But there is I in PIE

23 Aug 2018 by gebhard, 1 Comment »

For whom do you fight? Do you fight for yourself? Or for something else?

Tournaments provides an opportunity to gain renown for yourself and your consort. It is a good thing to fight in tournaments.

On the other side of coin, being part of something bigger is what attaches a lot of fighters to the SCA. For a good number of fighters, large melees are the highlight of what we do we in the SCA.

What other sport can you play along with the biggest legends of the game?

At the end of the day back in camp no matter what happened there is always a story of, “No Shit, there we were, and we turned the corner and there they were, at least two hundred of them!”

A lot of people believe in what we do so much, they dedicate many hours attending what I can only think of as the most boring board meeting, at the happiest place on earth. To put together a plan that will hopefully give our side and edge and win the day.

To give an example, The woods battle this year at 3 flags, The flags were checked at roughly 20 minute intervals, plus or minus a random interval.

Our general had a timmer nearing the time check interval, and he’d call for us to go passive. Any kill leading up to the time check, would send a opponent back to rez, and they would come back during the exact time we needed our numbers the greatest, and our opponents the smallest. (during a time check interval)

Then as the magic moment came, we would need to push out and get as many kills as we could. Followed by relaxed period for while so we could recover and hold ground until we neared the next time check.

This is why this year, I got to chant “Stay the line”, “Don’t chase! Let’em go”, “We need to keep this”, and so on. Troops get very eager to fight, but keeping a position will win us a battle. However, it doesn’t make for the most epic stories at the campfire.

I’m very proud of my region. The majority of fighters followed orders and did their job. They even followed my orders? This was a new experience. Was it white belt? Were people more lucid this year? I didn’t know, but it was marvelous. Throwing yourself on enemies is fun and all, but it’s far better to claim a victory for your King and Kingdom.

However there is always one, I will call him Bouncy Ball. Mr. Ball was very eager, I gotta respect the amount of energy he had. I quickly came to dread seeing him.

During a window when we needed to be passive, he yelled charge and ran out to attack our opponents. Normally this is a self correcting problem, but he was so loud with the reckless command, others would follow. This was a problem. If the enemy pushed at the right time, they would gain a stronghold and push us out at a critical time when needed to keep the flag.

Mr. Ball would come bounding up from rez point, would draw a lot of attention of both sides to his location, and throw himself on the enemy. He would ignore my commands, and it was all I could do to keep the rest of the guys from following him in.

At one point he responded quite literally, “If you knew what household I was in, you’d know we’d get all the kills!” before throwing himself again at the enemy ranks.

As I watched enemy react to Mr. Ball and swell up at his spot then push out towards us, this phase entered my mind,

“For whom do you fight?”

When you’re in a melee are you fighting for your own personal glory, orr are you fighting so together we can win (or fail) collectively. Are you fighting for King and Kingdom, or just to have a story of how many times you went to rez point?

Melee is a team sport, whatever happens, we face it together.

I don’t fault anyone for wanting personal glory, but that is won in a tournament list. Mr. Ball may have thought himself a hero, but from my point of view he looked very different.

When we are out together in a melee, I hope that you will do your best to fight for the Crown. As long as your part of this Kingdom, I have a oath to fight for you.


Pictures of woods battle taken by: Isabel Taylor

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One Comment

  1. CaptMonster says:

    In Melee, we get a job.
    We do the job.
    We got victory.

    Sometimes our job is not the main effort, it’s not where all the Sparks are flying. Sometimes it’s standing off to the side making Boogie eyes at our opponents. Sometimes it’s Kill Them All. But it’s always a group effort.

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