Re: [SCA Newcomers] tea & coffee??
>::hopeful smile of one that isDont stretch, dear, there is really no need.
>stretching to MAKE something period::
First of all, while I personally believe that Authenticity is a GOOD thing at all times, I DO like my cup of coffee in the morning...
I also firmly believe that you DONT have to justify EVERYTHING you do, say or eat interms of "Period". (In my opinion, there are far too many cases of pure overreaching used to "justify" things like coffee and solid candy chocolate in the SCA, and these justifications often are often not much more than wishful thinking disguised as scholarship.)
If you enjoy a non-period thing, like a morning cup of coffee, or bar of chocolate (or Pennsic Chocolate Milk -Yum!), then enjoy it, and if asked, say, "I know it aint period, but I like it".
Far too often people seem to think that we are asked by the SCA to be "onstage" at all times, and that is simply not true. It's OK to do non-period things. What bugs me is when people try to take things that are plainly not period, and declare them as period or worse, "back-justify" then as period, because that is, in effect, lying. What usually happens is that someone finds an example of something period that happens to be broadly in the same category as that being justified, and use that to say that X is period (like the use of undutched chocolate drinks in late period Spain as "justification" for eatng candy chocolate).
So just have your cup of tea, enjoy it, and dont feel the need to make a point of justifying it as "period".
HOWEVER, adding to the period Atmosphere at events is good because it makes it easier for those who are trying to get "into persona", so the _best_ thing to do is to enjoy your non-period foods/drinks in a period fashion, using a good mug, for example, or putting your candy on a plate, instead of just walking about with a styrofoam cup of coffee, or soda can, and leaving candywrappers about.
That said, I feel I need top point out something about "persona"...
It may be a role we play, to some extet, but a "persona" does not have to also play our MODERN "self" while we play our medieval "self", or "explain" the things our Modern selves enjoy.
That is a pretty common mistake.
My persona, Captain Elias Gedney of Yarmouth, having travelled, has indeed tasted the rare cup of Moroccan coffee, didn't much like it, and doesn't get to have it anyway, since going into business as a "coaster" (a local shipper- the UPS guy of his time). He vastly prefers French wine, "goode English Ale" or small beer for most beverages, to "that bitter saracen drinke".
Myself, I am positively addicted to Coffee in general and to Turkish coffee in particular.
My persona also does not make a habit of drinking water if he can avoid it, (most people in his place and time would have avoided that - It would have been very unhealthy, unless you could find a clean running stream - "sweet water")
But _I_ NEED to drink water, and often, especially while at camping events.
So not only do I not feel compelled drink as my persona drank, I also dont feel the need to make my persona drink as I do.
I enjoy working wood, cooking feasts, and metalworking.
Captain Gedney would not do such things.
Furthermore, my persona would undoubtedly consider most of the things I do at events as "beneath his station".
My persona, being a person of his time, also enjoys hunting and bearbating and violently hates Papists.
I dont share those feelings.
I also dont feel compelled to concoct some complicated persona story to explain why a middle class English Protestant (from one of the most Calvinist parts of England) would drink coffee, cook or do scullery at court events, act like a base tradesman, despise popular entertainments (considered barbaric to the modern mind), and like the company of papists, pagans, and folk of all sorts.
The more complicated your persona story is the farther removed it is from reality, I have found.
My persona is not _me_, and he doesn't _have_ to like what I like.
Well, I seem to have rambled a bit...
I guess the basic point is:
You dont _have_ to justify _everything_ you enjoy in the SCA (or out of it) in terms of your persona.
So all this "stretching" is just unnecessary.
-Renaissance Geek of the Cyber Seas
- Help! I am being pecked to death by the Ducks of Dilletanteism!
There are SO damn many more things I want to try in the SCA
than I can possibly have time for. It's killing me!!!
If you want to build a ship, don't drum up the men to gather
wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them
to yearn for the vast and endless sea.
- Antoine de Saint Exupery