How NOT to treat somebody's military memorabilia

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posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:29 PM
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When I joined the Army, I endured a lot of hardships, obviously, as any soldier probably have. One of the toughest was three days of what we in Sweden call "strapats-övning", basically, a really harsh and tough exercise with little to no food and rest, constant running around, firefights...basically pushing you to your very limits - and then pushing you some more for good measure. At the end of this exercise, everybody in my platoon, hardened soldiers that had undergone six to eight months of military training, was one stressful moment away from breaking out in tears, to put into perspective how difficult and hard on each one of us that it was.

And as a reward, we all got our regiment's berets, which is something really big in the Swedish military - it could be compared to the Special Forces' Green Berets in status (to us soldiers) though we were not a special forces unit. Basically, it's a very special thing when a Swedish soldier is awarded their beret.

When I left for the US, I left my beret behind in Sweden, thinking everything was all goodie. During my stay in the US, my mom and brother decided to reorganize the furniture where I (and subsequently my brother) live. As a result, when I return home to Sweden, my former sleeping place was reorganized - and my memorabilia from my days in the Army scattered all over our attic. Naturally, I got majorly pissed off, and started worrying that one of those two had thrown my stuff away.

If they had, I would've rained down upon them in a godly frickin' firestorm of death and destruction.

In the end, I found my stuff. And here is my problem.

What kind of person would cram someone else's beret - knowing full well the kind of hardship I've underwent to attain the right to wear that beret - into the bottom of some random dusty, dirty old wooden crate, overfilled with (crushing the beret) useless junk, in the darkest corner of our attic? It wasn't even together with my other military stuff, it had just been crammed into a random box where there was room, with unrelated stuff that wasn't even mine, making it really hard to find. When I finally found and dug it out, it was covered with dust and dirt, and I had to clean it. This is not the way you treat something like that, especially not if it's someone else's.

Some people, including my brother, have some serious problems with respecting other people's stuff. It makes me want to punch him really hard in the face. Fortunately for him, I don't punch family.


So, what do you think, ATS? Am I overreacting? I got very upset with this, and I never get upset - so do tell me if I am indeed overreacting.
edit on 28-8-2012 by Gauss because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:39 PM
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Sounds to me like it is more of a raspberry beret, the kind you find in a second hand store. Gotta love Prince. Anyway, yes I think you are definitely over-reacting. The beret is symbolic of the hardships you endured. You should carry those in your heart, and not be concerned with displaying the symbol of them on your head. In my opinion, when we delve deep enough in search of the cause of our anger, we more often than not find we have transferred our anger upon an available issue, not the underlying root. Just my thoughts.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:42 PM
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I really don't think you're overreacting. That beret means very much to you. It is a symbol representing your struggle and your triumph, and you made it clear to your family how much this tradition means to you and your brothers in arms. I would be mad as hell in your situation as well.

I am glad it found its way back to you though



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:42 PM
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reply to post by Gauss
 


I do think you are overreacting a bit. Granted I am not in the military but I do have a few objects that are symbols of things I have done in the past. I like them very much and go out of my way to keep them in good shape. The point is though that they are objects ... nothing more. They are symbols but that is it and I can promise you that they mean way more to you than they do to them.

That being said I can understand being upset but if you verbally attacked them then I think you went too far. Its ok, you did what you did and you've earned a right to be proud and nothing will take that away whether your beret is in pristine condition or whether it is lost in a house fire.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:44 PM
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Originally posted by ezekielken
Sounds to me like it is more of a raspberry beret, the kind you find in a second hand store


I'd like to see you earn one.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:46 PM
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reply to post by ezekielken
 


It's actually a dark blue, very nice military beret with a silver unit insignia. We're talking fancy stuff here.
That said, I will have to consider your advise. It may be as you say that there is an underlying issue. For example, this is not the first time my brother has shown such disregard for my property. Anyway, thanks for your comment.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:49 PM
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reply to post by Mkoll
 

No problem. I wouldn't choose a profession that might involve killing people for money though.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:50 PM
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reply to post by Mkoll
 


I'm glad you see eye to eye with me on this, dude. I did indeed make it very clear to my family, and I think that's partly what upsets me so much. Because what my brother did to the beret knowing what I went through to get it, gives the impression of complete disregard for my feelings on the issue. Blah.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:51 PM
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that's your problem, a beret can be replaced a family not.

if that beret means so much to you, encase it in glass with a little plaque and put it in a place of honor in your house.

then everybody will know how important it is to you.

if you treat it like any other piece of clothes, then other people will too.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:53 PM
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reply to post by Gauss
 


