And in the end it doesn’t really matter


As we enter into the last 6 days of camp I find it interesting to reflect upon the changes from the first several weeks, when the campers feared and respected me, to now, where they, to put it simply, don’t.  They have realized that I am all bark and no bite, I’m serious 23% of the time, I am more scared to take bad campers to the office than they are to go to the office and that, for the most part, I just don’t care anymore.  The children have gone from this

I love camp! And Bears! Hooray!

To this

I love to cause nothing but misery. Oh, and fuck camp.

Incidentally, that Santa Clause is one of the most disturbing pictures i have ever seen.  Anyway, I just dont care anymore.  On the playground today Timmy, damn him, found a wasps nest secreted under the slide on the jungle gym… or whatever those things are called now.  Giant metal and plastic play fort with slide.  Accident machine.  Law suite.  Whatever.

“Charles, um, there is a wasps nest under the slide” he told me as i reclined on a picnic table, hoping that just such a thing as wasp nest discovery wouldn’t happen.  I had been an uneventful day for me up till that point.

“So don’t go near it.”  I replied, not even looking up.  This logic, however, was completely lost on timmy.

“Yes buuuut…. it’s a wasp’s nest and I am a seven year old boy and am therefore compelled to go over and bother it with no regards for my personal safety.  If, however, i am injured I will of course blame it all on you and cry.  FOREVER.

A terrible sense of doom shivered down my spine as timmy turned away from me, a wry smile on his face and a wicked song in his heart.  Damn him.  I sat up and shouted.

“HEED ME CAMPERS!  I WANT IT TO BE UNDERSTOOD THAT NO ONE WILL GO NEAR THE WASP NEST.”

“A wasp nest, you say?” inquired Jimmy, turning away from the pile of dirt or whatever he was fucking playing with and looking straight at me.

“YES! THE ONE UNDER THE SLIDE!” I called back

“What slide?  Where?” he asked”

“THAT ONE!” I said, pointing “And just there, between the second and third joint, just to the left of that shiny bolt.”

“Indeeeeed,” mused jimmy as he left the dirt alone and began to stroke his chin contemplatively.  He walked over the slide and began to poke the nest with a stick or something.

“Yeah that one.  NO ONE GO NEAR THE ONE THAT JIMMY IS FOOLISHLY PRODDING WITH A STICK.  OK?”  No one seemed to listen. It was as if the slide was a giant electromagnet and all the children were bars of iron.  They slowly floated over to the slide, looks of awe upon their faces for they and they alone, had been blessed with a chance to see wasps, real wasps, in a nest under a slide.

“Oh well.  I suppose i fulfilled my contractual obligations in this particular instance.”  I said to my fellow counselors, who nodded sagely.

“In my opinion,” said one of them as the children began to pelt the nest with mulch and small stones, “a good stinging is just one some of these kids need.  Teach them a thing or two about wasps!  And life!  If you throw stones at something, you can expect the thing you throw stones at to be fucking angry.  I think that’s a chinsese proverb or something.”  The other counselors, myself included, nodded sagely a second time and went about our business.  Remarkably, no one got stung.  The wasps stoically took their punishment with an air of grace I had never held their species to possess.  All that happened that day on the playground was that the children had fun and a little bit more of my soul died, much like Voldemort when harry and his annoying friends kept destroying his horcruxes.  Poor Voldemort.  All he wanted was to be loved.

And seriously, who couldn't love that face?

All in all it was a typical day at camp….

Can you hear the cries of the children?


So…

I have landed a summer job at a summer camp this summer.  I wont say which camp however (I wouldn’t want to make an assassin’s job too easy).

“WHERE IS HE????”

Anyway, the more and more I work at camps, the more and more I come to understand how insufferably stupid children are.  Especially first and second graders.  I am fully convinced that if murderers were stalking the halls of the camp and the children were ordered to remain silent lest our hiding places were discovered, the kids in my group could last at best 100 seconds before a cacophony of fart noises and giggles brought the killers running into our carefully concealed sub basement and we were promptly slaughtered.

Firstly, leading kids in a group larger that two is akin to herding cats.  As soon as you look away from one, he finds something interesting on the wall and stops moving to stare intently at it for just enough time so that when he finally realizes that he has not been in line the group is no where to be found.  An example: I for one find little interest in normal, every day leaves.  If i happened to see a leaf with red barbs that dripped acid/poison and growled whenever you walked near, then sure, maybe i would give it a second glance.  To the eyes of child however, every leaf is a gateway into the magical land of leaf-narnia, and must be closely scrutinized for hours on end.

Everything else ever is also equally as interesting.  Mulch?  WOW!  I’VE NEVER SEEN THAT BEFORE!  A bottle cap?  WOAH!  WHERE THE HECK DID THAT COME FROM???? A dirty old sock?  FUCK!  THIS SHIT IS JUST INSANE!!!!  To make a long story short, children cant do anything that takes more than 6 seconds of concentration.

derp?

Secondly, I have come to believe that 93% percent of children are only able to get attention at home by force.  They either cry whenever ANYTHING goes wrong or they are just bad kids and do things purposefully to piss me off.  I don’t even know how many times i have told this one kid to not run ahead of the group, and yet he does it every time.  Oh, and we cant forget the tattle-tale kids who narc on everyone always, even if they were the instigators of the situation.  I call these kids tattle demons.  They’re are many varities of tattle-demons.  The most clever ones carefully plant the seed of a wrongful act in another campers mind, most likely via inception, and then wait an hour or so for the camper to perpetrate the unauthorized act.  He then can claim he had nothing to do with whatever happened, since it was so long ago and no one saw it.  This kids just suck and are total assholes.

Thirdly, most kids lose everything always.  I am always impressed to discover that a camper has wandered off without noticing he has no shoes on or he has forgotten to grab his lunch when i SAID GRAB YOUR LUNCH 30 FUCKING TIMES AND I GRABBED HIS SHOULDER AND SAID “LOOK INTO MY EYES TIMMY AND SEE THE SUFFERING THAT AWAITS YOU WHEN YOU FORGET YOUR LUNCH BOX AGAIN”  Children are even quick to forget punishments.  Today a camper threw a tennis ball over the fence after i had repeatedly warned him against the folly of such an act.  After he did it anyway i was forced to prevent him from playing gaga later in the day.  When the time for Gaga arrived, little timmy jumped into the arena and began to play.  I however had other plans.

“Timmy” i called across the room, “you have lost your privilege to play, and must sit out this game.  Your atrocities cannot go unpunished.”

“What did i do?” shouted the ever defiant Timmy.

“Do?  DO??? YOU DARED TO THROW A TENNIS BALL OVER THE FENCE!!! SUCH AN ACT HAS CONSEQUENCES!!!”

Timmy, realizing i had his number, angrily takes a seat as i turn to the rest of the kids in my group.

“LOOK!” i shouted to them, pointing at Timmy.  “LOOK UPON TIMMY AND SEE THE FATE OF THOSE WHO DISOBEY!!! LOOK UPON HIM AND TREMBLE!!!”  The children quaked in fear as my maniacal laugh swept across the gaga dome like a terrible wind of doom.  10 seconds later everyone was playing gaga, completely ignorant of the chastising they had received, and Timmy went in the next round and all was forgotten.

In short, kids are dumb.  Given the choice, i would almost pick cat herding over camp.  Almost

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