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Re: RE: "reenactors."

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  • NINETY3RD@xxx.xxx
    ... Echo? What Echo? Echo? What Echo? B
    Message 1 of 22 , Dec 3, 1999
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      In a message dated 03/12/1999 8:23:32 AM, abateman@... writes:

      >From: "Bateman, Andrew" <abateman@...>
      >
      >
      >
      >Benton Jennings wrote:
      >
      >
      >
      >Was that a Freudian slip there Larry?
      >
      >*O*-ppression.....?
      >
      >
      >
      >;-)
      >
      >
      >
      >B
      >
      >
      >
      >Andrew writes:
      >
      >
      >
      >Is there an echo in this room?

      Echo?

      What Echo?

      Echo?

      What Echo?

      B
    • Craig Williams
      -- ... Two. Me and one to hold my penis..MY MOTHER!...MY LADDER!!!
      Message 2 of 22 , Dec 3, 1999
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        --
        >>
        >>
        >>Was that a Freudian slip there Larry?
        >>
        >>*O*-ppression.....?
        >>
        >>How many Freudian phyciatrists does it take to change a lightbulb.........





        Two.



        Me and one to hold my penis..MY MOTHER!...MY LADDER!!!
        >>
        >>Oh grin..Craig
        >>
        >>
        >>
        >>
        >>
        >>
        >>
      • Craig Williams
        Tim, some thoughts on your last missive; for this reason the rules should be spelled out clearly to all who have command positions. You mean sorta like a12
        Message 3 of 22 , Dec 3, 1999
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          Tim, some thoughts on your last missive;

          "for this reason the rules should be spelled out clearly to all who have
          command positions. "

          You mean sorta like a12 page safety guide that includes a schedule that is
          distributed to all participants if not by mail before hand, then during
          registration the night before an event?

          "it is a good idea to have the controlling site person in modern clothes so
          that they can interact without looking anachronistic."

          I'm sorry,aren't modern clothes anacronistic?Kidding aside, a site
          representative should be able to be seen in and around the re-enactors and
          not be obvious. This way visitors photos are not ruined, and the ambiance
          can be maintained as much as possible. If it becomes neccessary for a site
          supervisor to step out of character to address a problem, then it is
          incumbent on the re-enactors to assist the site rep in rectifying any
          difficulties. Once the problem has been dealt with then everyone can go
          back
          into character. When I was the safety co-ordinator of the Battle of
          Ridgeway
          the battle designer and myself were able to drift between both sides
          unobtrusively because we dressed as period undertakers. I firmly believe
          that it is up to the discretion of the event co-ordinator what he/she wears
          to their own party (within historical context), without having to bend over
          backwards to accomodate the re-enactors.

          "They could also use the correct uniform and take command",
          If they know how. There is nothing more dangerous than someone who figures
          they can command because they've read A book and spent a little or even a
          lot of money on a swishy bit of schmatta from Whitehall. You know the type.

          "if command is delegated it should only be delegated to a person
          trusted by the site, and that person must be fully briefed."

          Agreed, like at a scheduled meeting prior to the safety meeting which of
          course would be outlined in the safety/schedule handed out before the event.

          "The person appointed to command is (or should be made aware of) who is in
          charge" That would be at the briefing.

          " and that person should have the trust to be able to communicate in a
          period way. In the example you give above the female in charge could drop a
          curtsy, say "If you will pardon me sir, it is of great importance that I
          speak to you in private."
          I certainly hope that her next sentence once cloistered behind closed doors
          is not ,"Your hat is on fire ". This doesn't work in an emergency, Tim.


          "female stalks across the paradeground screaming at the top of her voice at
          the supposed commander of the fort "WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE
          DOING?!!"

          Depending on what she was yelling about, she may be justified . If the
          re-enactor commander has been supplied with the said documents mentioned
          before, this problem isn't likely to arise,so I thinks it's moot.

          I am in total agreement with you when you say that ,"this is a problem
          that should never happen ", and barring an international conference of
          historical site supervisors holding a summit on "how to be of complete
          service to a re-enactor", I think using a little common (sorry I used the
          "C" word) sense is in order.



          Just a few thoughts...
          Craig

          "God is on the side of the big battalions",Voltaire
          "No foolin'." Craig Williams
        • BritcomHMP@xxx.xxx
          Dear Craig, Obviously we are on the same page. A few other thoughts on your post though.
          Message 4 of 22 , Dec 4, 1999
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            Dear Craig,

            Obviously we are on the same page. A few other thoughts on your post though.

