Order of the Arrow Ordeal Secrets – And More!

So I’ve finally figured out how to make Google Analytics work with WordPress, and, in the process, I find out that most frequently visited post on my blog is an ancient post from 2007, and it’s not even gay-themed! It’s this post right here – the Order of the Arrow. It’s a fine post where I discuss the hideous Order of the Arrow ordeal, an event that perfectly embodies the more al Qaedaesque extremes of the Boy Scouts of America. Still, as near and dear as this subject is to my own heart, I couldn’t account for why the page has remained so darn popular after four years. People still visit it on a weekly and almost daily basis. Is it because I’m such a great writer? A genius, even? Or could it be that the silent majority shares my loathing for hazing from awkward teens in neckerchiefs and loincloths?

I got my answer when I entered the phrase “order of the arrow ordeal” in the little Google box up in the right hand corner of my Safari browser. The second choice in the suggestions Google pulls up is “order of the arrow ordeal secrets.” If you Google that phrase, guess what link is at the top of the page?

Yep. Turns out zillions of terrified young Scouts use the Internet to get a sneak peek at just how wretched their ordeal is going to be, and the Internet thinks that out of 6,820 possible sources, I’m the most trusted voice on the planet on this particular subject.

I can’t emphasize just how sick, twisted, wrong, and delightful that is.

I wish I had revealed more secrets than I did. Those looking for specifics are bound to be disappointed by these revelatory gems:

“The Order of the Arrow is a secret society within Scouting, one with secrets so secret that I can never reveal them, mainly because I can’t remember any of them.”


“I was allowed to open my eyes to see some weird, creepy Indian ceremony in front of a campfire, which would last a couple of minutes or so, and then you were led to the next station, where you did the same thing. It’s here that I think the Order’s deepest secrets were revealed. I’m sure they were very important. I had to go the bathroom.”

I did manage to remember the menu – breakfast was some matches and a dixie cup filled with water and a raw egg. Then there was a half a slice of baloney and a half a slice of bread for lunch, and a carrot and a gumdrop for dinner. I also remembered the activity for the day – slave labor digging and hauling and chopping, all done under a vow of silence.

Only a scant few of the thousands who have visited had the courage/gumption/chutzpah/pinheadedness to leave me a comment. But, oh my stars and garters, what zippy comments they were. I share them with you below, with their original spelling and punctuation preserved.

Anonymous said…

I’m sure this will be a story for which your spirit family will comfort you in the next life. Geez, don’t get your holy underwear in a bunch.
October 21, 2007 9:08 PM

My “spirit family?” Is that an Order of the Arrowism I missed when they were starving me to death? (As for my underwear, people in glass loincloths shouldn’t throw stones.)

SGT Baker- Eagle Scout and Brotherhood member said…

… or you could just pretend to be a man and quit your bitching, you little girl! How about you come out and try the U.S. Army Special Forces selection, sally!
November 26, 2008 9:13 PM

Sgt. Baker, Eagle Scout and Brotherhood Member, just what do you think you’re doing? You dare Google sacred secrets of the Order? No gumdrop for you.

Proud Arrowman said…

wow I really think that you got your underware in a twist and you need to pick it out. If you don’t like it than don’t talk about it. Everything in the ordeal has a pourpose and it really soulds like your just a wuss cause if you wine about ants in your sleeping try going to philmont but you wouldn’t do that because once again you are a wuss
January 1, 2009 9:57 PM

So standardized spelling, apparently, is not a prerequisite for order membership, but porpoises are.

Anonymous said…

Hey thanks a lot you jerk. I’m about to go on my ordeal, and you got me all freaked out.

Also, i’ll bet you never made it to Eagle. (am i right?)
April 29, 2009 3:33 PM

Yes. You are right. Perceptive little freaked-out punk, aincha?

bakark omaba said…

u r a pussy. r u a fag 2?
June 6, 2009 6:02 PM

Alas, I am neither cat nor cigarette. On the plus side, I’m less illiterate than your average bakark.

Anonymous said…

you’re an idiot! The ordeal is a bad part of the OA introduction but it’s to prove you’re ready to be part of the organization. Although i see you obviously failed. It’s an honor to get in and you should treat it as such.
August 18, 2009 12:20 PM

Here’s how I treated it, Señor Anonymous. Right from the outset, I moaned and whined about what a piece of rat crap the whole experience was, so I got harangued by the guy who was supposed to be my sponsor/mentor/parole officer, who demanded I give him my phone number so he could drag me to a single one of your brain-dead meetings, which meant that I was honored to give him the phone number of the girl I sat next to in English class, who apparently received dozens of phone calls demanding that she keep current with her/my Order of the Arrow dues, which paid for the Boy Scout uniforms of grown men who have nothing better to do than boil eggs in dixie cups and send prepubescents into the woods to freeze.

Thus, with the wisdom that comes with years of hindsight, I now treat the experience with all the honor it deserves, which is precisely the amount of honor I just treated the hot, steaming pile my puppy left on the bottom bunk of my six-year-old’s bed.

I wonder where this post will end up in the Google rankings.

10 Things I Don't Believe
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