Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Taking the Tippy Test (#2)

On a hot summer's day many many years ago, a young girl went to Girl Scout Camp. She was very excited about this sleep-away camp because she would be

1) camping in a TENT for a whole week,
2) away from her BROTHERS for a whole week,
3) able to do what she WANTED for a whole week

Ah, yes, the girl was delusional, as usual.

Do what she wanted to, indeed....

Little did she know that the sadistic devil spawn that ran the camp (or "counselors," as they called themselves) made her do things like:

1) brush her hair (after a call to her parents, who threatened to cut it all off if she didn't, and which, after said call, took about 2 hours of painful de-snarling of her burgeoning head of dreadlocks to accomplish),
2) brush her teeth,
3) do unspeakable things with gimp (she wanted to make a whip, they said keychain. Spoilsports),
4) and take the tippy test.

Ah, the tippy test......

You say you want humiliation, brothers and sisters? The tippy test can give you that.

You say you want frustration, my people? The tippy test can give you that too.

You say you want to be mocked by all the other campers on shore while you flounder helplessly in the dark waters of a scary lake, in the depths of which there very well MIGHT TOO be monsters, trying to get back into the daggone canoe? The tippy test can deliver THAT with gusto.

Wait - you say you don't KNOW what the tippy test is? Oh me! How did you get through life not knowing this? I must tell you about it then! Dig this!

The tippy test is when you and a fellow camper paddle your canoe out into the middle of a (dark, scary, monster-infested) lake and, on PURPOSE, tip over your canoe and then try to get back in. In water over your head. With a canoe partner who weighs about half what you do and who has preternaturally strong arms, with which she can fling herself into the boat once you upright it for her but can't help you get back in so you can escape the slimy tentacles of the monsters who hear your flailing and splashing and who are at this VERY MOMENT homing in on your signals of panic and waves of indignation... Bitch.

Yes, you read it right. In front of every other person at camp, you TRY to drown yourself so that you can STRUGGLE to regain a seat in an aluminum pea pod, the point of which is to get.....

a patch for your sash.

Anyone else see a too-small carrot being dangled here? Anyone else see the futility in trying to get back in the boat when all you're getting is a PATCH? A PATCH? Why not something worth the painful embarrasssment, like MONEY, or 5 more minutes in the shower, or maybe a gimp whip?

Here's a little question for all you who love to be right all the time (it's a gimme) - Guess who never did sport the fashionable tippy test patch?

I learned to whittle and make whistles with blades of grass instead.


Anonymous said...

Know what's funny? While that kind of stuff was perfectly acceptable back then, can you imagine what we as parents would do if our kids came home telling us about it?

Jess Riley said...

This post made me think of Tiny Ladies in Shiny Pants by Jill Soloway; she shares a great story about her first and only trip to sleepaway camp...an experience I sadly missed out on. Anyway, you might like this book...funny stuff.

Erica said...

But it's such a PRETTY patch and all the OTHER girls have one! Of COURSE I understand the allure of the tiny carrot! :-)