Wilderness Therapy at RedCliff: Do You Speak Our Language?

Troubled Teen Therapy Outcomes: Why Numbers Matter
July 6, 2011
“Getting Knifed” at RedCliff Ascent
July 22, 2011

There’s a certain lingo used here at RedCliff that can be hard for people outside of our world to understand.  Even when folks understand the language, it can be hard to speak – it’s constantly evolving, changing, being added to.  I visit the student groups in the field at least once a week, and sometimes need a refresher course from the students.  We’ll call this CliffsNotes for RC Lingo 101.

wiggie  noun  sleeping bag, originally derived from the brand name Wigwam
wig  noun  abbreviation of the word ‘Wiggie’
ho ho noun  the blue sleeping pad that students sleep on top of
bogey noun  a good sized, strong stick that’s used to poke at coals and move logs around inside the fire; can be used to clear a spot for your pot and get some good coals glowing for a scoobie
scoobie  noun  a bread made of flour and water (or sometimes farina and water) that is cooked directly on the coals;  to the outside world, these are known as ash cakes;  doesn’t sound appetizing? Think again.  This is the students’ favorite.  Think of a pita pocket… you can stuff it with tuna and cheese, or beans and cheese, or`… the possibilities are endless
brimmer  noun   a dinner pot that’s as full as you can get it; students love to talk about what kind of brimmer pot they’re going to make for dinner
drop noun  refills from base for food and gear the students need replenished; drop happens every Wednesday and Saturday and is HIGHLY anticipated
drop truck noun  the vehicle that brings drop to the group
sketchy  adjective  inappropriate or questionable behavior; Related form sketchball
polliwog noun  a new student, typically under 20 days; someone who has not quite become used to wilderness living; derived from our new student group, the Polliwogs
wog noun abbreviation of the word ‘Polliwog’
holey soles noun sandals  to be worn around camp; similar to Crocs
Peanut Butter/Cheese  usually refers to which shift a staff is on, represented by whether the students receive peanut butter or cheese on Saturday drop during that shift
full body noun  the wilderness equivalent of a shower, using water that’s been heated on the fire and soap

That should help you stumble through the first few letters.  Better yet, throw a few of these words in a letter you send to your student and let them know you REALLY understand what’s going on out there!     By Alison Cox, (aka Autumn Lynx), Family Support Services