant risk from this as a supervised activity.

 

The great big zorb balls, I've been at Gilwell Park, our national HQ site, and they've brought a commercial team in to run it going down a hill they have there. The company set up a great big elastic/webbing net thing across the bottom of the field to stop the zorb, strapped two explorers into the zorb, then watched helplessly as the ball rolled down the hill, accelerating all the way, hit the net, bounced straight over, and carried on down the hill through bushes and scrub until it came to rest in a hedge. I hadn't laughed so hard in ages! The people inside were fine, but I guess if there had been a brick wall at the end, or the scrub had ripped the zorb apart or something, maybe they could have got injured. The organisers were wiping egg off their faces. Sometimes the great big zorb balls they just run them down an inflatable slide thing, a completely different case which is about as safe as you could get! Queasyness aside.

 

No, sounds like a group of people who have forgotten the difference between risk aware and risk adverse.

 

Oh, and I spent the weekend paintballing with my Explorers. They loved it. Sorry!

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Anyone else reading this and thinking, "Good thing they weren't at summer camp last year watching the Scouts do ____________..." and afraid to post it here with that blank filled, knowing that if we do it will show up in the next Guide to Safe Scouting?  I can think of one popular game last summer where overly enthusiastic Scouts were walking away with bumps, bruises, and probably a few sprains as well... yet good luck trying to stop the boys from playing.  I'll guarantee you that the activity I'm thinking of will undoubtedly result in some broken bones at some point (if it hasn't already), yet it was such great exercise and so much fun that I'm positive that eliminating it would be the worst thing the BSA could do.  Refereeing it, may be a good idea, but eliminating it would take out too much fun to justify the slight amount of risk it would eliminate.

 

To some degree, I get it, because I work in Information Risk Management and spend my whole day thinking up worst case scenarios and working to mitigate them.  Yet I have to wonder, when I read threads like the recent one about a dull sword being used in a Cub Scout ceremony, when the BSA stopped trying to mitigate risk and instead decided their mission should be eliminating risk.  How can the same organization that has a better waterfront risk mitigation process in place than any other that I've seen (and statistically a waterfront is probably the most dangerous place in our camps) be the same one that thinks that riding down a trail in a Jeep (another recent thread) is something that shouldn't be allowed?

 

Risk can be controlled without eliminating it.  It's sad when bad things happen, but Scouts have died sleeping in tents hit by floods and tornadoes.  Every choice we make in life has the potential for risk, but we can't truly live without acknowledging that risk is part of living.  You can't eliminate it completely, and if you try too hard life stops being fun because all you do is worry and hide, yet you are still at risk (even if you never step outside your front door a sinkhole could open up in the middle of the night and swallow you and your house whole - sadly this has really happened).

 

I think the professional worriers at national should take a step back and look at our own waterfront program for inspiration.  We can manage risk through solid rules and processes while still keeping Scouting fun. 

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Risk can be controlled without eliminating it.  It's sad when bad things happen, but Scouts have died sleeping in tents hit by floods and tornadoes.

 

Surprised BSA has not eliminated sweets at Philmont after the 2013 incident where a Scout was mauled eating candy in his tent.

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Maybe there is an  unacceptable risk to this activity, and maybe there isn't.  
 

No one here is providing any data to demonstrate that it isn't risky, they're just making assertions.

 

The real problem is that National also isn't providing us any data.  There's this wonderful thing called the internet and hyperlinks.  Surely there's a white paper of some sort that shows what the data is and what they based their decision on, or maybe there isn't and the decision is based on the same emotional basis and unsupported assertions being laid out here for the notion that it's safe.

 

Richard B, you out there anywhere?  Can you give us some actual facts that could help us understand why this is being done.  When you don't trust people with data, they'll assume yours is no better than theirs, and they're as likely to go with their own gut despite your best wishes.  That's the unintended consequence of not trusting your own members.

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Maybe there is an  unacceptable risk to this activity, and maybe there isn't.  

 

No one here is providing any data to demonstrate that it isn't risky, they're just making assertions.

 

The real problem is that National also isn't providing us any data.  There's this wonderful thing called the internet and hyperlinks.  Surely there's a white paper of some sort that shows what the data is and what they based their decision on, or maybe there isn't and the decision is based on the same emotional basis and unsupported assertions being laid out here for the notion that it's safe.

 

Richard B, you out there anywhere?  Can you give us some actual facts that could help us understand why this is being done.  When you don't trust people with data, they'll assume yours is no better than theirs, and they're as likely to go with their own gut despite your best wishes.  That's the unintended consequence of not trusting your own members.

 

According to this analysis Snowboarding must be next on the list. ;)

 

If National did have such data it would be nice if they shared it in their decision, wouldn't it? But that would mean actually doing the research and not relying on some actuary to tell them how to mitigate risk. I assume they have the same data on why water balloons and squirt guns are banned too? Are their facts that show that throwing water balloon larger than ping pong ball are less injurious than ones the size of an apple?

 

C'mon, let's not assume BSA has a good reason beyond either a threatened law suit or some perceived threat with no data to back it up. This is the same organization that cannot create a training program with actual training in it. I wouldn't expect them to have any significant study that suggests Bubble Ball is more dangerous than allowing kids to use bows, hatchets or walk around summer camp with a buck knife.

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