Collapsible Cup

Collapsible Cup. In some kind of metal, 2 1/2 inches in diameter. 3.5 inches when extended, but only 3/4 inch collapsed.

I believe this belonged to my grandmother on my mother’s side. (The one who saved the picture from the trash was on my father’s side.) She wasn’t a bicyclist to my knowledge, but she was a Girl Scout. She loved camping and streams. In fact, her Girl Scout nickname was Rushy, because she liked to sit by the rushing water.

My family always camped and she often came along. One trip was to Yellowstone and we kids were excited to see bears. The first night, half-way to the park, we camped out on a hillside along the road. Something was always forgotten on these trips; this time it was matches. Mother and Daddy drove to the nearest town, while we kids stayed with our grandmother (to guard the unpacked camping equipment, I presume.) She kept scaring us, pointing into the dark and saying, “Do you hear something? Is that a bear?” We were relieved when our parents returned, bringing the car, a place of safety, and the bustle of fixing dinner.

The next morning, Daddy said he thought he’d heard something snuffling around the car in the night and sure enough, there were bear paw prints in the dust on the car. Wow, what a close call!

I was in my mid-twenties when Daddy heard me telling the story to a friend. He burst out laughing. “There was no bear. I thought you knew. I drew those paw prints on the car.”

At the request of a reader, I’m adding a picture of the cup, collapsed.


  1. Cat says:

    My family had a collection of these little cups that always went with us on backpacking and camping trips. As an adult, I was delighted to find that they are making a comeback (maybe they never left??) in this era of eco-concern & reusable cups – I bought several as gifts at the DC Green Festival a couple years back!

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