Patriotism and Camp Champions
One of Camp's great gifts is its lack of cynicism. Campers are willing to say that they love each other. We get excited about watermelon and picnics.
And we can be really proud of our countries. Of course, I know that we have campers from many different countries with us at camp. Frankly, I wish we had a chance to celebrate Italy or Mexico at camp. But today is the 4th of July and we are all Americans today.
We started the day with a particularly enthusiastic Flag Raising, complete with the Star Spangled Banner. Everywhere I looked, I saw campers and counselors sporting the red, white and blue. One camper (not usually noted for his craft skills) even painted his shoes - one blue with stars and the other red and white stripes.
Bunting is everywhere and campers are singing patriotic songs.
[Note: until today, I did not understand that Miley Cyrus' "Party in the USA" was a patriotic song, but I am clearly misinformed.]
Dating Tips from Vern
Vernon Green, one of our mostly beloved long-time counselors and Leadership Team members, is visiting us this week. Vern Sir was the Rookie Division Leader for 3 summers and a year-round intern with us for two years. He is family and we always love to have him join us whenever he can get away from work.
For years, he has shared dating tips with us. Here is one of my favorites. Since the ladies of 7-11 (recently finishing 9th grade) join the boys for Flag Raising, he shares a few tips for the ladies. Today, he told us the proper amount to spend when you are someone's guest for dinner. You do not want to order the most expensive item on the menu - else you may look too demanding. Yet you do not want to under-order either - else you might insult your host. Instead, use this simple tip. Find the cost of the most expensive entre on the menu. Divide that number by 2. Now add $4. That is the amount you can spend on your meal. Drinks and tip are not included in this total.
And you thought physical and emotional skills are the only things that you learn at camp!
Much of my blog focuses on events on the boys' side of camp. I have committed to sharing things that I see and I spend more time with the guys than the gals. The girls' side gets Susie Ma'am, which I think is a better deal in the end, but she writes less than I do.
I, however, am always delighted to report on extra-cool happenings from the girls' side when I hear it. Today is such a day.
Last night was the Maxi (girls who just finished the 7th and 8th grades) went on their overnight. Every division goes out one night, cooks a meal over a fire and then sleeps outside.
The Maxi Division Leader, Craw Ma'am, decided to make it a special occasion.
She started it with a toast. Here it is:
Tonight I raise my water bottle to girls I truly adore
When I am around y'all I couldn't as for anything more
The Maxis second term are fun, flirty and full of spunk
And during Maxercise . . . whoahh . . . you've got the funk
I love gazebo time, H to H's and our DMC's
You girls really are the bee's knees
For thie evening I'm asking you to channel your inner poet
Though forget the coffee houses, berets and just show it!
Get with your cabins and write a toast
About the things around camp about which you boast
It can be fine arts, outdoors or things that are just silly
About the food, torchlight, the weather cause it ain't chilly
But don't forget to write about those who love you dearly
Each of you have counselors, who are the best, clearly
Inside jokes and funny stories would be clever
Words about your friendships that will never sever
Impress me and make me laugh because I know you can
Everyone should contribute a line or a Stan . . . .za
You will present this toast as the sun goes down
With each cabin seated all around
So GO WRITE, get creative and have a vision
Cause tonight ladies we are celebrating the MAXI division!!!
Each of the cabins came up with their own toasts. They were all long on love, laughs and creativity. Cabin 1+ was long on sentimentality. Cabin 1 was sung to the tune of the song "You're Not Perfect" (by Selena Gomez) that stressed inner beauty. Cabin 2 did a poetry slam with campers tossing in lines individually. Cabin 3 did an A to Z with each letter of the alphabet corresponding to something they love from camp. This toast then morphed into a rap. Actually, to be more specific, an Italian rap starring our two Rome natives.
Craw Ma'am has been focusing her time talking about the importance of inner rather than physical beauty. When she heard the toasts, she knew that the girls have been listening.