Aug 242010
 Tuesday, 24 August 2010  Posted by at 13:22 events, SCA, travel Tagged with: ,  No Responses »
Event Date Location Likelihood
Sacred Stone Baronial Birthday August 27-29 Blacksburg, SC Possible day trip
Tournament of the Golden Rose September 4 Apex, NC Probably not
Battle for the HMS Raven’s Cove September 18 Richlands, NC Possible day trip 
MATO III Beyond the Silk Road September 24-26 Apex, NC Highly likely – possibly camping
Coronation October 1-3 Blacksburg, SC Possible day trip 
War of the Wings V October 7-10 Booneville, NC Highly likely – possibly camping
Unevent December 5 (?) TBD Peer Up!
Twelfth Night January 8 Morehead City, NC Highly Likely, Capitain!
University February 5 TBD Probably not 
Ymir February 18-20 TBD Highly Likely, Capitain!
Nottinghill Coill Baronial Birthday February 25-27 Bennettsville, SC Possible day trip
KASF March 5 TBD Possible
Coronation April 2 TBD Possible
Aug 302009
 Sunday, 30 August 2009  Posted by at 11:30 SCA Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »

I mentioned that I found the style of coronet I wanted at Pennsic. Still need to either order one or commission one. Anyway, here are the pics of it:

100_0335 100_0337

Aug 132009
 Thursday, 13 August 2009  Posted by at 12:47 events, SCA, travel Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »

As A does not get his schedule until the week before,  we were not sure when we would be able to leave for Pennsic.  This left planning up in the air somewhat, but then he did get his schedule. Closing on Thursday the 30th, off from Friday the 31st through Saturday the 8th. Opening on Sunday the 9th. This meant we were not going to be able to get on the road until Friday and we would need to leave Pennsic the following Friday. Not ideal, but it would work.
About a week before Pennsic the AC in my car failed.  I added a can of refrigerant and within three days it was out again. Brought it to the dealership and $600 later they replaced the low pressure hose. Two days later, no cooling. Brought it back and another $500 and they replaced the high pressure hose. Things seemed to work after that.

Friday morning, I wanted to be on the road by 7:30/8. We actually got on the road by 10:30. Before we actually managed to leave the house, Girard calls me and says its been raining for three days, Roxeter Road behind camp is closed, and we will need to carry everything from the car over the foot bridge into camp, and to get ready for a wet war. *sigh*
The ride up was basically uneventful.  We stopped just past Summersville at a Walmart to buy more refrigerant and recharge the AC. (The dealership called me to ask how satisfied I was with the service – any guesses how I answered?) We also went through The Slowest McDonalds Drive Through In The World â„¢ – took us thirty minutes to order, get a ten pack of McNuggets and two sodas – and they only gave us one straw, so we had to turn around and go back to get the second one.  We made one other stop – to find an ABC store.

We arrive at Pennsic around 7:30/8 and Calli looks at me from behind the troll booth and says ‘Go look at the map of closed roads and cry.” I reply with “Hi Calli, Nice to see you. Girard already called and gave me the heads up.” I should note that it stopped raining that morning and was nice all day both for our ride and at Pennsic.

The nice person checking me and A in finds A’s registration but can’t find mine. She comes back and asks if the spelling of my name on my membership card is correct and I confirm it is. Still, she cannot find my pre-reserve paperwork. Calli ponders why she is looking there for it and realizes that she is reading my middle initial and last name as one word. Crisis averted.

We head off from troll to camp, and are meet everyone who is there. A quick assessment of Roxeter and we decide its passable, and pull the car around and into camp. We get ourselves set up, do the storage shed run, and get settled in enough to crash out after a long day driving.

The week at Pennsic went by in a blink. Some things that stick out:

-    Wandering through the merchants and not seeing anything special that jumped out at me. I recall thinking maybe I have been playing and going to Pennsic enough that its pretty much the same and I don’t need or want much of it anymore.

-    Possibly the single funniest moment of the war and still makes me laugh thinking about it. I am hanging out in Vermine and I mention that Nia said to hug those she likes and spit on those she doesn’t. I think it was Theo who jumped in with ‘Hug or Spit? I hope you don’t run out of hugs or the choice will be Or Spit…’

-    MOLing both the Free Scholar’s Charity Tourney and the Atlantian 5-Man Melee. I love working both of those tourneys every year. And watching the Marshalls modify The Slightly Irritated Sea Bass into the Slightly Irregular Sea Bass provided immense enjoyment. I like that the MOLs had veto power over the team names – I think we should keep that as a general rule. They also need to clarify the details on the Free Scholar Tourney as several people I spoke to thought it meant you had to be a Free Scholar to participate.

