December 21st, 2007


2007 Scout Auction

Troop 119 held its annual Bake-off and Scout Auction last night. Each Scout was encouraged to bring something he himself had (principally) baked. Each Patrol sampled all the offerings from the Scouts in that patrol and voted on which one to submit for Troop Bake-off. Four Patrols participated, so the judges (adult volunteers) had four goodies to choose among. Kevin of the Cobras (?) took first place.

Then we got down to the serious business of giving away stuff. Each year, the Scouts earn "Action Bucks" for wearing their uniform to meetings, attending activities, earning advancement, etc. These Action Bucks are good only for the Scout Auction, and only for that year. The Troop buys some stuff, like sleeping bags and camping gadgets, and other adults go scrounge stuff from connections they have -- everything from a titanium spork (from Yours Truly) to carpet samples to U.S. Army stocking caps. The bidding gets fierce at times. At the end of the evening, though, every Scout has managed to get hold of some cool stuff. There were even some nice "girly" things that Scouts could bid on, which were sure to wind up as gifts for mothers, sisters, or girlfriends.

Jared's Gingerbread House Jared's Gingerbread House
The judging begins The judging begins
Annual Troop Bake-off
The Winnah! The Winnah!
Kevin's brownies with peanut butter cups baked in and chocolate chunks in the icing won out.
Seussa Claus Seussa Claus
Yours Truly at the Scout Auction
What am I bid? What am I bid?
SM Lloyd brings the hammer down on another lot.
How to handle a competing bidder How to handle a competing bidder
Wynn convinces D.J. (in hammerlock) that he really doesn't want to bid on that lot.

Click on a pic to enlarge.
camp cook

Warms the cockles of your heart, it does

We watched Ratatouille on DVD tonight. It's about a French rat who dreams of being a chef. The plot is sort of "The Elves and the Shoemaker" meets every modern cartoon cliche. But for all that, I liked it. Yeah, it was formula-driven, but it had heart. It respected the food -- and I especially like that. And it had one really great moment.

That moment comes when the food critic, Anton Ego (voiced by Peter O'Toole, no less!) tastes the food prepared by Remy the Rat. He had come prepared to crucify, but as soon as he puts the ratatouille -- a peasant dish of vegetables -- into his mouth, his eyes get a faraway look, and we see the boy Anton coming into his mother's kitchen to a dish of ratatouille made with her love.

Iron Chef America should tie Jeffrey Steingarten in a chair and make him watch this movie.