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RE: Well it finally happened to me...

Poster: Dick Eney <dickeney@access.digex.net>

Tamar the Gypsy (sharing account dickeney@access.digex.net):  I have only
_personally_ observed a few instances of such incredibly rude behavior in
25 years of SCA experience in the East and Atlantia; in each case, the
rude person had only been in the SCA a short length of time and "knew"
things that weren't so.  In most of those instances, it was a new squire
who "knew" that "anything white was a knight's belt or master's baldric,"
or that "red belts are reserved to squires (which was only true in the
Midrealm at that time, and still is not so in the East or in Atlantia)". 
In one case, the individual had been around a while but was having severe
health problems which caused personality changes and erratic behavior. It
is truly horrifying to hear that someone who appears to have been in an
office for some time did such a stupid thing.  I am even more perturbed
that the other SCA members at the demo did not immediately pubicly
apologize to you for the man's behavior.  Simply "pretending it hadn't
happened" is insufficient, even if it hadn't happened in public. 

The suggestion that the incident be reported to the man's superiors is an
excellent one, and I urge you to do it as a selfless, socially positive
act, as this sort of behavior reflects badly on all of us.

> Poster: PETERSR@spiegel.becltd.com (Peters, Rise J.) 
> I wish I could say that this kind of thing doesn't happen in Atlantia,
> but it does.  A couple of years ago, a colleague of mine from work
><snip> a perfectly period monk's robe, complete
> with plain rope cincture that was correct with same, sandals, etc. 
> Well, the proper rope was an unbleached fiber of some sort, and within
> moments he had been cornered by folks arguing that by appearing
> =properly clad as a monk= he was somehow making an improper claim to
> knightly status.  And they did in fact make him feel so bad that he's
> never come back. 

Sounds like another "new squire or wannabee" incident.

> > > Poster: WzrdKing@aol.com > > <snip>
>a local SCA offial > of long standing came roaring up, red in the face,
absolutely furious over > an > SCA faux pas in our garb. He proceeded to
yell loud enough for the entire > gathering to hear about the utter
depravity of our offence and then told me > that such garb should never
ever be worn to an SCA event again. <snip> All of the other > good gentles
present, busied themselves with whatever was at hand and we all >
proceeded to pretend it hadn't happened. <snip> 

>I realized that nothing like this had > happened to me since high school. 
(Excluding my one year as an adjunctive > therapist in a psychiatric
hospital.) Out of all of the organizations I have > participated in the
almost 30 years since I graduated, such behavior would > have been
unthinkable <snip>. Simple rules of polite > human conduct were rigidly
enforced in all of the groups I've been active in <snip>.  the worst >
aspects of the SCA are a lot like high school: the swaggering stick jocks,
> the cliques, the nerds sucking up to the "in crowd" in hopes of being at
> least partially accepted, the intrigues...the > cheerleaders....

Sadly, that sounds like at least two mundane work environments I'm
personally aware of, one of which _included_ the red-faced superior
bellowing into someone's face - and that one was a lawyer's office... but
even that one didn't happen in public.  The swaggering (young executive),
the cliques, the nerds sucking up to the (boss and senior executives), the
(office) intrigues, the (yes-persons) are all character types that occur
in office jobs, often enough to provide employment for many cartoonists,
film-makers, and authors of "how to deal with idiots at work" books. 

> Now I know that on some level I'm making a mountain out of a mole hill >
> here <snip>.  But > I > still can't help feeling that as much as I love
> the dream, (I've been avidly reading about the period for almost 40
> years now,) I'm not sure that the > dream is worth going back to high
> school for.

I hope you don't find it necessary to leave the SCA over this, if only for
the sake of your son, who may need to stay long enough to learn that hobby
groups (and the SCA is indeed a hobby group) contain all types of people;
you have been to more than one event, but this was his first experience.

This could expand into a more general topic: how to train new members not
to misrepresent the SCA, not merely in behavior but in the things they say
about it.  The squire-wannabees pick up rumor and custom, and all too
often will pass it on as law and then behave as though it were their job
to enforce such 'rules', but it isn't only them.  I once had the good
fortune to be present in a mundane environment and hear a new member
telling a mundane that the SCA was a secret society!  I immediately spoke
up and corrected him, but I still shudder to think how many people he may
have told that to.

=Tamar the Gypsy (sharing account dickeney@access.digex.net)
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