Saturday, August 8, 2020

Tyger Queen Diaries - Dispatches from Pennsic War

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

Dispatch #6 from War.

This is my army.

There are none like it.

And this one is mine.

And I love each and every one of them. 💛💛💛.

The reserve tank is low. The emotions are high. And yet... Seeing the faces of my warriors preparing for the Bridge Battle replenished me. With joy and determination in their eyes they took the field.

Thank you, my beautiful killers. Thank you.

Love and Gilded Kisses,
Queen Fortune



Tyger Queen Diaries - Dispatches from Pennsic War

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

Dispatch #5 from War. 

Today I took a walk into the Woods with Kenric.

Her Grace Avelina handed me Kenric's Champion Tabard at Archery Champs this morning. 

Intact with the good juju, and now one or two of my tears I took it into the Far Side of the Woods with me. 

But that was not enough. That is not where he would have been. So Jarl Ivan took it where I could not go. 

And my Tygers and Our Allies fought so fiercely. With such love. And returned to me time and time again covered in Dragon's Blood.

I am so proud of my warriors. So very proud. 💛

Stripes Proudly Showing and Claws Out,
Queen Fortune

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Tyger Queen Diaries - Dispatches from Pennsic War

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

Dispatch from War #4

Tonight we reminded the Known World that the E in East is for EXTRA.

We attended the State Dinner in MidRealm Royal tonight. His Majesty Edmund of the Mid and Ôzurr had agreed to wear each other's colors. So He and Her Majesty Kateryn wore purple and gold and we wore red. Thankfully Mistress Sofia had just completed a GORGEOUS slashed silk doublet for Ôzurr and I had made a burgundy velvet dress to match with embroidered 2 part sleeves from Leonete and Thyra. (A huge thank you to Bianca, Daniela, and Margreta for helping me get dressed) We even got to wear the portrait pendants Lord Alexandre

gave us at GNEW.

And while the other royalty walked or took Royal golf carts, His Majesty Ôzurr and I rolled up in my beloved gondola.

We were fashionably late and let me tell you - it was an entrance.




His Majesty was not convinced the downhill portion of Our trek was going to work well, but I had faith in my Guard. My Guard who, I would like to mention, started playing O Fortuna as soon as we got started moving. As we passed the playground We even acquired a kazoo chorus accompaniment from the playground.

I'm pretty sure I laughed the entire ride.

Our Royal Cousins were, it's safe to say, surprised.

Thank you to Goerijs and the East Kingdom Stagecrafters Guild for making my gondola, La Serenissima, a reality. We have surely won the Style War Point.

Love and Gilded Kisses (from my gondola),
Queen Fortune

(Photo by Baroness Bianca Angussola)

Tyger Queen Diaries - Dispatches from Pennsic War

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

Dispatch #3 from War.

Today I followed my King into War.

His Majesty stood alongside Our dear friends and in front of Our Foes and Allies We broke the war arrow, and then loudly and clearly blew the war horn across the Battlefield signaling the start of Pennsic.

Earlier that afternoon We had sat in Mid Royal with Our Warlord, Our Generals, and Our stalwart Allies as Ozurr and Edmund discussed the kind of War They envisioned: one truly between eternal friends.

We have experienced Pennsic between Crowns that have true animosity and have watched the strife seep into every aspect of the event, poisoning the experience for everyone.

We did not want that.

Their Majesties Edmund & Kateryn did not want that.

And so the two Kings have worked very hard to create a War littered with F bombs. In this case F is for Fun. (In case you could not tell from the "Hippies" who protested Opening Ceremonies)

And despite winning the first battle: an impromptu dance off at the foot of the Battlefield - thanks to the wonderful drummers of La Familia Gladiatoria who brought the energy and the magic again this year - tomorrow We truly go to War.

But I hold right now in my heart the sight of my beloved Populace and Our Allies filling the East Kingdom courtyard. I walked out from behind the thrones and saw a sea of people. All of them smiling, laughing, and gathered to show the might of the East. I just stood for a moment, drinking in the sight of so many people I love in one place, for Us. I sometimes still cannot believe that We are lucky enough to get to lead the fiercest, most talented Populace in the Known World.

No matter your stripes my Tygers, you make me proud. Now let's go win a war together! 💛

Love and Gilded Kisses,
Queen Fortune

Tyger Queen Diaries - Dispatches from Pennsic War

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

Dispatch #2 from War.