            <<"for this reason the rules should be spelled out clearly to all who have
            command positions. "

            You mean sorta like a12 page safety guide that includes a schedule that is
            distributed to all participants if not by mail before hand, then during
            registration the night before an event?>>

            No, I mean that if a specific activity is not allowed at a particular time
            while being allowed at others this should be spelled out at the pre event
            meeting, not assumed that the non park person in charge happens to be fully
            conversant with the variations in the rules.

            <<"it is a good idea to have the controlling site person in modern clothes so
            that they can interact without looking anachronistic."

            I'm sorry,aren't modern clothes anacronistic?Kidding aside, a site
            representative should be able to be seen in and around the re-enactors and
            not be obvious. This way visitors photos are not ruined, and the ambiance
            can be maintained as much as possible. If it becomes neccessary for a site
            supervisor to step out of character to address a problem, then it is
            incumbent on the re-enactors to assist the site rep in rectifying any
            difficulties.>>

            No, I mean that in an emergency someone in modern dress can jump in and do
            what they like without affecting the first person interactions. For any
            member of the public who sees someone other than supposed commander (private,
            washerwoman etc.) obviously exercising command at a crucial time the
            'theatrical' illusion is gone fore the weekend. As members of the public know
            in which age they live a 'modern' person would not have this effect.
            It is like having a problem at the theater, Its one thing to have the manager
            walk on stage and correct a problem after which the action of the play can go
            on. It would somewhat spoil the effect to have a member of the cast do it.
            Its the difference between being performer or 'front of house'.

            I think in this same context if park people choose to dress up the 'how' they
            go in and out of character is very important. Their attitude in this will
            very much determine the amount of co-operation they get. You catch more fly's
            with honey than vinegar.

            <>

            Quite, the problem is usually not what anyone wears but how they behave while
            wearing it.

            <<the female in charge could drop a
            curtsy, say "If you will pardon me sir, it is of great importance that I
            speak to you in private."
            I certainly hope that her next sentence once cloistered behind closed doors
            is not ,"Your hat is on fire ". This doesn't work in an emergency, Tim.>>

            That depends on the emergency, There are many period ways of getting
            someone's attention but if of course we are speaking of a risk to life and
            limb then all bets are off. If on the other hand it is a breech of park rule
            that someone was not informed of I think the belligerent attitude it
            inexcusable. (A particular incident at Chalmette comes to mind).

            I think part of the large problem here, particularly for battles, comes from
            sites where individuals do not (and do not have the skill to) command on the
            field but want to dictate how the minutia if the battle should go. I have
            always though that we who are in 'harms way' should control the action
            because it is literally our backsides that are out there. The few bad
            incident arise when (as the Chalmette incident of many years ago) someone
            takes the attitude that 'this is MY site and you will do what I say whenever
            I say it and if you break a rule, even if I haven't bothered to tell you
            about it, I am hauling you on the carpet in front of everybody'.

            PS That particular 'lady' is no longer at Chalmette.

            Cheers

            Tim
          • BritcomHMP@xxx.xxx
            As it got sniped in my original reply somehow Craig wrote:- I firmly believe that it is up to the discretion of the event co-ordinator what he/she wears to
            Message 5 of 22 , Dec 4, 1999
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              As it got sniped in my original reply somehow

              Craig wrote:-

              I firmly believe
              that it is up to the discretion of the event co-ordinator what he/she wears
              to their own party (within historical context), without having to bend over
              backwards to accomodate the re-enactors.

              I replied:-

              Quite, the problem is usually not what anyone wears but how they behave while
              wearing it.

              Cheers

              Tim
            • Craig Williams
              Tim, in response Obviously we are on the same page. Nope. if a specific activity is not allowed at a particular time while being allowed at others this
              Message 6 of 22 , Dec 8, 1999
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                Tim, in response

                "Obviously we are on the same page. "

                Nope.

