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Re: Loyalty

Poster: "Robert Dawson,PA-C" <dawsonr@naxs.net>

Good Gentles,

    The other day I made the brief statement, "Good Lady, I disagree.
Personally, I joined the SCA, not a Kingdom, YMMV." in response to a point
raised by Jessamyn di Piemonte: "But those who join in a principality will
have even LESS incentive to travel to events other than Crown, Coronation,

    I should know better by now than to zip off a quick reply before heading
out of town for a few days, but my goodness what a great discussion it
spawned :-) While I say what I mean, and mean what I say, this time I
apparently did neither well.  To correct the misunderstanding, please allow
me to elaborate.

    Heather Swann commented (I think it was Heather, if I'm misattributing,
pray forgive me):

>> Depends, though, on how new people are brought in and how they're
>> introduced to travelling.  Did you join in a principality or a
>> kingdom?  If, for example, you joined in the Kingdom of Atlantia, you
>> were shown kingdom culture.  If you were to join in a principality,
>> you might be shown principality culture.  It depends on what folks
>> around you tell you to some extent, and thus what you feel a
>> connection to.

    I'm not certain how much impact your experiences as a newcomer have as
opposed to where you have your best experiences as time goes by.  When I
first started playing (AS VII) in Massachusetts there was the East, the West
(waaay out thata way in California no less), and ostensibly the Middle
(nobody talked about them much).  Unfortunately mundania intervened
frequently through the years and I never got to play as much as  wanted to,
or anyplace for very long.  Over the course of time I've lived in the East,
Middle, Meridies, Aethelmearc, and now (maybe, short story--off topic)

    One might be tempted to conclude, "Ah, you moved around so much you
never developed any group loyalty!" to which I would respond heartily, *SCA
by choice, by Grace of God, Meridies!*

    Who can put it better than Scott?  "Breathes there a man, with soul so
dead, who never to himself hath said, this is my own, my native land!  Whose
heart hath ne'er within him burned, as home his footsteps he hath turned
from wandering on a foreign strand.  Despite those titles, powers and pelf,
the wretch, concentrated all in self, living shall forfeit fair renown, and
doubly dying, shall go down to the vile dust, from whence he sprung, unwept,
unhonored, and unsung."  I think most of us have a group/place in the Knowne
World to which we feel a special attachment.  I feel sorry for one who does
not.  However, I don't think that sense of attachment makes us exclude
playing in areas away from that place.

    I also think a Northern Principality for Atlantia is a fine thing.
There are pros and cons to any such proposal, some which have been raised at
the Merry Rose, and others are sure to come.  I was attempting to address an
objection raised that the boundaries of a new principality become a border
that decreasing numbers will pass, to the deriment of the principality and
the parent kingdom.  My experience has been otherwise.  When I first started
to play there was THE EAST.  Over the course of lo these many years I've
watched the growth of the SCA--*not* the balkanization of the East Kingdom.
As a whole we have achieved strength through diversity.  I said it before,
if a kingdom has strong ties of friendship and culture among its populace it
cannot be diminished by the formation of a principality.  OK there are
friendly rivalries, and sometimes bitter ones, but on the whole we all play
together remarkable well.

Heather also pointed out:
>>I'm not saying you'd be a sheep and be ruled totally
>> by others- you'd probably travel to events your friends went to.  It's
>> just a human nature thing.  Of course, there will always be those who
>> will/will not travel regardless.

    Quite so, but among those who *might* travel, will the situation be, as
M'Lady Jessamyn di Piemonte put it: "...those who join in a principality
will have even LESS incentive to travel to events other than Crown,
Coronation, etc.."  As I said, I disagree.

Heather concluded:
>> I mean sure, I joined the SCA too- but do I go to East Kingdom
>> events?  Naw.....or Aethelmarc?  Nope.  I don't get the newsletters,
>> it's easier to just go to Atlantian stuff.... Of course, I have been
>> thinking lately I need to make time to get to more events in the
>> southern end of the kingdom.  I just don't have a convenient camping
>> tent, and so many of their events are now camping events....and that's
>> a factor that has an effect on travel too....
>> It's an aculturation and convenience thing.....

    And therein is the heart of what I see as the primary factor in
traveling to events, it's a "convenience thing."  Personally, I get both the
Acorn and Pop Chiv, and I check frequently on line for events that might
interest me in the Middle and Aethelmearc, but that's because at long last
mundane circumstances are finally letting me play the way I've always wanted
to, and I've got a lot of 'catching up' to do :-)  I freely admit what's now
"convenient" for me wouldn't be for a lot of folks.  From what I've seen
even if a principality forms, people will travel to the events they've liked
in the past, or that sound like fun, or that their friends are going to, or
aren't too far away, or are on the weekend the folks will watch the kids, or
any of a hundred reasons, but that an event is 'across the border' will not
be a prime concern for the majority of SCAdians.  I play in the SCA, not
just Atlantia, and my feeling is that, loyalties notwithstanding, so do a
great many others.  M'Lady Jessamyn's experience in Calontir has been
different from mine in other lands.  So while there may be many good reasons
not to form a Northern principality, I still disagree with M'Lady Jessamyn
as to that particular one.  I remain,

Your Obd't servant,

Kenna McKenna

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