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From the Deputy Autocrat

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  • Tylar Umeno
    Greetings Unto the List! I have waited a couple of days to say anything on the subject because I did not wish to respond out of anger or hurt. After reading
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 29, 2005
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      Greetings Unto the List!

      I have waited a couple of days to say anything on the subject because I did not wish to respond out of anger or hurt. After reading the initial couple of posts I stopped reading the list until I had a chance to calm down, take a step back and talk with my fiancée, the autocrat. I have since read everything that has come into my JML folder. I think this has re-opened a good discussion about what it takes to put on a Japanese event.

      We proposed to the Barony that we autocrat a Japanese themed event almost a year ago when the first murmurings of a Japanese 12th Night were heard. I saw the overwhelming interest in the Barony for knowledge about Japanese garb and culture. I taught many classes and complied lists of links for people to check out. This interest has done nothing but grow as we come closer to this event. I get at least three emails a day asking me questions about garb or some aspect of Japanese culture. I don’t claim to be an expert or authority on any of these things but I always try to point them in the right direction for research. When somebody comes running up to me at fighter practice saying, “I came because you said you’d be here and I want to know about making garb for my son who is interested in having a Japanese persona,” I think I might be doing something right.

      Since we put in the initial bid, the Barony has hosted a Crown Tournament and two other Baronial level events. I thought that everybody was burnt out after Crown but it seems that T on T has rejuvenated the Barony. People are coming up to my lord and myself asking if there is anything they can do for us. I got a call last night from our Minister of Minors asking about what she could do to make the Childrens’ Corner more Japanese themed. She also told me that after 20 years in the SCA things had begun to get “blah” but that she’s really excited about this event. There are five people working on hall decorations which include: camp curtains, banners and wall hangings based upon pictures from the Costume Museum’s Genji book. There are a lot of people working really hard to make this a success and I feel that the Barony supports us completely. I am getting reservations from people who haven't been to an event in years. The Royals are even coming up from South Carolina.

      Nobody has said anything negative about the work going into putting this event together but I felt that I needed to elaborate on what is happening and give some back story. This being said, I will continue.

      The game has always been part of the event flyer. It is listed under “Other Activities” as: “If you think there is someone who needs to be .taken care of. or if you want to lend your services, then join the Assassins Guild for the day.” I’ve been to events with this sort of game, there’s usually one every couple of years, and most people don’t participate. I hope that there will be more than ample opportunity to have “authentic” medieval Japanese experiences even with the game going on in the background.

      Is the game silly? Yes. Will I want to thwap somebody for singing something from the Mikado? Hopefully no. However, considering that T'n'T has traditionally been the "little Halloween event" I think that we have taken it far beyond its original roots and closer to reality than fantasy. There are some Baronial traditions that we needed to uphold in the planning of the event; those being the quest and the children's feast with trick-o-treating. As I have stated in a previous email, we tend to have low to no participation in quests. I was a character in the quest last year and nobody came to see us. So we charged the "quest mistress" to do something different and this is what she came up with. At least with this game people can play independently and more people will play so the work that the "quest mistress" put into organizing the game will not be for nothing. I choose people to help me with various aspects of this event based upon the belief that they could do their "job" and not need me to hold their hand the entire way.

      I respect the opinions of the other people on the list. I never meant for people to take offense. While Master Effingham will be missed, I understand where he is coming from and applaud him for sticking to his convictions. Thank you to everybody who has leant their support and guidance thus far.

      As the event draws closer, I fear that I will not be able to spend as much time reading the various lists that I belong to. If anybody desperately needs to get in touch with me, please email me directly at akiyo@... as all messages with “JML” in the subject are filtered to my JML folder. For those of you who are attending, I will be the blurr with the "bug hat." I will post the feast menu and any other updates as they come along. Again, thank you for your support on and off list for making this dream become a reality.

      In Service,
      Akiyo
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