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MEET THE SCOUTS


Are You Tougher Than a Boy Scout?   


KEEGAN RICE, AKA YETI        


WILL FLEMING, AKA BIG SOUTH   


RIO GIFFORD, AKAWOLF      


DIALLO WHITAKER, AKA TORPEDO    


MIKE HENDERSON, AKA HITCH   


ROB NELSON, AKA ROBINHOOD    


to participate, he adds, “I looked for the most-skilled kids from across the country.” Among the Super Scouts selected are Rob Nelson,


who has earned an incredible 132 merit badges, and Keegan, who is aiming to become one of the first Scouts from Connecticut to receive the National Outdoor Award Medal. The show’s host, Charles Ingram, a former Marine


and stuntman, admits he’s rooting for the Scouts. “These guys are my road dogs,” he says. “[The adults are] looking kind of shabby. It seems few of [them] had the discipline to read up and practice before coming here. If I knew I was coming on the show,” he contin- ues, “I would’ve read the Boy Scout Handbook about four times, learned how to build a fire and set up a camp, and would’ve had a proper rucksack. One guy came out with just a little handbag and I said, ‘And you were a Scout? Did you, like, forget everything?’ Their motto is ‘Prepared. For Life,’ and as the Scouts say—if you don’t use it, you lose it, and that will continue in everything you do.” Ingram professes to be well-impressed with the Scouts on the show. “If they’re any inkling of Scouts everywhere,” he says, “these guys are the leaders of the future.”


Mondello agrees. Of the competing Scouts, he


says, variously, “I can see him being a true leader,” “I didn’t want to mess with him on anything physical,” “He’s as intelligent and mature as men my age,” “He’ll be climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in two months,” and even, “I’ll vote for him for president in the future.” He concludes, “The proof is in the pudding—


they’re Eagle Scouts, and I’m not. Their character is amazing. This is what Eagle Scouts are supposed to be like. These are the people we should look up to.”


BACK ON SET, THE WOES CONTINUE for the adults: During a challenge called “Unhappy Camper,” in which both teams race to build a safe and efficient campsite, Mondello and Torno are pretty much keeping pace with Scouts Keegan and Mike until they try to fasten the rain fly atop their tent. The rain fly proves to be a fickle beast, slipping off one side when they’ve got it wrestled down on the other, and vice versa, repeatedly and remorselessly. Keegan admits he couldn’t help but watch their maladroit misadventures out of the corner of his eye. Silent film legend Harold Lloyd couldn’t have


cooked up a better piece of physical comedy. “I know!” Mondello laughs, explaining that he wasn’t familiar with the tent’s particular design. “We both were just, ‘How does this go; what the heck?’” He notes that in


36 SCOUTING ¿  


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