[Northkeep] Sir Balvins Defence

Dennis England sirbalvin at earthlink.net
Sat May 25 08:13:41 PDT 2002


I appreciate your support.  Spend no electronic ink defending me though.
That's my job ;-)

Diarmaid as I read that letter I found myself thinking we are not
responsible for this persons shyness or percieved slight nor do I believe
any evil Northkeep people tried to hurt this person.  It appears there were
some misunderstandings and apparently unrealistic expectations of the all to
human members of this Barony.  My response was curt, deliberately.  When I
hear someone blaming others and (what I saw as) trying to inspire guilt and
"we've been bad" response it gets me going.  Especially when I don't hear
anything deliberatly hurtful or that some small thing was made into a large
thing to satisfy an individual's view of the world.  I also got a little
defensive.  I have seen members of this Barony bust their butts to welcome
newcomers and create a space where they can learn and become part of the
group.  I don't know everyone in the Barony these days, not everyone talks
to me either, in fact i dare say if you're not a fighter I probably don't
know you.  With some exceptions of course.  That is no ones fault but my
own.  I am not going to blame these epople I don't know for not coming over
and introducing themselves to me!  That's just not the way it is.  That is
an unrealistic expectation to put on people.  I am responsible for my way of
being in the world.  And its not because I'm a peer that I don't know
everyone or people are intimidated, etc.  When I was a squire the same
things happened.  It's just how people are, they go with groups of people
who are of a like mind, they form groups based on common interest, and
sometimes they hurt one another's feelings or get their feelings hurt by
someone just because they're human beings with issues and life stories of
their own.  So all these things considered I had my own knee jerk, curt
reaction and genuinely found myself thinking "this person needs to move on
and find some other organization where they can their needs met."  I
probably should not have posted it to the list, but there you go...human.
So for public posting for of my private irritation I apologize.  I do wish
this person well and hope they have a good life in whatever they do.  Life's
to short to spend it miserable.  I will be glad to discuss this face to face
with anyone.  Just don't expect me to feel guilty for your feelings.

In Service,
Sir Balvin

----- Original Message -----
From: "Marc Carlson" <marccarlson20 at hotmail.com>
To: <northkeep at ansteorra.org>
Sent: Friday, May 24, 2002 9:00 AM
Subject: Re: [Northkeep] Sir Balvins Defence

> Angus,
> I agree with you about Balvin being a nice and good person, and never
> intentionally doing anything hurtfull.
> The fact is, however, he sent his message - which is easily read as being
> curt, and just this side of saying "don't let the door hit you on the ass
> the way out", and topposted that to Sioned's letter, which was itself
> topposted to Ainar's forward of Seth's message.  Neither of those
> messages were edited in any way.  Therefore, it is not a real stretch to
> read his message as a response to Sioned's message - and she, as you will
> recall was talking about the problems she's had with the local group.
> while I may feel that some of those problems are based on point of view
> (hers versus the people she's had difficulties with) - this in no way
> diminishes the pain and discomfort that has resulted.
> Now, I understand that some people may not care about that, or that may be
> little too touchy-feelie for them, but since I've been bitching about
> similar difficulties in getting people to show up at things, I've sort of
> placed myself into the position of having to give a shit about what people
> are feeling.  Sorry - get over it.
> Now, had you-Angus, or Alton, or even Frank, had written such a letter -
> response would have been to say to myself, "gee, that's too bad" and not
> bothered to respond - since, oh, gosh, you aren't PEERS.
> It may seem a little peculiar to me (as Marc), but peerage in the SCA is
> supposed to confer not only some cool benefits, but also some serious
> obligations.  For example, people look to THEM to see how to behave.  [And
> you know, I can't prove it, but I'm pretty sure that there might be some
> connection between the fact that of the small number of peers we have had
> around here, most of them (for perfectly good reasons all, mind you) have
> tended not to play with the local group AS a group - instead focusing on
> their own things and playing elsewhere - and the unspoken sense that being
> part of the Group is somehow something people shouldn't invest too much
> But I digress...]
> Since people DO watch the peers to see how to behave, it might be kind of
> nice if they'd take a little more responsibility for how their words can
> perceived in general (since of course no one can always keep themselves
> being misunderstood).  In fact, pretty much what Ainar was talking about
> with that request that people might want to keep in mind how they come
> across to new people.  As I said, it took no stretching AT ALL to read
> Balvin as slamming a new person who's had some problems getting to be part
> of the main group.
> Marc/Diarmaid
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