[Bards] The Brick

Marie Adams marie.adams at visionoflove.net
Mon Jul 28 09:42:18 PDT 2003

Thank you for your delightful story; my husband and I both loved it! Thank
you also for your compliment; it's nice to get one once in a while from
someone who doesn't "have" to give it, like my husband. Of course, he
doesn't seem to see giving compliments to me as a drudgery, but I think
you understand.
Grazie, Serena

Thu, 24 Jul 2003, Jay Rudin wrote:

> I wrote:
> RoG> Yes, they are acceptable, just as a well-made button is acceptable.
> But a
> RoG> well-made button will not out-perform a well-made costume in an A&S
> RoG> competition.
> RoG> (Sometime ask me about the brick.)
> The maiden with the lovely name asked:
> > Would you be so
> > kind as to explain about that to me?
> Well, as I am not in the habit of refusing requests from ladies named
> Serena, here is the tale of the brick.
> Many years ago, in a land of legend by the name of Trimaris, there was ..
> .. The Form.
> All arts and sciences were judged by The Form.  No arts or sciences could be
> judged by anything but The Form.  The Form was how judging was done, and all
> was done according to The Form.
> And there was much complaining.
> The judging form had no decisions for judges to make.  If there was the
> right number of documented sources, the documentation score was X.  There
> was no judgment call to make.
> And nowhere did it discuss scope, difficulty, or aesthetics (all of which
> require judgment calls).
> And all the Laurels knew of The Form, and defended it, saying that it was
> good to have an onjective measure, so that every judge would give an entry
> the same score.
> And there was much gnashing of teeth and wailing, for that The Form did not
> reward many things that the people thought were good.
> So it came to pass that good King Baldar called up one of his knights, and
> he said, "Sir Ropesle, the Kingdom Arts and Sciences competition is coming.
> I ask you to enter this competition.  Tell me not of thy plan, just show
> them what is wrong with The Form."
> And Sir Ropesle said, "It shall be as thou dost ask, Sire."
> And he made a brick.
> It was well-documented, with several primary sources.  It was well-executed.
> It was made in a wooden frame put together with pegs, and the source of
> ingredients was authentic.
> Still and all, what lay on the table of the competition, amidst the
> Elizabethan gowns and the illuminated documents and the glistening
> metalwork, was a squared-off lump of mud.
> The Form had no judgment calls.  The judges had to give the documentation
> perfect marks.  They had to give the materials perfect marks.  They had to
> give the execution perfect marks.
> And the brick earned a perfect score, and the ranking of "Non-Pareil" (which
> means, in the vulgar tongue, "without peer".)
> So King Baldar came in triumph unto the Laurels, and said, "Now you know
> what is wrong with The Form.  And they said, "What do you mean?  There is
> nothing wrong with The Form."
> And the King spake, saying, "Are you kidding?  You just gave Non-Pareil to a
> brick."
> And ...
> .. they started defending the brick.
> Robin of Gilwell / Jay Rudin
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