Wednesday, July 21, 2010

In Defense of Scouting

I just spent 4 days at Webelos Extreme camp, which was created 5 years ago as an opportunity to introduce Webelos (10 and 11 yr olds) to Boy Scouts and the cool things they'll get to do when they get there. Over 200 boys from across Central Texas participated in cooking, shooting sports, rock climbing, canoeing, and a ton of other activities. Its a really great experience, and I saw a lot of very tired, but very happy boys this afternoon when we had our closing ceremony.

Now, I know that Scouting organization has had its challenges, the adults that have created problems, and so on. I get that, and I also know the lengths that Scouting has gone to in response. I also know that a lot of people thing that Scouts is full of weird kids that don't fit in elsewhere. Here's what I say in response, yeah, there are some kids like that, and I think that is one of the greatest strengths of Scouting. The kids that cannot throw a football may discover through Scouting that he's a great cook, or that he can design and build a 40 foot tower with tree branches and rope, or he can start a fire with battery and steel wool. Or, he may discover that he can organize and lead a group of boys through a weekend of activities. Scouts offers kids an exposure to any number of opportunities they would not have elsewhere. My son Jack is headed to Washington, DC this weekend for the National Jamboree, he'll spend a couple days sightseeing, then 10 days with 40,000 other Scouts at the Jamboree. In a couple of years, I hope he'll go to Philmont for an 11 day wilderness experience. If he chooses, he can sail tall ships in the Bahamas, scuba in the Keys, canoe the Boundary Waters of Minnesota. My brother served as an honor guard and stood on the podium with George HW Bush at his inauguration, I opened doors for people at an inaugural ball. The potential is endless and its not available elsewhere. Scouting is a place available for everyone, you don't have to be an athlete, exceptionally smart, good looking, or anything, you just have to want to participate.

Like any big organization, Scouting is not perfect. However, I don't think there is another organization that provides as much opportunity for the boys who participate in it. No place else will they be able to do so many different things, meet so many different kinds of people and do so many cool things.

I haven't even talked about the fundamental purpose of Scouting which is character development. Young men in scouting learn and hopefully adhere to the Scout Oath and Law to become well rounded men who have led and understand the responsibility of leadership. This is the key thing that sets Scouting apart because no place else will they be surrounded by so many people focused on the same goals, with the same purpose, working together to become men of character.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Gearing up for Scout Camp

I'm totally excited for the coming weekend. Jack and I will be out at Lost Pines State Park for Webeloes Extreme Summer Camp. This is a 3 day camp where Webeloes are exposed to life in Boy Scouts. I'll be leading the cooking station, where the boys will get the opportunity to prepare a variety of foods like what they'd cook in Boy Scouts. Its going to be fun, but hot!

It works out that this week is also the week off from Crossfit, so I'm not going to miss any workouts, which is nice. This doesn't mean its a full rest week, there's still working out going on. I've kept on swimming at lunch, which is really the best way to spend a lunch hour. Deep Eddy is freakin' awesome, cold water, minimal chlorine, the perfect activity. I've been getting in a 1/2 mile swim, getting ready for the triathlon. Its going to be fun!

Anyway, that's what's going on...

Friday, July 9, 2010

Still Crazy Busy!!

Well, things haven't slowed down a bit! I kind of miss the slow life I had just a few months ago, but not too much. I like having a lot on my plate, its forcing me to learn organization, focus on detail, all those things I'm not too good at. Never a bad thing to push yourself in new directions and challenge your comfort zone.

I've been trying to get my swimming in, preparing for the triathlon. Its nice working so close to Deep Eddy, I can get there, get my swim in, and be back in the office in an hour so I go on my lunch break. The fact that its not super chlorinated, and the fact that I have a buzz cut, means I can get away with just drying off and going back to the office. It can be tough to go back to work after the break, but what are you gonna do?

Looking forward to a great hike tomorrow with the TNT group at Pedernales Falls State Park. Should be fun!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Quick Update

Alright, I need to either keep this blog regularly or dump it. Gonna try the quick hit method...

Totally slept through my alarm this morning, missed the lunge circus at Crossfit, totally peeved about it. Now I get to do it in the heat of the afternoon (as soon as I'm done here actually). Oh well, it happens, as long as I'm getting the workout in right?

On another workout note, going to be at Deep Eddy for laps around 11:30 the rest of this week, open invitation to all. Come on down for a midday cool off and swimathon.

Finally, in the great news column, the Hays County Commissioners Court adopted the Strategic Plan we've been working on for a little over a year now. Yeah, nothing should take that long, but sometimes that's how it goes. Its done, they're happy and I can do other things.

Life is still a whirlwind, got a lot happening, all of it good, which is nice. As I mentioned before its funny how quickly life changes. I'll try and keep this up to date a little better...