attack_laurel (attack_laurel) wrote,

Day Six: I am eaten by sharks.

Well, nibbled by sea urchins, anyway. 

Still can't sleep, and bad pain, so today's post is brought to you by the letters c-o-e-d-i-n and e, but:

pinkleaderwas a super darling and sent me roses yesterday because I was missing Bob. She is super-duper, and I am her porkchop.

Speaking of which, we're planning on going to the May session of embroidery up at Plimoth.

In other news, The super-cute project is finished, but Bob took the camera with him, so no super-cute project pictures until next week.

I'm updating my website and actually (*gasp!*) working on putting the shop together (Well, Brian's doing most of the work, but it is happening).

You all know I'm evil, right? That the Attack Laurel website is the absolute stone-cold truth, and that I despise and sneer at everyone's efforts? 

sarahbellemmade the mistake of iconing her ruff-itude, so I had to rain on her parade:

...because I am truly evil like that.

More seriously, the Attack Laurel Academy started because I truly hate the phrase "Authenticity Nazi". It's insulting, hurtful, and extremely hypocritical when it's used by people who would scream blue bloody murder if anyone dared to say anything that hurt their precious feelings. You can imagine that I just adore being called a "Nazi" just for liking to do things in as close a way as possible to the period I replicate.

But some people feel it's perfectly acceptable to call those of us who strive for period a name that was used by repressive right-wing murdering genocidal fuckheads, because it's somehow bad to want to do things correctly. Or write articles about how to do things in a period manner.

I'm not talking about the assholes who bounce around crapping on everyone's parade, so don't whine to me about them - many SCA'ers throw the phrase about indiscriminately, slapping everyone who does things in a remotely period manner with it.  People who haven't ever met me have called me a Nazi, and I've even been called a Nazi for asking (in a post, not directed specifically at anyone)  that people follow the absolute minimum standards of the SCA - little things like decanting their water from a plastic bottle into a cup, or covering a cooler with scrap cloth.    How dare I ask them to do anything that the SCA requires!, they say.  Nazi, indeed.

It angers me, and yes, it hurts. Sure, there is a subset of idiots out there who think that insulting everyone's efforts is a great thing to do, but they're not Nazis (and they're a very small subset). There Are No Nazis here.  You can tell, because everyone is still alive, no-one's been put in a concentration camp for wearing poly-cotton tunics, people who fail to conform to Society minimums are not asked to wear upside-down laurel-wreath patches, and no-one has had their fabric stash confiscated and given to other "Nazis".

So, the name "Attack Laurel" was my replacement for what is frankly an unacceptable insult that no-one who considers themselves a nice person should ever use against someone who is not, in fact, a member of the National Socialist Worker's Party .  

In 2004 (roughly), Atlantia's King came up with a law for Atlantia that required the covering of modern armour, and the concealment of non-period items around the tourney field (not all parts of the event, just the tourney field). There was quite a bit of whining at the time, but the appearance of the field has been significantly improved at events.

I made a comedy post about it in my previous diary that became the first official Attack Laurel article (the New Rules post). I posted it on April Fool's Day, which I thought would make it obvious that it was a joke, and most people managed to see it that way, but it rapidly got posted and re-posted to various lists across the Known World, and some people freaked out and thought it was real.

Apparently, some people still do. I have a word for those people, but it stays in my head.

The initial post was so well-received that when I started my website (thanks to pinkleader's gentle nagging and able assistance), the Academy became a part of it. I'm proud of it - I hope it amuses people in the same way that the Quarter and the excellent parody Not Neccessarily The Pikestaff (from 1991 - if you can find a copy, do - it had an event ad for the "Authenticity Policeman's Ball" that was hysterical) have done - and it in no way reflects my real feelings about Laurels and authenticity in the SCA. 

(And it's a shame that I even have to write that disclaimer.  The humourous nature of the site should be patently obvious.)

Hyperbole. It's a fun word, and taken properly, it's an excellent foil for comedy. I basically took everything that I and others like me (who just like doing our own thing, really) have been accused of over the years, and intensified it. My basic goal, however, remains the same - to push "Attack Laurel" as a substitute for the hated phrase, and get people to stop using "Nazi".  Along the way, I hope to provide an outlet for negative feelings about Laurels who do fuck up, and also to demystify the whole "Peer!OMG!" fear phenomenon.  It seems so far, that I have been successful in this second part.  I'd love to be successful in the first.  Calling someone a Nazi is unacceptable in every other venue - why is it okay in the SCA?

There's nothing wrong with aspiring to be better than the lowest common denominator, and there's nothing wrong with being content with that minimum - different people have different goals. If the "Authenticity isn't FUN!" people could be a little more tolerant (seriously, there is no equivalently rude and nasty insult for the "fun" people that I've ever heard), we'd all be better off. We're not looking down on anyone - we're too busy working on our own projects to give you a hard time about yours. All we ask is that you meet the minimum standards of the SCA.

And if that's just too hard, there's always the Renaissance Faire - they don't require you to dress up in anything.

Tags: attack laurels, authenticity, humour, sca
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