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.....It was yet another whirlwind weekend that went by way too fast. It'll be just like this through the summer. I'd better get strapped in for the ride.

.....Saturday morning was a trip over to Angharad's house out by Horseshoe Lake for the new June Faire Sign Painting Party. It was hosted officially by the Order of the Wyvern's. But many other hands were involved in the process to this point. Adelheidi purchased the materials. TBT and Albrecht did the initial artwork. Marcus made sure they were delivered to their house for the painting itself. Arion went to the County Recycle Center for the paint. Then a bunch of us turned out at 10AM on Saturday to do some painting.

.....TBT initially set up the color scheme for the figures. I actually like the designs. It is definitely a different style that the old signs, but will work nicely. The colors pulled by Arion are BRIGHT. I thought them somewhat garish at first, but when I stepped back later and looked at them again, I thought that the colors worked great as road-side advertising.

.....Here is the design put together by TBT:

.....We painted one side of all three boards (which were six feet by four feet each). They needed to dry and then flipped over so that the other side could be painted. But we had to get going as TBT had to catch up on orders for her Business, and the next shift of painters were due in the afternoon. So we left around 12:30 or so. We'll have to remember to get pictures of the completed signs. :-)

.....After lunch TBT went to work and I started the pack up of Heather for May Crown. I pulled together both of the smaller pavilions and counted out all the parts to make sure of what we had and what we didn't and then made a list. Everything went into Heather or on the lumber racks at that point. The Baronial Chairs went into Heather, and the bed. Even with all of that packing done, Heather was only around a quarter of the way filled with 'stuff'.

.....Ran down to the Baronial Storage Unit with my lists of missing 'stuff' and pulled out the Baronial Pavilion and packed it up, and then dug out the missing items. Which, as guessed, were all located in the Storage Unit.

.....I think this is the earliest I've ever packed Heather for May Crown infrastructure. Loading the remainder of what we'll need for the weekend should be fairly straight forward. I finished Saturday feeling slightly accomplished. :-)

.....Sunday started with the usual Starbucks run first thing in the morning and then some catching up of chores on the computer. The quarterly financial report for the Office of Kingdom Chronicler is complete and out the door. It will be the last report dealing with paying a printing house directly for production of The Crier.

.....Also made arrangements for upgrading the software to the Chronicler's Office. When Angharad stepped down we picked up CS4 (InDesign). A new Chronicler will take office shortly, so we're going to purchase the next upgrade to CS5.5 / CS6. It is an amazing piece of software. Light years ahead of Pagemaker, which is what I used to produce The Crier. And already advanced from what we purchased as InDesign two years ago.

.....I still find it amazing the things that have simplified themselves in the handful of years since I was Chronicler. I remember having to spend upwards of an hour or two setting up each page of The Crier to be turned into a .pdf in order to send it to the publisher for printing. A single click of the mouse now formats everything and makes it publishing ready. A single keystroke!

.....I still remember producing newsletters in WordPerfect, so I think it is at least a little understandably on why I'm so constantly amazed. :-)

.....Madrun and Dylan showed up after lunch and I was regaled with stories of fighting units at Art of War over the weekend. Dylan had obviously had a very grand time there. :-) I pulled some of the basics from him and posted something to the Baronial e-list about it. Morgan piggy-backed on top of that post sometime later with an absolutely fantastic tale of the weekend and the exploits of the Dragon's Laire Populace members who attended. We need to encourage more people to do that. :-)

.....This evening was a trip to Rich and Gwen's in order to celebrate Rich's Mom's birthday. Rich performed grill duty, something he does very well. It was all very tasty. I also had a little bit of an opportunity to talk to Bernie as well about some of the September Crown site preparations I was hoping Bernie could help in doing. He was all over it. He's going to see what he can do to get a back-hoe out there to help fix the road on site. He also might have an in on a local (to the airport) brush hog that will take out the remaining scotch broom that is messing with our lay-out.

.....This week doesn't look too bad, although the schedule is tight. Tuesday is the regular Social. Wednesday is a September Crown meeting at the Sylvan Way library (I've got to remember to finish the agenda for it). Thursday is the May Business Meeting.

.....May!? Wow, I can't believe it is already May!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....It's the start of the Regional Security Drill. My work cell has been beeping at me all morning to warn me of new and updated security warnings at work. I'm rather glad I did give in and take advantage of the liberal leave policy. Thursday and Friday off are kind of nice. I think that most of the Yard took advantage of it as well. No phone calls at all this morning. It's a little eerie.

.....Although it is kind of busy in its own way. The next four days are the online Crown Council. An ambitious agenda was put out. Our last Regional meeting was just twelve days ago and I had to get the notes filtered and put onto the Kingdom database. Then comply with the data requests from the Kingdom Secretary. I was able to get them done, but would like to have had more time to organize and expand on data. I suppose that was my fault for proposing a Winter meeting so close to the Crown Council Meeting.

.....The notes actually look more organized online than they have been. We've been working on some possible process changes as well to help tame the ever increasing size of the notes, as well as use the candidate's database more online. Eduardo suggested putting a link within the notes to each candidate's database entry, where the solid history of the candidate could be recorded. That way the notes themselves could be a repository of the current thoughts of the Regions and plans moving forward on how to best support the candidates. Organization, what a concept. :-)

.....The Western Region has probably seventy or so members in it. But there is a core group of around six or so whom I can count on to be there no matter where the meeting is. Coutess Elizabeth is one of those members, who attended the March 10th meeting. I need to remember to give her a huge hug the next time I see her. :-)

.....At some point this morning I need to break away from the computer and do something else, or else I'll be physically peeling my eyes from it. I want to put together some sort of formal 'to-do' list for the upcoming few months to June Faire as there are a lot of things to get done and a lot of things to potentially forget.

.....Tonight is Fight Practice at the OSSC. I think I'll want to go to that. Tomorrow I think I want to go to Seattle. Sometime this weekend we're spending some time with Gwenllyn. We have to get into the Storage Unit sometime this weekend to pull out one of the clothing racks for Gold Key. I know there is something else I'm forgetting that we're supposed to be doing this weekend. I'll think of it as some point I'm sure.

.....Finally getting a little good news from the September Crown site. We have a source for drinking water on site. The Port of Bremerton has a Pea Patch located at the entrance. We weren't allowed at first to access their water. We weren't even sure that the water provided there was even drinkable. But I received formal word this week that we have it and it is drinkable. Fantastic!

.....Also have a new Point-Of-Contact with the Port of Bremerton to discuss the Pea Patch area. Every little bit of extra land will help. The site is large, but not as large as say the Nix Farm. So I'm a little paranoid. Parking is my next big concern.

.....I think I'll make the Corned Beef today as well. Theodoric makes a batch for everyone who'd like some each year around St. Patrick's Day. It is always really tasty too. And lasts me for several days as TBT and The Rhys Monster don't touch it.

.....I have not received any sort of link to my issue of The Crier. Nor have I received one in the mail. I need to ping Society on that and find out what is happening.

.....TBT and I were talking about writing up Baronial Award Descriptions as well. I think the next batch of them were mine to write up. The new ones for Martiallate Service (Dragon's Compaignie), A&S Service (Mano Minos), and Persona Development (Dragon's Mantle). I think I'll try to do that this afternoon as well. Although that keeps me on the computer longer. Hmm, maybe I'll save that one for later this weekend. :-)

.....O.K. Must. Get. Away. From. The. Computer. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....The check from the Kingdom Chronicler's Office for the portion of the legal settlement of the SCA is ready for a second signature and I'll have it into the mail this evening. Just because I'm paranoid I'm going to at least get delivery confirmation at the Post Office kiosk after the Social. I'll just be glad that the whole thing is coming to a conclusion. And it looks like everyone is maintaining an air of civility about the entire process. Which probably amazes me the most out of this whole affair. I was really anticipating flame wars and name calling all over the e-lists. But everyone buckled down and went to work. I wish we approached everything in this manner. The things we could accomplish would be wonderful.

.....I'm hoping and hoping that we as an organization have grown up a little from this experience and shaken off a little of our naiveté. The truly despicable things this person did in the East could really have happened anywhere. Vigilance and attention to detail are not always our strong points as a group, but we need to work on those skills. Amongst other things.

