I have the first meeting with my new team this week. As an icebreaker, I'm going to ask each person to recall a quick childhood memory. I haven't decided mine yet--I get the luxury of mulling it over, which the others won't. But as I was thinking about it, this came to mind...
I was at Camp Takodah, a summer camp where my parents worked when I was a kid. It was a special day--games day or carnival or something. I don't remember what they called it. In any case, they had a dunking station. There was no booth; there was a chair or a bench where the dunkee would sit, under a tree. There was a bucket of water rigged to a target of some kind. When you hit the target, the bucket would dump on the dunkee.
Counselor after counselor took his turn (it was boys' month at camp). He'd walk up wearing his bathing suit, drop his towel nearby, sit and grin and, eventually, get drenched.
Until my Dad. My memory is of him strolling up wearing a suit and carrying a newspaper, sitting down as if delighted to have found a place to read his paper. He'd spread the paper out and read while kids lined up for the joy of administering a bucket of shock.
I'm sure I've remembered some of the details wrong (and hope Mum or Dad will correct me), but I know that experience shaped me, both in my appreciation of my Dad and in my sense of humor.
My Dad does love a good story and he loves creating fun experiences for others (for kids, especially). And I still most appreciate humor that includes a really, really good straight man who's a really, really good sport.