Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tallykeeper’s Report - First Meeting at Fields' TeePee

As the sun rose and with dew still on the grass, Red Thunder and Rushing Ram swiftly traveled throughout the land of Carpenter on iron horses, and delivered dream catchers and invitations to each teepee of each big Brave and little Brave, one by one.

Then, on the third Saturday under the waning moon in the month of pumpkins, eight little Braves and big Braves met in the teepee of our chief, Rushing Ram and Red Thunder. Red Thunder opened the Pow-Wow with 12 beats of the tribal tom-tom. The little Braves and big Braves then raised their hands and eyes to the Great Spirit and gave a tribal prayer. All Braves then joined to form the unbroken circle and courageously repeated the aims and pledge, led by our chief.

Beginning with Red Thunder and ending with Bear Rock, and moving as the planets revolve around the great light, each little Brave stood while holding the talking stick, made by Rising Sun and Great Wolf. One by one, each Brave boldly spoke his - and his father’s - real name and Indian name. Other Braves listened with great respect and did not speak until the talking stick was in their own hands, except to loudly say “HOW HOW!” after each little Brave finished.

Next, Red Wolf held the talking stick, and then showed the WAMPUM bag. With care, Laughing Horse explained how the tribe members will collect money earned while performing a service for family or community.

Soon, it was time for the tribe to select its name, by which it shall be known across the entire Arapahoe Nation. Red Thunder presented each little Brave two leaves, of different trees from the tribal forest: one, the red leaf from the great maple, representing the Carpenter Comanches; and two, the yellow leaf from the eastern red bud tree, representing the Carpenter Coyotes. One by one and in secret, each little Brave left the Pow-Wow room of the teepee, and cast their vote into the tribal urn. After all votes were cast, Red Wolf precisely counted each leaf in the urn, by laying them in two piles on the teepee mat. And by a 5-3 margin, the Braves shall forever be known as the Carpenter Coyotes. All the Braves, without fear, howled their best coyote sound, and together boldly proclaimed, “HOW HOW!”

Next, all the Braves gathered around the work table. Using special ink sticks, each Brave carefully wrote their real and Indian name on each side of a wooden spear head. Some Braves decorated their spear head with special symbols and markings. All the big Braves helped the little Braves make a necklace using leather from a cow’s hide. After enjoying some snacks, all the Braves returned to the Pow-Wow circle, content with both full belly, and their new tribal decoration.

After all the Carpenter Coyotes were seated, Running Bull received the talking stick. All the Braves listened intently as Running Bull explained each of the patches, feathers, beads, and the bear claw. All Braves waited patiently while Bear Rock handed out the red crow bead, program patch, and feather patch. Rushing Ram and Red Thunder were recognized with the Chief patch. Laughing Horse and Red Wolf received the Wampum patch. Thunder Eagle and Daring Eagle received the Sachem patch. Burping Platypus and Thunder Squirrel received the Fetchum patch. Bear Rock and Running Bull received the Tallykeeper patch. Fire Feather, Rising Sun, and the other Coyotes were especially excited to hear about the white polar bear claw that the Braves will receive after the Polar Bear Swim in the winter. All the Braves asked for clarification on how deep they had to get into the water to earn the white claw.

Next, all the Coyote Braves listened quietly as Daring Eagle and Thunder Eagle told the story of how the Indians received fire. The tribe felt a special connection as the great coyote was part of the story. After roaring like a lion, Daring Eagle was joined by Jumping Wolf when he howled like a wolf. Rising Sun helped to growl like a bear and bark like a fox. Burping Platypus joined in to help chatter like a squirrel and croak like a frog. And all the Carpenter Coyote Braves howled like a coyote! HOW HOW!

As the Pow-Wow ended, Chief Rushing Ram led the tribe in the ceremonial closing prayer, in sign language, and in honor of the Great Spirit.

Once the tribe was outside, Hookin’ Fish lit the tribal torch, and all the Braves followed Fire Feather on a march into the autumn wind to the Carpenter Coyote campgrounds, where seven teepees surrounded something that looked like it could be a pit of fire. That is where the big Braves made a great fire, while little Braves played in the darkness of the wide open grassy lands. Soon, the fire was blazing, and all Braves enjoyed making their own “smores”. Two containers of Jiffy Pop popcorn were sacrificed in the great fire in order to ward off evil spirits and flying insects. Big and little Braves played nighttime hide and seek. At ninety minutes before the midnight moon, the little Braves and big Braves each went to their own teepees, and bundled up in their sleeping bags, ready for a night when the sky air would be only eight degrees from when the big lake freezes.

As the sun rose in the cold autumn air, the little Braves returned to the chief’s teepee for some Dunkin Donuts and milk. Then the Carpenter Coyotes scattered into forest.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

First Year Feather Award Requirements

Colored feather patches are awarded, as per the requirements listed below, at the rate of one per month, with no definite order required. Only little Braves/Princesses earn the Red, Blue, and Turquoise Feathers, which require memory work, with dad's coaching, of course. The remaining four feathers are earned by the Big and little Brave/Princess concurrently. Each patch is attached to the bottom of the feather award patch on your vest.

  • Red Feather: Know and repeat before tribe all the real and program names of each Big and Little Brave/Princess.

  • Blue Feather: Repeat the six Aims of the Y-Guide/Princess program.

  • Turquoise Feather: Recite the pledge of the Y-Guides and Princess program.

  • Orange Feather: Arrange a night-off for mom/family member. Big and Little Brave/Princess plan, purchase, cook, and serve dinner. After serving dinner, Big and Little Brave/Princess do the dishes. To earn this feather, a statement in writing to the Tallykeeper must be furnished.

  • Yellow Feather: Complete a 2-mile walking hike with Big Brave. This can be a tribe outing such as the Fall Outing at Camp Kanata. A report should be made at the next tribe meeting, each Brave/Princess telling of interesting things observed.

  • White Feather: Complete one overnight camping trip with Big Brave (Recommended as tribe outing.Camp Sea Gull and Camp Seafarer do not count).

  • Green Feather: Complete three craft projects with Big Brave. These can be completed over a period of time. The projects will be presented to the tribe upon completion. The three do not have to be presented at the same meeting. The Tallykeeper will keep an accurate record of the projects. Crafts made at tribe meetings don't count.