.....Enough said by me on that subject I guess.

.....That check hurt though. The accounts of The Crier are the lowest they've been in well over a decade. The 2010 figures used as a starting point were higher than the account levels are today. It's a good thing we're moving to an electronic format. I guess I will not have to worry so much about what to do with all the extra money as there is far less of it now.

.....Sir Rauokinn brought up a good point in her Live Journal, something we struggle with a lot even in our local branch of Dragon's Laire. An Tir is paying over $120,000.00 as their portion of the settlement while the West is paying around $36,000.00. Both of these figures represent 18% of the amount of the total funds held by the Kingdom in 2010 (including all the sub-branches). Good points were brought up. Is the West divesting itself of savings in order to make purchases (land, regalia, etc.)? Is it just more important to those of the West to purchase what they want and need up front rather than save for 'something better' or a 'rainy day'? Do they have their funds invested in ways that are outside the incorporation? I tended to doubt that one at first, until I started thinking about their Kingdom Land Fund (KHTI), which is an entity completely outside the SCA. Out of necessity and legality, funds cannot go back and forth between these two funds sources at all. But it makes a great and independent way to keep money secure.

.....That is merely speculations though. The West may just have a bigger vision in mind in the handling of their funds, or at least a much different perspective. It would be interesting to come together and discuss our different perspectives and trade ideas.

.....In Dragon's Laire we've always been careful to maintain a healthy balance just in case we have a disastrous June Faire one year. That way we'd have the funds available to support ourselves for at least a year to rebuild if possible. In theory the idea is good, but just how much do you keep in reserves. Enough to cover all the rentals and June Faire for a year? Enough for just June Faire? some have advocated that we keep little to no extra funding as we are a not-for-profit organization. I certainly don't agree with that radical of approach. But balancing out all the different viewpoints and desires of the Baronial Populace can be difficult at times, that's for sure. We could, if necessary, go without a meeting hall, rental fight practice site, and storage units. We've done that in the past, but having all this available has certainly made things much easier on us in many ways.

.....The next several months, at least through June Faire, are going to be interesting to watch from a financial standpoint. We really need June Faire to do extra well this year.

.....I need to keep an eye on the September Crown bills as well. If I can hold off on actually paying many of them until after June Faire, that would be good. I don't really want to have to knock on Kingdom's door and ask for funds up front. Just makes the record keeping more difficult.

.....Serjeantry this year could prove as interesting as last year. In 2011 the model was established. Now we have to go through the growing pains. There will be some changes still in the requirements as we find things that do not work well and things that could work better. We've discovered something already this year we want to incorporate for next year. Last year and this year we announced a time and location of when we would accept Letters of Intent for Serjeantry. We solicited for questions. But we did not, at least this year, actively canvas the Populace to see who was going to submit a Letter. The requirements for the Serjeantry are lengthy, and complex in parts. We need to ensure that the potential candidates understand exactly what they are submitting a Letter to do. I would hate for someone to become excited and passionate about becoming a member of the Serjeantry only to find out that it held obligations that they could not in good conscious accomplish.

.....I think what we might start doing next year is establishing a date, prior to Candlemas, where each potential candidate must meet with us by in order to talk about what they want to do and what they understand of the Serjeantry Program. That way maybe we can head off at least some concerns before they become concerns. Then, if the candidate still truly wants to take part, they can go ahead and submit their Letters. I have often thought that the 'out' was the fact that no oaths are given with the Letters of Intent. But really, a Letter is a commitment and pretty close to an Oath in reality. So we may have to noodle on that concept some more.

.....Something that has become 'tradition' for TBT and myself is a letter to the Baronial e-list after major events and happenings that involve members of the Populace. We think that recognition of the good things people do as part of the SCA is one of our primary missions as Baron and Baroness. The giving of awards is one of the great ways of recognizing these people. But you can't give awards to everyone at an event, they become meaningless quickly. People seem to like their names mentioned though, specifically connected to the things they do at any given event or happening. The letters we've been doing seem to be well received. But they keep getting longer and longer. It might be a good thing that Master Ralg has set a size limit to the Baronial e-list. I'm constantly running against that bulkhead these days. :-)

.....I'm just hoping that there aren't just as many people sighing whenever they see my name flash across the e-list on the computer screen. 'Oh, no, here comes another long snoozer of a post.' At what point does 'recognition fatigue' start setting into the people reading the list? I might start posting short posts on the e-list that direct people to longer ones on the Baronial web-site. I wonder if I can get Aelianora's buy-in on that as the Baronial Web-Minister? Hmmm, might be the way to go. I'll have to solicit some input on that one.

.....Time to update the e-list anyway with items I missed from the original Candlemas post. I seem to be rambling anyway, and it is almost time to go to the Tuesday Social.

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....There are certainly a lot of things happening right now. It is sometimes difficult to keep them all straightened out and moving in the correct direction.

.....Ursulmas last Saturday was actually fun for me. It is not TBT's favorite event, based on past experiences. But for me, it is a chance to meet and talk with people I haven't seen in a while, and make tentative plans for the upcoming year. The intrepid Madrun and Tsuruko accompanied us in Florence, the Wonder Van, and we arrived at a fairly decent hour. Lots of people lent a hand right away and we were set up in no time at all.

.....We had a pretty healthy contingent of people in the martiallate Tournaments over the weekend. TBT and I did our best to make it to all the Dragon's Laire participants to hand out tokens made by TBT. They seemed to appreciate the recognition, and we think it is definitely important to recognize these people. So having done that always makes me feel pretty good.

.....Made the rounds of the Marketplace. I didn't see much that was new and revolutionary. Although I really thought the wool felted hats looked pretty good. Madrun ended up buying one later in the day. If I had a little more free spending money I might have bought one too. Oh, who am I kidding, I would have blown it all on books at Pastiche and threads at Sparrowhawk's. Just sayin'. Maybe it was a good thing I didn't have any real spending money. :-)

.....Attended the annual Western Regional Calendar Scheduling Meeting as hosted by Countess Daedin. Not a whole lot new and revolutionary, although it was kind of nice that everyone seems to be taking a lot more laid back approach towards sharing dates on the calendar. No head bashing at all. I thought it extremely interesting the difference in attitude between all the branches on the I-5 corridor versus us. They all think of neighboring branches as 'just down the road', which they are. We, on the other hand, are a $38 ferry ride away, practically on the other side of the world. Not sure if that attitude can be overcome, especially if gas prices stay pretty high.

.....Presented the invitation to June Faire, drawn by Renart. It looked really nice, so we definitely took a little pride in presenting it. Tried our best to make sure that Renart stayed in the general area so he could receive the gratitude due, or at least see Their Majesties pleased expressions.

.....At around 5PM or so, TBT was DONE and ready to go. We were all a little tired. I could have stayed a little longer. But Ignition was starting their performance and in that closed off hall the air was already starting to become think and heavy. Ursulmas always seems to do a number on my respiratory system. The cold and stifled air, combined with the many bodies in one location. I woke up wheezing a little on Sunday, and definitely feeling slow and run down. Spent most of Sunday recovering.

.....Monday was all about working on e-mails for September Crown, as well as answering questions needed for Pernell to turn in the ACCEPS form. We're almost done with it. Pernell will get all the signatures on it at the Thursday Business Meeting, along with a check to submit, then we'll be live in no time at all. Getting closer it is.

.....Also spent time resurrecting Crier files from the dead hard drive. We had a difficult time opening up the files on the DVD's that Talon gave us. We eventually were finally able to open the first disc; which thankfully had all the correct files on it. I updated the Spread Sheet and balanced all the books for late December and early January. Then finished the Doomsday Report for The Crier with approximately six hours to spare before the deadline on Tuesday. :-) But it is done!

.....The last checks have been sent out for the last paper edition of The Crier. From now on they will be produced electronically, with the handful of paper copies being produced by VPP in Tennessee. We will no longer take part in the production process, other than creating the files. It was sad to see that last check go into the mail. But it was going to happen. I found it interesting that VPP picked up the SCA contract. They have been aggressively pursuing the SCA since Day 1. I'm curious if there are members of the SCA on the VPP staff?