-    The wandering beer wagon. So, we had all this left over beer and decided to load it into the wagon and take it to the Atlantian Social. Along the way we stopped and served beer to many a passer by – and many whose camp we were passing by. It was a very fun thing to do. In fact we are talking about making a wandering beer wagon a plan for next year.

-    Bog hopping, and why does the Blue Feather camp have a clock on their sign. Short answer, because they had space and why not do a public service and provide a clock. If only they would stop over heating in the plastic encasement. This all told to us by Caleb who turned out to be very fun. Glad we met him.

-    Having some of my worst garb used as an example of how to do things correctly. A wanted to go to a ‘What not to wear’ class and it sounded fun. Turned out to be a ‘let me critique your garb’ session and less fun then advertised. But the teacher was explaining how to miter trim and called me forward as my late period Pelican work tunic had mitered trim on it.

-    Running into Johann. Lost his (and Gryphon, Larissa, et al) phone numbers when my cell phone went crashing off the fifth story of the parking deck. Had no idea he would be at Pennsic – and up until four days before land grab neither did he. Hardly recognized him until he started speaking. Somehow I should not be surprised that he found Allison and began hanging out with her. Makes a lot of sense.

-    Making dinner for the camp on Thursday before Windmasters’ court. Lots of improvising and such but still a good meal that went pretty far. Definitely repeatable.

-    Finding the perfect coronet at Duchess Isabel’s store. Too bad it didn’t fit. Need to either email her my measurements or find someone to commission a similar style from.

-    The B double E double R U N with their Excellen-Gs.

-    Generally feeling relaxed and not on a schedule with no commitments aside from the two tourney MOLings.

This is the first war I can recall where by the end of it I was not ready to go home. Usually I get to the end of war week and I am done with Pennsic, but this year, for some reason, I did not have that. In fact, I wanted to stay another week.

The drive home was uneventful. We got on the road at 6:30 on Friday night. We crusied along talking and listening to podcasts and at around 1:30 we both were hungry (and you cant find anything open at that time) and I was too tired to drive anymore. We could not find where we packed A’s glasses, so we got a hotel room about 2:30 from home. We got up the next morning, took a long hot shower, had a nice breakfast at the Hampton Inn we were staying at, and was home by 1:30. By Sunday night all of the laundry was done and 95% of everything was away.

All told, a very good war.

Jul 282009
 Tuesday, 28 July 2009  Posted by at 15:36 brewing, SCA Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »

So, last week Girard came over so we could bottle beer. OK, so he could bottle and I could keg because I gave up bottling long ago. To paraphrase Robert Fripp,

There are those that say bottling beer sucks. This is because bottling beer sucks.

Anyway, I am in the process of cleaning the kegs, which involves running soapy water through them, followed by a sterilizing agent (I use Beer Bright), then rinsing out. All of this requires CO2 to force the soapy water, sterilizing agent, and rinsing water through the kegs internals.

Guess how far into the process we got before I ran out of CO2? Did you guess not far at all? Congratulations, you are right.

Normally I get my brewing supplies from American Brewmaster in Raleigh. However that’s in Raleigh, they have limited hours, and well, its Pennsic prep time… A little Googling and wallah! Metro Fire & Safety in Durham refills CO2 tanks (and Scuba tanks) and they are cheaper then American Brewmaster. Win.

So, I intrepidly head there first thing so I can be there when they open. Monday to Friday 9 to 5, so it means I am going to have to go during work hours. And I dont want to leave a full CO2 tank in the hot car all day, so it means getting it filled, driving it home and then heading to the office. *sigh* Nothing is ever easy.

But I get there just as they open last Friday. They very cute helpful guy behind the counter looks at my tank and gives me the bad news. Its due for hydrostatic testing. That takes a few days and costs $20 more.

I begin contemplating how late I can get the tank and still have beer to bring to Pennsic. He says they may have a loaner, but I would need to pay for two charges plus the testing. He goes into the back to cheack and comes back with his manager.

Good news! They have a tank they can swap for mine. I just have to pay the refill and testing charge. WOOT! In under fifteen minutes I was out of there with a freshly tested and filled tank. So, there will be beer at Pennsic. Both the infamous Cock Ale and a blackberry wheat.

