[Ansteorra] Why aren't we doing this?

Jay Rudin rudin at peoplepc.com
Thu Nov 4 04:30:03 PDT 2010

There are moments when it can become real --
a late-night bardic circle,
a moving speech by the King,
watching a tourney,
a moving ceremony.

All such moments can be broken with the intrusion of something modern.  The bardic circle stops being real when somebody performs the Beatles.

The speech stops being real if the King mentions his computer.

The tourney stops being real when we start talking about the latest movie.

And the ceremony stops being real when the flash goes off.

In all cases, the medieval world we are creating breaks down, and we are suddenly thrown back into the 21st century.  It's like saying "It's only a model," when the knights approach Camelot.  Suddenly the great shining castle on the hill ceases to be a beacon of chivalry and honor.  On second thought, let's not go to Camelot -- it is a silly place."

Of course, this only matters to those people who were caught up in the dream at that moment.  If the bardic circle is just late night fun entertainment, why not do a fun modern song?

If the speech is just a spirit rally, why not mention the modern items?

If the tourney is just hitting people with sticks, the movie isn't a problem.

And if the ceremony is just a congratulations for working hard, then the flash pictures are great souvenirs.

Everybody has times when they are just playing, and most of us have times when it's real.  As Count Jan once said, "You can play the dream, or you can play the club, or you can play the joke.  And we all do all three.  The real arguments aren't between the people who always play the dream and people who always play the joke, but between people playing the dream right now vs. people playing the club right now (or dream / joke or club / joke).

The people taking pictures are playing the club right now.  The people caught up in the ceremony are playing the dream right now.  They will not agree about the best thing to do, because they aren't playing the same game.

Robin of Gilwell / Jay Rudin

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