Once upon a time, I went to a week-long, Connecticut ‘Adventure Camp.’ The year was 2005, and I was just as (non-)outdoorsy as I am to this day. Therefore, it was both a perfect fit for me and the OBVIOUS choice for my mom to make. — I am brimming with sarcasm and snark here, because I could not be less outdoorsy if I tried. Surely I appreciate nature, and I do love hiking, but I really don’t like getting dirty. It’s just a thing.
We were split into two ‘crews.’ The first crew had all my friends in it! Yippee! And the second had me plus everyone else. Hurrah. (I really think summer camp should be about branching out and making friends, but at the time, I was pissy as a whacked beehive.) While Crew #2 did: trip to the swamp, trip to the mountain, trip to the cave, trip to the lake, trip to the fossil site, Crew #1 did the reverse (fossil, lake, cave, mountain, swamp).
I showed up to camp in my Blondie Junk Food tee and denim cut offs, as well as a pair of Tevas that I was required by the program to bring. My new, cool style was off to a jumbled start, but I felt confident. Popping into the back of the van, because I felt it was best to be accommodating, I slowly watched as four rows filled up in front of me.
“Hmmm.” I (imagine I) thought. “Curious. Do I smell? Is my Blondie shirt too intimidating? Debbie Harry, always a risk.” — And then, after five additional minutes of waiting, further self-analysis and thumb-twiddling, Tom and Blake** entered the van.
The pre-pubescent douche followed a very strict dress code when I was entering Middle School: one puka shell necklace, two layered shirts (one being a striped polo, the other being a t-shirt), no haircut for months, either a palate expander or a retainer and one tilted hat. They did not break the mold when they made these two.
Tom and Blake were to be my seat mates for the rest of camp, because, as luck would have it, THESE WERE OUR NEW PARTNERS!
Settling into my book, because I am one of few very lucky people who can read in the back of a van, I was interrupted by Tom and Blake loudly scream-singing:
Tom: Nothing chillin at the Holidae in
Blake: (poorly imitating a female voice) Who you wit?
Tom: Me and my peeps won’t you bring four of your friends?
Blake: (again with the imitation) What we gon’ do?
And so forth. They sang this song everyday, all day. As we paddled through a swamp. Repelled down a mountain. Caved in the dark. And sifted for fossils.
There is no moral or greater message to this story. This was extremely annoying and I learned nothing.
** Names have been changed to protect identities. (…)