Saturday, August 20, 2011


They don't idolize these in Minnesota.
That should be our first hint that
something is the matter with
Unlike me, David was born and bred in Wisconsin, which means he possesses certain abilities and tendencies that he has in common with nearly every other native Wisconsinite – sort of a Wisconsin belief system. I’m still puzzling the mechanism by which these Wisconsin-based commonalities are transmitted – is it something in the water? More likely, I think it’s something specific added to the vaccinations that Wisconsin children receive, with the result that those kids grow up to all hold certain Wisconsin-related beliefs that are downright bizarre when you think about them, such as that brats are delicious or cheese curds even more so. How else could you explain that that between July and January, a good 40-50% of the conversations in the Badger State revolve around something as inconsequential as the Packers? There’s no way that would happen naturally without significant medical intervention.

One of the tenets of the Wisconsin belief system is the importance of Going Camping. David’s normal approach to camping is to basically pack every single thing in the house into the car, on the theory that the reason that we own all that stuff is because we need it, and we’ll need it when we are camping too. Then he cooks for days and crams all that delicious food into the car. That means the whole car is taken up with supplies, but that’s okay, we can always strap the baby to the hood.

See that piglet on the left? That's
where we went camping.
We’re leaving on a camping trip tomorrow, but this time around David didn’t have time to pack so it fell to me. I have lived many years in Wisconsin but I am not a native, so my approach to camping is somewhat haphazard. First of all, I chose our destination site based solely on the fact that it was one of the few state parks I could find that still had campsite reservations available – the runt of the state park litter, so to speak.

The name of this park is “Bigfoot State Park.” I take it this means Bigfoot lives there. That could explain why there were so many open campsites left.

Next, when I actually “packed,” and I use that term loosely, I just threw a few diapers into a bag, made sure we had bug spray, and called it done. For food, I am bringing trail mix, which is somewhat of a sore point in our family because Stella still PICKS THE GODDAMN M&Ms OUT OF TRAIL MIX even though we’ve been working for YEARS to get her not to do this. I am trying to impress upon her that children have been dropped off at the orphanage for less.

In anticipation of this camping trip, we even bought a tent. I made sure to get a 6 person tent in the hopes that it might be fairly spacious. The number of people that supposedly fit in a tent of a certain size is a huge joke, because there is no way that a “6 person tent” would comfortably sleep 6 people, unless 2 of them were still embryos. Another possibility would be bunk beds – if you could squeeze three sets of bunk beds into a 6 person tent then I imagine 6 people would sleep quite comfortably in there.

The bottom line is that we’re about to venture out on a camping trip for which I packed, instead of David. I didn’t worry about pesky luxuries that we’re unlikely to need while camping, like matches, a flashlight, or toilet paper. We’ll commune with nature, enjoy the woods, and spend fun time together as a family. One thing that I can count on us not doing, though, is eating trail mix with M&Ms still in it.


  1. I totally get the m&m sorting - Mo calls it "mining the gorp." you could always make a move to everyone gets their own personal bag of gorp and then when your m&ms are gone, they're gone!

  2. As a transplanted Wisconsin native (to Illinois--gasp!), I can shed a little light on the availability of campsites at Bigfoot Beach State Park. It's in southern Wisconsin, and another part of the Wisconsin belief system is that you never go south. Only north. Illinoisans, on the other hand, love to go "north" to the Lake Geneva area. In any case, happy camping! P.S. Love your blog!

  3. "Mining the gorp"! I love it! And you know, there did seem to be a lot of FIBs at Bigfoot. Yes, we're back already. We had to cut our trip short due to -- well, that's the next blog post...