Do you have a burning question about a situation that happened in the SCA and want to ask Goody? You can write to Goody at this form. Questions may be truncated for publication, and submitted questions may not be answered.
I’m not part of the LGBTQIA+ community myself, but I want to support my SCA friends who are part of that community, particularly during Pride Month. What are some good substantive ways to do that?
— I Know That the A in LGBTQIA+ Isn’t For “Ally”
Dear Ally, There are so many ways you can help, but I can think of two really important ones:
First, make sure people know that you are an ally and that you are a safe person. Possibly find a way to display a rainbow or other ally token to make it very clear. Recently I have seen new rainbow peerage medallions, rainbow knight chains, rainbow ribbons and brooches being worn by LGBTQIA+ and allies. This visibility brings a lot of comfort to those who could use it.
The second way is to help call out bigots when they are being awful, especially during Pride. It’s sad, those who need to hurt others just to feel better about their own lives, but they are always out there. When they speak, answer louder. There are more allies than deeply terribly people and it might be good for them to know they are in the minority now. Maybe it will be helpful for them to experience some of the discomfort they enjoy causing so they can learn a little empathy. Well, we can hope.
Hope this helps,
I’ve been playing in the SCA for many years now but I am still confounded as to proper interaction with royalty. I cannot keep straight how to address them and what the protocol is, and by and large try to steer clear of them as much as possible, as they seem to be this rarified and unreachable group who swanks around events in a cloud of retainers. Any words of advice?
It happens to the best of us. There are a lot of royals and royal peers, especially if you attend an interkingdom event. At wars it’s just hats galore and with standards of different kingdoms, well, good luck? If you are ever stuck, try this absolute truth: “Hi Your… um, I’m sorry, I don’t know your proper form of address, will you please tell me so I have it correct?” Trust me, they will tell you and probably won’t be dicks about it. If they are, note that name and let a few of your friendly neighborhood peers know about it and the problem will magically work itself out.
Also, there are some good guides on hats and regalia available online. Print them out and play “Royal & Count” (yes, that is a pun) with your friends. Rack up points for each bestowed peerage, Roses, Count/ess, Duke/Duchess, Prince/Princess, King/Queen, Territorial Noble and Court noble. Maybe the winner gets help striking camp or a nice beverage of their choice.
Hope this helps,
People keep asking how a friend introduced his wife into the SCA. Truth is she started playing 35 years ago, and he found it through her 8 years ago, people keep referring to her as Ulric’s Wife and forget she has a name. Is this a common problem?
Fantastic Atwood reference there. Seriously, <chef kiss>. Now, on to the advice: It really sucks when one member of a couple or family becomes more SCA-famous than the other or others. The best rebuttal to this is that any time you hear someone referred to as “Ulric’s wife” or “Caitlyn’s kid” interject the person’s name and interrupt the conversation. “Alys, you mean Alys, Ulric’s wife. That’s her name. Let’s use it.”
It seems painfully simple and a bit rude, but sometimes you have to squash down the polite and just make a firm point. Everyone deserves to be their own person, with their own agency, and their own name. Humans are not accessories and good on you for paying attention to this issue. No matter if m’lady “Alys” has been in society for 35 years or 35 minutes, she still gets to have her own name rather than just being someone’s other.
Hope this helps,