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Poster: "David H Ritterskamp" <dhritter@dpcmail.dukepower.com>

     On Fri, 11 Apr 1997, Denise McMahon <denise@access.digex.net> wrote:
     >Poster: Denise McMahon <denise@access.digex.net>
     >Greg Lindahl wrote:
     >> Poster: "Greg Lindahl" <lindahl@pbm.com>
     >> > Well, baronies have definate advantages over shires, a titled 
     head of the
     >> > group to rally around.
     >> This may be an advantage to you and your group, but I suspect that
     >> many current residents of shires disagree with you. People are
     >> different, you know.
     >Your pardon, my lord, but, actually, I don't agree with you either,
     >Leifr. I don't think that it is a necessary advantage to a group that
     >there be someone "in charge" *with a title* for that group to rally
     >around. You don't really need a titled person... teams don't. Teams 
     >their own identity as a team to give them cohesiveness... much like
     >shires have their identity as a shire. 
     >This ambiguous titled person might make some processes easier within 
     >group and could also make other processes a heck of a lot more
     >difficult. :-)
     >Some shires in Atlantia have done without them for years and seem to 
     >doing just fine. 
     >In Service,
     >Rowan Berran McDowell
     >Seneschale of Stierbach
     I have to toss this in, since this subject is of interest to me...
     Quick, name all the active shires.
     Now, name all the baronies.
     Which do you know better?  
     There are those out there who know both.  However, I for one don't.  I 
     know most of the baronies and d**n few of the shires.  I didn't even 
     know that Wilmington (Seareach) wasn't part of the Barony of 
     Windmaster's Hill until somebody told me they were forming their own 
     barony, and even then I just thought it was a canton.  Didn't know it 
     was a shire.
     Shires do not AS A RULE have the representation/noticeability that 
     Baronies do.  How many events is Seareach known for?  One.  Sheep 
     Raids.  Never been to it.  Going this time.  Heard it's fun.
     How many events is/was Crannog Mor known for?  One.  Spring Thaw.  
     Hasn't been held in awhile, I think.
     Those are the only two shires I know of.  Everything else in NC/SC is 
     taken up by Baronial status.  I don't even know the Shires in the 
     north, but I know Dun Carraig, Lochmere, and Caer Mear, which is doing 
     pretty well for somebody who doesn't get up there enough.  I don't 
     necessarily know the exact geographical areas, but at least I have a 
     NAME to associate with a person or group.  Can't say the same for 
     shires.  They just don't stick out.
     How many events is Windmaster's Hill known for?  Sacred Stone?  Black 
     Diamond?   A MINIMUM of two each; Black Diamond has Ice Castles and 
     Assessment; Windmaster's Hill has Boat Wars, Ymir (and I'm sure I'm 
     leaving at least one or two out of that list); Sacred Stone has Novice 
     Tourney, Baronial Birthday, Phoenix' Eye, Auxillium et Concillium, 
     Boar Hunt, Siege of Troy, etc.  Nottinghill Coill has Feast of Thirty, 
     Pennsic Pauper's Potluck, etc.
     Possibly, part of the problem is that shire-level events don't seem to 
     have the...sangfroid?  panache?  OOPMH that makes you WANT to go.  
     Crannog Mor isn't that far away from where I live, and I attended 
     college there, and still have friends in the area, and yet I just 
     don't bother.  I have some very old friends in Hindscroft, which is 
     even closer, and yet I don't even think of Hindscroft in SCA terms, 
     because it's a shire.  See?  I forgot about them completely, or else 
     I'd have listed them a couple of paragraphs ago.
     You can argue the point all you want and say that representation 
     doesn't matter, etc., but the simple truth is that it does.  I'm as 
     active or more so than most people I know, and if *I* can't remember 
     about shires, do you think the average SCAdian is going to?  I 
     remember people and places based on the level of interest I have in 
     them, which is directly related to the amount of time I spend or even 
     contemplate spending around them.  That's why I know Sacred Stone, 
     Nottinghill Coill, Black Diamond, Caer Mear, Windmaster's Hill, and 
     Hidden Mountain, and I don't really think about Crannog Mor, Seareach, 
     and Hindscroft.  They're just not VISIBLE.  It's entirely possible 
     that their lack of visibility is directly related to their lack of 
     events, which is directly related to their lack of enthusiasm, which 
     is directly related to their lack of visibility, etc.  
     And before the Hindscroft and Crannog Mor and Seareach people get on 
     my case for calling them less visible, remember; I spent four years in 
     Crannog Mor and I saw it all happen.  This isn't just coming from me; 
     this is coming from listening to the Crannog Mor populace and seeing 
     what happened to Hindscroft after they broke away from Sacred Stone.  
     (And not even knowing about Wilmington in the first place!)
     Now, it's possible that I'm a ridiculously atypical case and everybody 
     else is better off at remembering people/places.  But I doubt it.
     Food for thought (enough to choke on!)
     Ld. Jonathan Blackbow

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