|Back when things were fun.|
Yesterday a very good and dear friend came to hang out, chat and do that coffee / cake thing. It was awesome. I'm glad to see her start to get her mojo again. She went through a really rough time ( not my story to tell) and had more than a few people tell her some really mean things, again not my story to tell. We met through the SCA and about 80% of our conversation was about the SCA. I realised after she had gone home that I didn't really have a lot of nice things to say about this hobby and where it currently is anymore.
I've been playing SCA since I was 19 more or less and I'm 46 now so do the math. When I started I was a wild thing more interested in fun, booze and boys than anything else. My relationship with this hobby for the first 8- 10 years was mostly pure fun. Then I had a falling out with a couple of people who hurt me, deeply, so deeply that it still hurts and I still wonder why they did what they did to me. It's ancient history and I've mostly let it go but that sting, that twinge of why didn't you guys just be honest and say something up front is still there. I remember clearly feeling very betrayed by EVERYONE and I walked away, I also had other things to worry about, like school and stuff.
Now I am sure I've also hurt my fair share of people and done more than my fair share of really stupid things so I try to keep this in mind when I get on an SCA downer but I must admit lately it seems to be getting harder and harder for me to just enjoy it.
My favourite SCA times are from Newfoundland, the shire with the unspeakable name at the edge of the world. In my memory, in spite of some major lows, these were the very best years ever. The whole shire brunched together every single Sunday and were were friends, lovers, mates, etc.... we were family and I think my biggest problem is I want THAT feeling back.
It occurred to me as I lay in bed this morning thinking about this that my biggest problem right now is I feel as though I don't belong any more. I'm an out dated fossil whose time has passed. I don't think this is actually true but it does sum up how I feel. Displaced and out of time ( as in wrong place and time).
It's hard to be in the SCA in Germany. The central region seems to be all tiny groups and divisive bitching. People vying for awards and pats on the head. Many people seem to view the award system with being important. The more shinies you have the more important you are. I think this has been a problem in the SCA for a long time but it's very prevalent here and I wish people would understand that really no one is important and everyone is important. This is a hobby not a job. ( at least it shouldn't be a job at all)
There's no real sense of community here. We had that once when we first formed the shire, there were six of us, close friends and working together. The stars on the Shire device represents each of us. Every time I see the shire device I am reminded of where we began and why and when I see what we have become it makes me sad. I am partly to blame though and I know this but changing that seems to be too big of a task and I don't want to be caught in the middle of a never ending struggle for power brought on by jealousy.
|Aventiure: the six stars for the six founding members Skarf, Leo, Marcus, Maeva, Ele and me. It's black and white to remind us that everything story has two sides and that while it may appear so not everything is black and white.|
My lack of enthusiasm and my unwillingness to change seem to go hand in hand with the general malaise. I would hold A&S stuff at my house but quite honestly there are people I just do not want in my home. Is this evil? I don't think so, maybe it's me being mean but at least I think it's an honest answer.
But groups grow and divide as is their nature and couples split causing lines of division. Alliances shift and change and somehow things never quite seem the same. Right now, for me, here in this place it's like white noise in my head. I'm not the only person who has noticed this club, our hobby, isn't what it once was. law suits and risings costs, rules and regulations, and a general lack of ability to keep up with the technological times seem to be huge issues. One only has to look at the websites of many kingdoms and shire to see just how lacking we are. Given that the first impression of a club now is their webpage, who the hell would join us? When I compare how we present who we are and what we do with how the 501st does I truly despair. We look like a bunch of boring, disorganized bureaucrats. We don't really present the club's strengths and it doesn't surprise me that we don't pick up new members all that much. We don't really show off an enticing, exciting face. We have so much going for us as a club but oddly enough on first blush all people really see are the dull bits.
So I pare down my SCA dealings to good friends and my SCA family, when I get a chance to see them, or hear form them as they are all over the known world. I took on one office to pull friends out of a bind but really in retrospect I shouldn't have. I asked for advice and help and got none. Then when help did come, surprisingly from an unexpected source I no longer cared. It angers me that I've let my apathy creep in. I don't like doing a bad job of things yet here I am doing a bad job. So what did I do? I took on a second job. I took on Signet but that will be fun, it's a job I know and like.
So I'm drifting. I feel as though I no longer belong, as though I no longer have a place. I am aware that the only person who can really change this is me and that all of my ennui is entirely my own. I am aware that only I can make myself happy and only I can enjoy the hobby at hand. I stay away from events because I don't feel the need to infect the world at large with my unhappiness. I stay away from events because the last few times with one exception it felt to me as though I were an unwelcome annoyance ( not true I'm sure but perception is everything sometimes) We create our own reality. I certainly create mine. Irreconcilable differences. After such a long time I wonder if it is possible to just go back to holding hands and laughing at silly things.
|pennsic 15. When we were young and life was less complicated.|