Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Keeping Your Promises

I'm terribly in two minds about the new Guide promise.

Obviously it's a shame if the atheist children of atheist parents can't join. After all, they've got to find friends somewhere, and goodness knows having parents like that isn't going to help them.

But that promise - I mean, in the first place, it's not exactly republican-friendly. What do we do for young women who want to belong to a paramilitary organisation but don't approve of a hereditary quasi-ecclesiastical nominal ruler?

And then there's the line about "be true to myself and develop my beliefs". I mean, to be fair, it's inclusive. There's nothing there an atheist, Muslim or a Christian couldn't say. Or, for that matter, a Satanist, a member of the Junior Wing of the Klu Klux Klan, or somebody whose other hobby is pulling the legs off moths. All could promise that, whatever else they do, they'll be true to themselves. And by definition they'll be right. Whatever they do - that's what they're like.

So, if the Guides want something which doesn't disappear up its own inoffensive asininity in future, can I suggest the promise that the Little Pebbles say? It has deep roots in popular culture, yet is somehow at the same time both profound and deeply inclusive.

"I promise that I will just be myself,
that I will totally nail it,
go on an incredble journey
and that I will completely own my membership of this organisation.
Although I'm seven years old, this is my last opportunity.
I'm what this is all about.
I feel like my whole life has been leading up to this,
and it's been the best day of my life."


  1. That new promise has no guiding light outside of the self. Very sad.

  2. This is an awesome promise.
    It's clear that they want it so much!
    They're living the dream!

  3. I would say this was a sweeping generalisation but then all you Christians are the same..

  4. Well, yes, I believe that a Nice Cup of Tea solves all the world's ills but I realise this is a teensy bit self-centred...

  5. I suggest:

    I like bananas, monkey-nuts and grapes
    that's why they call me Tarzan of the Apes

    It worked for me so I don't see why all the little girls shouldn't recite it too: it carries a Deep Sense of Adventure and Purpose, and Tarzan isn't necessarily a male name, though I suppose they could substitute Jane if they have a problem with it. Not really sure Jane scans as well though: might have to make it Janey. Best recited whilst beating one's chest enthusiastically with both hands.


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