Kingdom Arms by Robin of Thornwood Calligraphy by Robin of Thornwood Populous Badge by Robin of Thornwood

The Twelfth Year

May Day Tourney -- Barony of Calafia
May 7-8, 1977

Held at Balboa Park, San Diego. Lady Cristóbal was the autocrat. Saturday there was a Box Lunch Auction, Fighting Lists, where every other round was fought double-weapon, and a revel. Sunday saw an arts auction, games, and fighting.

Opening Court on Saturday was presided over by Prince Martin and Princess Arabella, Baron Talanque, Baroness Rowen-Lynn, Al Caid Balin and Lady Caid Lorissa. Master Conrad von Regensburg ran court while the fool, Moonshine, clung with rapt devotion to Conrad’s ankle. The populace ransomed Sir Gregory of York’s arms for a resounding $26. Carlotta the Lost received the Gilded Thimble for outstanding art work in Calafia. A birthday cake made by Lady Eloise of Lancaster and Mistress Louise of Woodsholme was presented to Baron Talanque, and of course the Mongolian Birthday Song was sung. House von Regensburg presented Al Caid with a copy of Steinbeck’s Arthurian Legends, complete with the entire tale of Sir Balin. HH Arabella presented the Legion of Courtesy to Sir Armand Sebastian de Savigny and Baroness Diane de Savigny. Baroness Rowen-Lynn presented a bouquet of fresh flowers to both HH Arabella and Lady Caid Lorissa du Griffin.

At the lunch box auction, $46.50 was made, with Lady Sine Singing Hands’ box full of her shortbread going for $18 to Alan Daemon. After several melees the lists were held for Champion of the Day. Prince Martin won, defeating Jason Griffiths of Shadowhyrst, and gave the Girdle of Hippolyta to Princess Arabella. Mistress Louise of Woodsholme won the linen napkin prize for the Most Innovative Box Lunch. Sir Gregory of York won the prize for creating two new verses for the Mongolian Birthday Song, receiving a golden kazoo and a bottle of champagne.

After dinner everyone reassembled at the Plaza del Prado in Balboa Park for a revel. There they were treated to the sublime and the ridiculous: firstly (the sublime) Lady Lavendar of Lorne, Lady Joan of Crawfordsmuir, and Al Caid Balin of Tor presented a scene from “Tiger at the Gates”. Then followed the ridiculous as HH Martin, Al Caid Balin, Sir Gregory of York, Lorenzo de Sant’Angelo, Jason Griffiths of Shadowhyrst, Tober Thorvald, and Lord Robear du Bois presented “Little Bunny Foo-Foo.” Refreshments were served.

The next day proved to be a continuous drizzle. Everyone except a few brave fighters kept inside the pavilions until Al Caid Bali of Tor decreed the tourney adjourned to the home of Mistress Louise of Woodsholme, where hot tea and coffee combined with medieval chess to salvage an otherwise fruitless day.


Annotations:
“The Mongolian Birthday song [See below], ala Caid, was actually created at this tourney. I had heard a snippet of a song as rendered by Duke James Grayhelm. When I asked for more, he had said that was all there was or all he knew. I took it back to Caid (Robear du Bois and I had been "researching" Mongol dancing – the Mongol Stomp I believe it was called), and introduced the song snippet to the populace at this event and hosted a contest to come up with new verses. At day's end, we retained the original verse and accepted three more. It became a Caiden standard at all subsequent birthday celebration. While the song has been wildly accepted, no one seems to want to do the stomp. (It's a somewhat physically painful dance, go figure.) “Sung to a "Russian" style dirge (I think you'll know the "tune" I mean.)” – Martin the Temperate

Mongolian Birthday Song
To the tune of Volga Boatman
Happy Birthday (Grunt)
Happy Birthday (Grunt)

Death, destruction and despair,
People dying everywhere
Happy Birthday (Grunt)
Happy Birthday (Grunt)

May the candles on your cake,
Burn like cities in your wake
Happy Birthday (Grunt)
Happy Birthday (Grunt)

Now that you're the age you are,
Your demise cannot be far
Happy Birthday (Grunt)
Happy Birthday (Grunt)

Make the women wail and weep,
Slay them all but spare the sheep
Happy Birthday (Grunt)
Happy Birthday (Grunt)

