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Courtesy and smoking...

Poster: Heather Swann <heather@pop.net>

Gracious Gentles All,

I concur with the Courteous Gentles who stated their displeasure with
the low state of courtesy in our Fair Society in these times, and the
problem of needing to avoid smoke.

Having taken a break from the Society myself, I find that Courtesy is
not what it once was.  Manners have become a lesser thing to many, and
this is disturbing in a Society that once prided itself on its Grace. 
There are, of course, always exceptions and exceptional people, and when
I see and meet them, I do try to remark upon them that others might take
them as an example.  And I try to be one myself, though being human I'm
sure I often fail.

I have had to help other ladies carry heavy objects while watching Lords
stand by and not offer assistance.  Granted, I'm a strong woman, though
my back is not what it once was, but I'm not as strong as some of the
Lords I saw standing idly by watching and talking.

I've seen people be brushed past without a courteous "Pardon me" or even
a glance.  At the Twelfth night where the hallwayss were so crowded (not
this last one) I saw people (and I myself was) slammed up against one of
the walls without so much as a "pardon-me-are-you-ok-my-apologies".

Then again, there are the exceptions- Lord Kevin of Thornbury always
offers assistance, Lord Boroghul Khara is always ready to lend a hand,
Sir TJ has always been swell that way, Baron Ranulf has been quick to
aid, among many others....and mind you, I speak not just of lords....the
Honourable Excellency Meleri ferch Iasper has been quick to volunteer,
Baroness Morgainne de la Flame, Baroness Caitlyn, Lady Muireann, and so
forth.  And all the swell folks who have no cookies at all, but play the
game right, with a smile and an open hand....

It's simply that for the most part in the everyday Society experience,
at least mine, YMMV, the level of courtesy has gone way down.  And
that's the thing that most attracted me to the SCA in the first place. 
If the courtesy disappears then we're just a bunch of rude people in
funny clothes, nu?

I mean, to me that's the whole point.  The courtesy.  All the rest is
nice as well, but without the courtesy, it's a pretty lame game, imho.

Perhaps we should try to work in courtesy classes that don't just
involve how to address whom, but how to be courteous in general, and
courtly as well...

As to smoking, as someone who is allergic to it, I have but one
question:  Why is it those who smoke commonly do so close to all the
stuff I'd like to be able to see, and right by all the exits where I
have to walk?

I mean, I know there are very courteous folks who are careful about
where they smoke, but being allergic, I find this to be a big
problem....y'see, it's not just that I can't breathe the stuff-if it
gets in or on my clothes, my hair, my skin, I have to wash it off/out,
or it will itch unmercifully and cause my throat to start closing......I
don't mean to be mean here- it's just that smoking is pretty pervasive
at events, and I have to keep so alert to it, I'm not really spending
much time having fun playing the game....makes it hard to get up the
enthusiasm for events...I started making all my garb out of cotton just
so I could wash it every time.

And thanks, Branwyn for volunteering to talk to the smokers for those of
us who can't get that close...I really appreciate it!  :)

Just my tuppence ha'p'nny.....and my apologies if I've offended

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