Monday, March 14, 2005

badge of dishonour
I don't know how to write this, where to start - do I start at the present and work back or explain the import before I explain the betrayal? My father is giving a talk to the local history society. He has called it 'the three guides' and is gleeful about the little joke he's going to play on the audience. The talk will be about three tourist guides to the Isle of Wight written at different times and the interesting differences between them, but dad is going to lead the audience on by opening the talk with a story of when he was young he was a scout and went to camp and in the field next door were some Guides on camp... You get the idea. To improve this wheeze he has got my Guide blanket out of storage. This is the blanket that I used to take to camp - it has all my Brownie and Guide badges sewn on it as well as various fun patches and badges. It has a slit in it so that you can wear it as a poncho. I feel really horrible about this. I tried to explain to dad that I wasn't comfortable with him using my blanket, but he thought I was winding him up. He said, "I look really great in it." And I wanted to retch, that he's already worn it. Can you understand? The thought of him parading this relic of my chilhood makes me feel physically sick. As if he'd decided to wear one of my old party dresses for some smutty purpose. I know I'm overreacting and that it's only a blanket, but it's my blanket and when I was a Guide that blanket meant ever such a lot to me, I was so proud of my badges and the careful stitching. I imagined, even then, that one day I would pass it on to my daughter. Somehow I feel violated. TA asked if he should call home to explain on my behalf, but no dad would be mortified and I don't think he'd ever understand. To him its just a prop but to me its improper.

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