Middle School Lock-In Learnings


I was a chaperone at the middle school lock-in at church last Friday.  Whew.

That night, I discovered a couple of things that I didn’t know before.

1) Middle school boys are interesting.

They don’t wear coats, even at night in January.  For the most part, they also don’t wear long pants.  One boy did bring a coat but he tucked it, and it was large, into the front of his sweat pants.  He walked around like that for hours.

They throw footballs in the building, even after you ask them not to.  One balanced a half-full can of Coke, slanted, on an antique table in the church lobby.

I asked, “Does that still have soda in it?”

He responded, “Yes.  It wouldn’t work if it didn’t.”  Duh.

I’ll have to say, he didn’t spill a drop.

When given popcorn, you can follow them anywhere because they leave a trial.  It’s like Hansel and Gretel.  I wondered if any went into their mouths.  Which could explain why they each had room in their bellies for 10+ iHOP pancakes.

They will dribble a basketball or hang on a rim for hours if given the opportunity.

They do not know how to talk to girls, but they do know how to hit them.

2)  Middle school girls are determined.

We went to an arcade from 10 PM until midnight.  There, multiple girls found the game with the robotic clasper.  You put two coins in and with a joystick guide the robotic hand that is inside a glass box.  The goal is to place the hand in the exact right position, press a button to drop it down, and hope it grabs a nifty prize you can take home to put on your already cluttered dresser.  The problem is that the clasper rarely works.  It drops down, pinches together, and generally brings up air.

In this glass box, there were only rolls of tickets, the ones you win to claim more prizes.  On her first try, one girl scored a roll of 500 tickets.  She turned them in for more coins.  She then returned to the game to fish for more tickets.  If the clasper happened to grab another roll, she returned to claim more coins so she could return to try to get more tickets.

It was like she was spinning around in circles.

Insert coins

Win a few tickets

Get more coins

Insert coins

Win a few tickets

Get more coins

What was the point?  Where was this going?  What was the end goal?

I stand perplexed.

At least the boys were using their time to do productive things like blow up dinosaurs that were attacking earth in a vicious sort of way.  If, by chance, a real dino attack occurs, the First Pres. youth group is going to be instrumental in saving our planet.

3)  My brother-in-law can sleep standing up.

4)  You can fit 30 middle school kids under a desk.

Because our church is old, playing Sardines, where one person hides and if you find them, you join them, is quite an adventure.  Our church elevator has a stop at Basement 1 and Basement 2 if that gives you any idea of the depths of spookiness.

Dodging in and out of Basement 2 closets and mechanical rooms at 2 AM is freaky!

One kid hid under the Youth Director’s office desk.  When the last kid found them, there were 30 packed underneath.  They’d been there for quite some time.

Perhaps my greatest discovery?

5)  I don’t like people at 4 AM.

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  1. That is a lot to learn in one night! 😀

  2. Connie H

     /  February 10, 2016

    OMG, I laughed so hard about the boys in shorts! I’m not sure why they feel they don’t need long pants when it’s below freezing. It’s a daily conversation at my house:

  3. ROTFL … I had to share this one.

  4. It happens often

  5. My sides are aching from laughing at this post. I wouldn’t like people at 4:00 a.m. either. I said you are super dad, and your real full house family and friends will make it so. It’s just February. Hang onto your cape, it’s gonna be a great ride!


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