High Inquisitional Council of Peerages cries foul on Aoife's Links

Pursuant to new SCA corporate-level administrative sanctions, a High Inquisitional Council of Peers met recently behind closed doors and voted to censure Dame Aoife Finn of Ynos Mon, creator of the popular Aoife's Links column. SCAtoday.net has learned that the worst may be yet to come.

A quiet, unassuming, lady like Aoife may seem an unlikely target for sanctions originally intended for serious miscreants, but it appears that Dame Aoife may have offended the wrong people with her recent columns. A multi-kingdom council was formed whose existence was supposed to have been kept secret until after they concluded their business, but SCAtoday.net staff reporters learned of the group through an anonymous source.

Before beginning this tale, this reporter should issue a disclaimer: I consider Aoife a friend as well as a valued partner, and a tremendous resource to the SCA. So if this sounds like an editorial more than a news report, so be it. The gauntlet is thrown down!

The Inquisition — and I will focus deliberately on that notorious portion of the group's name, for that best characterizes their behavior — was convened by the Board and the officers of several kingdoms to address what they euphemistically refer to as "irregularities and inappropriate content" in Aoife's popular Aoife's Links column. Specifically, the Inquisitors were offended by the following Links installments:

  • 101 things you can do with duct tape but can't tell the kids about later
  • Pennsic Classic Swimming Hole photo albums cataloged and indexed (membership required to view)
  • Celts and Cannibalism: The Real Untold Story
  • Great games to play to keep awake during Pennsic Great Court
  • Cooking with pelicans: the other white meat
  • Heraldic designs they will hate, but the rules will make them pass anyway

Admittedly, the one on Celts and Cannibalism was arguably beyond the pale of decency. After all, one can hardly imagine eating one of those. But the others are, in this reporter's opinion, well within the bounds of legitimate historical research. One is led to wonder how far this could lead, as censorship is a very slippery slope.

In an interview scoop that should make those wannabees over at the Pennsic Independent wet themselves with envy, this reporter sat down one-on-one with a member of this secretive inquisitional council, and asked very pointed questions. The respondent spoke on condition of anonymity, so here let us just refer to this person as "A" for answer. The SCAtoday.net interviewer will be referred to as "Q" for question. The following transcript is presented unedited to let our readers judge for themselves the facts of the situation.

Q: What is it about Aoife's column that you found unacceptable?
A: Isn't it obvious? Those links subvert everything that is good about the SCA into some kind of....parody. It is contemptible, disgusting, to make fun of the hallowed institutions of this organization!

Q: Can you be more specific?
A: Well, take the duct tape one for instance. That feeds two totally false stereotypes about SCA people: one, that they use an inordinate amount of duct tape, and two, that they have sex.

Q: What has duct tape got to do with....oh, never mind.
A: Yeah. Took you long enough. So I suppose you figured out the swimming hole thing, then?

Q: I tried, but I put both my credit card numbers into the site but never saw anything all that great. It would show me five seconds of MPEG video, then tell me it wanted another twenty dollars. Are you telling me Aoife is getting rich off that site?
A: Well, somebody is, and it's not the Board. And that, sir, is the basic problem. She can do what she wants with her damned links, but she's cutting into the action here, and the Board doesn't like that.

Q: If it's all about money, why that bit about heraldry registration? Why do you care?
A: You reporters are stoooopid! The SCA makes 68.3% of its revenue off heraldry registrations. If we have to start letting things pass, well, then people won't have to pay five or six times.

Q: And the Great Court column? That bothered you....why?
A: Simple. The Board doesn't get to wear shiny things on their heads, right? Well, Great Court is the closest we have to a great Imperial Royalty, and let's just say the Board would like very much to keep things moving in that direction. Once Pennsic is moved to Milpitas, we can....uh, don't print that.

Q: Of course not. The poultry thing, then, the one about pelican meat? What about that?
A: Yuck. The Legal Committee freaked when they even heard the first hint of a rumor that someone was advocating eating that grey, oily stuff. No self-respecting cat would touch a pelican. What if someone totally untalented, say, someone so utterly unversed in A&S that they have only been a Laurel for a few years -- or, perhaps, are not yet even a Laurel at all -- thinks that cooking advice is worth trying? It could lead to dozens dead at an SCA feast, or worse yet, one of our lawyers missing his Monday golf date.

Q: So, once Aoife is censured, and the Links are censored, is it over?
A: Not on your life! We may recommend ultra-super-duper-secret Level 5 Banishment for this troublemaker!

Q: Don't you think official sanctions are a bit extreme just because you don't like these articles?
A: We are in a war against the Axis of Aoife here! Desperate times call for desperate measures. SCAdians understand that they need to give up a certain amount of personal liberty to be safe from people like Aoife who want to destroy the SCA. Why do you hate authenticity?!

SCAtoday.net has been unable to contact Aoife since we learned of this situation. Rumor has it she is being held at an undisclosed location in Outlands. According to our sources, Aoife is currently held under the "Society for Creative Anachronism -- Furthering Every Administrative Legalist's Totalitarian Yearnings" (SCA-FEALTY) Act, a law created to quell dissent among uppity members.

This article is a work of parody, published for the amusement of SCAtoday.net readers on April 1, 2006.

Oh, Aunt Aoife

I'm enjoying your column because...you'll never believe this, but i get to give a speech about the SCA to my class in college. I really want to ask about the story of your first Pennsic, but i'm almost afraid to.

The New Axis of Aoife

Unto all residents of the Known World:

I categorically deny all charges posted to that fallacious website SCAtoday.net, and proclaim myself chief outlaw in charge of the Known World. The Board of directors is hereby sanctioned to wear a rubber chicken 'round their necks for 27 consecutive days, and to learn these new rules effective immediately:

Rule # 1 No tunafish on the fighting field.
Rule # 2 Keep Gilbert Alive.
Rule # 3 Aoife gets 51 % of all booty. She gets 100% of all baby booties.
Rule # 4 Keep Gilbert Alive
Rule # 5 Aoife's armed guard, in the form of her three mercenary daughters, are hereby proclaimed Queens of the merchant area, and shall be worshiped as such. Unless,of course, they have not painted their toenails, in which case the daughters are demoted to cabin boys.
Rule # 6 Keep Gilbert Alive.
Rule # 7 Ignore all odd numbered rules.
Rule # 8 Follow only the even numbered rules.
Rule # 9 Anyone who does not follow these rules will face execution by pickled herring at 20 paces at dusk. Escapees shall be shot point blank with a marshmallow shot from a rubber band, just as soon as we can find them.
Rule # 10 Keep Gilbert Alive.

All hail the NEW Dread Pyrate of Aethelmearc

Aoife, in hiding somewhere on the high seas

Once upon a time...

Jubei... I remember a guy from Tree-girt-Sea named Jubei... An Inquisition.. We had one of those show up at a Feast of Fooles in Tre-girt-Sea, many years ago... they got laughed out of the Principality in much the same fashion, seeing as they were as out of fashion as high-button greaves. One of their group even offered membership parchments in something called "Mensa" to the assemblage, though why anyone would want to join a table simply does not meet with common logic... And Richard of Alsace asked him if he was aware of the new branch of this supposedly intellectual group that had been founded in Moscow. "How so?" inquired the Inquisitor, to which Good Richard replied, "Why yes, good my Lord, they call themselves the MENSAviks!" One does need to keed these stuffed cuirasses in their place, after all... It is noce to see that someone is - I have not been around much since, oh about, Pennsic III or thereabouts... The man formerly known as Tarkhan Jubei... who can be found at www.leedarrow.com