.....Tuesday night was the Social, along with the inaugural meeting of the Textile Guild. I think at least a dozen or so people showed interest in the Guild, so I'm hopeful that it will take off and do interesting things.

.....Oliver was not at the Social last night. I don't remember him saying that he wouldn't, and he didn't send an e-mail yesterday. I need to give him a call and make sure everything is O.K.

.....Tonight is the weekly Fight Practice at the OSSC. I have to remember to pack the armor from the garage into the car. Thankfully I bundled it all up over Christmas, so I only have to grab the one pile of stuff. There are new people who want to experience fighting in the SCA. I hope they like it. :-) We need more fighters. :-) You certainly can't deny the adrenaline rush you get from the hitting and being hit on the field. It can be addicting.

.....Before Fight Practice though, TBT and I are going to make a run to the Silverdale Harrison and meet the newest member of the Barony, born to Jess Dunn and Ehrig this last week. Ehrig made sure we knew last night that visitors were allowed and welcomed. :-)

.....Thursday is the Business Meeting. Friday is the packing for Candlemas. Then Saturday is Candlemas itself.

.....Right now it looks like three entries in the A&S Championship. Two entries in the Bardic Championship. And one entry in the Scholar Championship. All the entries look interesting. It'll be a long day, but fun as well. It'll be really interesting to see how the model works in the Scholar's Championship of having the one entry be 'judged against a standard'.

.....Evening Court is where the new Serjeantry candidates present their Letters of Intent as well. This year looks to be stunning! Possibly upwards of possibly a dozen, or more, people are presenting Letters. I'm a little overwhelmed just thinking about it. It's going to be a busy summer. But I'm supremely excited as well. Just seeing this Program take off like this, seeing the inspiration that comes with it, the energy, the good feelings of Teamwork and Fellowship. I'm extremely thrilled.

.....Then Sunday is our walk-through of the new September Crown site at the Airport. Many of the Team will be there and we'll brainstorm the possibilities. I definitely want to try and narrow the location of Erics in relation to the Royal Encampment and the Marketplace. Then we can build around that. We'll look at ideas on how to utilize the camping space most effectively, and take a look at the parking situation. We had a couple of ideas were kicking around on off-site parking. Bernie came up with an additional really good idea of utilizing the Airport grassy fields as a parking area. We're making the rounds now of finding the right official with the Port of Bremerton who can give us the go ahead.

.....Then it is off to the proverbial races. I want to get as much planned in February and March as we possibly can. In April the prime build up to June Faire will be in full swing and I don't want to mess with that. We'll fly under the radar primarily before picking up altitude again in June. That's why I tried to apply people to Team Haggis III who weren't already eyeball deep in June Faire planning. I didn't succeed fully, but I made some progress.

.....The week that was and will be on electronic paper. Time to get moving on finishing it. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Just read a Psychology Today article on detrimental overuse of multitasking. Definitely something of which I am guilty. I'd probably get more done efficiently if I could learn to concentrate on just one thing to completion. That's really hard though. I've been taught through years of emergent work planning and rescue to concentrate at whatever is screaming the loudest and drop whatever else I might have been doing. Or, as in the SCA, I tend to hang out with people with various forms of ADD. :-) Of, which, I suppose I may have to add myself to that list of names.

.....Here is the start of the article:

"It Works: Doing One Thing at a Time
The Efficiency and Ease of Single-Tasking
Published on January 7, 2012 by Marietta McCarty in Life Saving Philosophy

Recently I spoke at a three-day retreat devoted to the concept of simplicity and how to realize it in the specific circumstances of our individual lives. The desire of these participants mirrors that of countless students and readers to slow down and simplify. As usual, the arch-enemy can be spotted: the frazzled, distracted, cluttered mind. The answer: learn to give undivided attention to the present moment. How: practice the art of concentration. The outlook: hard job, but hopeful, ever-hopeful.

Isn't it interesting that we must work so hard to get down to the here and now? More interesting still, we do it to ourselves, taking on too much, growing increasingly anxious at getting it all done, restless nights ending frenzied days. But if we practice concentrating, we can be busy, focused, and efficient. Best of all, we can breathe and relax. Not one weekend seeker of simplicity denied that she could make these changes with determined effort. Almost all wondered if they had the discipline to cultivate good focus and stay with the effort for a lifetime. All realized that acquiring an undivided mind is work without end."

.....We did manage to make it out for a Starbucks run yesterday. Although it was late for us. By the time we made it back home it was almost noon. I read for a while and played around on the computer, and other things that allowed me to procrastinate and not get things done.

.....After lunch at Sizzlers and a stop at Madrun's to pick up blue dye, I worked at finishing up the banner. It is all painted now. Looks a little garish. The pithon and feathers were Or and Argent anyway, with some red thrown in for the Dragon's Laire badge. I was a little less successful with an off-red tint to the Baronial Populace Badge as it turned out orange more than anything else. But I'm not going to mess with it. Then, finally, a blue background in the final two-thirds of it. Really does like like a child's finger-painting session. But I'm relatively pleased with it. The colors are rather vibrant.

.....It dried overnight and as soon as I can get on to TBT's schedule, she promised to surge the ends nice and straight for me and create a pole loop for it. I need to make sure the first banner is available for this as well when it happens. Then it will be time to set the dye. I will have to find a steamer to borrow, which is the one disadvantage to working with the dyes rather than the paints from the first round. With the silk paints, I could iron the silk to set the colors.

.....Already thinking about the next banner and have ideas on how I want to work on it, as well as designs. Will try the hoop method, although I can see issues with it already. But if it allows me to straighten out the lines of gutta and make it look more 'professional' overall, I think the extra effort of working section-by-section will be worth it. We'll see.

.....Need to buy some more silk though. I may experiment with a different silk this time as well to see if we can get better results from something that is just a little less filmy, with a little more body to it. Hmmm.

.....Also picked up a set of knitting needles from TBT yesterday, who showed me how to knot in the round. It was far easier than I expected it to be. Maybe I've finally found something that will occupy my hands during long meetings. :-) Still want to learn to naalbind, but one thing at a time. :-)

.....Gotta get some cleaning done on the house today. At least the kitchen and the cat boxes. There are some e-mails that need to go out. The Pelican Notes and meetings to finish up. Maybe even a circlet or two. Need to figure out what I really want to get done first.

.....Need to also arrange for a meeting place to hold next Friday's September Crown meeting. This needs to be the priority actually as several have asked that maybe we find someplace that will allow us to order a beer or glass of wine. :-) I'm sure we can find a meeting room locally somewhere.

.....Would like to get The Crier Doomsday Report going before too much longer, but some of the crucial information is on a hard drive that all-of-a-sudden became essentially obsolete with the last update of Window. Amazing how fast technology moves these days, as well as how fast things become no longer useable. Talon said he might be able to help. I hope so. There was a lot of information stored there.

.....There is a light dusting of snow on the ground here. It doesn't look bad on the roads at all, but is still making me reluctant to go anywhere far today. Ivan wanted to check out a large parcel of land in Sequim and I had kind of thought of doing that today, but may hold off on that. Maybe we'll see how things look around Noon.

.....Time for a shower. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....One usually associates New Year's Day with thoughts of the future. Of making resolutions (that are usually broken fairly quickly). Me? It was a day of reminiscing. I didn't make any kind of progress on anything worthwhile really. But I still had a good day none-the-less.

.....TBT and I went out for our usual trip to Starbucks this morning. Upon return home I puttered on the computer for a while. For some reason I was in a mood to watch 'The West Wing'. One of my all time favorite T.V. series. YouTube has quite a number of good scenes in little snippets. I must have watched a good hour or so of them before finally getting annoyed that I could only watch short snippets at a time. :-)

.....So, after taking care of a bunch of laundry and working on the new banner for a while, I get a phone call. From Brighid, 'Hey, we're having a 'West Wing' marathon over here. Wanna join?' I really wish she'd stay out of my brain. It's a messy place. Just sayin'. :-)

.....We must have watched at least four episodes from the first season. They weren't even my all time favorites. I still want to see the one built around 'The Carol of the Bells' where Leo tells Josh the story of a friend helping out another friend who's fallen into a hole. Or the one where Admiral Fitzwallace, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, gives his opinion on 'gays in the military'. There are lots and lots of good lines in that series. I'd give a lot to see a President Bartlett in office.