“Clint Bigglestone (Harald of Breakstone), Steve Henderson (Steven MacEanruig) and I first sung this song to Paul Moslander (Don Segundo Sombre de Muerte Christiano) a couple of years before the SCA began. We made it up rather extempore and decided we liked it, so we sang it again at various affairs. Since it was a gag birthday song, we never felt the need to add verses.
     “Once the SCA got going, so did the song. However, I think putting something like these words to this tune is too easy to do; I think it had parallel evolution in other venues, because I've heard it in places that I don't think it could have gotten to from us. After all, this was well before the Internet became common and I don't think that Steven and William put it in their songbooks (though I could be mistaken about that). I know the song got a lot of exposure during one of the early Pleasure Faires when the Sheriff's Men sang it during "Robin Hood's Birthday." Their recitation brought down the house (good thing it was an open air venue).” – Stefan de Lorraine, who wonders just how this song did travel so far and so thoroughly...
“I know that we assembled the rest of the verses from the contest entries submitted that day. If you've heard those particular verses in other venues, then I submit it's of SCA origin. I've shared it with many non-SCA'ers (and long before the Internet) and I'm sure many others have too. It may have made it's way into one of the Caiden songbooks.” – Martin the Temperate
“You would be surprised at the places songs travel. I once wrote a nasty song about a certain Duchess of CAID (Moral; don't mess with bards), which only had 1 handwritten copy given out. Years later, I sang it at a private bardic circle and was informed by 2 of the participants that they had already heard it -1 in An Tir & 1 in Ansteorra. I had only quietly circulated it (orally except in 1 case) to those who would appreciate it in Kingdom, so how it got out I haven't a clue.” – Charles of Dublin
“Actually, I wouldn't. Some of the songs that Steve and I wrote on long trips up and down the kingdom, and published in "Obnoxious Songs to Kill Your Enemies By," have turned up in other songbooks. Mostly as "Anon." but I was quite taken the time I came across one listed as "Trad." And I don't think they intended "Traditional in the SCA" either. You'd think they'd notice that the tune was modern (rarely did we use anything which was out of copyright, actually), but apparently not.” – William the Lucky
“Obnoxious Songs to Kill Your Enemies By, vol 1, was a great songbook. It inspired many of us to emulate your efforts (we wrote better songs of course -),) and it became traditional among a cadre of Caidens to write lore in the bardic form. Many of our songs described SCA events, personalities and deeds. I think the history of the SCA would be incomplete without an appendix of songs. Some can be embedded right into event descriptions.” – Martin the Temperate
[(we wrote better songs of course -),)] “Better songs? Never. Actually, the only problem Bill and I ever had with many of the other songbooks that came out later was that they didn't always pay much attention to scansion and rhyme. We were pretty careful about matching our songs to the tunes.” – Steven MacEanruig
[I think the history of the SCA would be incomplete without an appendix of songs. Some can be embedded right into event descriptions.] “I tend to agree. Bill and I will have to talk about it. I have most of our two songbooks typed out in Word. I'd have to find the time to finish them but it might be done. On the other hand, we might want to sell them again. I have to admit, though, that the price we could get for them now would not significantly change our financial situations.” – Steven MacEanruig
“Does that imply, that you are both so rich that it would not impact your Estates; or does that imply that no-one would by them.... -)” – Edward "The Bobsey Twins are coming - Everyone look busy" Zifran of Gendy
“Actually, it means that since we carefully did not copyright them, we have no more right to the proceeds than anyone else would who printed up a bunch.
     “P.S. What enormous distance from reality causes you to equate us with the Bobsey Twins? Or is it just senile decay causing you to forget some of the things we did?” – William the Lucky
“Hey, you were always together ...
     “No, it's not senility. You guys were great. It was a great boost to be visited by two Western Knights, especially Old, adults like yourselves. You guys were under no "obligation" to come to An Tir. You came just for the love of it. AND a long ways I might add. IT really was a great thing for those of us living there. But then, now in retrospect, you two were barely Thirty, when you did this. So maybe you weren’t so "adult" after all. I mean now, I don't even trust anyone under 45... -)” – Edward Zifran of Gendy
“Yes” – Steven MacEanruig
“Concerning songs and events, etc.
     “I still talk about the era "When men were men, and Riesling was Riesling," which of course is backed up by a rousing chorus of "Men of Riesling." Jana and I both found ourselves spontaneously bursting into choruses of it, when talking about this list. I'd say it's kind of one of the background themes for the time period of AS X-XIV.
     “Men of Riesling, and "I Don't Give a Damn About a Chain or a White Belt" (Money's the stuff for me...) are songs that I still catch myself singing, on occasion, often without even thinking about it. Interesting how SCA songs can embed themselves into the consciousness ...” – Jilara of Carolea
“Not to mention "They call him Dougie Longshanks" (I wonder how the crown will feel) sung to a Simon and Garfunkel tune and "One, two, three what do we fight hard for?" I heard Yang sing that to Edwin ... not knowing who it was. He finishes, the huge man who requested it said, ‘Thank you, may I introduce myself, I am Edwin Bearsark,” and we all watched Yang choke ...” – Jana Seasgair


Description of this event, © Copyright 1980 by William R. Keyes (Wilhelm von Schlüssel)
This is from The History of the West Kingdom, Volume 1 (the only volume produced). When reading this text, please keep in mind the following disclaimer:

Disclaimer: This history may have errors in it, as much of the detail is “remembered” history, or as one of the cover pages of the original type-written manuscript states “The material within is derived from the information printed in The Crown Prints and in The Page, and from the memories of the participants.” The original document was typed on onion-skin paper, with hand-written notes (often in the margins). All attempts have been made to reconcile the notes with the original document.

Annotations, when they are added, are from The Annotated History of the West, Volume 1, which is the same text as Master Wilhelm's mentioned above, with commentary from members of the SCA who were active at the time of the event, and are added to help clarify questions and expand on what happened and why. This volume is copyright © Ken Mayer (Hirsch von Henford).


[Back to Year XII]     [Main Page for the History]     [Who's Who]


The West Kingdom History Website was created by and is maintained by Hirsch von Henford (mka Ken Mayer).