- 11 months ago
In the interest of waxing nostalgic, we’d like to see if anyone would be willing to share their classic camp memories. It could be from last year’s tumblr camp or from the legitimate Nintendo-run camp of ye olden days, if you’ve got a CH memory worth sharing, just hit up the submit box!
It’s awesome that you do this.
My favorite memory is the accidental creation of a late-night storytelling tradition. It was Camp ‘98. *eyes glaze over* Ah, yes, I can remember it now. I was thirteen and had spent a considerable portion of my pre-Internet childhood reading Goosebumps books, watching Are You Afraid of the Dark? on Nickelodeon, and of course running from Boos in Mario games.
Back then Nintendo kept Camp Hyrule’s chats open 24/7 — actually, that’s all camp was made of. At one point there were dozens of chat rooms to explore. You could *actually* get lost at Camp. I mean, a refresh would solve your dilemma, but let’s gloss over that detail. We were immersed.
Come nighttime, Camp emptied out, but a handful of insomniacs stuck around and kicked it at the Bonfire. Given the culture we grew up with, it was only natural for us to tell scary stories. At first we went to the classics: Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz. I typed portions of this book up in chat without a care in the world for copyright law.
The next night, my dad asked if I was typing the stories verbatim. “Yeah, why?” He suggested that I try to make up my own story. Good idea, Dad! It was hard to come up with a story on the spot, but it turns out Camp Hyrule attendees are highly creative and humorous. The event evolved and took on a choose-your-own-adventure style of storytelling. People sent me ideas through private messages, and the chat group voted on these ideas in the story. It was wonderfully collaborative and organic.
We did this every year after that. Then in 2000, the year Majora’s Mask was released and hyped at Camp, a curfew was enacted. Camp closed every night at midnight Pacific! (This seems quite generous in retrospect.) We were crushed. After some talk about canceling the story, we decided to continue the tradition. We had to change rooms. The Bonfire was way too crowded in the final hours of Camp now. We wandered a bit and discovered the Ranch.
The Ranch was new that year. There wasn’t much to it. A stable, a field, a horse. Actually, a rather stumpy horse. The more time we spent in the Ranch, the more we realized how funny this stumpy horse was. More campers were checking in on the story due to its earlier time slot, and soon enough, a horse named Stumpy was voted into the story by an *overwhelming* majority. It was a riot. People had the best commentary, I couldn’t stop laughing. Word of Stumpy and his adventures spread through all of Camp. For how awful I expected that Camp to be, it turned out to be one of my favorite years. People embraced Stumpy, and he only took on the life he did because of the support, enthusiasm, and creativity of many campers.
Can you send me an email? kattixie@[that-domain-that-Google-uses-for-email].com