Today was a very good day. I hope yours was as well.

We started out by going to visit the King and Prince of the Mid who were each completing a Deed of Arms. While on the field I met up with Our cousins the King and Queen of Ealdormere Roak and Hyrrokin who are so much fun! I have been saying this many times that We are lucky to have the best other Royals.

I went on an unsuccessful quest to find lacing rings and successfully found many old friends in the marketplace. This is how Pennsic works.

His Majesty Ôzurr and I then went to Giata Magdalena Alberti 's Equity in the SCA 101 class. I have known Mistress Giata for many years online and from going to Gulf Wars and was thrilled when the BoD chose her to serve as the SCA Diversity and Inclusion Officer.

The East was well represented in attendees which gladdened my heart. There was a ton of great info and I cannot wait for the video to go up online. She made many great points like apologizing when you yourself screw up and also not piling on when someone else has. Apologies are hard, but you don't get to decide how you made someone feel.

My biggest takeaway was to practice what you would say in situations where you witness something. I had the night before had a chat with a member of the populace who was practicing with their older teen what to do if sexually harassed. Giving them a playbook of strategies if they are in a situation they don't feel comfortable in. We then in class role played scenarios Giata had collected which were tough, but that have happened. Thinking about what you would say makes it easier to quickly respond yourself to a situation or help someone else. It can be as simple as "Yo, not cool. We don't say stuff like that here."

So think about what you would do if you saw and create your own playbook. Just like with consent, it isn't fun if everyone isn't having fun.

Love and Gilded Kisses,
Queen Fortune

Tyger Queen Dispatches from the Pennsic War

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

Dispatch #1 from War.

Today's set up of East Kingdom Royal was a resounding success, I can only hope breakdown goes as smoothly. They let me sleep in so I woke to the dulcet tones that could only be Sir Colin as he and a few other Peers were setting up the Royal Oval.

I quickly had breakfast and set up the Vigil Chapel which was House Strangewayes big project last year for Pennsic, funny how this year our big project is the reign.

The Tyger's Cubs were very efficient and aggressive when needed to keep everyone hydrated and fed and this evening His Majesty and I rewarded them with a movie night.

Count Baldric is AMAZING and prepared for Us a projector with speakers, preloaded with a few of Our favorites. Ozurr and I went to the store and got a cart filled what a selection of snacks I can only describe as "twelve year olds with a credit card" and there was Jiffy Pop from Elizabeth Lovell.

My darling daughter Margarita De' Siena, Lady Ollala, and Lady Daniela and I put together some metal twin size bed frames, topped them with air mattresses and some fabric and we were ready to go!

Tonight we watched A Knight's Tale and they loved it! The adults all quoted along "it's called a lance... Hello" and one of the kids responded "Have you guys all seen this before???". Yes my child, many, many times.

The best moment was in the scene where the characters are all brainstorming ideas for the love letter and one suggests mentioning his lady's breasts and all the kids going "No no no no that's a terrible idea!". Queen Fortune's School for Young Pages is clearly doing something right. 

After just a bit too much sugar Our guests trundled off to bed. It was a wonderful time and will be a great memory. The perfect way to start this Pennsic. 

Love and Sugary Gilded Kisses,
Queen Fortune

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Tyger Queen Diary from a Year Ago today

Dear Tyger Queen Diaries,

This weekend His Majesty Ôzurr and I jetted off to the Sigtuna Market in Ruantallan (Nova Scotia). It was a trip made possible financially by the generosity of all of you through Our fundraiser, and logistically by Baron Guthfrith Yrlingson and Baroness Isobel Mowbray (including a drive to the airport this morning at 4:30am which I think we can all agree is above and beyond - even if you *are*in fealty to Us)

If you, like Us, have never visited Ruantallan I heartily endorse going. We had amazing event with wonderful hospitality, great competitions, amazing people, and delicious food. I regret nothing about this trip except for how short is has been. 

The Barony here is so clearly growing and thriving. I talked with multiple people about their targeted demos at local gaming conventions, and how they then work hard on retention. It shows. 

In fact, the last 3 events I've been to: Otter's Welcome, Panteria, and now Sigtuna we have either run out or nearly run out of Newcomers tokens. (No one's fault but my underestimating while packing!)

