Last week, I spent 3-days in Lake Geneva at a Camp for kids called “ONE STEP.” All the kids at this camp are dealing with cancer.
Last year, I went up for just 2-mornings, teaching a couple of cooking classes. Next year, I will go up for a full week: No TV, No Newspapers, just a book to read during breaks from interacting with a bunch of kids who are taking a vacation from their very adult life of fighting cancer – I can’t wait for next year!
How did I do? Well, they gave me an award for “Mister Congeniality,” so I guess they liked my interaction. Honestly, I know the secret to interacting with kids: be a kid, think like a kid, act like a kid, and most of all, treat all the kids the same no matter how much you would like to take some of them in your arms and cry until the disease was cured by your tears and they could be happy, healthy “normal kids.”
Treat them like they are normal kids.
For too long, I resisted getting involved. I was afraid of confronting the heartache. Luckily, I have a very close friend who has been leading this camp for many years. She kept after me. Finally, my curiosity got me off my tucas. Initially, it was disturbing. The 1st class was overwhelming. Probably, I would have stopped going. But at the 2nd class, I began having fun. It lead me to NOT notice the bad.
This year, it looked like business as usual. This year, it looked like kids having fun.
I cooked my heart out for 3-days. Wednesday Morning we made pizza from scratch. The dough, the sauce and all the toppings. We cooked the pizza on a stone using a peel just like the pizza joints do. 3-kids in a group did all the steps including the most important step: devouring the pizza!
Thursday we worked on omelet prep which included cutting, dicing and blanching ingredients like broccoli. Then we practiced making omelets for our Friday breakfast. Friday Morning, at 7AM, me and my assistants made omelets for 45 kids and all the counselors in the dorm. We set up portable burners with the ingredients we had prepared; we even toasted homemade bread from Joey’s Brickhouse; I have never work harder; I have never, ever been more rewarded. At the end of my stay, the kids made pasta with sausage and meatballs. I had to take a nap before driving home (it took me all day to get the smile off my face).
To be Brutal, to be Frank, every one of our legislators should have to spend a week doing what I did. I can guarantee we would have Medicare for our kids just like we have for our seniors.
On the plus side, many of these kids will survive and become model citizens. They will have been introduced to proper medical care and understand the value of preventative medicine.
All the kids who come from poverty, who have to endure poor to non-existant health care, will suffer the consequences later in life. Also, in the end, they will cost us more.
Let’s keep going with health care reform. Let’s concentrate on kids. I’m 69 and still asking why seniors are more important than kids?
Back to you, Greg.