[Ansteorra] An Unfortunate Accident

Catrin ferch Maelgwn ladycatrin at gmail.com
Mon Jun 9 21:18:50 PDT 2008

The fundamental flaw in this approach is that everyone "colors" their
perceptions differently.  I don't believe it's possible (setting aside the
question of whether it's even desirable) to carefully select those
associations that will reflect favorably on me--for the simple reason that
it's impossible to know or control how those I associate with are
perceived.  My friendships may elicit opinions about my character from one
outsider that are entirely different from the opinions of another.  So, if I
choose to associate with someone who is one person's greatest hero and
another's foulest villain, where does that leave me?  Shall I then take into
consideration every possible reflection my associations will have on me,
knowing that to do so is to relinquish complete control over that choice to
the whims of a multitude of others?  I suppose one could simplify things by
following the general opinion--avoiding, perhaps, those who are known by the
majority to be "bad news"--but even that seems unpredictable, at best... and
a poor way to choose one's friends, at worst.

Perhaps I myself am oversimplifying things by taking your well-meaning
advice at face value, and I apologize if I am being overly contrary.  But I
have thusfar spent a happy lifetime in the august company of everyone from
Miscreants to Goliards to Laurels to Queens, with nary a thought to what
reflections their friendships might have on my character.  To a one they
have been true and loved and trusted friends, and I do not regret for a
moment any associations I may have missed out on because someone, somewhere,
disapproved of them.  Nor do I think I ever will.

Of course, the obvious response to this is simply that I have made my
choice, as all of us must do.  But I could not let this advice go unanswered
without a word of... well, of dissent, I suppose.  I guess that's my
associations rubbing off on me.

In the spirit of cordial debate,
Catrin ferch Maelgwn

On Mon, Jun 9, 2008 at 10:29 PM, Michael Kahn <Kahn at west-point.org> wrote:

> Ah, Lord Quill, do you not recall what your parents taught you?  Well, I'm
> assuming they did, because my parents taught it to me:  "Birds of a feather
> flock together."
> I know nothing of Goliards, Miscreants, or anything else of the sort.  What
> I do know is that we *choose* with whom we will associate.  Such choices
> reveal something about each person's character.  Because I also know that if
> you do not sit down with "tax collectors and sinners," you cannot have any
> influence on them, I will not dismiss someone out of hand for mere
> associations.  However, when you choose to associate with someone, you ARE
> revealing something about yourself in making that choice; thus, it only
> makes sense that your choice in association should redound upon you in some
> fashion.
> I speak in general because, again, I know absolutely nothing about Goliards
> and Miscreants.  Do not regret that *you* are colored by the associations
> you *choose* to make; instead, choose your associations so that their
> reflection upon you will be the impression you want others to have of you.
>  That choice is yours.
>  In Service,
>   Miles Grey
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