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First Word

As I said on the House Corvus e-list, I donít make New Yearís resolutions as such. I do, however, use the turn in the calendar to take some time out and reflect not just on the year thatís past, but also the year ahead. And, the fact of the matter is, I miss doing the Raven Roundtable. The internet is all well and good, but thereís something to be said for hard copy newsletters. If nothing else, they make for fine reading in the bathroom. Thankfully, I donít have internet access thereÖ yet.

The year 2000 already looks to be a very full one for House Corvus. Just yesterday I put up my 2000 planner and was shocked to see how many dates I already have blacked out for events and such. I have no doubt that you are experiencing a similar time crunch. These demands on our time make it even more important, though, to keep time open for our friends and family, especially our housemates!

Iím trying to institute a few new systems into my routine this moth to help keep me a bit better organized. Weíll see what fruit these ideas will bear! Hopefully, it will result in a little less tension for me and better communication with all of you. For one thing, I plan on a monthly Roundtable! (Hmmm, I almost said a return to a monthly Roundtable, but I donít think thatís ever been the case.) This will also mean the return of at least once a month visits to see my grandmother in Florida. At least one weekend each month, Iíll be headed to Orlando to indulge myself by working in the garden. Anyone who ever wants to join me for a weekend there is welcome to do so. Just let me know if youíre interested. Only twenty minutes from Sea World!

One of the benefits of the e-list is our ability to easily share (yes, I know this is split infinitive, but it just sounds wrong to phrase it any other way) our schedules with everyone in the household. Posting our event itineraries makes it more likely that we can be sure to spend time together, perhaps by attending an event we hadnít initially planned. It would be nice if we kept up the lunchtime tradition; making sure that, regardless of how busy we may be at an event, we take lunch with our housemates. This way, we not only get to eat lunch, but that we also have some time to just sit and visit with our friends. Coordinating these luncheons seems simple enough on the e-list, so letís keep that going this year. We certainly have enough events!

Well, I never did get to send out any holiday cards this year. When I first thought about it after Thanksgiving, I thought it was way too soon. Quickly after that, though, I became distracted and the next thing I knew, time had caught me up! Iíd like to thank you for your cards and well wishes. It means a lot to me and I do so love getting cards in the mail!

Super news! My sister Fawn received a clean bill of health from her doctor yesterday, which has me very excited! She had quite a bit of trouble over the holidays. While it was going on, I was too caught up to ever go online and share any of it with you. Once done, I didnít see the point of dredging it up. Suffice it to say that it was pretty gruesome. Emergency rooms, emergency surgeries on Christmas Eve, lots of pain, even more worry, but eventually resolution and restored health. Frankly, despite the way it may have appeared at the time, it turned out to be the best Christmas ever. After all, Fawnís fine now. You canít get a better gift than that! -- BRAN

The Trimarian Word

Greetings unto all the good little ravens throughout the known world!

Well, as that Chinese proverb goes, we definitely live in "interesting times" here down in the south. Since our last Roundtable, life has been anything but dull. We have seen changes within relationships, mindsets, groups, etc. To borrow a quote from Semisonic, "Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end." So with every change comes new challenge, but also the potential for new fun.

Rising from the ashes like the proverbial phoenix, those of us down here who got scorched during the Body Politic of Wyvernwood have found ourselves busy and productive again with those who still believe in the dream. No longer associating ourselves with "that Barony," the southern Corvites have moved our "base of operation" to the Shire of the Storm. Shire Storm is across the bay from the Barony, and consists mainly of our good friends, allies, and Pennsic campmates, Alhard Manor. All in all, a cool bunch of people. Don Miguel has become local Herald in the Shire of the Storm, and I find myself readying for my return to Storm once life becomes a little less hectic. As I write this, I look back upon my experiences in the SCA, and find myself chuckling. Years ago, when I first joined the SCA, I attended a couple of meetings in Wyvernwood. They seemed very unfriendly, very intimidating, and just plain boring. Within about a month, I began to attend Storm meetings, where I found the atmosphere to be a complete 180. Perhaps history really DOES repeat itself? If only I'dÖ. oh well.

Project-wise, many of us plan to attend Kingdom Art-Sci in January. Hosted by Shire Storm, this will be a great way in which to contribute service-wise to the shire. Additionally, I have volunteered myself to provide the goodies for the Trimarian gift basket for the Kingdom of An Tir for this upcoming Gulf Wars. My apprentii and I are busily working on "Stuff," along with assistance from Alhard Manor and additional contributions from various members of the household. This is a wonderful group project that I am sure will turn out quite wonderful!

Well, the new year will certainly bring about many changes of status. Rowen will be moving way down south, and will most likely be inactive while becoming situated. But I'm sure it won't take long before we have our "Satellite Office" in Key West fully functional. As for Mebh, Miguel, and I, we will be actively working towards becoming more situated within the shire. Further, we hope to be working on some household items such as some surcoats, banners, etc. One can never have TOO much of a spiffy thing, right? Until next time, I remain, -- GIUSEPPE

A Very Corvus New Year!

Lord Robert and I had the grand opportunity to travel down to Trimaris for New Yearís and spend it in Tampa with all of the members of House Corvus who live there: Giuseppe, Rowen, Medb, and Miguel! In addition to getting together with our Corvus buddies, we also got to see all of the Trimarian members of ĎJust Our Budsí from this last summerís Pennsic encampment! As if the turn in millennia wasnít enough! It made the whole evening a grand reunion.

We got together at Mistress Hollenís house and were dazzled not only by her incredible graciousness and courtesy, but also by her talent. She is one phenomenal artist! She let us play on her computer and tinker with some of the most sophisticated rendering programs. What fun! And her home was just fantastic!