                "if a specific activity is not allowed at a particular time while being
                allowed at others this should be spelled out at the pre event meeting, not
                assumed that the non park person in charge happens to be fully conversant
                with the variations in the rules."
                Tim this is what a schedule is for, any major deviation should be cleared,
                no exceptions.
                >
                ><<"it is a good idea to have the controlling site person in modern clothes
                so
                >that they can interact without looking anachronistic."
                >
                >I'm sorry,aren't modern clothes anacronistic?Kidding aside, a site
                >representative should be able to be seen in and around the re-enactors and
                >not be obvious. This way visitors photos are not ruined, and the ambiance
                >can be maintained as much as possible. If it becomes neccessary for a site
                >supervisor to step out of character to address a problem, then it is
                >incumbent on the re-enactors to assist the site rep in rectifying any
                >difficulties.>>
                >
                >No, I mean that in an emergency someone in modern dress can jump in and do
                >what they like without affecting the first person interactions. For any
                >member of the public who sees someone other than supposed commander
                (private,
                >washerwoman etc.) obviously exercising command at a crucial time the
                >'theatrical' illusion is gone fore the weekend. As members of the public
                know
                >in which age they live a 'modern' person would not have this effect.
                >It is like having a problem at the theater, Its one thing to have the
                manager
                >walk on stage and correct a problem after which the action of the play can
                go
                >on. It would somewhat spoil the effect to have a member of the cast do it.
                >Its the difference between being performer or 'front of house'.
                >
                >I think in this same context if park people choose to dress up the 'how'
                they
                >go in and out of character is very important. Their attitude in this will
                >very much determine the amount of co-operation they get. You catch more
                fly's
                >with honey than vinegar.
                >
                ><>
                >
                >Quite, the problem is usually not what anyone wears but how they behave
                while
                >wearing it.
                >
                ><<the female in charge could drop a
                >curtsy, say "If you will pardon me sir, it is of great importance that I
                >speak to you in private."
                >I certainly hope that her next sentence once cloistered behind closed doors
                >is not ,"Your hat is on fire ". This doesn't work in an emergency, Tim.>>
                >
                >That depends on the emergency, There are many period ways of getting
                >someone's attention but if of course we are speaking of a risk to life and
                >limb then all bets are off. If on the other hand it is a breech of park
                rule
                >that someone was not informed of I think the belligerent attitude it
                >inexcusable. (A particular incident at Chalmette comes to mind).
                >
                >I think part of the large problem here, particularly for battles, comes
                from
                >sites where individuals do not (and do not have the skill to) command on
                the
                >field but want to dictate how the minutia if the battle should go. I have
                >always though that we who are in 'harms way' should control the action
                >because it is literally our backsides that are out there. The few bad
                >incident arise when (as the Chalmette incident of many years ago) someone
                >takes the attitude that 'this is MY site and you will do what I say
                whenever
                >I say it and if you break a rule, even if I haven't bothered to tell you
                >about it, I am hauling you on the carpet in front of everybody'.
                >
                >PS That particular 'lady' is no longer at Chalmette.
                >
                >Cheers
                >
                >Tim
                >
                >>The War of 1812: In Europe, thousands fought over the fate of hundreds of
                square miles: in North America, hundreds determined the fate of THOUSANDS of
                square miles...
              • BritcomHMP@aol.com
                In a message dated 12/8/1999 9:53:37 PM Central Standard Time, sgtwarnr@idirect.ca writes:
                Message 7 of 22 , Dec 9, 1999
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                  In a message dated 12/8/1999 9:53:37 PM Central Standard Time,
                  sgtwarnr@... writes:

                  << Tim, in response

                  "Obviously we are on the same page. "

                  Nope.

                  "if a specific activity is not allowed at a particular time while being
                  allowed at others this should be spelled out at the pre event meeting, not
                  assumed that the non park person in charge happens to be fully conversant
                  with the variations in the rules."
                  Tim this is what a schedule is for, any major deviation should be cleared,
                  no exceptions. >>

                  Er. Craig?
                  First you say 'Nope' meaning I assume we are NOT on the same page and then
                  make the statement above which seemingly agrees with what I have said.

                  I can see one potentially large difference in interpretation here in that one
                  could take your statement to read that any and all actions anticipated must
                  be cleared at a pre-event meeting. However you implication is that the entire
                  responsibility is on the re-enactment commander. If he is not aware of the
                  site rules, and the site neglects to inform him off the rules, it is still
                  his fault if he breaks them because it "should be cleared".


                  Leaving aside that I have NEVER attended a meeting where any site has gone
                  into anything like that detail I would say that there are two problems here.