Still have not decided if I am going to bring it to A&S display on Monday. However I still need to write up my documentation, just in case.

Jun 262009
 Friday, 26 June 2009  Posted by at 14:09 homosexuality, SCA Tagged with: ,  No Responses »

Asim‘s post on harassment in the SCA got me thinking…

When I was still a protege I had a few conversations with people who asked me if I thought being gay would be an obstacle to being elevated to the peerage. The first time I was asked, I stopped dead in my tracks as it never even occured to me.

I suppose I have been lucky… to the best of my knowledge, I have never been discriminated against because I am gay. Friendly teasing from friends, yes. But outright discrimination? Not that I am aware of. (I am talking about direct and personally focused and not the generic ‘no gay marriage’ type of discrimination.)

The question about homosexuality and peerage got me surprisingly paranoid for a short period of time – I found myself asking others what they thought of the issue when I had never even contemplated it. I did not get one negative response. I did get a few ‘well, you are so straight acting…’ type of responses. And I also got one that really surporised me and made me think – “No, and in fact you will help other gays who are not as straight acting by making it more acceptable.’

Dont get me wrong, I know there were openly gay peers elevated long before me, even here in Atlantia. But this was one of the few, if not the only, times in my life where I saw my homosexuality as a potential road block to a goal. To the best of my knowledge it was not… there might have been a few people who the fact may have colored their watch list commentary or polling responses, but I view that as their issue and not my own.

No real point to this, just some musings based upon the aforementioned post.

May 282009
 Thursday, 28 May 2009  Posted by at 09:55 brewing, SCA Tagged with: ,  No Responses »

[EDIT] OK, that was full of fail…  please head here and complete the poll. [/EDIT]

Fore those that missed it in an earlier post…

That evening we engaged in the next step of the Cock Ale.

A few notes on the cock ale …First, for those who don’t do period brewing, or even any brewing, the cock ale recipe is kind of legendary. Everyone talks about it in a chiding sort of way, but I dont know anyone who has actually done it – few internet accounts show that people dont read as they have used raw chicken. Fools.

Secondly, if you take out the chicken the recipe sounds really good – ale with raisins, dates, nutmeg, mace, and sherry. Yum. This leads to my plan. I have done a very very basic ale for the base – I didn’t even add hops, but have used oak chips for my bittering agent, which is a first for me. I have siphoned off maybe a half gallon of that for comparative purposes. Then I have about a gallon with cock in it – well its a gallon jug with the adjunct ingredients and topped with the ale. The remainder is the recipe without the cock as that actually sounds quite drinkable.

Now the dimea… I really wanted to have it for Rapier Academy but couldn’t get my act together to get it done. Now my choice is to either bring it to Golden Rose and offer it up as a side highlight, or save it for Pennsic and bring it to the A&S display in the barn (do they let you display alcohol? I dont even know…). I would really like to make it more of an A&S thing then a curiosity thing, but it means either I only brew one beer for the baronial parties as I only have two kegs – and I despise bottling. Plus I have to store and transport it and space going to Pennsic is always at a premium.

Whats everyone think?

May 112009
 Monday, 11 May 2009  Posted by at 13:31 meme, SCA Tagged with: ,  No Responses »

– Been an officer? (Local, Regional, Kingdom, Society?) – Canton Seneschal (current), Baronial Exchequer, Deputy Kingdom Exchequer, Deputy Kingdom Seneschal for Communications
– Do you have an SCA name? – Yes, Nikulai Ivanovich
– Do you have an SCA persona? – Sort of…
– Changed persona because of different garb? – Nope
– Been adopted by a person, household or clan? – Prior to being elevated, I was protege to Mistress Stephania Herring. I am also a member of HOuse Flaming Bolt
– Had a name and/or device accepted by the SCA College of Arms? – Yep
– Had a name and/or device rejected by the SCA College of Arms? – Yes, and I am still angry with the college of heralds as it was their fault.
– Have rank higher than an Award of Arms? – Yes, I have a Patent of Arms

– Been an Event Steward/Autocrat? – Yep, just once or twice…
– Kingdom level or local level? – Local, Kingdom, Inter-Kingdom
– Cooked an Event? – Nope – have thought about it
– Taught a class at an event? – Yup, Atlantia University and Pennsic
– Run an activity at an event? – Does MOL and Gate/Troll/Reservation-ocrat

