Hey Vesta--have I said or done anything rude after I have legged you in fighting?
The simple answer--the one requested, however implicitly--is "Of course not."
The problem is...This is the Wrong Question.
The question should be: have you ever seen me behaving dishonorably on the field?
Because this kind of finely tuned question always comes from those who know, deep down, that they have done wrong but they can't bear to look at that part of themselves, so they must hem it in with particulars. Like politicians do.
I did not have sex with that woman... if I define sex in this particular way.
I did not behave dishonorably on the field... if I define dishonorable behavior in this particular way.
Because every fighter has made that error. Every one. At least once. Where they don't feel it because their blood's up, or the f*cker won't take a shot from anyone without a white belt, or they're too good to die to N00bs in Crown, or, or, or... And it's one thing to make a mistake. Because we all do. You fight long enough, you'll make that mistake.
The honorable fighter will resolve to not do it again for the rest of the tournament, and holds true.
The dishonorable fighter always has a reason for why it wasn't a mistake, really. The other guy should have--well, whatever the Other Guy was at fault for.
There are always, too, the true flowers of chivalry: the ones who make sure, great tournament or small, that when they err--they publically acknowledge it. To both their opponent and to the crowd. "I didn't feel that at first--the fight is yours. Well struck!"
How do I answer? How can I say, No to the question I'm asked and Yes to the one I should have been asked?
*I haz smartz*
I like to pick people I have never faced before. I don't get this in Coronet, where I'm on the Challengee side, so at Crown I'm always hot to find someone new. I usually end up picking Avacalians, for some reason, but this time I got a Kingdom Centralite: Sir Daniel d’Antioche, the Kingdom Earl Marshal. Woot.
And old friends.
That's the big stuff from that day.
I fought in the Squires' Tourney, as I always do, when at a Crown Event. I act the same way at every Squires' Tourney which, except for the chance to fight other women, is pretty much the same as at any other MeatGrinder. (Well, there's the reporting thing, but still...).
Squires' Tourney was fun. They were really careful of the fighters and the sun and the heat, which was nice. Lots of water, lots of breaks, even ICE! (Ice was blessed, Ice was good....) One of the fighters, Rhys (squire to Durin Oldenmoor), got bags of ice to the fighters and we were all flopped in the shade with ice chunks on our faces/throats/wrists or sucking them down to cool off. It seems so hard to believe that it was so hot!
I got to fight some great folks:
Aewodian(sp? Grendal's squire, who used to have all that FaceFur...) who has a fast and wicked greatsword. One of these days, I'll get him :)
Thegn Ulfgar (took the shortstick class from him at SoK -- dang, he's fun)
Lyotr (sp?) a squire with this fabulously decorated Celtoid armor
Sir Rustam, who pasted me, as always. I really, really need to fight him more, so I can get an idea of the arcs of his circles. They throw me off every time. I just don't have an understanding of his system...
Prinz Berek, and I blocked that back-of-the-head shot from him once, even! WOOT!
A couple of other squires -- some I won, some I lost. I didn't really report all my fights...
Sir Savaric, who has the COOLEST helm, I swear. That golden faceplate is awesome. Actually, I fought him twice. Once, on my request and the second time, after the break, he sought me out, saying "You! I want to fight YOU again!" (I admit, I actually looked around to see who he was pointing at *g* I didn't think it was me!) Both of our fights were long, drawn out to-the-teeth bouts. I don't think he'd seen the Vesta Defense before :) because he had a heck of a time getting through it. But Savaric was grinning -- I could hear it in his voice -- and said, "Great fight!" when he finally offed me.
After Squires' Tourney, I trundled back to my tent, got out of my gear and hopped into the shower. I'd gotten out of the shower and was putting my garb on when Fig bellowed for me to go to court. I'm all "Crap! What'd I do?"
I found out I'd one the chiv prize at the Tourney, which totally boggled me. Crown Prince Owain had some lovely things to say about that particular prize (I remember his words when HIS squire won, how he spoke to the populace and said that he thought his squire could attain no other award which would honor him so much as this one.)
I was flabbergasted and probably looked like a fish: ob ob ob.
This is the third time I've received the Chivalry Prize at Squires' Tourney. I admit I didn't think that was very big of a deal until my conversation with His Majesty Cedric at Egils, this last weekend. He was talking about how he'd WON Squires' Tourney multiple times (six? I think he said? I was a bit tipsy at the time, so things are blurred), but he'd never gotten the Chiv Prize and how he wanted to and here I was, getting it three times.... Made me think about it a lot more. Like... why? Why some times, why not others? Why these times? And why myself?