                  1, It is impossible to think of all the eventualities that can happen in a
                  re-enactment or 1st person scenario in front of the public so there must be
                  some flexibility. Your statement about 'checking deviations' beforehand
                  assumes that an unplanned action is known to be a deviation from the rules
                  and can be anticipated. If it could be anticipated it would not be unplanned
                  (catch 22).

                  2, It is the SITES responsibility to state very clearly and unequivocally
                  what the no-no's are before the event. If the person is not given the
                  information he can hardly be expected to abide by the rules.

                  It is foolish for the site to make assumptions about what someone who does
                  not work there may or may not know about the rules. If the site were to
                  follow up their non decimation of such information by publicly chastising an
                  individual problems will ensue. Particularly if no danger is inherent in the
                  action.

                  I am glad that we are on the same page with the rest of (and indeed the bulk
                  of) my post.

                  Cheers

                  Tim
                • David_Webb@xxx.xx.xx
                  This is a very interesting discussion, and while a conference is not needed, it might be useful for reenactors and site managers to get together to exchange
                  Message 8 of 22 , Dec 9, 1999
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                    This is a very interesting discussion, and while a conference is not needed, it
                    might be useful for reenactors and site managers to get together to exchange
                    views on safety, direction and communication at events.
                    I think that for big events, one should try to have emergency staff in modern
                    clothing, identified. We hire, for a ridiculously tiny honorarium, St John's
                    ambulance. We also have crowd control staff in modern dress, on the lines, and
                    an emergency plan. Our key first aider has a walkie-talky so that they know
                    what is going on in the battle, and a cell phone so they can call 911 if an
                    emergency is requiered.
                    Site staff in period costume are on the field also, and they are there to
                    ensure safety, but also to help unit commanders with communications, etc. If
                    the site does not have a person or people on the field for a demonstration, then
                    things can go wrong, and even get dangerous, and usually the site person then
                    has the option of going out in modern dress to shut things down, or have some
                    sort of tissy fit in public, or just ignore dangerous stuff.
                    I was a safety officer at a 7 Years War Event at Louisbourg this year. The
                    safety officers wore armbands, attended meetings, and were on the field with the
                    staff during the battles. This worked out very well, since we could discuss
                    things before they went wrong. For example, the Brit commander and I together
                    decided how close we could safely move troops on a flank nearest the crowd. The
                    site ropelines were no longer relevant because of a strong wind blowing from us
                    onto the crowd, and we had to respond to this wind change to avoid flashing or
                    smoking out the audience. With an unobtrusive walkie talky, the opposing
                    commanders could cue phases of the planned scenerio, and even communicate if
                    they chose.
                    We had one safety problem. A planned failed assault went wrong when one
                    participant did not die, but chose to attack the Fortress of Louisbourg and its
                    French defenders single handed. I guess the bushido code lives on in New
                    England. The difficulty was compounded when two Frenchmen obligingly shot him
                    at point blank range. A safety officer was there and tried to stop this silly
                    and dangerous charge, and also to deal with the two idjits who really made
                    things worse by firing at this guy. Since he was on the field in kit, this
                    problem was dealt with, and the battle was not interupted. With no one on the
                    field, a site person might have gone out in modern clothes to shut things down.
                    What was good about this episode was that the 3 stooges were identified, and the
                    site worked with the event and unit commanders to deal with the problem, and the
                    unit commanders took appropriate disciplinary action. With no costumed staff
                    on the field, a battle between the site and the unit or field commanders would
                    very possibly resulted.
                    At the same event, there were some site guard units who really were not very
                    experienced in tactical demos. They actually frightened some of the reenactors,
                    and instead of banning the guard units, or having participants walk from the
                    event, safety officers were placed to monitor and advise the guard units as
                    their sole responsibility. This was done tactfully, and everyone was happy and
                    got to participate.
                    Finally, we had an unfortunate artillery commander who had his foot run over
                    by one of his 6 pounder guns. His group, and all the participants left the
                    field, and no one noticed his problem. I was on site as a safety person, and
                    because I was in kit, I was near enough to see that he was in distress. I was
                    able to get help, and save his nice officers boot by getting it off before his
                    foot became too swollen. With no one on the field in kit, it might have been
                    some time before he was noticed. I really do think it is useful to have staff
                    in period costume on the field, especially in big battles.
                    While reenactors and site managers all share responsibility and liability at
                    events, the host organization as property owner usually gets sued as the
                    primary target. As an employee or agent for Parks Canada, I am aware that the
                    deep pockets of my employer are on the line. So are the historic programmes at
                    Parks and Sites across Canada, and many could close down or be suspended if we
                    have a bad accident that frightens senior administrators and politicians. This
                    would also lead to stricter rules ( such as no opposed sides tacticals) and some
                    other organisations might follow our lead. Finally, in event of a bad
                    accident, especially involving negligence, it is only the site staff and
                    managers that will lose their jobs and blight their careers. Federal, State, or
                    Provincial labour laws usually apply, and criminal charges can result for
                    participants and hosts alike.
                    A number of reenactors ( or living historians, as opposed to dead ones) have
                    jobs in film, or as exotic dancers, or whatever, and could also be in a
                    difficult employment situation if they were directly involved in an event
                    accident. But it is the event safety officer at most historic sites, and the
                    site manager, whose jobs are really on the line. If my paycheck is on the line,
                    I get to call the shots at my site, and this includes deciding on hosting an
                    event or not. I do have a veto. I really must communicate with, work with, and
                    listen to the event participants, and especially the commanders, and treat them
                    with respect, and hope that my trust in them will be justified. If there is an
                    accident, all parties loose , all of us have liabilities and responsibilites,
                    and so all of us have the authority to act to stop dangerous activity.
                  • Craig Williams
                    David,. Bravo and well said! Craig
                    Message 9 of 22 , Dec 9, 1999
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                      David,.
                      Bravo and well said!
                      Craig
                    • BritcomHMP@xxx.xxx
                      Good points all Dave, I suppose we can expect the odd loon in the ranks and certainly it behooves all officers and NOC s to watch out for these individuals and
                      Message 10 of 22 , Dec 9, 1999
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                        Good points all Dave, I suppose we can expect the odd loon in the ranks and
                        certainly it behooves all officers and NOC's to watch out for these
                        individuals and quell the spirit of 'bushido' or anything else contrary to
                        regulations and safety.
                        At Mississenewa this year I ordered all muskets checked for their half cock
                        with the rule that no muskets which did not have a working half cock were to
                        be allowed on the field whether or not they have a hammerstall attached
                        (everyone I am sure knows my opinion of THAT bit of frippery). No less than 3
                        muskets failed the test!

