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Subject: Conflicting Goals rss

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At our weekly troop meeting we managed to end up with only 2 scouts. I had brought along Say Anything to play towards the end, but with only 2 some of our other activities were a little weak.

We've been working on Camping merit badge but I didn't want to leave the others in the dust, so I decided we'd review some of the things we'd covered so far.

The scouts had played Say Anything before and liked it, so I decided to do a special version where we'd make up our own questions and they had to be about camping. We were mostly successful, and definitely had a good time. There were a couple of really interesting responses.

I asked the question "In my opinion, which is the worst job on the typical duty roster?" It quickly revealed that one of the scouts hadn't paid much attention to the duty roster when he decided that "loafing" was my least favorite task (I don't like it when the scouts loaf, but I don't remember ever putting it on the duty roster).

My assistant decided to reverse it and ask what they thought his favorite duty roster task was. He was a little upset when one of the scouts wrote "Drinking coffee" and the other wrote "Yelling at people" (no, neither of those appears on a typical duty roster either).

The final blow though came when one of our scouts asked "What do I do at the end of every campout?" (not really a good Say Anything question, but we let it slide). He was expecting us to realize that he does all the cleanup (something he often tells us) but was instead surprised when the answers were "pout", "cry", and "storm off". It led to a discussion about perception and reality that might have made him finally understand something. He really does help a lot on camp cleanup, but he does it with a bad attitude and he (somehow) never realized that the rest of us were missing his good work because of his bad attitude (he has done all 3 of those things at the end of camping trips).

We also played two rounds of the game in a more regular format. My scouts are a little older, but still teens, so questions like "Where's the best place to take off your pants?" were vetoed in favor of some questions with less likely to be risque answers.

I think the game worked pretty well for us in both the real version and in our "homegrown" version. It sparked a lot of discussion on topics from duty rosters to different kinds of fire lays and even which is the best dessert at camp.
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