Liam wanted to join a cub scout den when he heard they got to sleep on an aircraft carrier. Other than hanging out with his friends, this was his only reason for joining. The achievements, belt loops, honor code, be-a-better-citizen stuff... not interested or appealing – only the aircraft carrier sleepover. Hoping some of that might rub off anyway, I signed him up and was instructed to buy him a uniform.
So off we go with Liam wearing his shirt like a jacket, unbuttoned, in a t-shirt and soccer shorts. The belt loops he's earned, he's lost, and both of us pretend we care for a few minutes before we just get in the car and listen to Black Eyed Peas. When we arrive, we realize his den is scheduled to march in with the flag. All the other boys have ironed shirts, pants with belt loops, and clean shoes. Liam is wearing his rainbow crocs that we bought at the flea market last year. The straps are missing and my mother-in-law's dog bit a chunk out of the left toe. Because Liam is "out of compliance," he is not allowed to touch the flags on the way in. He can carry the boy scout flag on the way out.