                        This is something I shall continue to enforce I can assure you.

                        Cheers

                        Tim
                      • Kevin Windsor
                        Dave. I have to wholeheartedly agree with what you said! I was at Louisbourg and I had an interesting position. I was doing a postgrad in Heritage
                        Message 11 of 22 , Dec 11, 1999
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                          Dave. I have to wholeheartedly agree with what you said! I was at
                          Louisbourg and I had an interesting position. I was doing a postgrad in
                          Heritage Preservation and part of my job that weekend was to evaluate you!
                          (not you specifically but the safety officers and other staff) I felt that
                          all of the staff did an outstanding job!! I witnessed the single man
                          storming the fort and the only reaction I got from the crowd was "hey look
                          at that stupid guy!" I feel that if you were wearing modern clothes and
                          ran out on to the field and chewed him out then the whole battle would have
                          been ruined. The walkie talkies were also not very noticable except for
                          one man and when a visitor questioned me about it I informed her that he
                          was probably a safety officer making sure no one did anything stupid. This
                          seemed very reasonable for her. I also had a chance to speak with some of
                          the re-enactors that were there and they were glad that the young pretty
                          boys had some extra people watching them. That made them feel safer! I
                          must admit that I have not been following this a closely as I should but as
                          a person who helps put on events I know it is my job on the line and since
                          I get paid for doing something I love I don't want to loose that so you are
                          right! Anything that will keep it safe and make sure I or my site doesn't
                          get sued I will do. Be that having uniformed safety officers or
                          plainclothes or modern dressed people or as at Louisbourg both doing
                          different things. With uniformed on the field and modern off with the
                          public (although when the public started buying and wearing those t-shirts
                          it got hard to tell the difference) If the public sees someone who looks
                          like they know what they are doing then they will go and see them. If they
                          loose a child or something like that then they don't want to spend hours
                          looking for an officer because all they see are people in red coats because
                          they are panicking. I feel that both are really needed! Some for public
                          and some for re-enactors each working together.

                          These are only my two coins thrown in the fountain though!
                          Kevin
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