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Simon

On the outskirts of Philly, a long way from camp,
He sits and he writes by the light of a lamp.
Kept warm by a blanket he stole from his bed,
he whistles the song he has stuck in his head.

Behind dirty glasses, his eyes are alert.
A procession of Daleks appears on his shirt.
His hair is uncombed and it looks like a nest
for phoenixes, Nargles and other such guests.

The cursor blinks blankly at the top of his screen
as he tries to recall other bios he’s seen.
Should he write about soccer? Or board games? Or acting?
Should he include pictures, or are they distracting?

He breathes out a sigh. He knows what he must do
to let his true character somehow shine through,
though it may make some readers feel rather perplexed.
He taps a few keys, and he types out this text:

Salutations! My name is Simon, and I like science, singing, soccer, soup, sporks, swing dancing, swing sets, syzygies…and also a few other things that aren’t alliterative with my first name.

I love all sorts of games and puzzles: board games, role-playing games, card games, improv games, logic puzzles, trivia, cryptic crosswords… you name it, really. Sometimes I write poetry and short plays and stories. I also really like to learn and share fun facts. So, I’ve decided to combine my passions for fun facts, games, and writing by writing a puzzle for you, dear reader, to solve. When you see me at camp, tell me what you think the answer is!

I’ve written up a list of fun facts about myself. The twist, however, is that one of these “facts” isn’t actually true! Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to figure out which one is made-up. It’s possible to do so without ever having met me or having any special prior knowledge; everything you need is right here on this page.

If you spot the imposter at first glance, well done! And if you don’t see it initially, just look again.

● The most delicious Lazy Dog flavor (in my opinion) was black licorice, until it was discontinued.
● “Here Comes the Sun”, by The Beatles, is my favorite song.
● Elves are one of my favorite fantasy creatures because nobody seems to agree on how tall they are.
● Spiders don’t bother me at all, but I’m terrified of centipedes.

●Even though I’m obsessed with many types of games, I don’t own or play any video games.
● Very bright green is my second favorite color, after light purple and before maroon.
● Ender is the name of my dog! He’s a very sweet old chocolate lab, and he’s named after a science fiction series I like.
● Nine years ago, I came to Camp Augusta for the very first time. However, this will only be my eighth summer here.
● There’s only one food that I’m allergic to, and it’s zucchini.
● Harry Potter is one of my favorite book series. I’m a Ravenclaw.
● On Fridays at midnight, my friends and I like to stand on a rock in the woods underneath a railroad bridge and yell poems at passing trains.
● Neil Gaiman is one of my all-time favorite authors.
● Elevators formed a major part of the setting and plot of the first play I ever wrote.

BONUS CONTENT: Here’s a little bit more about my life story so far (all of these facts are 100% true, I promise!)

I was born in Sacramento, California. I’ve also lived in Washington, D.C.; Berkeley, California; my college home of Swarthmore, Pennsylvania; and my current home (when I’m not at college) of Oakland, California. I’m 19 years old—the oldest JC, in fact—and currently a rising sophomore at Swarthmore College, a small school near Philadelphia. I haven’t officially chosen a major yet, and it’s difficult because I’m interested in so many different things! I especially like chemistry, creative writing, linguistics, literature, educational studies, theatre, and Spanish, and I wish there were a way for me to learn everything about everything.

School isn’t the only thing I do, though! I’m a huge soccer fan, and I love to play with my club team, watch the Champions League and Premier League, or even just mess around with a soccer ball with a couple of friends. I also act in a Shakespeare company called the Yellow Stockings Players— the name is a reference to Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night, but we also typically perform wearing yellow stockings.

Generally, I love to be outside. I love to go hiking, trail running, and backpacking, and sometimes, when I’m feeling adventurous, even rock climbing, sea kayaking, or skiing. During my most recent backpacking adventure, my friends and I hiked a section of the Laurel Highlands Trail in the Allegheny mountains. It rained really hard on the third day, so we kept warm by singing filk songs (that is, the folk songs of fictional worlds. Ask me to teach you one!) around a campfire.

I’m so, so, so, so, so, so, so excited to be a Junior Counselor at Camp Augusta this summer! I can’t wait to learn things, shoot things, create things, stab things, climb things, ride things, chase things, and constantly be surrounded by woodchips. And most of all, I can’t wait to meet you!

BONUS BONUS CONTENT: some photos that may or may not reveal what my face looks like.

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