When I was a fifth-grader in New Jersey, I lived in a big postwar development where all the houses were close, but not too close together. The streets were lined in a grid and well lit; you could always find your way back home by counting back down to fifth street, where I lived. On Halloween, my mother let me and my friend Brad wander the whole neighborhood by ourselves until the homeowners got tired and put the almost-empty bowl on the porch with a “take one” sign. For a kid who grew up pretty close to home (not by choice) this was a night of pure freedom—we ranged out as far as we could imagine, almost all the way up to the Krauzer’s at the far end of the neighborhood (which was considered a Voyage To The End Of The Universe during the summertime.) We avoided gangs of bigger kids looking to terrorize us smaller ones by jumping into bushes or falling quietly into groups of larger kids. Brad’s older brother Todd had warned us that he and his friends would be out looking for us with shaving cream and eggs. We walked the first few blocks in constant neck-jerking fear, but soon succumbed to the pleasures of free candy and no parental supervision, filling our pillowcases and itching at our costumes, and the night seemed to last forever.

I just read that Jam Master Jay was shot and killed in Queens last night. Everybody wave your Adidas in the air.

I also got an email the other day from our friend Paul, who has been quietly reminding me how bad the trucks I lust after are bad for the environment and for the other drivers on the road. Paul, I’m working on a reply—hang tight.

Jen and I went to the AIGA Baltimore’s Pulp, Ink & Hops show last night, where they get you drunk and give you lots of paper samples. This year we departed from SOP and picked up only a few samples while drinking the same amount. It was good to catch up with a bunch of people we haven’t seen since, well, the last PI&H show.

And what must be one of the most absurd things I’ve read in a long time, the Boy Scouts are gonna kick this guy out unless he renounces his atheism. You know what I say about the Boy Scouts? The hell with them. I don’t think religion, or lack thereof, should have anything to do with whether or not you’re a Boy Scout. Whatever happened to common sense? Seems to me they should give out a merit badge for that, too. Tell me what you think.

→ This is a syndicated post from my Scout weblog. More info here.

Date posted: October 31, 2002 | Filed under history, Scout | Leave a Comment »

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