.....The clean up of the garage this last weekend netted a few saves and reminders. I had thought that all my old files and Crier copies were packed for storage in Rubbermaid sealed containers. For some reason some of the very best stuff was in a cardboard box that was near the garage door (dealing with humidity and temperature issues) and had 'stuff' piled on it, slowly destroying it. I'm glad I caught it when I did.

.....At the September Crown where Her Excellency Sineidin made the announcement that An Tir was hosting a 4YC Celebration in Randall, Her Excellency Amanda approached me with a box of old papers that she was intending to toss, but thought that someone might want them. In that box was a set of copies of the first few years of 'The Crier'. It's amazing how far we've come since the days of one page issues of 'The Crier'. :-)

.....Issue No. 1. One page of announcements. :-) Master Ralg will sigh in exasperation at my saving copies of stuff like this, but I personally like being able to have this connection to the past. :-) Although, it might save a good deal of space if I were to scan these into electronic storage? Hmmm, I wonder how much it would cost to have someone do it for me?

.....In my travels to nostalgia, I also found this:

.....TBT has always been HOT!!!! :-) I think I'm one lucky guy. :-)

.....And she only gets better with time. I'm looking forward to another year of walking by her side. :-) Here's to a great 2012! A Dragon Year! Or a '5' Year! Depending upon which superstition happens to amuse you the most. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....So, I walk into the U.S. Bank branch located in the Albertson's in Silverdale. I've been using this branch to deposit checks into the account for The Crier now since September of 2004. The same primary name has been on the account. The stipend checks from SCA, Corporate have been made out to the same recipient for that entire time, 'SCA, Inc.; The Crier'.

.....So, like I said, I walk into the branch and I ask to deposit this stipend check. The teller takes the check and deposit slip and types the account number into her computer. She then asks me, 'Is 'The Crier' on the account?'

.....'Excuse me? Yes, 'SCA, Inc.; The Crier' is the name on the account.'

.....'I'm showing this account as belonging to 'The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.'.

.....'Yes, that is what the acronym, 'SCA, Inc.,' refers to.'

.....'But the check is addressed to 'SCA, Inc.; The Crier,' not to 'The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.' I'm afraid I can't accept this for deposit into the account.'

.....I blink in confusion for a minute or so. 'I've been depositing these same checks, made out to the same addressee, for several years now.' Then I pull out receipts of deposits from earlier this year. 'See, you've accepted deposits for these checks, from the same source, for even larger amounts, for a while now. Can you at least deposit this check into the account while you clear the confusion? There is enough in the account to cover the check if necessary.'

.....'I'm sorry, Sir. I cannot accept this check for deposit. The name on the check does not match the name on the account.'

.....'The checks in my checkbook here have that same name on them.'

.....'Anyone can have any name printed on a check. I'm sorry, but that does not prove anything.'

.....'What would it take to prove that 'SCA, Inc.; The Crier' is the same as 'The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.'?'

.....'Do you have the Certificate of Incorporation for either 'The Society from Creative Anachronism' or 'SCA, Inc.; The Crier.'?

.....'Um, I don't normally carry those documents around with me.'

.....'I'm sorry, Sir. I cannot deposit your check into this account.'

.....I'm just flabbergasted at this point. TBT was with me, witnessed the entire conversation, and was just fuming. I was rather irritated as well, and wanted to go away for a few minutes and calm down. So I just took the check back and walked away. Went home and grabbed a copy of the SCA Letters of Incorporation, a copy of the last bank statement (which had the same identical title on it as the checks, 'SCA, Inc.; The Crier') and went to the U.S. Bank Branch in Bremerton.

.....Whereat they accepted the check and deposited it without asking me for any further identification or proof of anything.

.....You know, I'm starting to doubt the sanity of any holdings in any bank. Maybe it is time for a complete overhaul of the institution of banking as an industry all together in the United States?

.....Only one more quarter of stipends for The Crier, than this job goes away. Starting to look forward to that with more and more eagerness. :-)

.....Although I still wonder what the future holds at SCA, Inc., and what their plans are exactly. We're looking at a revenue increase in Corporate of close to $75K to $100K a year due to no longer issuing stipends for the publishing of Kingdom newsletters. There hasn't been much talk of where those funds are going officially. I wonder if they are going straight to legal defense. I sure wish we'd hear more of what was really happening. Although I suppose that this might not be the best idea for legal reasons.

.....Maybe a shot of Don Julio or two might do the trick of taking away the irritation of the day instead. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....I worked hard at trying to keep the list short, but it still managed to gain some momentum over the past several days. :-) I have now decided to lock it down and will refuse to add to it. And then ensure that for every hour of stuff that 'must be done' and hour of 'is fun to do' is included for balance. As I look at the list though there are several things that could conceivably fall in both or either category. Hmmm.

.....Today is a celebration day! For Ralph and Gwen's birthdays. Out of respect we don't ask for ages. But it is nice to gather with friends and celebrate at our most favorite type of celebration - FOOD!

.....Then more food later, at Matt and Rycheza's for their annual tree trimming party. We had to miss last year's gathering for some reason. I think it was Aquaterra's Yule. But this year we'll definitely go. Matt and Rycheza are good people and it'll be fun to hang out with them for a while.

.....Made a running start at the list yesterday. Spent several hours doing the deep clean of the bathroom. It sparkles like a vampire now. That CLR stuff works incredibly well at removing hard water stains. I'd always thought of it as a gimmick. Now I'm a believer.

.....Tried to brave the Post Office on two separate occasions during the day. It was an absolute mad-house both times!!!! We finally ended up making it work late in the evening and using the kiosk. TBT will still have to brave the crowds next week in order to get her overseas package shipped. I do not envy her that trip. It'll be rough!

.....Mom wanted to see if we could get to her Christmas decorations in the storage unit, so I stopped by there and made the valiant effort. Had some fun with the crabby lady in the office by typing in the code for the Baronial Storage Unit and then opening up Mom's. :-) Took her about ten minutes to come running down the street in her putt-putt mobile to make sure I was not robbing it blind, and then give me a several minute lecture on using the right combination at the gate. I was polite and didn't remind her that she messed up Mom's combination in the system and wouldn't fix it until I brought Mom into the office. Blech!

.....Worked on the financial report for The Crier. All the paperwork is in order. Checks about to be signed and sent off. All income deposited. Would like to finish the Doomsday Report, but Microsoft put a bug into that plan. With the latest Windows patch, the drivers for the external hard drive were made obsolete. The company that manufactured the hard drive was bought out by Seagate and updates were not available. And, of course, the Doomsday Report is on the external hard drive and my back up is six months old. I could recreate it, but would rather not if I can help it. It'll require a lot of work.

.....But will shake all that off and have some fun. I'm looking forward to sleeping in past 4AM tomorrow. Although I still can't seem to sleep much past 5AM. :-) Looking forward to a trip to Seattle. Cell phones and new eye glasses from Costco are also in the plans for the next day or so.

.....Been staring at the portable loom and wanting to grab Madrun on Tuesday for another lesson in the missed hole card weaving technique. I need to cut off what's on there now and warp it up again. I'm really liking the thin wood cards that TBT put on there for the last lesson. They are easy to work, and don't take up nearly the space the monster sized cardboard cards take. Yes, it sometimes takes me a while to accept the truth as the truth. I am, sometimes, a little stubborn. :-)

.....Need to also ping Francesca in Glymm Mere and see how the Yule Feast Toys-For-Tots gathering went. Aquaterra refuses to post a number. :-) I think our 134 toys collected is looking pretty fine! :-)

.....Off to breakfast!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....I just finished the Doomsday Financial Report for the 2nd Quarter of 2011 of The Crier. Which isn't doing all that badly, to be honest. THL Godith took the directive to heart about 'tightening the financial belt'. The Crier is one lean publication now, and still does everything it is supposed to do. And looks good to boot. :-)

.....The transition to an electronic version will be interesting next year. Although I am rather glad I'm not currently the Kingdom Chronicler as I can see a few headaches on the horizon. Namely, dealing with those who want a hard copy of their Kingdom Newsletter at the same time you are publishing an e-version.

