Boston, MA - The Boston Tribune's randomly chosen entry into The Best Letter from Mom While You Were at Camp Contest appears below. This week's entry was submitted by Debbie Jones of Dover, MA.
Dad and I (and the admin that I suspect is Dad's new mistress) are so happy to hear that your summer "job" at the Big Game Reserve in South Africa is going well (especially since Dad and I paid thousands of dollars for you to "work" there). We are also pleased to hear that you have developed a love for the endangered zebra, but we are not confident that the zebra-skin purse that you really want for your birthday would be an appropriate gift to send to you in South Africa. We think it might be really hot and itchy to carry in that ungodly heat.
We were also pleased to hear that you are already thinking about next year's Senior Project. As for your idea of importing Angus beef to feed those really skinny wild dogs that roam the filthy streets, Dad thinks that it would be a whole lot simpler to just drag the big game animals into the streets after they die. Sort-of like a buffet. Would save on the cost of shipping, anyway. Just a thought.
By the way, don't forget to do your weekly online journal entry about what you are learning as a Volunteer Big Game Reservist. I know that you only have access to the internet once a week when you go into town, so I took the liberty of copying "the things you'll gain by joining this project" from the website. Maybe some of them are actually true! First, they list "a sense of independence and improved personal confidence." Like getting your ass out of bed and going to the local supermarket to bag groceries for a real paycheck wouldn't have accomplished the same! Jesus! Okay, Mommy will sip the martini more slowly, from now on.
Also, according to the website, you are allegedly experiencing a "rewarding, humbling and worthwhile experience." Why the f*ck are we paying good money for that? Helping your mother take care of your siblings would have allowed you to experience that for free.
Oh my God, now that I have actually read all of this crap about the expensive f*cking vacation we just sent you on, I am so pissed. They claim that "you will have a chance to discover your own hidden talents." Just a chance? No guarantee? And what if you have no hidden talents? I guess that is why there is just a chance. Never mind. My bad.
The website also claims that this experience will be "a way to make new friends." Well, f*ck me. Like you couldn't just be nice to the kids on the bus and make a few friends that way? Did we really need to pay thousands of dollars for you to go to the Big Game Reserve in South Africa so that you could "make friends" with people who couldn't make any f*cking friends anywhere near where they live because they are such losers?
Anyhoo, Mom wants you to know that she is proud of you for going halfway around the world to help the animals. And she is so glad that you didn't go to the Galapagos Islands to help other rich kids help stupid little turtles find the gigantic flipping ocean when they are maybe twenty goddamned feet away from it. Some stupid, direction-challenged turtle genes need to be removed from the gene pool, for God's sake. Is that politically incorrect to say? Oh well. I forgot my train of thought.
One last thing - when you mentioned that you were looking forward to the sleep-outs and camping under the African sky despite the fact that you skipped the lectures on "everything you need to know so you can be safe in the wild," I feel compelled to say as a parent that bug spray is essential. Take it and use it!
The deadline for entries into The Best Letter from Mom While You Were at Camp Contest has passed. The winner will be selected soon. Stay tuned!