October 19, 2001
Last week I left myself and fellow Boy Scouts with a terrible choice: drag one or more of our Scoutmasters from the back seats of their car, where they were sleeping peacefully after letting the heater run for an hour before they retired, or face a possible bear (or maybe even the dreaded Pig Man).
Scoutmasters come in two types, and we had both. Mr. Hendrickson, who represented the more common type, was a jovial, easygoing man who told fart jokes and was a Scoutmaster, I think, to have a reason to get away from his wife on weekends. Mr. Radnewski, the second type, was a prickly outdoorsman who could cook eggs in catalpa leaves, start a fire with a sliver of flint and a pocketknife, and who always wore a red and black hunter’s coat with a dog-eared copy of "How To Build A Pine-Needle Jacuzzi (And Other Fun Ways To Rough It)" in the pocket. The only other adult around was Alvin’s grandfather, who was also the only adult sleeping in a tent. Waking him up was simply not an option because he was scary enough when he was awake. He had hair like Albert Einstein, but the resemblance ended there. He smoked constantly and drank coffee all day. This explains why he’d answer any request for help or information with, "Not before my coffee."
Mr. Hendrickson was a heavy sleeper, so we decided to try Mr. Radnewski, who could be awakened by the sound of a snake slithering across a rock. As it turned out, he could also be awakened by ten adolescent boys creeping toward his car. "GO TO SLEEP, BOYS!" It was a non-negotiable order. If the woods had been on fire, we would have taken our tents down to the lake and pitched them underwater. Finally we convinced Alvin to wake up his grandfather. "All right," he said, "but you guys come with me." Approaching the tent of Alvin’s grandfather was a harrowing experience, made worse by the fact that the mysterious sound got louder as we got closer. In fact, as it turned out, the sound was coming from the tent. Then we realized it was coming from Alvin’s grandfather. Among his other eccentricities, Alvin’s grandfather had a sinus condition. As we would later learn, on previous camping trips Alvin’s grandfather had kept the other Scoutmasters up all night, which is why they slept in their cars, and left him out to keep us up all night.
Enjoy this week’s offerings.
Never raise your hands to your kids. It leaves your groin unprotected.
I’m not into working out. My philosophy is no pain, no pain.
I’m in shape. Round is a shape.
I’m desperately trying to figure out why Kamikaze pilots wore helmets.
Do illiterate people get the full effect of alphabet soup?
I’ve always wanted to be somebody, but I should have been more specific.
Ever notice when you blow in a dog’s face he gets mad at you, but when you take him in a car he sticks his head out the window?
Ever notice that anyone going slower than you is an idiot, but anyone going faster is a maniac?
You have to stay in shape. My mother started walking five miles a day when she was 60. She’s 97 now and we have no idea where she is.
I have six locks on my door, all in a row. When I go out, I lock every other one. I figure no matter how long somebody stands there picking the locks, they are always locking three of them.
One out of every three Americans is suffering from some form of mental illness. Think of two of your best friends. If they are OK, then it must be you.
They show you how detergents take out bloodstains. I think if you’ve got a T-shirt with bloodstains all over it, maybe your laundry isn’t your biggest problem.
Ask people why they have deer heads on their walls and they tell you it’s because they’re such beautiful animals. I think my wife is beautiful, but I only have photographs of her on the wall.
A lady came up to me on the street, pointed at my suede jacket and said, Don’t you know a cow was murdered for that jacket? I said I didn’t know there were any witnesses. Now I’ll have to kill you too.