On Knighthood Before the Age of Majority
To confer the order of knighthood upon a child is cruel and unusual. It is outright unreasonable to expect a pre-pubescent child to successfully shoulder the burdens of knighthood without lasting psychological damage. You know, what with the code-of-chivalry and national defense requirements. I know this tale all too well….because, yes….I was a Child Knight.
It was the summer of 1990, or maybe 1991 – I don’t know for sure because the trauma of what took place has rendered my memories foggy and dreamlike (*cue fife-players*).
I awoke the morning of my knighting ceremony alive with joy and skipped with glee about the hearth, kissing my family members, one-by-one, atop their darling heads. Like a scene out of Snow White, I danced off into the friggin woods – to commune with nature in preparation for my transformation later that day. I spent hours painstakingly gathering and placing flowers in my hair – to disguise the slightly-grown-out bowl cut of which I was so ashamed. Thusly adorned, I joined hands with my loving parents and set off to become a knight.
*More fife music as we make our way to the knighting grounds…….enter queen with a fdlrrrrrring! of the harp*
As I knelt before her, the queen cleared her throat to speak…
At the sight of my floral headpiece the queen jibed, “Oh, look, she’s raided the forest”, drawing an ignorant chuckle from the toothless and filthy crowd of peons.
“Lay off, bitch – I’m eight and I thought a crown of flowers would please Her Majesty”, thinks I all up in my head.
The queen’s insidious allusions to thievery and the guffaws of the masses pelted my soul like pellets of ice. Whyfore such humiliation? Wherefore art thou, Mommy?
Just as the queen’s japes and emotional-blows to the emotional-solar-plexus were about to transform me from a docile 8-year-old into a slobbering, galloping madwoman I felt the cold touch of steel on one shoulder…and then the other. The deed was done and I had indeed become a Child Knight.
What I had looked forward to all morning quickly became a nightmare for the most of the afternoon.
All the aforementioned aside, there is a small part of me that’s like, “No big whoop”, because I did become a queen later the same day. See photo below, taken a mere lunchtime after my knighthood ceremony.