Saturday, we went to Stierbach Baronial Birthday, where I ran the rapier tourney. It was a format concocted by yours truly years ago, which seems to be getting better and better as time goes by. What I mean by that is that the rules keep getting more entertaining and more practical every time I run it.
Basically, it is what I call a "missmatch" tourney, with an element of luck attached to it in the form of a deck of cards. And because there is an element of luck, it is a bear-pit as I feel that it would not be fair to the fighters to make them win or lose due to fate and for them not to have the chance to line up and try again.
In other words, opponents cannot match forms, and the first choice of weapons goes to the fighter who draws the higher card. The idea behind this is to get folks out of their comfort zone and have them try something different. Lately, what you are going to see in tourneys is lots of rapier and dagger, and the occasional cane. It can get monotonous, if you ask me.
However, when you have the chance to have your first choice of weapons, you get to strategize and force your opponent to use something else. If you know that said opponent has a favorite style, you can claim it as your own and he will have to fight with something else. (Heck, one new fighter discovered buckler and fell in love with it. I doubt that he'd have tried it otherwise.)
Even better, the Joker will give you the chance not only to get your first choice of weapons, but to dictate to your opponent what she's going to have to fight with. But in order to do that, you will have to entertain the crowds. If you don't, then *your* opponent has first choice and will dictate what you're going to use.
Oh, and Queen or King of Hearts are an automatic win, and King or Queen of Spades an automatic loss. It sucks, but that's why it's a bear-pit.
This type of tourney lends itself to Baronial or Queen's Champion's format, as you can get her Excellency or Her Majesty (as appropriate) to join in the fun and add all sorts of shenanigans in the name of entertainement.
All I can say is that everyone seemed to have a great time, Dom and Dante told great stories, and Syr Guy won the prize for most entertaining death, courtesy of the Gods of Infantry, all in good fun. (Oh, and pirategirleee makes a great Vanna White!)
It doesn't get much better than that.
At any rate, I did take a couple of pictures, but the one that caught the spirit of the day is the one of Her Excellency of Stierbach skipping with a bunch of roses, ready to cause mischief among the fighters.
Here it is.
Other cool stuff that happened at the event was the Capoferro class taught by Dante, which I always find useful and which I think everyone should take at least once.
On the other hand, I was a bad Pearl and an even worse Laurel, as I didn't get the chance to go see the A&S. I hear that Arghyle had a really nice chair on display. I'll get to take a look next time.
Sunday, I decided to play with dolls and worked on Margot some more. She still needed a lot of sanding, and I spent a lot of the afternoon just doing that. She still needs some more of that, and this is probably the most demanding part of it. You see, she may be made out of clay but, once the clay is cured, you treat it like wood. Which is good, as wood is what would have been used anyway.
At any rate, it is a long and tedious process which puts a lot of strain on your hands and your back. All I can say is, I can certainly understand why Susan Parris charges what she charges for her dolls.
But it is worth it.
She will still take many, many hours of work, but I know that Margot will be a fabulous doll. It will take some time, but I can't wait to finish her.
(ETC: Possibly December if I am lucky. There is still too much to do, and my work schedule doesn't help. But I'm working on it.)
And that's all folks. Other interesting things happened, but they will have to wait for another post.