No problem gauss. I hope you saw the humor behind my opening and realize there was no malice intended. What has been a hard lesson for me to learn is not to place expectations on others. More often than not you will be let down. In this culture of me, selfless behavior is the exception, not the rule.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:54 PM
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reply to post by underduck
 


I didn't actually attack them as in throw insults around, but I was pretty...hrm...verbal with my displeasure of their storage methods in regard to my memorabilia, it is true. That said, I'm all about memories, but I've always loved to collect these objects, trophies and memorabilia of my adventures. When I have children and grandchildren, one day, I want to be able to sit down, show them any random object of my trophy hordes, and tell them the stories behind it. So, yeah, I do tend to get attached to such physical objects for this very reason.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:55 PM
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reply to post by randomname
 


Harsh words, but you are very much right, friend. And I will take your advise, and put the beret in some kind of glass encasing. Hopefully that'll get the message across.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 05:57 PM
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reply to post by ezekielken
 


No worries, man, and I think you're right. Most of the time, I maintain a continual poker face. But I guess sometimes somebody accidentally steps on one of my very few buttons. I guess there is a lesson for me to learn somewhere around here.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 06:17 PM
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reply to post by Gauss
 


I don’t think you were wrong to get upset. Everyone has mementos and things we value and sometimes others have no idea how important a certain object is. You might have an old car that others think is a hunk of junk but that doesn't mean you can't get upset it if got damaged! Just because they don't see the value in it doesn't mean they have a right to beat it up.


However, you must keep in mind that you left it there unsecured. You can’t really expect him to know the significance of that item, especially if you left it unsecured…but that doesn’t mean you can’t get pissed about it!



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 06:21 PM
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reply to post by seabag
 


Thanks for your comment! It's an excellent point, man. I think the value of an object depends on the memories associated with it, and, well, as mentioned the beret had some serious memory value to me.

And you're right, I did leave it unsecured, and that's entirely my bad, I can realize now that I have cooled off. I assumed that, being that he's undergone similar trials as mine in the Marines to get a beret of his own (ultimately failing because of previous illness resulting in ill preparation for the trial), he would know and realize the value of it to me.

But, I guess I have yet to learn the lesson of what assumptions make me.
edit on 28-8-2012 by Gauss because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 06:22 PM
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Gauss, your brother showed a complete disregard for something you hold dear. Seems to me he's just a little bit jealous, and did it on purpose.

Your story reminds me of an old saying: Family are people you wouldn't choose to be friends with if you had a choice.

This may not be true in all families, but it sure as heck is true in mine.

Hopefully you can clean up your beret, and then keep it someplace safe. For your brother's next birthday, buy him a smashed hat.



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 06:26 PM
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reply to post by FissionSurplus
 


I appreciate your humorous take on this. Thanks! I needed the laugh.


Me and my brother have never seen eye to eye on things, and add to that the fact he never got his beret in the Marines, and the fact he's unemployed and I recently got back from a trip to the US, and...yeah, I'm thinking you might be right on the jealousy part too. Let's just say I'm not going to miss him overly much when I'm moving to the United States.


And in good news I did clean up the beret, so it's looking like new now again. One set of smooshed hat coming up for B-day present.
edit on 28-8-2012 by Gauss because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2012 @ 01:05 AM
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reply to post by Gauss
 


When I retired from the US Army after 30 years I got rid of all my uniforms (ACU's, Really? What are they good for anyways?), but did keep my ribbons and promptly put them in my footlocker with all my plaques as well.

The stuff in my footlocker is there for me, not others.

However, with that said I do still have plenty of reminders from my military days with me daily. The boxers that I was issued upon my last deployment are still holding up strong, as are the socks and belt. ( I know, the boxers are probably to much info
)

My Beret from the Eighty Duece is still with me as well.

But there are two things that I use daily. My first canteen cup I was issued back in '80 to drink my coffee, and my personilized beer stien that I was given upon my retirement.

Anyone screws with those and their toast!



posted on Aug, 29 2012 @ 02:41 AM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 


You were with the "All Americans" then? My respect, dude, and my beret comes off for you.


I'm with you, though. You don't mess with someone's stuff like that. Sounds like I need to get myself a chest to keep it all in.


And I have some of the boxers, T-shirts and socks from my Army days too. Say what you want about the Army, but they make durable undergarments.
edit on 29-8-2012 by Gauss because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2012 @ 07:09 AM
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This sounds like my mother. She always would go threw my things and cause some of them to dissapear. Reorganize my stuff and insist she was helping, when she actually made it impossible to find my things. Ugh.

And theres a reason my motorcycle parts are crammed in a box and not on a shelf
I feel ya. Thank god i can live on my own

.





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