.....Financially speaking though, I'm thinking that my reports will get even easier to do than they are now.

.....It was a good day at Hot Summer Lights in Druim Doineann. The weather was beautiful. I love the site. High enough up in the Olympics to take the bite off of the heat felt lower down. And the breeze coming right off of the mountains had a slight chill to it that took the edge off of any heat baking the site. Rather good for fighting. :-)

.....TBT and I arrived at about 10AM. The Baronial Pavilion had been set up the night before, for which we were grateful. We threw our chairs and stuff under it and went off to wander the site. I need to remember to add my thank yous to the e-mail of HSL thank-yous later this evening or tomorrow morning.

.....The Baronial Encampment was just on the other side of the infamous flagpole. I had a little bit of nostalgia looking at that thing. I can still picture various bits of Caitlin Spenser's clothing hanging from the lines there. :-) It was an HSL where the Spenser-Longfellow Household had its last grand party before imploding with impunity not long after. But that last party, with the Hawaiian print theme was definitely a memory of epic proportions. That huge Hawaiian print tunic I wore still wakes me up in a cold sweat on occasion. It was awesomely bad. :-)

.....A good representation of the Baronial Populace was camped this year! Jahnkin and Adelheidi. Conchobar and Eilidh. Eadric and Katerina. Marion. Myrick and Aileen. Morgan. Morrigan. Caedmon. There were others as well. TBT and I enjoyed hanging out with them before the war itself started.

.....Marion also gave us a tour of her new 'Soul Pad' pavilion. It is a modern tent that has a rather medieval look to it. It has a plastic floor and is supported by a single center pole and an 'A' Frame door. Incredibly easy to set up. Folds to a very small amount of storage space. Looks 'relatively' medieval. Moderately priced ($700 is a little more than I would want to spend, but still worth the consideration). I wasn't so sure about its longevity, but TBT says the canvas is of good quality. I also considered that the poles and ropes could be replaced for low cost. So definitely worthy of consideration for the future. I love Panther. But the five million poles, ropes and stakes take up a lot of space in whatever vehicle is hauling it. Just sayin'... :-)

.....TBT and I set up for the day in the Baronial and watched the 'war' from there. There were at least twenty or thirty fighters. Baron Alexsii even showed up for the day. THL Althon was in charge of the scenarios and he had a good set of scenarios planned.

.....THL Jahnkin did a good job leading as the Baronial Warlord and the Dragon's Laire troops were motivated and eager. I was quite proud of them all as Baron. Dragon's Laire ruled the day. But I suppose I shouldn't say that too loudly as we all concentrated on the 'fun' aspects of the day. Her Excellency Brighid was even in her combat archery gear and on the warfield. Made TBT and I wish we had made the time to get our armor in gear. Well, maybe me more than TBT. She has been very focused on getting caught up with her orders and assignments.

.....Today was also the Trial of Sargent for both Jahnkin and Caedmon (in heavy fighting). Master Cedric had agreed to be the judge and he took it very seriously. TBT and I were both very grateful. He set up scenarios for both Jahnkin and Caedmon to show their abilities to lead and strategize on the war field. He set up scenarios to demonstrate their fighting abilities. He interacted on several levels with both of them and made sure TBT and I were in the loop at all times. All of this while still making the candidates feel at ease with what they were doing, and teaching them an item or two along the way. Totally a win.

.....By the time the war itself was done, everyone was tired but very elated. You could tell that everyone had had a great time.

.....TBT was anxious to get started on her orders again and we had stayed at the event a little longer than I had first surmised. So we gathered our 'stuff', and as several of the populace grabbed it from our hands to haul it off to the car (I'm still not used to that :-)), TBT and I wandered to say our good-byes and do a few last minute functions.

.....Spoke with THL Ivan about September Crown. I've been holding off on launching the e-list until I had heard from Druim Doineann about their wants and desires for participation. Ivan let me know that they wanted to help, but weren't sure how or what yet and that we basically should go ahead with our plans. So I will ensure that Ivan is on the e-list and start things moving. Actually, I'm pretty happy as the major up-front positions already have volunteers. The only one I still need to find a volunteer for is Gate / Pre-Registration. But I have a couple of ideas on this one, so I'm not really worried.

.....I'll launch the e-list tomorrow (or rather re-launch T.H.II, Part III :-)), and we can start talking about a site visit sometime in late September or October.

.....The unbelted fighters had a Tournament scheduled for 4:30, and I think that it was pushed until later. We knew that Myrick, Dillon, and Caedmon were going to be participants. So TBT and I ensured that we stopped and gave tokens to each of them and wished them well.

.....We stopped by the Archery Range for a bit. Wandered through the Arts and Sciences area. Then said our final good-byes and drove off.

.....I really need to clean up the disaster area that is my Computer Room, so that I can find things again. Then I need to concentrate on finishing the clean out of Lobelia and the garage tomorrow so that I can get ready for the Summer Madness next weekend. For all I know TBT and I, and Madrun and Dillon might be the only ones camping the weekend there. :-) But that's O.K., we'll light a fire and sing 'Baby Shark' all night long. :-) Which might be better than it sounds with enough tequila. :-)

Willows Whiten, Aspens Quiver
Little breezes dusk and shiver
Through the wave that runs forever
By the island in the river
Flowing down to Camelot
Four gray walls and four gray towers
Overlook a space of flower
And the silent Isle imbowers
The Lady of Shalott

.....Second verse, which I need to look up and see how good my memory is. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....The transition to a fully electronic Kingdom newsletter is going to happen at a faster pace than I had envisioned. You ever get the impression that things are moving around you so fast that you, yourself, seem to be a drag on the threads of time? Or is it that I'm just feeling old? I still remember the days when having a 'Printing and Postal Deputy' to the Chronicler was an important job. It went obsolete years ago. The job of Chronicler itself is not long for this world I bet. Web-Ministers are about to rule the world...

"Due to external economic conditions and increased overall costs facing the SCA Inc., the Board of Directors and senior staff have been forced to make over $250,000 in cost cutting measures to the 2011 budget in order to ensure continued operations.

The largest recurring expense for the SCA at the corporate level is the stipend payments made to the Kingdoms for publishing hardcopy newsletters. As our modern society moves increasingly away from hardcopy publishing to electronic mediums, the costs of hardcopy publishing have increased proportionally. Based on the need to curb these costs, and the responses of the membership in the 2010 census, the Board of Directors believes it is essential for the continued financial health of the SCA to transition the organization away from paper newsletters. Accordingly, the SCA has initiated a project to transition all kingdoms to e-newsletters, and is projecting implementation by Jan 1, 2012. Until the SCA has the infrastructure in place to support e-newsletters, the 2011 stipend amount provided by the corporate level for production assistance will be reduced to cover only those aspects required by the governing documents. This will reduce the overall stipend for mailings and production by 60%. The decrease will begin with the stipend checks being mailed after the end of the 1st quarter of 2011. The Board of Directors greatly regrets the necessity of making these changes to the stipend structure, but feels that it is the best of an array of difficult options to execute its fiduciary responsibility to the membership of the organization.

This means that postage will still be covered for all mailing classes, including the expected postal rate increase later this year, but the production stipend will be greatly reduced. Most components of newsletter production costs are controlled at the Kingdom level, including newsletter size, use of color printing, page count due to non-required information, and printing companies utilized. Thus, Kingdom Chroniclers have several tools at their disposal to lessen the impact of the stipend decrease. To further mitigate the financial impact to the Kingdoms, the following changes in required inclusions will be effective with April 2011 newsletters:
• Membership forms will no longer be required to be published
• The list of Board of Director nominees will no longer be required to be published
• Full Society regnum will no longer be required to be published. Contact information for the Kingdom Ombudsman must still be included.
• A statement indicating where to locate the additional information on and/or Kingdom websites will be required to be published.

