Jan 20, 2011
Brownie Points. Bacon Badges.
Knowing my affinity for fake food, a friend sent me this link to this bacon patch from artist Lee Meszaros on Etsy.
It's part of her merit badge collection. This one is awarded to someone who, you guessed it, "brings home the bacon." And as a working mom/creative director, multi-tasking/multi-personality, busy-life/busy-body professional gal, I'm definitely bringin' it.
But in simpler times, I was a Brownie.
You have to be a Brownie when you're little (I was six here), before you become a Girl Scout. I think that's how it works? I wouldn't exactly know, since I was a Brownie for all of like one year and then my mom probably decided it was just more effort than it was worth. Piano lessons were more likely to benefit me in the long run, and required less... er, outfitting.
Because, man, was I all about the outfit. The beanie, the little snap tie, the sweet peter pan color, the brown striping, the zip-up jumper, the freakin little tassels that fold up under the top of the knee socks (my favorite part) and of course, the classic brown Hush Puppies.
The funny thing is, that I would wear this entire get-up to every single Brownie meeting. Whereas the other girls wore, oh, like a Brownie t-shirt and jeans. Maybe the striped blouse with kakhis. Definitely not the beanie. Or the sock tassels.
At the time I thought those other girls were just "too cool." But at the same time, while I perceived this, I was too little to be shamed into not wearing what I thought were awesome duds. It's like getting to wear a costume! Not even on Halloween! Hello?! But the conformity shame kicks in when your the ripe old age of seven. Hmm. About the time we quit Brownies. Maybe my mom was more perceptive than I give her credit for.
I did earn a few patches along the way. My own little merits. Probably for things like friendliness, honesty, helpfulness, sock flair. Soft stuff. 'Cause I don't remember learning any hard skills, you know, like building a fire with two sticks or tying awesome knots.
But if I had merit badges today? They'd probably be:
Donny was a Cub Scout for a brief stint as well. Long enough to build a little matchbox car. But he traded in his navy blues, his yellow neck kerchief and his Webelos beads for a black trenchcoat and Dungeons & Dragons at the age of eleven.
Now, Kathleen's are easy to pick out. Miss healthy-fare/hiking-far. Miss still knows how to have a messy night out on the town. Miss invitation designer/inviting danger. And, no, she never wore a scout uniform even for the shortest amount of time. Why is no one surprised by this?