Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Teen Cafe: Survivor (insert name of city)

Our first Teen Cafe of the summer looks to have been a rousing success. The theme for the week was pirates and shipwrecks, so we played our own game of "Survivor". The teens divided into two tribes (boys vs. girls was the hands-down choice), then faced a mental challenge, a creativity challenge, and a physical challenge to see which tribe got to stay on the island.

Before we began our challenges, we gave each tribe ten minutes to come up with a name and create a banner. After five minutes, the banners looked like this:

The girls finally settled on the Ninja Turtles, and began - but did not have time to finish - this very sweet banner:

The boys...never did agree on a name. But they had fun drawing:

First up then was the intellectual challenge. Each group had a set of puzzle pieces in a bag, and had to assemble the puzzle with no idea of what it looked like. To make the puzzles we had written quotes about friendship on two posterboards, staggering the words so they weren't in straight lines, and cut them into pieces.

The boys finished first on this one, and received their first immunity idol. Next up was the creativity challenge - face painting to match their tribe's name (or lack thereof). In the interest of time, only one person from each tribe had his or her face painted. This is where we had our one injury of the night: while we were using officially safe face paint, the boys got a little too close to their volunteer's eyes. He wouldn't wash it off until we took his picture, however, so here he is:

the red eyes just made it creepier

And here is the girls' ninja turtle:

A judging panel of three staff members voted (2 to 1) the girls as winners, so they had their first immunity idol, and we were on to the physical challenge.

We had the feeling the tribes would be divided by gender, so our physical challenge was not one of strength of muscles, but rather strength of stomach. We had two places set with the exact same food items - and yes, these were all actual food items, purchased mostly at the local oriental market. Once again we had a volunteer from each tribe, preferably someone who knew they were not allergic to seafood! The winner would be the person who ate the most items. No time limit, drinks were encouraged, and no one was to be forced to eat anything.

looks gross...smells, I don't think I need to taste this

We need to figure out how to post the video here, it is hilarious. Jesse went for drama and expediency, beginning by shoveling several unidentified items into the seaweed wrap and biting in. He couldn't hear Miss Ami over the noise of the crowd, informing him that he had just mixed salted miniature shrimp with pickled garlic cloves, and that it might not taste...oh, well.

Mary, on the other hand, quietly and calmly surveyed the feast and methodically went from worst to easiest, plopping the baby octopus into her mouth right off the bat, saving the quail egg for the end. She decided the baby clams weren't half bad, but the dried squid was a bit tough and chewy.

Both gamely did their best for their tribe, but what did Jesse in at the end was...the baby food. Yes, he ate the squid, the octopus, the sardines, etc., but one taste of stage 1 turkey baby food and he was through. We can't blame him - have you ever tasted the stuff? No wonder babies spit their food out!

So, the Ninja Turtles were the winners, but Jesse got extra candy anyway. Next week's theme, Winter Wonderland, should be less dramatic but just as much fun - think marshmallows, and lots of them! We will also be trying out our new cotton candy machine (which, truth be told, the staff has already tested...extensively). See you there!

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