As additional reminders, branch event announcements are only required to be published for the month in which the event occurs. Should the branch event occur in the first week of the month, publication in only the prior month is acceptable. Please refer to the Chronicler’s Handbook for the minimum event information required for publication.

The Society Chronicler has information available for the printing house in Knoxville, Tennessee (USA) that several Kingdoms have already been utilizing for more cost-effective printing and mailing services.

Fundraising that is specifically done for the purpose of newsletter publication is still allowed, but (as always) is at the discretion of the Kingdoms.

The Board of Directors, SCA, Inc. greatly appreciates the time and effort put into newsletters produced at all levels of the organization and is committed to implementing a financially responsible process to provide information to the membership by a blend of electronic and hardcopy media.

Please contact your ombudsman with questions or concerns.

Board of Directors, SCA, Inc."

.....There was a time when I thought being on the Board of Directors would be an interesting job. But the longer I play in the SCA the less I feel that way. The BoD has to get so wrapped up in the legalities and corporate structure of the Moderne Worlde that I think there is a real danger of losing the magic that is the basis of the SCA. It's a very tenuous thread, that connection. And once lost is hard to recover.

.....It'll be interesting to see what the SCA changes into over the next decade or so.

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....It's been a handful of days since I updated Live Journal last. Lots of things to think about these days. You wouldn't necessarily think of Holloween as a thoughtful day, but it has become so. :-)

.....Today is [ profile] aelianora's birthday. I hope it was a good day for her. I probably should have called, but I didn't think about doing that until just a few minutes ago and don't necessarily want to interrupt her evening.

.....Today is also Catelin Spenser's birthday. It's been over a year now since her death. I miss her quite a bit. I'm still curious as to what she would be saying to me now that I'm about to wear the Coronet as Baron of Dragon's Laire. I'm sure she would have had a great deal of interesting advice for me. :-)

.....Starting to get my brain wrapped around the step-up, in less than two weeks now. The 'to-do' list is still daunting, but the actual ceremony should happen more-or-less with at least a reasonable amount of dignity. Something that was more difficult to achieve than I would have thought. TBT has been knocking herself out with the step-up clothing. I think I'll be wearing better clothes for that one ceremony than I've ever worn to date, either in the 'real world' or the SCA. :-)

.....Tomorrow I have to be in Tacoma at 0800 to check in for Jury Duty at the Federal Courthouse. Not necessarily the best timing as there was a Port Gamble June Faire meeting scheduled for the same day. Ack! And I still need to go in early and get the Monday morning reports out the door as there is no one else available to put them together. Sigh! It could be a long day.

.....Being the Federal Court though there might be the chance that I may actually sit on a Trial. Every time in the past I was called into Jury Duty I was summarily booted out of the room due to my affiliations with Bill Bogan, who takes care of the breathalizer machines on the Olympic Peninsula. I've been kicked off of trials at least three times now because of that. I'm kinda hoping that it doesn't happen this time. Although it could be problematic if the trial runs through November Crown Council. I'm sure Their Majesties would be cranky with me if I had to miss my own ceremony. I wonder if Their Current Excellencies would be cranky with me if they had to hold on to the Coronets a few weeks (month? years?) longer than expected. :-)

.....Speaking of cranky people, I think we're finally going to get The Crier bank account out of my hair. Master Pyotr has volunteered to make the drive over here so that he and I can sit out at U.S. Bank and wait through the entire process of moving the account over to his name. Wow! What a headache that has been. Every time I've gone into U.S. Bank to start the process they've come up with some new rule or process they neglected to tell me about the time before. Although being the Chronicler's Exchequer isn't exactly a difficult job I think that I'll miss it some.

.....The step-up ceremony has been interesting to write. I immersed myself in Anglo-Saxon writings and then made an attempt to write a ceremony in the same style, using a framework set up by Her Excellency Brighid. I'm finally getting to the point where I'm, almost, satisfied with the results. Although the culling process has been tough. Anyone who knows me knows that I use ten words to describe something that should only take two. So learning brevity along with style, has been quite the learning experience.

.....I think that the Chaucerian verse I've been writing for scroll texts will be more interesting, except for the fact that everything I've written so far sounds more like Dr. Suess than Chaucer. :-) Sigh! I used to think I had the potential to be a writer. Now I think that maybe I'd better consider going back to school and learn how to write! :-)

.....Work has been really interesting. One would think that the Big Boss moving on to 'other things' would make me the happiest person on the planet. And on some levels it has been an incredible relief. He is not altogether 'gone' yet and still spreads terror in liberal amounts. But I don't see him nearly as often as I used to. And it has been a hard thing to learn to 'move on without him' and learn how to think again.

.....I've been working for this guy for almost four year. In that time something I learned to do, but never really noticed, was to not put a whole lot of effort into anything I did directly for him. It was understood on some level that no matter what product I put together, he would hate it, relay to you how stupid you were, and then procede to explain in minute detail what he wanted. Over and over and over and over again. So, the usual 'thing to do' was to throw together whatever reports, charts, writing, etc. that he wanted, without putting a whole lot of effort into it. With the full knowledge that he would hate it and then tell you what he really wanted.

.....But now, I no longer have to produce for him. It is his successor now, my former mid-level boss. And he is so overwhelmed at the moment that he is basically allowing us to run our own show. Ack! We have to think for ourselves, and produce reports that we have to defend ourselves. With no one telling us what to do. From one extreme to the other. I much prefer the current thought process to the former. But it is going to be a little bit before I feel completely comfortable walking on my own again.

.....It's almost 9PM and we've had no trick-or-treaters at all. I guess that the Rhys Monster is going to make out on chocolate this year. All of the candy that neither TBT or myself can't eat will have to be consumed by 'someone'. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....Greetings All,

.....Tried to log into my computer at work this morning and was denied access to my personal files. But I can still access the internet. Go figure. :-) So I thought that I'd do a little updating in Live Journal.

.....Did a little more turnover of The Crier to Angharad last night. She seemed a little stressed yesterday. But when we sat down and went over things she was a lot farther ahead than she may have thought she was. The October issue should go to print this weekend, all totally managed by her with minimal effort by me. Next in the queue will be the turnover of financial paper. I've got to get my last quarter report into Master Pyotr and make sure that everything balances out correct. Then I'll hand it all over to Angharad as well. Then I'll be done. :-)

.....Already looking for something to occupy my SCA time though. :-) Isn't that bad? :-) Never realized what a drug the SCA is and how addicted I am to it. :-) The withdrawal symptoms are rather intense. :-) I may have to autocrat some sort of event sooner rather than later to get my next fix. :-)

.....This Friday will be the reception of the Beloved Tamm and I at Last Chance. It'll be a potluck managed by Kierran. I don't think that it'll be a large affair. Mainly just a handful of friends. But it'll still be fun to get together and hang out for a while. Now that Brighid has broken her arm, maybe I'll even get her to sit down for a while instead of being the gate goddess all night. :-)

.....I was going to bring Lobelia to sight. But with the Beloved Tamm staying home I think that I'd rather day trip. As the Seneschal now I'm feeling a little guilty at doing that, but we'll play it by ear. Maybe I'll see about asking Petr and Kierran if I can steal a corner of their living room for at least one night if I stay on site really late.

.....Conchobar reminded me last night of Estrella War. I'm definitely going and it looks like a group of us are going to drive down there. I may end up renting a U-Haul and taking a bunch of stuff down there with me. If anyone is interested, let's talk. The more people that get involved, the cheaper it will be to rent said U-Haul. I was thinking of hotelling it, but at this late date the closest hotel may be at the other end of the state. Will have to do some checking as soon as possible.

.....I love the drive down there. I may not want to live in California, but it is MY state and I consider the desert the most beautiful place in America. I always drive through or around Mojave and Death Valley and soak in the sights, as well as stopping in at my favorite hot springs at the southern end of Death Valley at Tecopa. Very rejuvenating!