– Ever fought at an event? – Nope
– Ever fought at Pennsic or another War? – Nope
– Done a different martial art at an event? – Nope
– Ever run a martial activity at an event? – Nope
– Fought at an event tourney? – Nope
– Ever fought in a Crown Tourney? – Nope
– Won a tourney or contest at an event? – Nope
– Made your own armor? – Nope
– Made your own weapons? – Nope
– Been a squire? – Nope
– Have rank as an archer? – Nope
– Have rank as a fencer? – Nope
– Created a seige weapon? – Talked about it

– Have you ever entered an A&S contest? – Yes
– Have you ever won an A&S contest? – Yes, and become Kingdom Brewer
– Ever run an A&S contest? – No
– Ever judge/critique items in an A&S contest? – Yes
– Ever Wordsmithed a scroll? – No
– Illuminated a scroll? – No
– Done the Calligraphy for a scroll? – No
– Made your own paper? – No
– Made a book? – Yes, in a class at K’Berg
– Make someone’s order medallion? – No
– Write someone in for an award? – Just a few – after all, an autocrat’s job isn’t done until the award recs are in
– Have you ever sewn your own garb? – No
– Sewn Garb for others? – No
– Ever been sewing on the way to an event? – No
– Ever finished an outfit before an event? – No
– Researched and completed an outfit from said research? – No
– Ever taught a class on sewing? – No
– Finished a hat? – No
– Do you know how to spin? – No
– Ever woven your own fabric? – No
– Do you know how to knit? -  No
– Do you know how to crochet? – Yes, actually from summer camp
– Have you ever dyed your own yarn or fabric? – No
– Embroidered a garment? – No
– Beaded a garment? – No
– Ever entertained at a feast? No
– Ever ran a bardic circle? – No
– Ever performed in a bardic circle? – Yes
– Had songs requested from you at such? – A story, not a song
– Ever competed in a formal bardic? – No
– Know any period songs? – No
– Been banned from a bardic circle for a song/performance, or have a piece you perform banned/controlled? – No

– Ran a court as Royalty (King/Queen or Baron/Baroness)? – No
– Ran a court as Herald? – Yes
– Heralded at Court? – Yes
– Been an Attendant, Guard or Champion at court? – Yes
– Been called to court to receive an award, if so which one/s? – Yes -s ee my awards above
– Been called to court to present something, if so what? – As autocrat
– Been called to court for punishment? or other redress of grievances? – No
– Been part of a court ‘shtick?’ – No
– Done something while watching court, e.g. embroider, if so what? – carved a casting mold
– Had a royal comment on what you’re doing? – Yes, when I asked Her Majesty not to allow Her retainers to throw someone in the lake when my name was on the site contract
– Have awards from more than one Kingdom? – No

– Have you ever gone to Pennsic? – Yes
– Ever done Zero Night? – Qua?
– How many Pennsics have you gone too? – 8?
– Ever Taught a class at Pennsic? – Yes, Troll 101 Life Under The Bridge
– Taken a class at Pennsic? – Yes
– Gone to Opening ceremonies? – Yes, a couple of times
– Been a waterbearer? – Yes
– Worked a shift at Chirurgeons Point at Pennsic? – No
– Worked a shift as security at Pennsic? – Yes. Thursday night dispatch is a lot of fun
– Volunteered in any other capacity? – Yes, troll
– Ever merchanted at Pennsic (we’ll take shopping as a given)? – No
– Gone to the swimming hole Classic or family? – Yes, just to find them
– ‘Trolled the Bog for parties?’ – No
– Hosted a party at Pennsic? – My camp has
– Been part of a ‘Pennsic building project’? – Yes

– Ever traveled more than 8 hours each way for a one day event? – No
– Gone to a different Kingdom for an event? – Yes
– Lived in a different Kingdom? – Not while I was playing
– Have trailer hitch and trailer, mainly because of the SCA? – No
– What ridiculous lengths you’ve gone to get to an event? – Did a weekend of Pennsic once. Flew to Kentucky for Border Raids.

– Run out of closet space because of garb/gear? – No
– Ever crammed more than 4 people into a hotel room? – Yes
– Met your future spouse at an SCA event? – No
– Met most past significant others in an SCA setting? – No
– Have better research books than your library? – Some of them
– Is your tent bigger than your first apartment? – Not quite, but close