A Week Of Being A Camp Counselor As Told By Ron Swanson
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A Week Of Being A Camp Counselor As Told By Ron Swanson

The stone cold director of Parks and Recreation is all of our spirit animals.

A Week Of Being A Camp Counselor As Told By Ron Swanson
The Washington Post

For a lot of us millennials, Summer 2016 is one filled with internships and jobs that will eventually launch us into our future careers. For others, its filled with jobs that you only have so that you can earn yourself a few bucks while you try not to accept the fact that next summer, you'll probably have to at least think about adulting. This summer, I was lucky enough to be asked back to work at my town's summer camp working full time hours for the remainder of the summer. As a returning counselor, I can say that I have become well-seasoned in noticing the patterns that my coworkers and I go through on a weekly basis. Here are the stages of being a camp counselor as exhibited by my favorite employee of Pawnee, Indiana's Parks and Recreation department, Ron Swanson.

1. Avoiding parents on a Monday morning

One of the things that is worst about any given Monday morning, is not only trying to accept the fact that the weekend is over, but having to answer questions of parents that you may not even know the answers to- all while keeping a smile pasted to your face because they trust you enough to care for their kids all day. I'm sorry ma'am, I haven't finished my coffee yet, but maybe my boss can help you.

2. Seeing your favorite camper pull into the parking lot

This is one of my greatest joys of being a counselor. Over the course of the summer, you find campers make your day great, and give you hope for the future. They help break up the ones who are misbehaved, and essentially are the only people to help keep your head on straight.

3. When your campers want to play your favorite game

Throughout the day, it is crucial that you play a variety of games and activities in order to keep your campers entertained, and to hopefully wear them out. When they all want to play your favorite game, its like the feeling you get waking up on Christmas morning... until you play the next game.

4. When campers ask to do something you despise

Like I said, it's the absolute best when your campers all are enthusiastic about the game you want to play, but when you need to switch it up and they all band together to beg to play your least favorite game, it may or may not ruin the vibe for the rest of the day. The best part though, is that you can shut them down with a simple "no".

5. Trying to pretend lunch isn't your break

As much as we'd all like to believe that lunch is a time for you to lay back and relax, you really can't. You'll turn around for one second, only to report back and realize three of your kids are standing on tables, one of them is crying, and two more are no where to be found. This requires you to eat like:

6. When a counselor offers to help you with your kids

Whether its a side job for you to do, or taking your kids to the bathroom, it's the best feeling when another counselor helps you out without you even have to ask.

7. Seeing the public roll into the park

Since our camp is held in a public park, we often have unplanned interactions with people from the public. It stinks especially when they have dogs because the campers feel inclined to sprint over and bombard dogs with love. As frustrating as it is to try to get their attention back, I can only imagine how terrifying it is to have your dog bombarded by a dozen little fifth graders.

8. Not understanding their 21st-century lingo

One of the hardest things about getting your campers to like you is trying to relate to them about their interests. Especially when their interests are the new movies that are coming out, Disney channel shows, or the most popular video that just got posted on musical.ly. I'm sorry, but I just don't know who you're talking about.

9. Trying to show the parents that you actually didn't have an awful day with their child

If I've learned anything about being a camp counselor, it's that some parents are just so overprotective. They'll freak out if their child ate six goldfish instead of five, or if they tripped and scraped their knee. I know I'll probably understand their psychotic ways when I become a parent myself, but until then, its just excessive. Sending them off at the end of the day is the best, but also one of the hardest parts of the day.

10. Going home on a Friday afternoon

Being a counselor is quite possibly one of the most underrated summer jobs there is. Going from being an active college student to not even having the energy to eat dinner when you get home is definitely something you have to grow accustomed to, but there is no greater feeling than pulling out of camp on a Friday afternoon and realizing you have two whole days to sleep in as late as you want... Until Monday rolls around.

*disclaimer: I love my job, and wouldn't change anything about it. Being able to play with kids less than half my age makes me feel like a kid again and definitely eases the pain of having to adult soon. Oh and my coworkers aren't too bad either.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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