I did my usual thing of scanning the teletext pages for the local honours handed out to anyone I might know, when my jaw hit the floor. In Essex Mr R Bryant MBE \”For services to justice in North London\”. I was immediately sure it was Dad as he'd been a magistrate for 20 years in Waltham Forest, and had been chair of the NE London Chancellor's advisory committee for some time (and was especially distinguished as the other 4 chairman were judges – Dad was the only, and I think first, lay chairman).
Having no broadband back then, but a working wireless setup connected to a Microsoft SBS 2000 server with modem (oh happy days!), I fired up the laptop and hooked up to the net and searched around. There I found the website from Buckingham Palace, which showed a similar report, without being *absolutely* sure I was convinced it was him.
Dad had kept completely and utterly schtum on the matter. As he had to.
The following morning, having set a completely unusual Saturday alarm, I rang and asked to speak to 'Mr R Bryant MBE'. \”How the hell did you find out?\” was his, frankly, shocked response. \”Curiosity and the Internet Dad!!\”. I then explained.
Tonight, catching tweets on this year's New Year Honours, I realise that I'm no longer really bothered by it all, and will catch up with it all in the morning. It doesn't really matter now… Another subtle shift in perspectives.