Brownie Points

“Brownie Points” is the name of a TLYW themed season that began in October 2014. It is an idea that takes inspiration from Brownie, Girl Guide and Girl Scout badges. Here are links to the UK versions (Brownies, Guides) and here’s a link to the US versions.

Achievement points are the fundamental unit of currency in TLYW and are collected one at a time for individual actions, such as going to the gym. Brownie Points differ from Achievement points in two ways:

  • Brownie Points are a larger unit of currency than Achievement points, typically equivalent to 5 or more Achievement points, with no upper limit.
  • Brownie Points, because they take inspiration from the actual Brownie and Girl Guide/Scout movements, potentially span a wider range of topics and activities than normal Achievement points. So, for example, the Brownie Badges that are theoretically on offer include things like Science, Cooking and Music, none of which are normal TLYW activities and therefore, at the time of writing, don’t have Achievement points connected to them.

TLYW Brownie Points are merely inspired by the Girl Guide and Girl Scout movements, with only the loosest, most tenuous and imaginative connection to those esteemed organisations. Therefore, the criteria for winning any one of these pretend badges is completely arbitrary and is made up by me as we go along. And with that bit of preparatory explanation accomplished, here is the record of pretend badges that I have won, and those that I am working towards.

Completed Badges

bookworm iconBookworm

Read three books to completion. Doesn’t have to be Classic Lit but must be something worthwhile and not crap.
 I read Dataclysm, by Christian Rudder, Orlando by Virginia Woolf and The Great Mortality by John Kelly.

book icon

Bookworm II

Read five more books.

I read The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy, Dolly by Susan Hill, The Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferrante, The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides and So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson.


classic lit iconReader of Classic Literature

Read three of those chunky works of Classic Literature that you are supposed to read before dying.

Done! I’ve read Moby Dick  (1851) by Herman Melville, The Red and the Black (1830) by Stendhal, and The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James (1880)..


friends iconFriend

Fulfil 4 social engagements with existing friends.

Make 1 new friend.

Done and done.


Learn how to cook five new dishes.

Progress: Grilled whole sea bass; baked cod fillet; lamb chops; mac and cheese with home-made cheese sauce; steak with broccoli.



Music Lover

Go to 3 music-related events.

Done: Joined a local community choir. Haydn’s The Creation, London Philharmonic Orchestra. Philip Glass, also by the London Philharmonic Orchestra.



Badges In Progress

artist iconArtist

Acquire new art skills.
Produce at least one artwork that’s good enough to display on the blog.

Progress: I’m working on the new art skills.



Bookworm III

Read ten more books.

Progress: 1 How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Terry McMillan; 2 World War Z, Max Brooks; 3 The Stepford Wives, Ira Levin; 4 Man’s Search for Meaning, Viktor Frankl. 5 You’re Never Weird On The Internet, Felicia Day. 6 Death By Video Game by Simon Parkin. 7 High Rise by J G Ballard. 8 The Bear & The Nightingale by Katherine Arden. 9 The Psychopath Factory: How Capitalism Organises Empathy by Tristam Adams.


Books-iconBusiness Reader

Let’s go for ten business books.

Progress: The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey. Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim & Renee Mauborgne. Ready For Anything by David Allen. Designing Brand Identity by Alina Wheeler.

swimmer iconSwimmer

Swim 500 lengths of my local pool.

Progress: 390 lengths.


piano-clipMusic Lover II

Go to 5 music-related events.

Progress: Pirates of Penzance, English National Opera. Rigoletto, English National Opera.Stravinsky’s Firebird, Philharmonia Orchestra.

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