February 28, 2004

When I was five, I went to summer camp at the Jewish Community Center. I have mentioned this experience tangentially before, in the third paragraph of this post, but never discussed it directly.

The kids at JCC summer camp were split up into groups of eight or ten. On the first day, each group had to come up with an animal name for itself. Most groups ended up choosing ineffably banal names like the Bears or the Lions. I, on the other hand, had been reading a terrific book about exotic animal species, and somehow through the force of my personality (which has never again been so powerful) I managed to convince the kids in my group that we should call ourselves the Golden Eagles.

That night, however, I finished the book and started another.

I went in the next day and insisted that we change our name from the Golden Eagles to the South American Giant Anacondas.

Evidently, the force of my personality had already begun to ebb. The other kids, morons to a one, thought the South American Giant Anacondas was not a good name for our group and decided to stick to the Golden Eagles.

I date my life as a societal outcast from that very day.


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3 Responses to When I was five, I

  1. Adrienne says:

    In first grade, our bathroom was in the back of the classroom. One day, forgetting the slats in the bottom of the door, I was enjoying a spirited rendition of Somewhere Over the Rainbow and, while I emerged to applause it was tainted with derision. Things went downhill from there.

  2. jadedju says:

    I was a camp counselor at a JCC day camp, our kids were assigned to groups named after cities in Israel. It wasn’t until much later that I realized that many of the city names were places on the west bank, filled with Palestinians. Politics really ruins all the fun.

  3. andy says:

    in a similar incident during elementary school, i attempted to have our group named the “black panthers”, as i had been reading about wild cats of the jungle and was fascinated. my fate as an outcast was sealed early and often.


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