.....The Beloved Tamm is planning on mucking out the basement this weekend, so maybe I can get to my armor sooner rather than later. Got to get into some kind of shape before Estrella so I'm not a complete dork on the field. :-)

.....Having fun with the cardweaving still. I'm not counting anymore, but have to take it slower so that I can see the pattern each time. I can't wait until I finish this sample weave and take on something larger.

.....Hope your mid-week is good. Take care.

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....It's Tuesday morning here at the work desk. I had one boss retire last Friday and another re-assigned. I'm facing with a certain amount of dread the incoming regime of someone with whom I've worked before. I had a lot of drama thrown at me last week. A lot of angsting over the weekend. This week looks to be full of a lot of angst and drama as well. But, you know, at this very moment, I'm relatively calm and even smiling. :-)

.....I logged into e-mail this morning. Wasn't expecting a whole lot. But I received a handful of e-mails from unexpected people concerning The Crier. People noted my e-mail about the September issue being late, and instead of sending a barrage of hate mail, I instead received notes thanking me for my service and complimenting me on the look of The Crier over the past couple of years. These were people who I didn't think even knew my name. There were former Crowns, peers, past chroniclers, and other members of the An Tir populace.

.....Not a single negative e-mail. I think that I'll hold on to those good thoughts for as long as possible this morning. Definitely a good way to start the day. I'm definitely bemused. :-)

.....Angst and drama will appear as regularly scheduled either later today or tomorrow. :-)

.....Arontius / Aaron.

.....P.S. But while I'm thinking of good things, if you ever get invited by the Absolutely Fantastic and Wonderful Raphaella to have dinner prepared by her, TAKE HER UP ON IT. The Beloved Tamm and I went to her dinner party on Saturday and the food was absolutely fantastic and she served it with absolute grace. We thoroughly enjoyed it!!! Thanks Raphaella!!!! :-)
arontius: (The Beloved Laurellen Icon.)
.....Greetings All,

.....Today was the day. I uploaded the September issue of The Crier to the Idaho Falls FTP site and said my final good-byes to it. In some ways it was a very good feeling of relief to see those files uploading. But a very large part of me was feeling rather sad. The Crier has been a rather persistent and determined part of my life for three years now. Rather like a recalitrant child, and I'm already starting to feel like I'm seeing a good friend leave home for the big unknown.

.....When I took over as the Kingdom Chronicler, I really had no interest in the Kingdom At Large. During that time Dragon's Laire was my home and entire world. In my mind only those who wanted to play politics or fight on a more professional level played at the Kingdom Level. That was when Giovanni was about to step down as Baronial Seneschal. I was rather excited about being Seneschal. It was the office I had wanted for a while.

.....Then in steps Her Excellency Brighid. She pushed and prodded and basically twisted my arm to take on the office. The Kingdom was in a bind at the moment and they needed a Chronicler. She knew I could do the job and she knew that it would be good for me in several different ways. I was very reluctant, but was finally persuaded.

.....Those first handful of months were rough. The deadlines were brutal and at the Kingdom Level, people don't play around with the politics. They ARE the politics. If you don't watch where you step the quicksand will suck you right up. I definitely made a few mistakes. Got caught in a web of deceit by Sir Butt-Head and even got e-mail yelled at by a King.

.....But I learned A LOT. I met a lot of very good people. I learned how to play on a Kingdom level. I learned that these people were people as well. Not really icons or divas (for the most part :-)), but actually people. With their own stories and hobbies and passions. I learned how the Society works and how the different entities interact with each other. I had the opportunities to meet SCA people from all around the world. Where I was once very provincial, I finally grew to the point to where I could grasp the bigger picture. The SCA is a much bigger place than for what we give it credit for being.

.....So now my final issue is in the hopper. My new icon is part of the final cover art by THL Alis. It is of course the Beloved Tamm. :-) I guess that Alis is going to take a break from producing art covers for a little while as well. But she was approached by the art editor of Tournaments Illuminated, so I see great things in her future. :-)

.....At September Crown I turn the office over to Angharad. Then I plan on partying with Don Julio. Anyone who is a friend of the Don, come and join me if you get the chance. :-)

.....With Regret and Love, Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....Greetings All,

.....I'm sitting here at my desk at work and looking at the piles of STUFF and thinking that I'm glad it's Friday, it's been a long week. :-)

.....On Sunday I board a plane for Washington, D.C. at 0900. With a two hour lay-over in D.C. then a flight to Jacksonville, Florida, for eventual arrival in King's Bay, Georgia. I've already been warned about the alligators. :-)

.....Things are finally starting to flesh themselves out at work, which in Government-Speak means that the level of chaos has grown significantly. :-) I've been slowly ramping up on the new job and letting things slide on the older one. There is a lot to do. I still don't feel prepared for the conference I have to attend on Tuesday. I'm supposed to sound intelligent on a schedule and plan for a ShipAlt in which I'm just starting to learn which way is up. :-) But I've learned to tap dance well for the government, so I should be O.K.

.....Monday will be a tour of the facility and the town. When I first hired into the Shipyard I would never have guessed that 20 years later I'd be touring hotel rooms to see which ones would work better for workers I sent to site. We're supposed to go and look at about eight different sets of Corporate Lodgings on Monday. :-)

.....Not looking forward to the Sunday flight though. I asked for early and the earliest I could get was 0900. I will not be into Jacksonville until after 1900. Argh!

.....Saturday will be busy. The Crier is nearly complete and will leave my hands tomorrow morning. It is late, but the Idaho Falls people tell me that they can have it in the mail by Tuesday next week, so I should be good. I'm actually starting to feel a little sad at giving up the office. It is a lot of hard work and I really do need to give it up, but it has been good to me and I've gained a lot of knowledge, not to mention satisfaction, out of doing it. It'll be like saying good-bye to a friend. I hope that Angharad comes to appreciate it as much as I have.

.....This week has been non-stop. With all the change-over coming up, there has been a lot of churn in the office. Looks like half my office will be re-assigned elsewhere. I'm told temporarily, but I know better about these things. I will not be surprised if the entire landscape has changed when I walk in next Thursday. Oh, well, will not be my problem for much longer. The new boss takes over on September 4th. I'm pushing hard to be out of my desk by then. Wish me luck.

.....Next Friday we're off to Crown. Still debating whether to pavilion it or come in Lobelia. I think what happens with Rhys may play a part in that. If things come together he'll be headed off to the bio-donors that weekend. The Beloved Tamm may have to drive him to Burien and then drive to site. Which might not be a total bad thing. That'll mean that she can get out of Crown earlier if she wants. We'll see what happens.

.....Aelianora says that the first Salsa Fresco of the season is done. Can't wait to taste it!!! :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....Monday at the new job was very much like Monday at the old job. Oh, wait, that's because I'm doing BOTH jobs. :-) The government is nothing if not predictable in this department. I was very naive to think that things would be different in this case. :-) But be that as it may...

.....There is a lot to learn about the new job. There are aspects of it that I cannot wait to sink my teeth into. Already making my lists and checking them twice. :-) Already looking forward to the next two installations, with the very next one being in King's Bay, Georgia. Probably will mean a road trip sometime in August or September, but it'll only be for a couple of days.

.....The hard part will be even faking like I really give a damn about keeping up with my old job of supporting emergent work in San Diego. Which, of course, I do care, but it is as busy as ever. I'm going to give my supervisors two weeks to make the transition themselves before I tell them that I'll do ONE or the OTHER, but NOT BOTH, and that they have to make up their minds as to what they want me to do. :-)

.....Reviewed the updated resume yesterday. I liked what I received. But, you know, as I read it I kept finding myself saying, 'I could have written this myself.' or 'I would have said this just a little differently here.' Not that I'm complaining. But I should have just buckled down and done it myself. Would have felt better about it having my own personal touch. And it had been at least five years since I touched it last, so of course it needed a major overhaul.

.....Crier archives are now in Cassie, awaiting delivery to Angharad. Just the working files remain in the house. Oh, boy, am I itching. :-) Sometime next week or the week after I'm going to sit down with Angharad and review how to lay out The Crier in Publisher. She'll be almost ready to go at that point. The living room had space in which to walk and I felt a little better for having removed the boxes from the area. I felt bad for mucking up the Beloved Tamm's working space. Hopefully she'll feel better for having more room in which to work today.