Otter's Welcome had *30* newcomers! Panteria had close to 20. This event had likely 15! (I must admit I stopped counting)

My glorious East Kingdom, you cannot know how proud I am to have this dilemma. I apologize that I ever underestimated you in welcoming newcomers into the Society. Clearly we are doing something right, and need to continue reaching out and also, like Ruantallan, making sure new members are supported while they find their place. Offer rides, offer encouragement, help folks with garb and feast gear, help pair people up with mentors, be open to answering questions, and be open to their perspective. 

One of the newer members I met came up and asked His Majesty and I what Our favorite parts of the SCA are. He said that people kept asking him and he decided to learn more about folks by asking the same question in return. It was a really good dialogue and both sides learned something. 

We later got to have drinks at a local pub as an informal post revel. We should have more of these for our day events. They bring the community together in a way events sometimes cannot because of how much is going on. It gives us a chance to stop and just *be* with each other. 

And if you are going through your spring cleaning and find a mug or two that could use a new home, I'm sure Lord Alexander Clarke would be willing to take them off your hands for the Newcomer Mug Initiative. 

So, again, a huge THANK YOU to Ruantallan for a wonderful visit and for setting an example for the East. 

And now, my wonderful Tygers, I'm going to take a brief nap and hopefully wake back up only when we land in Carolingia. 

Love and Gilded Kisses,
Queen Fortune


The backstory on this adventure was I was running a training in Syracuse NY (which is in Aethelmearc) and that Friday drove down to Newark NJ to meet up with Ozurr and we flew to Nova Scotia. Our flight got delayed a couple times, and we later learned from our doubt attendant that there was a pretty good chance we would have been diverted to Bangor because the fog makes it too hard to land. 

We were in Canada for about 24 hours and then I took a flight back to Boston and Ozurr got one back to Newark. 

I landed at 10am, got a rental at noon in Worcester, and drove back to Syracuse. 

The glamorous life of SCA Royalty! 

Monday, March 30, 2020

Researching Oaths

His Highness and I are working with Master Malcolm Bowman on oaths for Coronation based upon the "Promission Ducal" sworn by the Doge of Venice at his Inauguration, specifically the Promission of Enrico Dandolo (1192-1205):

* To govern righteously according to justice

* To increase the prestige of Venice

* To readily do justice to everyone

* Apply the laws impartially

* Do justice to false documents

* Keep the secret of what was discussed in the councils

* Do not collect or appropriate assets or revenues due to the Municipality

* Do not grant anyone the seal of the Duchy

* To arm at least ten ships at the expense of the Municipality

* Not to influence the election of the Bishops and the Patriarch

* Do not send personal letters to the Pontiff, the Emperor or the Kings
 
* Not to appoint judges and notaries arbitrarily

* To respect collegiality in the management of power

So, despite being from 1192 many of the promises are surprisingly timeless (you do wonder if a couple of these have names on them, I'm looking at you - "do not send personal letters").

Although, with the great job Settmour Swamp did on our new *wooden* chests, I bet they could outfit 10 ships... 😉

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Tyger Princess Diary: Damn Fine Toybox Runner

From a year ago today:

Dear Princess Diaries,

As I said this weekend at Black Rose Ball: I feel it's my job as Princess to make sure wishes come true. 

Thankfully, Talen is still talking to me and he did provide the most energetic and longest Toy Box run I have seen since Her Then Majesty of the West Ariah Hume. 

You see, a week before Talen had told me about his experience *not* running the toy box for the veloci-... I mean children of the East. Instead, he got to run it from the B-blocks to the battlefield and then to EK Royal. Then running behind B as he ran the toy box.

And I could just tell, in the way a Princess can tell, that this really, really, disappointed him. 

So, when on Saturday I had the opportunity to make his wish come true I took that chance and called him up to the front of Court. As His Majesty handed him the chest he made eye contact with me and I could tell from the look in his eye and the tight smile he made that he would remember this experience for a long time, and knew it was because of me. 

The fire in those eyes warmed my heart.

So Talen, thank you for running Saturday and bringing joy to our kingdom's future. And thank you for someday forgiving me. 

Love & Gilded Kisses,
Princess Fortune

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Princess Diary from a year ago

Dear Princess Diaries,

So, I'm going to let you in on a secret: this Royalty gig comes with a lot of "stuff". Crown boxes, and thrones, and largesse, and regalia, and and and...

