minstrel: Things bardic at Triatia war, and saying hello (fwd)

J. Michael Shew jshewkc at pei.edu
Fri Mar 28 20:54:25 PST 1997

	The problem with this missive is just the concept that there
should be a war-point for bardic at a war.  I have seen many a war without
one.  Is there a warpoint for A&S?  Is there a warpoint for anything other
than fighting?  If not, then asking someone to have a warpoint for bardic
is a bit like asking them to change their plans for you.  I don't like
	Problem is, the lady in question did not give me any more
information than you read in the original post.
	Okay, let's work this out:
	1:  The Triatian war, which I cannot go to since I am working,
will not have a warpoint for bardic.
	Answer: The war-o-crats are not willing to devote time to
something they presume is less than a crowd oriented activity.  I can
understand that.  Let's assume for a moment that the "battle" of the bards
is open to all, with no elimination prior to the event.  Now be truthful:
How many of us devote total attention to all the one on one fights in a
tourney?  I will answer:  I only pay rapt attention to someone I know or
someone who is phenominally good at fighting.  Would the populus wish to
sit thru thirty or fourty bards?  How about thirty or fourty of the
average with one or two of the best thrown in somewhere?
	Hold prelims before the contest?  Is that right?  Several of my
fellow bards would scream to high Valhalla if that was suggested.
	Sellec the bards by popular vote?  Not practical, unless you want
to encourage politics.  Most of the people will vote for the name they
remember.  That might not be the best, just the one they know, or heard
	Let the judges decide?  Okay, who's gonna be the one to tell lady
Begginer that she's not as good as lord Beenhereawhile?  And who's gonna
insult the Laurel by picking a lowly AoA over him?
	As you can tell, the college has been bugging me for ways to set
up bardic warpoints.  It is not a pretty sight here in my study!

	2: The Kingdom does not respect/notice bards.
	Yup, that is true.  However, they also do not notice armorers,
(Unless they are making great stuff for the kingdom), or Brewers, (unless
they are brewing great stuff for the kingdom), or costumers, (unless they
are wearing their best to kingdom events,) or nosepickers, (unless...You
get the picture.)
	Answer: Are we performing at every chance?  Are we singing in the
corners, setting up circles where nothing else is happening?  Are we
writing for the kingdom?  Are we performing for the Ministry of Children?
Are we trying to be seen?
	Okay, I did not perform per-se at the last event I was at.  I was
qualifying for archery.  But I sang as I shot!  (Got 4 in the target too!)
And I sat next to a lot of people and was asked to sing.  Of course I did.
I told three stories, did six songs, and re-hashed an old war tale I had
heard years ago, much to the delight of the fighters.
	Okay, so I did perform.  There was no venue.  Nobody hushed the
surrounding people to let me sing.  I did it anyway.  
	If we try to do these things they will notice us.  They have to,
we're loud and people stop to listen!  (Old adage: The sqeeky bard gets
the mead!)
	3: The fighter/archer/anybody is more organized than we are.  
	Answer: Yup, true and true!  But are we trying to get organized?
Are we meeting?  Are we working locally?  Are we getting to the point
where we can get along?  I have heard from three, count 'em, three
circles.  Of those three, one is stumbling in it's infancy, one is looking
for new leadership, and one is still going strong.  (Hey, I left out my
own!  Okay, FOUR circles.  I'd brain my students if they didn't work
together! <Grin>)
	Get out there and do it.  I have gone over the rules three or four
times a day for the last three months.  There is no rule against local
groups working in the college.  There is no rule against local bards
meeting and getting things done.  Hey, there aint no rule against hardly
anything in that charter, except me being a tyrant. (Darn, and I had that
Caligula costume all laid out too!  I guess the manditory orgies are a
bust!  Can I still get people to call me a god?)  :)

	In short, there are no easy ways to achieve what we want.  But
there is a lot of fun and long ways:  Improve performances, entertain at
the drop of a hat, compose things that people will want to sing at a war,
put effort into working together.
	Oh, and never offer Mikal a soapbox.  He won't get off and tends
to dent the top!
    Mikal the Ram; an annoying Bard of no redeeming qualities
__________________________(jshewkc at pei.edu)________________________________
Dread Jarl of the Vanir       in the storm wind victorious
By your grace this sea steed      treads pathways of silver. 
We honor with whispers     like the sound of wave song
Your wild waters     and fair wind words


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