.....I was tired when I got home last night, and somewhat grouchy. I tried very hard not to take it out on Rhys when he acted like a 10 year old, but I did snap at him a couple of times. I can see that this parenting stuff takes a lot of work. But I was able to see it happening and can work on developing strategies to work AROUND it in the future. I would have had a much more difficult time doing this in my 20's. Being in my 40's now is something of an advantage in this department. :-)

.....Yakked long enough, time to get to work. Have a good Tuesday all! :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....The August issue of The Crier has been uploaded to the ftp: site in Idaho Falls. ONE MORE ISSUE DONE!!!!!! ONLY TWO ISSUES LEFT!!!!!

.....The September issue will be the last one with my name on it. The October issue will have THL Anghard listed in it as the Kingdom Chronicler. Although I'll be looking over her shoulder as she prepares it for issue. I have no worries on her abilities to do a good job.

.....Oh, boy, I can smell freedom on the wind, and it smells WONDERFUL!!! :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Woo! Hoo! The July issue of The Crier is done and has been uploaded to the Idaho Falls ftp: site. I'm done! I'm done! Only three more freakin' issues left! August, September and October issues. I can see the end at hand, and it feels wonderful!!! :-)

.....The advertisement for the office of Kingdom Chronicler will appear for a second time in the July issue. There has been some interest, but I still think that Angharad has it in the bag. So for the August issue Angharad will be accepting and reviewing all copy that comes in for publication. This way she'll gain the necessary experience in being able to review event copy for accuracy and completeness. This is probably the most difficult part of the job. You not only have to go through the event copy checklist, you have to ensure that the event is on the Calender with an EIF on file. Then you have to follow up with any copy that is missing any data. At this point in time about 40% of the copy that comes in is complete and ready to go. The remainder requires some additional work to some degree.

.....For the September issue I'll be looking over Angharad's shoulder as she format's the copy for inclusion in Pagemaker. I want to make sure that she has a complete understanding of how *I* put together an issue of The Crier. Once she is officially the editor, she can do whatever she wants with the formatting, look, lay-out, etc. (in fact I am encouraging her to get creative and try out new ideas).

.....For the October issue, I plan on just watching over her shoulder and not saying anything as she completes the issue. On September 2nd, the Kingdom emancipates me with my complete freedom coming on September 10th. Only 87 freakin' days left!!! Huzzah!!!!

.....I'd better get to bed if I want to be in any condition to pack Mom's house later in the morning. The Baronial Copier goes away today as well. There is an additional 16 square feet of space about to be reclaimed from my basement. Huzzah! Tamm will be pleased, almost as much as myself. :-)

.....Take some time to enjoy the day today. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Greetings All,

.....It's a Friday morning at work, I'm sitting here with my cup of tea (with Sugar Free Egg Nog flavoring this morning, interesting combination with Green Tea :-)) and getting ready for the regular Friday crisis du jour. Although, even though I hesitate to say it too loudly, I think that things might just be leveling out here at work. I am very hopeful on that because I could use a few months of being able to really concentrate on things at home. :-)

.....The May issue of The Crier went out the door this week. UMD in Idaho called me yesterday and said that the first batch of First Class Mailings should hit their Post Office today. We'll start seeing them in mailboxes by mid-week next week. Whooo Hooo! Only FIVE more issue left. FIVE!!!! June, July, August, September, and October (with Angharad). Oh! My! God! I can count them all on one hand now. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel! :-)

.....Finally got my hands around the new financial reporting requirements for The Crier. Society changed all the reporting rules on yes, but no one remembered to tell me this fact or give me the new forms until March, AFTER I had done everything on the OLD forms. I was a little irritated at that and kind of drug my feet. Master Pyotr has been getting rather anxious on getting those finished, so I finally sat down and plugged in all the numbers. Master Pyotr is reviewing them right now.

.....This weekend will be all about June Faire. My 'to-do' list is long and I'm behind on it. If I could have looked into my crystal ball last September and seen everything on my plate for this year I would have been much more forceful in saying 'NO' to the Chairman position. But I have it now and will do my best. It will not be my best production, but I am determined not to fail. Go insane maybe... :-)

.....I can feel the initial signs of burn out and so have to start being extra careful. I enjoy the SCA too much to burn out on it. This is where all my family and good friends reside. I would miss them all too much if I were to have to go away for a while.

.....I will not be able to spend the weekend with the Beloved Tamm and that bumms me out big time. Whine! Whine! Whine! I can't wait until we get her moved over here. This long distance relationship stuff sucks big time.

.....One more item added to the summer schedule. Looks like I'll have to move my mother out of her duplex at the end of July. Sigh! The landlord is getting ready to retire from her regular job and wants to move family members into Mom's side of the duplex. I suppose that I should be grateful that she agreed to wait until late July. But still, what fantastic timing. Those of you with trucks and strong backs should make themselves scarce towards the end of July or else you'll see me on your doorstep with begging eyes. :-) But we're going to be packing and moving stuff into my garage for the next couple of months, so the end move should not be too bad. Mom does not have a lot of heavy things. I think that finding a new apartment is going to be the hardest part of this whole thing.

.....O.K. it is a Friday morning whine-fest for sure, but Amazon STILL has yet to deliver The Children of Hurin to my doorstep. I'm seriously peeved!

.....Enough with the whining already! :-) Hopefully it is out of my system now. Hope that everyone has a good weekend. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Woo! Hoo! The April issue of The Crier was uploaded to the Idaho Falls FTP: Site last night. Mailing Labels were e-mailed shortly after. One more issue has left the building! Only SIX (6) issues (OR LESS) left to go (May, June, July, August, September and October (in collaboration with Angharad)).

.....You can tell that Spring is on the doorstep, even if you don't go outside for days at a time. The amount of new event copy goes up with the advent of Spring. :-) I had to break down and increase to a 40-page format again. It is still stuffed full, with some missives being moved to the May queue for inclusion there.

.....Some of the larger events are really starting to get aggressive on their advertising. Estrella sent literally dozens of e-mails requesting that information be placed in the Kingdom newsletter. I'm starting to see a lot of traffic on Gulf Wars and Pennsic as well. Not that I'm complaining at all. Although I am missing the days of just a few years ago when these events would send stuff my way with a polite note asking if I would consider placing their advertising in The Crier AND offering to PAY for the advertising. Now I am part of mass mailings where I have the PRIVILEGE of being offered to share in the advertising for some of these events. :-)

.....I'm feeling old for sure when I start complaining about missing simple politeness. :-)

.....Work is starting to get very interesting. It's starting to look as if the Shipyard might be reducing its upcoming submarine workload in favor (or by direction) of bulking up for Carrier work. We're sending mass amounts of people to Norfolk, San Diego and Japan in the next few years to work on Aircraft Carrier Projects. Portsmouth and Pearl Harbor are being bulked up to take over the remaining submarine work in San Diego and in Pearl Harbor. Being primarily a submarine planner, it'll be interesting to see how things land in the next few years.

.....Several months back I was asked if I wanted to go to Japan to work on a Carrier Project Team. I turned it down then and the subsequent offers since then. But someday it might be interesting to go over there at least for a while.

.....Watching all these people on LJ put out some stunning artwork made me start jonesing for something artistic to do (although I'll be the FIRST to admit that I'm NOT an artist, just as Brighid Ross :-)). But I've pulled out my calligraphy and found myself enjoying the practice. Also pulled out my bobbin lace roller and found myself enjoying that as well. Very relaxing to concentrate at trying to do something well. Will have to try and make some more time to do things like that. I owe Sir Richard some Sonnet lines, gotta do that SOONEST. :-)

.....Which is difficult when you are trying to REMOVE about half of the stuff that you own inside your house! :-) Am making a little headway in the basement. It looks like a disaster area at the moment, but items are going into the garbage can, recycle bin and Goodwill. A van load of STUFF goes with me to Seattle on Friday when I visit the Beloved Laurellen. Larger furniture items that we can drop off at the Goodwill there.

.....Phone is ringing, have to run. Hope everyone has a good day, Friday and weekend. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.


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