Of course, any time spent in the company of Duke Merowald is always a hoot and I was grateful for the opportunity to enjoy his unique sense of reverie. Our time at Pennsic was all too brief. What a treat to see him and his wife again!

The ever-ebullient Columella introduced us all to the Chalice of Shame! This is a stoneware chalice impressed with daisies and such. A true artifact of the Dark Ages (we call Ďem the Ď60ís), passing it along with ever renewing contents to a new Ďvictimí turned out to be a fun game throughout the evening. Naturally, seeing all of our good friends of House Alhard was a treat, though I must confess that I was completely enthralled by one of Columella and Leonidasí two dogs throughout the evening. Sitting around a campfire and petting a blind dog gave me a whole new experience in the serene.

One of Giuseppeís apprentices presented a gift to Columella and me in the form of special telescoping forks whose sole purpose was for roasting marshmellows in the fire. We did that with great alacrity and it became something of a contest-seeing who could create the most tumescent marshmellow.

When the clock hit 11:55pm, the members of House Corvus stood away from the fire to drink a toast to all of us in the household. What a joy to stand with our Trimarian family and think about all of the rest of you. Could there be any better way to usher in a new millennium? Hereís to another two thousand years in your company!

For Your Consideration

While Iím certainly in no great hurry to add any new members to our ranks (of course, thereís always room for the right person), I did want to discuss a few items as well as people with you.

We recently had occasion to experience some confusion over household inductions and I wanted to be sure we were all on the same page before we proceeded with any others. Naturally, this is my fault, since I thought I had communicated better than I truly did. Yes, we do have a process. But, sometimes, we have to make exceptions as well. If my take on this is wrong, donít hesitate to illuminate me (like any of you would hesitate! Hah! )

Before we offer any invitations to join House Corvus, we publish the person under consideration here in the Roundtable. We then use the e-list (or any other form of communication) to share our thoughts on the candidate. This might happen anywhere from a year or more before we actually proffer an invitation, if we ever do. Thus far, weíve only ever invited about 20% of the people weíve discussed in ďFor Your Consideration.Ē

When we reach a group consensus on whether or not having a person join House Corvus would be beneficial to both themselves and the household, we decide either to extend an invitation or opt to pass on the individual. Just because we donít think a person is ready at one point, in no way precludes them from coming under consideration later. Weíll simply publish them in this column again and review how and why the circumstances may be different.

When we decide to have an induction, weíll get the wordout on the e-list so that everyone will know whatís in store. That way, if people are able, they can be at whatever event the induction is scheduled.

Iíll make sure I do a better job of following up on candidates and also of getting people who are under consideration out to the newer members of House Corvus. Frankly, it never even crossed my mind that (díuh!) some people wouldnít know whoís been under consideration from before their induction. From now on, Iíll periodically republish names for which we havenít ever reached a consensus.

Of course, thatís the ideal method in which new members are added to House Corvus. There will be occasions where weíll have to make exceptions. Itís hard to imagine circumstances under which such haste will need to be made that we canít follow this simple process. Perhaps, where proteges, apprentices, and squires may be concerned, theyíre could be trickier situations: possible but not probable. After all, what Peer attaches someone whom they havenít had their eye on for some time?

As House Corvus only has Pelicans and Laurels, currently, we can address some of these from the get-go. Though, even between these two peerages, there are differences. Rhiannon and I have agreed that we wonít take proteges whom we donít feel should be in House Corvus. This makes it simple for us because we wonít be taking on proteges that you all donít feel comfortable with. Giuseppeís responsibilities as a Laurel in Trimaris are somewhat different, however. He periodically takes on apprentices whose art he feels responsible to promote. They may or may not be Corvus candidates.

I donít think it will become necessary for Rhiannon or I to have proteges outside the household. However, thatís an option that needs to remain open to us. Itís possible that there are people whom we might feel the need to promote who simply donít fit in with the Corvus philosophy. Hey, itís possible! Otherwise, weíll stick to the ďFor Your ConsiderationĒ process.

No matter what, we all have equal say in who is a member of the Household! Speak up if you think someone really should be a member. Definitely speak up if someone is placed under consideration that you feel should NOT be a member. You all know howÖ enthusiasticÖ I can be. I rely on your input to make the best decisions possible for our future.

That being saidÖ a few people have popped in to my mind recently that I would like to mention. I have no intention of acting on any of these things, but bring them up because Iím really curious to see what thoughts you all may have.

Candidate 1 - Comments omitted from online version.
Candidate 2 - Comments omitted from online version.
Candidate 3 - Comments omitted from online version.
Candidate 4 - Comments omitted from online version.
Candidate 5 - Comments omitted from online version.
Candidate 6 - Comments omitted from online version.

Sometimes people fade out of the SCA because they donít have the support mechanism we all need on occasion. Would they still be around and involved if they were in House Corvus? The flipside- how much do we want to ďcarryĒ low activity level people in the SCA? Are we only looking for people who are self-motivated enough to make a difference on their own without needing to be supported by a household?. Certainly, the majority of House Corvus members are just this sort of go-getter.

As in most things, I feel we need a balance of these two extremes. We canít all be busting our asses all the time. For the most part, I feel people in the SCA want to do things, they just lack direction and assistance. I guess thatís what we should keep in mind when looking at candidates. Do they lack direction or are they simply lazy? Are they inactive due to circumstance or because they canít be bothered?

Now you see why we all need to consider people when they come up in this column. On more than one occasion, Iíve only seen one face of a candidate. Sometimes, youĎve shared insight, which I never could have gleaned from my encounters. Sometimes, youíve advised me to positives I never realized. Itís our shared commentary that provides the clearest picture.

Last modified on Wednesday, November 26, 2008
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