|Those Things That Count
After attending these past few events, many things became readily apparent for me as a long-time Amtgardian returning to the fold. None of them were more readily apparent or important than that memories and relationships will carry you farther than any individual achievement or glory.
Before any of you out there count me as overly sentimental, I am not. I have realized that those things that count will be recanted by you and yours longer than you could possibly imagine. Even beyond that, you will hear the young ones recanting such tales as well. Many would call this ego stroking or living in the past. I would disagree and tell you that instead this is exactly what makes Amtgard truly great and exactly why Amtgard is having such a hard time living and prospering.
The fact that a great many of Amtgard events are so ditch-heavy that people are ditching from sun up to sun up has killed what made and sometimes still makes Amtgard so great. I have often said that it was my generation that helped kill the wonder of Amtgard by being the first group to truly train to win. The generation that followed took it to the next level by discouraging battle games and only wanting to ditch. The next generation has taken it the final step and has established ditching even at night. Now this will sound like an odd compliant coming from a Warlord and Sword Knight, but I will frame it a bit.
What happens when you take out large-scale games and evening gatherings? You remove the opportunity for legendary actions and the very place to talk about said actions. Almost every story I overheard over the past few events was about battles from years ago, old hilarious hangout times and great political battles from years gone by. No one is making any new memories worth mentioning with very few exceptions. Also, it used to be that you could wander from camp to camp enjoying new stories, good laughs and great socializing in general. This too seems to be a dying scene.
I dont want to live in the past, but the day Amtgard becomes nothing more than an endless ditch with no consequence, stage or importance I will be checking out for good from this great group I have loved for a great part of my life. Its not too late and I know I am not the only one to feel this way. So I ask you, Amtgard: Where is the next Ballspitter's? Where is the next great 300 against 300 Knights/Squires vs. the world? Where are the new star chambers, legends and great conquests?
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