One of our few “fun” stops on our recent trek to Dallas was a stop at the National Headquarters of the Boy Scouts of America, which has been in Texas since moving from New Jersey in 1979. The building is massive but utilitarian, reflecting the approach of an organization that is increasingly focused on economy.
Sadly, this is the headquarters of a shrinking organization. We’re down to about 2 million registered scouts, a not-insubstantial number to be sure, but a far cry from the numbers in the past. While the program has done a truly unbelievable job of remaining up-to-date and relevant (far more than it was in my day, to be sure, when the organization had become hidebound), some organizational issues (now addressed) and the battle for the time and attention of young people have combined to take its toll on the organization.
I fear that in order to survive, Scouting in the USA will need to cut back on the number of organizations, and move toward a unification of Boy and Girl Scouting.
In the meantime, though, I will dedicate my spare time to supporting the organization, its units, and the youth who make up the organization. I can think of no worthier cause, political correctness be damned.
34.520º N, 119.406ºW
Los Padres National Forest
July 15, 2017
“The young need old men. They need men who are not ashamed of age, not pathetic imitations of themselves.”
– Peter Ustinov
Earned it. A year ago today.
VW Syncro. If only they actually made these
All I want out of my next car is the body of a Volkswagen Vanagon, the power train and 4×4 drive system of a Ford F-250 Super Duty Diesel, and the comfort of my Infiniti QX-56, all for about the price of the latter.
I know, I know.
But a guy can dream…
My Life Scout son Aaron was elected as leader of his patrol in the troop our Council is assembling to represent Ventura County at the 2017 National Scout Jamboree.
Soon after, the patrol named themselves “the Procrastinating Goldfish Patrol.”
Against all odds, I managed to find them appropriate BSA-regulation patrol patches. As you can see, the patch above shows a goldfish clearly in the act of procrastinating. The patrol will wear this with pride, along with all of their other insignia and regalia, as they journey to the Summit Bechtel Family National Scout Reserve this month.
I can think of no more appropriate insignia with which to launch this new feature. Each month I will highlight a patch that is of personal interest and significance.
My father-in-law offers his own candidates for Coffee Mug of the Year, these two cups thown, glazed, and fired by his grandson.
Travels this month (bold by plane, italic by train, all else by automobile):