19 September 2007

Boot 'N Paddle - September 21, 2007

Remember last year when I held the contest for a chance to write Boot ‘N Paddle for a week? Contestants had to write a Boot ‘N Paddle about one of three topics: 1) “Welcome back to school”, 2) “The great outdoors” and 3) “You know you’re sick when….” Tons of people entered! The editors and I had a real ball reading through some of the entries! It was so hard to pick a winner…that we didn’t! In the end we decided to enter snippets from some of our favorites….

-This past weekend was simply divine. I have this memory, and it is one that will stick with me for ages, I swear it! There was this moment, a moment so delightful that I had to believe I had conjured up the splendor in some undisturbed summer slumber.
I had just returned from a stroll down an old logging road with my Springer spaniel, Helios. Nearing my rusty gate, my faithful companion stirred a grouse from beside a giant of a maple tree. Just as Helios barked, the grouse fled (This went on for a long time until…) a moment of pure, uncontaminated, autumnal bliss.
- …and yet snowshoeing can be a positive experience, too! I can’t deny that I have felt very happy on a pair of snowshoes.
- Dog is not man’s best friend! My cat is my best friend!... (This was a very heartwarming story that was just way too long for print. Thanks anyway Jeremy!)
- So there I am, in the middle of woods on my fifth day of not having eaten anything except my jeans, so my legs are freezing!
-You guys, I think it is really neat that school is underway! We cast off the lines, and pushed away from the summertime docks to set to sea heading for academia. Well, here we are gang and I must say we have arrived at a very strange new land!
- What is the great outdoors? Is it a myth… some conjured idea stemming from frontiersmen too drunk on whiskey and wine to know their own surname. Well I did some research and the term actually stems (as most things do) from Greek mythology. No, I will not bore you with tales of Zeus taking Athena out his head to bring the world knowledge, nor will I tell you of Artemis’s hunts or Aries’s wars. For it is actually a small fawn named Pan from which our story starts.

Wow guys! Thank you so much for submitting! If I’m not careful, I might lose my job! HAHAHAHAHA!!! (It’s not a job)

New season of Boot 'N Paddle

Hello freshman class! Here’s a sampling of what you guys have been talking about:
- Kelly talked practically all night to Jake about… prettymucheverything.
- Brit told Drew that she has the best boyfriend back home. He knows like everything about her. They’re best friends.
- Mike told Nick about a bunch of parties that were “sick.”
- Meg told her FYP that her brother doesn’t have a belly button. Later, she said it again, and Derick made fun of her because she already said that.
- Jill told Maddie that Derick is soooo funny, and cute.
- Adam told a really loud story in the student center about how he ran from security.
- Pat heard that his roommate hooked up with their neighbor after the quad experience and now Katie is super pissed because she liked Pat’s roommate (after hearing that he had a house in New Hampshire), but now Pat likes Katie (according to Jenn), but he had a cold sore and Katie is super “sketched out,” but is kinda intrigued even though she likes Pat’s roommate because Nicole told her that Pat is awesome at surfing.
- Lars told Thom that his brother just graduated. He lived in the town houses and has friends that are living there and can “hook them up.” Thom didn’t completely understand what Lars meant but said, “oh nice!”
- Valerie was hung over for her first class and told all of her friends back home.
- Kyle remembered a sweet story and told everyone.
- Cameron’s orientation group played the name/drink game and he totally knew what to say…Cameron/Corona.
- Everyone talked about how amazing the Outing Club BBQ was on Wednesday.

Surprised that I know all this? Well, keep reading Boot ‘N Paddle for an expanse of surprises, and not always good ones. Coming to you from the Outing Club, Boot ‘N Paddle will vaguely address the outdoors (who needs to read about the outdoors? You see it everyday. Right? Wrong), but mainly let’s me write pretty much anything I want (no swearing). Keep reading!

The last Boot 'N Paddle from last year

In honor of this being the last paper of the year, I am going to devote this Boot ‘N Paddle to an actual outdoor experience I had last weekend.

Friday night was a late night. They always are because we are in college and we do college things like staying up really late. That, and writing term papers. And hanging out on the quad.
A couple of friends (I call them “buddies” when I’m talking about them to other people. “Oh yeah, my buddies…”) and I decided that we would go hiking on Satu–– no, we would go rock climbing on Saturday. We’re all really good rock climbers who watch rock climbing movies.
Friday night turned into Saturday morning and we were still awake! I finally went to sleep at 5:30 and I’m not sure what time my buddies went to sleep. Maybe they never did. I wouldn’t put it past those guys!
It’s about a two-hour drive to the rock climbing area we usually rock climb at and I was in the best shape to drive, so at 7:30 we all hopped into my car and headed out. My buddies slept the whole way.
I made it to the rock climbing area in an hour and a half, a fact I will casually drop next time anyone brings up driving in the Adirondacks. My buddies woke up and got super stoked about the impending rock we had yet to conquer.
Once we reached the rock, we set up our gear and starting climbing, using rock climbing terminology the entire time. One of my buddies climbed and made it to the top. Then another, and another. Finally it was Gern’s turn. Gern is a self-proclaimed rookie who started climbing in the fall.
Gern made it about halfway up the cliff before his right hand slipped. He managed to regain a hold on the rock and called down, “I’m not sure I can do it!”
My buddies started shouting back to him mixing rock climbing terminology with other phrases that I hear kids saying around school and it hit me how multidimensional we are. We aren’t just college kids. Nor are we just rock climbers. We are rock climbing college kids.
I pointed out my realization to my buddies and they were all very intrigued. Greg pointed out that we are also intellectuals. Casey added romantics. Kip claimed to be an optimist and a future leader.
At some point during our self-realization, we all forgot that Gern was still climbing.
Gern fell and broke his pelvis. Rock climbing can be really dangerous.

Backed up Boot "N Paddle

This may shock some of you. It should shock all of you. Oh my gosh…I’m going to get into trouble for this…
Okay, there is, wow, this is hard. There is, well, okay. It snowed a couple of days ago. That typically doesn’t happen this time of year. In fact, I looked it up, and it has never happened. Ever.
You might also have noticed the new building on campus. They call it the “Science Center.” Hmmm…a building dedicated to science that doesn’t have any people in it… “Okay,” I asked myself, “what’s going on?”
I decided to swing by the “Science Center” and get to the bottom of things.
As soon as I touched the front door, I knew I was onto something. I always thought the building was made out of steel, cement, brick etc. Wrong. The front door is made out of balsa wood. As is the entire building. Even the glass!
So why exactly was the “Science Center” so expensive to build? Keep reading…
I walked down the building’s long corridors and rode up and down the delicate balsa wood elevators. Nothing.
But then, on the roof, I found…oh boy, this is what’s going to get me into trouble… St. Lawrence University and its scientists have developed a machine that is capable of manipulating weather and have built it on the roof of the new “Science Center!”
Why would they want such a machine? Admissions, probably.
Why would they use it to make snow at such an odd time of the year? Well, I can’t say for sure, but I would imagine they are still trying to work the kinks out of it. Just wait, I’ll bet you (after the snow storm fiasco) the weather starts getting much nicer. Green grass, blossoming trees, birds will even be affected by the machine! They’ll start singing!
Don’t expect the “Science Center” to open anytime soon. They can’t risk discovery of their device. In the fall there may be an electrical problem. The spring, while trying to stock the building, there will be a serious chemical spill that will force haz mat teams to shut the building down for at least a year.
It’s a money making scheme. For all you know, St. Lawrence and its scientists could have manipulated you into coming here. Why did you come to school here? Think about it.