My third, and final, summer camp trip to Camp Rotary was the year we discovered how fun bug spray was. Not only was it a useful tool to keep bugs at bay, but it was also incredibly flammable.
Clearly, being the responsible scouts, we would never misuse this discovery. We had our fire training after all!
My response to that is: clearly, you don't know teenage boys with little adult supervision now do you?
Also, do not try this at home... we shouldn't have either to be honest.
A Flame Thrower
During some down time back at the campsite, Kyle and Jim called me over to behind a tent to share a discovery that they made. They told me that they had a flame thrower. Well, I didn't believe them. After all, I didn't see a massive gun that could shoot flames (like you see in the movies).
While it was true they did not have a WWI-style flame thrower, they did technically have a device that would throw flames. You see, Kyle and Jim discovered that if you light a match and spray a can of bug spray at it, the flame would follow the bug-spray and would create a burst of flame. To our teenage brains, it was a cheap flame thrower!
Well, they tried to set a dead leaf on fire with it, which they could not. After failing that, Jim lit a match and sprayed the bug spray from under the match to create a tower of fire. We all laughed maniacally has teenage boys do with fire.
But, it is all fun and games until an older scout comes over. The flame tower caught the attention of Old Seth. Old Seth came over and yelled at us and took away our matches and bug spray. We thought we were in trouble, since he went over to our scout master, Mr. M. We watched nervously as Old Seth told Mr. M what happened.
It was this moment when I realized that I don't think Mr. M really liked Old Seth, or at the very least thought Old Seth was a giant tattletale. I realized this because he just laughed at Old Seth. I don't remember if he took the bug spray and matches, but we did get them back. Mr. M probably just told us to not do it again.
Realizing that we escaped trouble, we listened to his warning so we wouldn't get into trouble for a repeat offense. Unfortunately, someone else did not hear his warnings.
A Tower of Flame
Word travels fast, and soon everyone in Generation 0 discovered just how flammable bug spray was. But, the person who discovered it the hard-way was Chris.
Chris was tending the fire one day, but it was starting to go out. So, he had a brilliant idea: he could make the fire bigger by giving it some more fuel. His fuel choice? Bug spray!
Chris took the top off of his bug spray and starts pouring it into the fire. To Chris's amusement, the fire got bigger. To Chris's horror, the fire started to climb the stream of bug spray being poured out. The flame climbed higher and higher and Chris freaked and dropped the whole bug spray container into the fire. In a poof, the fire got bigger for a short period of time before returning to the its original, pre-bug-spray size.
After we realized Chris was okay, we all started laughing. But, that wouldn't be the first incident with Chris and bug spray.
A lot of Pain
Its all fun and games until someone gets hurt.
We were all in a tent, and Chris was playing with a can of bug spray (I don't remember if this was before or after his fire incident. For all I know, maybe he a stash of them). I don't remember the exact string of events that happened, but it ended with Chris making a (bad) joke and sprayed the bug spray inside of the tent. But... the spray ended up in my face, and got in my eye.
It hurt. It hurt a lot. DARN IT Chris! I ran out and ran into Mr. M and said that I got bug spray in my eye. He chuckled and said its not the first time its happened in the troop. It happened to one of the older scouts the previous year. He brought me over the latrine and I washed my eye out. I never had to flush my eye out before; it was an odd sensation, and I hope I never need to experience it again.
So with that, we were done playing with bug spray.
So that is our saga with bug spray during our third year at summer camp. It was fun, but for all of the wrong reasons.
Scouts! While bug spray can be fun, remember it is not a toy. It can hurt a lot if used wrong. Don't make the same mistakes I made.
Or do, I'm not your father. Just some random guy with a website.
...(but seriously, don't).