May 19, 2024
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May 19, 2024
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WHO Do We Appreciate? A Camp Newsletter

Whew! Another exciting week has come and gone at Camp Zareinu V’chaspeinu! We, the head staff, are literally falling off our feet, and we’re not sure if our hearing is going to come back. So for now, here’s a summary of what happened this week, in writing, because we know your kids don’t tell you anything, and if you come over and ask us on Shabbos, we’re just going to politely nod and laugh and hope it wasn’t a question.

Wait… Did You Say Boating or Bowling?

Bowling. We said bowling. We don’t know what you’re talking about.

OK, we said boating. But then on Monday morning, after everyone got on the bus, the boat people called to tell us that they were closed because of the rain.

This led to an emergency meeting in the parking lot between the camp director, the head counselor, the assistant head counselor, the bus drivers, and one concerned mother who doesn’t know how to say goodbye to her son in the morning, and they decided that, since it was raining, we could probably go bowling, which is the official rainy-day activity of Chol Hamoed Sukkos. Then someone brought up that, seeing as they were standing in the parking lot, it was not actually raining.

Pillow Talk

All of the bunks tie-dyed their pillowcases this week, because they were cheaper than T-shirts. And who can’t use an extra pillow before the Nine Days? You can put it on the pillow that you sit on on the floor of the shul, and it can brighten up your Tisha B’Av!

(NOTE: Please ask your LOR if you can brighten up your particular Tisha B’Av.)

We Had a Field Day!

What even is Field Day? It sounds like we’re farming.

It turns out that Field Day is a lot like Color War, though Rabbi Headcounselorstein assures us it is not. There are definitely teams, though. The teams were called “Cholent” and “Kugel,” named after reasons to come to a kiddush. Plus those names gave the counselors a challenge of trying to come up with songs when nothing rhymes with either word unless you hilariously mispronounce it:

Come blow your bugle!

‘Cuz here comes Team Kugel!

Nothing else rhymes with “kugel”!

We even checked Google!

You’re welcome for not insisting that the kids come in their team colors, which would be brown (cholent) and grayish beige (kugel).

Running in the Fields

Field Day was two days, because there was too much going on to have it all in one day as advertised. Most of Field Day took place at the park and the indoor swimming pools, as no farmers were willing to lend us their fields. Especially after they saw what we did to the bowling alley.

Actually, though, it turns out that Field Day has nothing to do with fields, unless you count the wheelbarrow races. We were short on time, so we ran all the races as fast as we could. There was a swimming relay, a wheelbarrow race, a potato sack race, and a penny hunt, in which Rabbi Headcounselorstein threw 100 coins into the pool and everyone had to find them and decide whether they’d rather keep them or hand them off to be counted.

Here are some things that we learned:—It’s hard to be a wheelbarrow if you wear your tzitzis on the outside.—It’s not easy to figure out where to buy a potato sack these days.—Rabbi Headcounselorstein must be a blast at the mall, when he comes across those fountains.

Scavenger Hunt

The highlight of our Field Day was a scavenger hunt in the park, in which we were given a list of things to find. The list included:

  • 1 Canadian goose
  • 1 swing with chain
  • 1 elderly person + bench
  • 1 traffic cone
  • 1 50-lb. rock
  • 1 item of forgotten clothes
  • 1 dead possum

Wait—those weren’t the things we were supposed to find. Those were the things we actually found.

As with the bean hunt, all items found were brought back to camp for Friday’s cholent.

Bound for Rebounderz

On Monday afternoon, we will IY”H be going to Rebounderz—an indoor park featuring wall-to-wall trampolines. And you know this place has to be fun, as is evidenced by their use of the letter Z. There’s no “Department of Motor Vehiclez” or “Smith Brotherz Funeral Home.”

The rule is that all jumpers have to wear socks, but Rebounderz will be providing official safety socks—or, more likely, sockz—in case some of the kids are not wearing any or their socks have holez. The socks will be yours to keep, for obvious reasonz. And it doesn’t hurt to have an extra pair of socks to wear in the Nine Dayz.

Everyone who’s coming needs to sign waiverz.

We’re Not Tip-Toeing Around This!

As the first half of the summer limps to a close, it’s time to show our appreciation to the counselors, who spend all day pitching balls to your kids in the heat and, in the case of the younger bunks, waiting for them to get dressed. Twice. Not to mention the rebbeim, who have to get the kids to learn even though we’ve made it absolutely clear to them that they could not give tests or homework, all without calling you out of work for parent-teacher conferences. And when we asked what people could do to show their appreciation, most of our staff made the international hand symbol for money.

Mordechai Schmutter is a freelance writer and a humor columnist for Hamodia and other magazines. He has also published eight books and does stand-up comedy. You can contact him at [email protected].

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