Friday, February 1, 2013

Free Association

Interesting how the mind wanders. This morning, picking up clutter, I came across my weathered old Girl Scout Pocket Songbook. I feathered through the pages, recalling folk songs and rounds I had long forgotten.
Growing up I always treasured my membership in the Camp Fire Girls, but by high school years there was no group where I lived and so in my junior year I joined a Girl Scout Marinership, feeling understandably a traitor to the cause.  Yet it was a wondrous experience. Little did I know that a decade later I would be a dedicated Girl Scout professional worker, a career I followed for nine fulfilling years.
Getting back to the story, though. Shortly after joining the Flying Cloud, as we called our Mariner group, Lady Baden Powell, the Chief World Guide and wife of Lord Baden Powell the founder of the Boy Scouts, scheduled a visit to Victoria, BC. Of course we attended. I remember standing on the field in a big arena to shake her hand, like perhaps a thousand other scouts. She looked intimidating and ancient to me (she would have been 57). I was new, and had no uniform. Yes, I was a little scared. I remember her handshake and her words to me:"But my dear, where is your u-ni-form?" Blushing I explained I was new and had none. Then she said firmly but not unkindly, "Oh, my dear, we MUST wear our uniforms...that is how we REC-OG-NISE one another."
This morning in my mind's wandering I thought about what it would be like if all NRA members wore uniforms so those of us who opposed them would know our opposition by sight? And what would it be like if Mac owners wore a big apple tee shirt all the time?
This week the Boy Scouts of America (it should be the Boy Scouts of the USA because they omit Latin and South America but the Boy Scouts aren't as astute as the Girls Scouts of the USA) voted to lift the national ban preventing gays from openly participating in the organization. It seems each community or troop could call their own shots. about a different colored uniform for those who are  inclusive versus those who are not?

Lots of folk wear pins and carry pens with logos but that is not quite the same as instant recognition.
Speaking of uniforms, doesn't Lady Baden Powell look magnificent in this rendering from a postage shamp? An impressive leader, indeed. This weekend I'm attending my first watercolor workshop at Oakmont. I'll wear my old paint spattered beige pants. I dont know the teacher or other students. I'm a bit apprehensive. Like the old camp round, "Make New Frieds" I feel like I'd like a uniform that advertises my sentiments. Wish me luck.

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