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Poster: Janet Toney/Terry Neill <71035.3227@CompuServe.COM>

>>>My concern is the folks, often newcomers, who can't tell the difference
between conveient, fantasy, and historical, get them all confused, and then are
adamant that what they saw at some fight-n-feast IS historical despite any 
efforts to explain otherwise.<<<

I believe you "overdumb" newcomers. Some "old timers" never get the clue, but I
believe there are as many new people who are really interested in "doing it
right" or at least as best they can as there are among the titled nobility.

>>> my field garb and esp. my Pennsic garb, shows little attempt at anything
more than a T-tunic style. I wear it because it is convenient, fits my sewing
skill and budget, and is machine washable.<<<

Sounds as if you are attempting to hold the Society to a level of authenticity
you don't keep for yourself. And cotten t-tunics are why many newcomers wear
exactly the same garb you do - time, expense, skill - and why spend tons of
money on a hobby you may not enjoy? One of the attractions of the SCA is that
new people can *get involved* right away, without spending years on research
before we allow them to attent their first event. 

And there's ***lots*** more people can learn about Medieval history via the SCA
than garb - woodworking, embroidery, metal casting, forging, natural dying, wool
washing and combing, brewing, cordial making, breeds of Scandanavian sheep in
period, leatherworking, cordwaining, nalbinding, medieval styles of heraldry,
medieval horse tack, period pavilion-making, rowing and square-sail sailing (on
a 32-foot Viking long ship and a 22 foot Viking faering boat), sprang, yes, and
actual history - these are just *some* of the things *I've* personally learned
or done *this year*. And I've taught several of them as well (over 30 nalbinding
students this year and I continue to teach anyone who asks to learn, for
example). I've only been in the SCA 4 1/2 years - just won my first-ever A&S
competition this last weekend. I'm too old and slow to try to fight or even
fence, but I participate in equestrian events whenever possible (3YC for
example) and so have been studying period riding styles, types of horses, bits,

I don't consider myself particularly unusual in the SCA. I see people studying
on their own or doing group research and projects or teaching all around me. For
many of us, the *process* is the thing we enjoy best. If I only wanted to look
authentic, I could probably hire someone to make me up a couple of gowns, blow
the budget on a pair of bifocal contact lenses, and out-authentic the best of
them. But that's not why I'm in the SCA and it's not even educational - what
would I have learned?

I guess I'm really not even sure I see the point of your arguement. Perhaps you
are looking for a group that is *not* the SCA. I, personally do not want to
belong to a group like some of the Civil War reinactors where authenticity is so
stringently enforced - but it is easier for them as they have many concrete
examples of artifacts, photographs, first-serson accounts, etc, to help them
with their research. I wanted to get *started* and be allowed to participate
without spending a couple of years getting all my gear together. but if this
*is* what you'd like to belong to, perhaps there is another group somewhere you
should be seeking. One of the Markland groups with which I participate does
authenticity competitions two or three times a year and spends the year
researching garb, household goods, metallurgy, history, etc. 

I'm not arguing against people *who want to* being as authentic as they wish and
can afford to be. I just do not want to see hand-spun, home-dyed, warp-weighted
loom-woven, and hand sewn garb de rigetour for the Society and everyone in it. 

					Ana Ilevna, Caer Mear

					Janet Toney

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