SCA: "Creating its own legends"

In an extensive feature article on the SCA, Matthew Lickona of the San Diego Reader writes of his visit to a tournament in Lakeside, California's El Monte Park and discusses the organization with various prominent SCA members.

Lickona writes about the tournament and interviews Sir Guillaume de la Belgique (Scott Farrell), his wife Felinah Tifarah Arvella Memo Hazara Khan-ad-Din (April Farrell) and King Patrick O’Malley.

From the article:

In the Society for Creative Anachronism, what started out as an imitation of “the way they do it in the movies,” combined with an interest in handiwork and hanging out with friends, began to evolve into an experiential investigation into history. Says Felinah, “We started focusing more on sources from people’s daily lives. There were manorial accounts. People kept journals. Literacy wasn’t necessarily as rare as we are sometimes led to believe.”

Along the way, “I think we began to see ourselves much more as a community,” one that asks, “What would it have been like to live back then?” Also, “There are kids involved now, children who have been raised around this group.” A generation has passed on “the lore and legend of the SCA” and created a historical fallacy or two along the way. “Our original SCA chain mail, made with the knowledge at the time, weighed maybe 80 pounds. And if you talk to people who have been in maybe a year or so, they will tell you, ‘Oh, yeah, did you know that people in the Middle Ages carried 80 pounds of chain mail?’ We’ve created our own legends.”