Baufer weapons

Mike Baker mbaker at
Wed Oct 9 09:48:00 PDT 1996

> Another question, why was baufer fighting for children
> outlawed in this Kingdom?  That probably would be important to know, so 
> I could see about addressing that point.

Actually, m'lady, you skirted the edges of the reasoning later in your own 

> As far as parents at the field when their child is fighting.  Again, I was
> thinking of the age of law suits.  Valid points were made as to a child 
> being able to participate because of a parent not being able to be at the
> field.  Maybe the idea of drills is one that I need to look into further.

Even more at the core of the concern are the damnably-infuriating 
application of the child abuse regulations. Would you be comfortable losing 
custody of your children because of bruises they receive from Mommy or Daddy 
while learning the *safe* use of boffer weapons? Would you be willing to pay 
the court costs and risk the freedom of your friends who had served as 
sgt-at-arms during line drills where another child slipped and whacked yours 
a good one (accidentally) that marked the face?

When I began playing in the SCA, boffer weapon combat was a thriving 
sub-text of the experience, allowing anyone and everyone a chance to 
experience combat without the need for investing hundreds in a suit of 
armor, helmet, and rattan weapons (or equivalent rapier-combat gear). Then 
the rule-mongers and lawyers threw their fits, and first gorgets and groin 
protection, then even fencing masks became "requirements".

And people stopped playing at boffers, dammit. (I got caught by having been 
absent some years, building boffers for my sons, and got chewed on mightily 
for allowing them to use same at the first event they attended with me...)

Even adults mostly stopped. Some of our more spirited young adults 
occasionally drag them along and damn the customs / rules, but it just isn't 
the same as being able to include boffer combat as an option in formal event 
proceedings. (One of my most memorable SCA experiences was at a tournament 
where non-heavy fighters could compete - and DID win - by opting for boffer 
daggers during the combat rounds.)

> It is sad that there are people out there who feel they can't play this 
> because of lack ot things for their children to participate in.  It is sad
> that we can't get enough people to voulinteer to help, or even come up 
> ideas, for the children.

Lady Catrin, this is indeed so. Of course, there also are difficulties when 
once having volunteered, the poor misguided fool (*THWACK* -- sarry, sarry 
'bout that) err, I should have said "appreciated volunteer", is never 
summoned when it is their "turn" to guide the activities. Or is dumped into 
position and given no real assistance in executing their plan. Also consider 
the disappointment encountered by eager idea-mills who find that their 
suggestions are constantly ignored / conveniently overlooked when activity 
planning is done.

Don't think about the potential disappointments *too* much. I for one 
appreciate that you have raised the boffer issue as regards young 
participants again. The "drill" possibilities, and various target exercises, 
may be the most viable options forwarded so far however. I'm working toward 
a portable pell that might be of use for such an effort....

For non-weaponed activities, any event where I am present can generally 
count upon me for a tale or two appropriate for small ears, and even the 
occasional song or poem.  Warn me in advance, and I'll even run a "bardic" 
circle for 12&under -- or teens, if needed. "Comes with the territory": best 
way to grow new bards is to start 'em out young!

Amr ibn Majid al-Bakri al-Amra
     currently residing in Barony of the Steppes, Kingdom of Ansteorra
Mike C. Baker                      mbaker at
Any opinions expressed are obviously my own unless explicitly stated 

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