But, even with all this new stuff, it turns out I still have this Chatelaine Soapbox kicking around here.

You see, I was the Chatelaine for my local group, the beautiful Shire of Quintavia, for several years. I resigned when we won. In fact, I resigned by text at 2am to my wonderful (and long suffering) Seneschal Sir Matthias Grunwald with the following message:

"Dear Matthias, I quit. Love, Princess Fortune"

But let me tell you, I firmly believe that each and every member of the SCA is a Chatelaine. 

And while recruitment is very important, I also don't want us to forget about retention. Those friends we had at events for years who had an attack of life and haven't been able to play, have you reached out to them lately? Even just a "Hey friend, thinking about you and it made me smile". Letting them know they are welcome back. 

Or have you reached out to the new person in your group who moved here from another kingdom and invited them out for a coffee (your Princess's favorite beverage) and to hear their stories of their home group. Letting them share their experiences before telling them what our local customs are.

Or have you reached out to the parents of toddlers who would love to go to an event but the task seems gargantuan when they think about wrangling their kid solo while one partner goes to the Thrown Weapons Range and who will help them if one kid starts crying while another wants to run toward the shiny swords!?!? Have you offered to help co-parent? Or offered to help them set up a tent area for the kids so you can sit and chat next to it and catch up? 

Or have you just talked to someone new at an event for a few minutes? Maybe they aren't a newcomer but they are a new face. Ask them about their cool belt pouch, or where they got that awesome hat? Are they having a fun event? Did they try *insert awesome Dayboard item here*? Talk to the arts person who has displayed incredibly intricate embroidery, and the fighter who just won the tournament, and the fencer who... Ok maybe not them. 😉. (I love my fencers, I also love teasing the fencers)

But cross pollinate, talk to folks outside your circle and make connections. It makes us a stronger Kingdom and a stronger Society. 

And with that, dear Princess Diary, I'm going to tuck the Chatelaine Soapbox away for a bit and try to organize more "Princess Stuff" getting ready for April 6th. I hear Mom and Dad have big news for Ôzurr and I. (I hope it's a kitten!)

Love and Gilded Kisses,
Princess Fortune


Monday, February 24, 2020

Another Tyger Princess Diary Entry from Estrella

Dear Princess Diaries,

I once thought my SCA family was pretty big. I knew people up and down the kingdom and even a few folks in other Kingdoms. But it's always expanding.

Last Fall I went out to Great Western War and was adopted into the Weastie family without whom we could not have survived this Estrella War. I will thank them all in a separate post as they deserve it, (and Ariah Hume deserves sainthood).

Then we became Prince and Princess and suddenly all of Zack Karabin s SCA family was mine as well. (Including actual family in the case of Jaymee)

And they have been such a gift!

It was killing me to be torn between the coasts and SCA friends this weekend. We both really wanted to be at Yevgeniya Pechenaya s Laureling, ESPECIALLY because of the ENGAGEMENT!!! His Highness and I sent her a "virtual vigil" message before we headed to site Saturday. (#MillenialReign)

Lada and Suuder have consistently been amazing assets to us, between arranging for retainers at Ôzurr's first solo event as Prince, to always checking in to make sure we don't need anything, to making us the most delightful Prince and Princess regalia coozies. Lada is so talented that even unconventional mediums like, say, puff paint become willing tools to her artistry.

Congratulations to my favorite Vicereine, Mistress Lada! You are a shining example of your Order! 💛

We raised a toast to your elevation last night with our favorite beverages.

All my love from the muddy lands of Atenveldt and Gilded Kisses,
Princess Fortune


Sunday, February 23, 2020

Tyger Princess Diary 1 year ago today

Dear Princess Diaries,

I may be a princess, I may very much want to be a Disney Princess, but that Disney princess is most certainly not Ariel. 

You see, I wanna be where the people are (warm).
I wanna see, wanna see dry land again. 
Walkin' around on those... What do you call 'em? Oh. Pallets!
Sloshin' 'round in boots you don't get too far
Mud's too deep so we are jumpin', slidin'
Strollin' along down a (What's that word again?) river!

Mud where you walk
Mud where you run
Mud everywhere in this Kingdom of the Sun!
The water view's free
But wish I could be, back on dry land!

Soggy Love and Gilded Kisses,
Princess Fortune

P.S. Yes, His Highness and I (and most of our camp mates) are safe at a hotel.