The only thing I can think of, in common of the three times, is taking the time to notice how the civilians around the erics are doing. It's very easy, for us as fighters, I think, to take care of and with the other fighters in the field with us. And we are courteous to each other, and we are courteous to those watching, but I wonder how often and how much we actually pay attention to those watching. The past few years have really made me realize how so much of the SCA is fighter-centric (especially heavy fighter-centric) and that we even tend to define people in relation to what we are: there are fighters and non-fighters. We describe them by what they are not, in how they are not like us. Which shows a fascinating set of assumptions about the SCA default(s).
There are others, of course: Lady Fighter, Male Laurel, Rapier Fighter, ListMistress, Earl Marshal... what they say is that Women fighters are not the norm, Men are usually not Laurels, Heavy Fighters are the default, List Ministers are almost always women, Kingdom Marshals are usually male... that's just one of those oddities of the SCA which fascinate me...I read ozarque's journal and she, a linguist, talks about the pre-suppositions of a language and its culture. I guess I'm starting to see ours.
Over the past few years, I've started to really pay attention to the Populace -- to see them as something besides that pale blur on the outside of the field. (Of course, over the past few years, I've finally had contacts so I can do something besides Fight By Blur...maybe THAT has something to do with it, eh?) But you know? If I'M hot and sweaty on the field and need water, I'll bet the Waterbearers and the Heralds and the Marshals need some too. Maybe what we need is a little more observation? Or a little more empathy?
Maybe I need to stop blowing stuff outta my ear :)
Sunday night was my birthday party -- the Come As You Aren't Party. It's a tradition (now) to celebrate Vesta's Birthday That Way. I was prodded to cough up my new alternate persona (Ilsa is retired, you see) and I categorially refused.
Anybody remember the Summits Masque? Anybody remember MY role?
Yes, I brought out Sir Rod. Rod of the Horn. And his Enormous Codpiece.
It was fabulous.
People were stunned. One shire member was so helpless with laughter, she actually left the party.
Ekat made this beautiful cake and I got lovely prezzies (and CHOCOLATE!!!). One of the coolest ones was a Grendal knife! I know! I can't AFFORD a Grendal knife!! and now I CAN HAZ GRENDAL KNIFE!!!!
So the party went on for quite some time. Samurai Gardens brought over the remnants of their food (free sushi!!) and there was pizza and sandwiches and lots and lots of Yum! And Raffe got pickled on Aelfric's mead, and I had a great convo with one of the guys from the Western Marches, and I laughed so hard that I hurt my stomach muscles.
And Monday was pack up and go home.
So, a bunch of us closed out site and went to DQ :) Was much Yum!
Got home about 4pm, unpacked around 7pm, and went to bed. It was time to prepare for Egils....
My tent stayed 98% dry (getting some seam leaks on my 8? 9? year old Panther), I slept very warm (yay sheepskins!), I had good clean fights and got to see some warm fuzzy moments. Yeah, it was cold, but the fire was warm. I wasn't lonely at all and I only had to escape the drumming once (there's just something about those big doumbeks that hurts).
Friday, I was the last of the group on-site.
After that loss, I was out, so I was free to think of the other thing I'd had planned for the weekend.
Sunday, the pack up
Then I thought...hrm. I have thoughts on this, too.
On the one hand, they're not entirely polite.
On the other hand, I'm tired of tip-toeing around the freakin' elephant.
I've heard from the fighter who posed the question that he'd gotten only two responses from this email.
One, from the Princess, thanking him for backing her play.
The other, from his own knight (who he'd cc'd).
No surprise, really.
The Shield of Chivalry wasn't given out this last Coronet.
What a wasted opportunity.
> > From what I have seen done in the past once a Baroness steps down down, her Sergeants are no longer Sergeants.
> > The fealty was to the Baroness personally and not to the Barony. A new Baroness may or may not extend an
> > invitation to former Sergeants to be her Sergeants. If she does, the former Sergeant may elect to not become a
> > Sergeant for the new Baroness.
> > Sergeantry is not an official position within the Society. It is considered retinue from my understanding.
> > Myself personally, my loyalty was to Baroness _________. It will always be so. I do not wish to nor will I transfer my
> > loyalty to another Baroness. If this means I am no longer officially a Sergeant then so be it.
> > A title is just other peoples words.
> > *smile*"
After I got over the shock, I wrote the following reply:
I took this Sunday night, when I changed the dressing and had a long and lovely shower. As you can see, I really lucked out and missed all the important stuff: bones, ligaments, tendons. Everything works, it all wiggles just fine. It aches a little, especially by the end of the day if I can't elevate it once in a while, but all in all? The mutant healing factor is working great. I slept like a log for a few nights and that seemed to do the trick, as per usual. I'll keep posting progress photos as it goes along. You'll have to pardon the hammer toes and other podiatrical deformities.