April 24, 2013 - So there I was, minding my own bees wax when one of our salesdudes shot me over an email from the Clarkston office. Some person, a woman Andrew Dubats is working with had won some sort of recognition for her efforts in Glamping.
Hmm? Come again? What was that she's good at?
Glamping, I didn't know what it was so I looked it up on the internet.
I kid you not, glamping – is the scrunching together of the two words, Glamorous and Camping. (I think my Enlish teachers called that act a contraction or something else related to pregnancy.) I could not believe what I was reading – since when did camping become glamorous? My googled word "glamping" came up with the following. I think that will help explain it better than I, an embittered old white guy camper, can.
"Organized glamping trips feature all of the exposure to the great outdoors as traditional camping trips, but the amenities found at the campsite far exceed anything most campers have ever experienced.
"During a typical glamping trip, for example, the tents are often designed with bright designer colors and materials, not the olive drab canvas tents of yesteryear. These tents can be rigged for electrical power, which means occupants can operate appliances, reading lamps, and climate controls.
"People may sleep on full-size air mattresses, or even regular spring mattresses . . ."
As the kids these days like to text to their peeps on their cell phone, OMG! Oh, my goodness – what has happened to camping. What would Spanky, Alfalfa, Buckwheat and the boys from the He-Man Woman Haters Club think of Glamorous Camping? Would they let Darla bring a regular sized spring mattress while the crew was out in the woods?
This is what happens when you invite chicks to be in charge of the camping trip. Glamorous camping. Argg! I totally blame the 37th President of the United States for this travesty of wilderness justice. Who knows where we'd be now if Richard Milhous Nixon wouldn't have signed Title 9 (the Education Amendment of 1972) into law. I'm sure I wouldn't be opining on glamping's merits. Thanks, Dick.
Da dames is messing everythin' up.
Camping used to be synonymous with roughing it. Camping was about eating beans out of a can. It was about bugs and feeling things slither underneath you, your sleeping bag and even under the tent. It was about jack knives, whittling, walking sticks and campfires
Camping was about bathing in the nearest body of water, be it creek, pond or lake. Sometimes with soap, and sometimes without. There's nothing that will knock off a day's sweat, dust, smoke and grit than jumping naked into a spring-fed or beaver damned lake in the middle of some million-acre national forest. Individual hygiene was optional while finding a the best dump stump was mandatory for every man.
Camping was about getting back something that was lost when humans moved to the city to work. It was about getting in-tune with nature: walking in the woods, observing and listening only to the sounds about you. It was about packing a dime store book in your back pocket and reading at night until you fell asleep.
The idea was to do things, live a way you didn't do at home -- without music, movies, satellite TV and computers. Every camper knew if it was gonna' be hot and sticky out, you were gonna be hot and sticky until you jumped into the lake. There was no mechanicaly climate control device.
We prayed if it rained it wouldn't down pour, but if it did, we'd get wet. Camping wasn't glamorous, it was glorious. Maybe if we were more marketing savvy back then, we would have called it Glormping.
Camping was such a part of being a young man, that this year I am taking my teenaged sons up for a week in the Upper Peninsula. Yep. We are gonna go all the way up to Lake Superior. We're gonna hike. We're gonna kayak. We're gonna back backpacks. We're gonna' cook on an open fire.
Oh, and did I tell you . . . we're gonna do it all from a base inside a cottage. Yep. Beds, TVs, washing machines, chairs, real to goodness toilets and showers. Roughing it really sounds like hard work.
Comments? E-mail Don@ShermanPublications.org
Don is Assistant Publisher for Sherman Publications, Inc. He has worked for the company since 1985. He has won numerous awards for column, editorial and feature writing as well as for photography. He has two, sons Shamus and Sean and resides in the area. To read archived copies of his columns, click on his name, just under his picture up top . . . He can be e-mailed at: email@example.com