ARCH - History repeat itself

Sluggy! slugmusk at
Wed Apr 11 22:39:29 PDT 2001

Gilli noted:
> > Plus we really should feel put upon here.  Almost
> > every fighter is a walking arsonal of things that 
> > can penatrate a helm; shield corners, the wings on
> > elbow and knee cups, etc.

and Chass commented:

> Shhh Gilli lol they will have us rework all of our
> armor next lol

How about a minor rework of one element of our armor, the helm?

In the short time I've been fighting (first authorized for Gulf War
VIII), there have been a number of rules and armor requirement changes
such as the way and material that helms are strapped and gauntlet rules
for combat archers.

What did we do? We commented and griped but complied.

So, I would suggest that since goggle/lensatic eye protection is not
universally practicable (I, for one, cannot put my helm over my head
with goggles or glasses on, nor can I put them on after the helm is on),
then a requirement for a supplemental screen in the face of a helm would
be a reasonable compromise. Such a screen would not need to withstand
the force of a sword blow; that's what the other grillwork is for. A
screen would only need be present when combat archery was being used, so
it would not have to be applied except at melees and melee practices,
much like gauntlets are only required when the weapon does not provide
the equivalent protection. In practical terms, a piece of hailscreen
duct taped over the face sheild would suffice.

This does not mean that I advocate making such a sweeping change to an
armor requirement, but then my helm straps already met the newest
requirements when they were passed, too.

For me, if a change has to be made _anyway_, it makes the most sense for
each fighter to modify their helm (even temporarily) into a design that
will not only help protect against errant arrows, but also shield
corners, wings on knee and elbow copps and tree branches. 

The alternatives seem to be either to modify literally tens of thousands
of arrows and bolts society-wide at what will probably be a relatively
fixed cost each (as well as hundreds of crossbows), lose the investment
in those thousands of arrows as we replace them with golf tubes or
abandon combat archery altogether. Obviously, I do not like that last


As for the litigious mundane society, the standard response to the
question, "Would a fighter sue an archer for the loss of an eye?" is
essentially, yes. Maybe the fighter's health insurance company (assuming
they have insurance) would do it. They could sue for recovery of their
settlement and not even involve the fighter.

We shouldn't have to accept that answer. We are here to have fun;
sometimes, having fun can be dangerous. Sometimes, fun isn't that much
fun unless it _is_ dangerous. Whether you ride a horse, camp in the
wilderness, shoot arrows, fight with rattan sword and plywood shield or
walk across a listfield in a flowing garment, you subject yourself to
some degree of risk. You do this with the written promise that you won't
sue SCA, Inc. and with an unspoken promise that you won't sue anybody
else, at least if there was no intent to do you harm. A properly
constructed arrow shot from the proper range was not intended to hurt
anyone and was not negligent. If it hurts someone, that is unfortunate,
but NOT intentional. It is unfortunate that floods happen, but you can't
sue the weatherman because he didn't say it was going to rain.

The cold truth is that McDonalds has to pay for people who spill coffee
in their lap, cigarette companies have to pay for people who smoke for
decades knowing that its going hurt them and good men go to jail for
helping to catch the bad guys. This will continue to happen until we as
a society, perhaps as a species, get fed up enough with it to stop it.


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