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Poster: "Scott F. Vaughan" <vaughan~sf@glaxowellcome.com>

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It often strikes me as interesting what exactly people consider 
inauthentic and/or inappropriate to the SCA. For example:

I am bard, a minstrel by trade and a fool in my spare time (I 
seem to have an awful lot of spare time.) Among other things, I 
mostly sing and play guitar, some period stuff, some folk, some 
filk, plenty of stupidity. Most people in the SCA have little 
problem with this and enjoy a little music now and then. I 
daresay, a large portion of the SCA knows very little about 
period music performance. They know blatantly modern pieces and 
filk when they hear it, but everything else seems to be okay. The 
small portion of people who actually do know something about 
period music might say <in my best Baroness Ceridwen "hommada 
hommada hoopty froofty" voice (no offense to Your Excellency)>:

- "the guitar is not in our period though it has relatives that 
are (but stringed instruments were mostly plucked. Chord 
strumming didn't really exist as accompaniment only ornament)"
- "most of the folk music we know comes from the 17th-19th 
centuries and is only loosely based on some late period 
- "filking period pieces is alright, but modern tunes are right 
- "original pieces should be written in period styles, not just 
with historical/SCA themes"
- "efen is very silly and really doesn't know what he's talking 
about most of the time"

I imagine experts in any craft would be able to tell you an awful 
lot more than the layman, and be able to find fault much more 
easily than most (not that they should). I, for instance, know 
zip about calligraphy, illumination, brewing, herbalism, 
medicine, leatherworking, armouring, metalworking and a whole 
host of other things. I guess I know blatanly modern and fantasy 
things when I see them, and I just tend to giggle at them rather 
than get offended.

What some folks call offensive (glasses, nikes, exposed ankles, 
wheelchairs, Jethro Tull, unescorted ladies in court, nylon 
tents, coolers, beer cans, chequey :), etc.) others don't really 
notice or find these things to be neccessary "evils." Do some 
people just have a higher tolerance for inauthenticity? Do some 
folks just have better imaginations than others? Are we so eager 
to judge one another?

I believe we live in a Very Big Dream with lots of room for 
everyone. We all have room for improvement (I said EVERYONE.) 
That's why we do this. All we can do is encourage others and 
ourselves to strive to be better, not judge. What may be "grossly 
modern" to some may very well be a "reasonable attempt" to 
another. A wise person once said "If you're not having fun, 
you're doing something wrong." Someone else said "You can change 
the world if you can change your perspective of the world."

My 3 shillings worth,

Efen (a non-smoker who only wears glasses now and then, hides his 
diet coke, plays a blatantly modern guitar, usually wears period 
looking shoes and a hat, believes the Peerage can re-organize 
themselves if they want to, escorts his Lady into court when he 
can, opens doors and offers to carry things for anyone who looks 
like they need help, bows to thrones, likes to drive to events in 
his van, bathes regularly, and uses flush toilets - but doesn't 
expect anyone else to)
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