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Author Topic: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting  (Read 7573 times)

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Offline Sturmkatze

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Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« on: November 10, 2007, 02:39:37 PM »
Why can?t we have more comradeship? I mean there are many reenactors who just can?t wait to get out of their kit after the event? Why is this? Hell, you spent a LOT of money on it, why not hang out and have a beer and socialize? I have been doing it long enough to remember when WWI and WWII BOTH had battles on Sunday, not this crap of bugging out Saturday night or at 0-dark-thirty on Sunday morning.

One favorite WWII event that sticks in my mind was the 50th D-Day at Virginia Beach -- that was a damned great event! We got there on Wednesday and it went to Sunday? MAN what a flea market and we got a couple of good battles out of it, PLUS some really great comradeship. When you talk of WWI and WWII, nowadays it?s only Friday night and Saturday? used to be Friday eve, Sat afternoon, Saturday NIGHT and then Sunday morning. Saturday morning was reserved for stuff like training, trench work and the flea market? it was sad when that got changed. I can tell you that at the GWA's Fall event this last weekend (2-4 November) when I woke up at 08:50 on Sunday, there were like FIVE cars left in the parking lot ??? That sucks! All that work and preparation for just a few hours?!? Let's go back to Sunday combat at events!
Best, Marsh
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Offline atlanticwallblanks

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2007, 11:17:36 AM »
Having started 3 weeks after the 50th anniversary of D-Day (oh the stories I have heard!!!)  I have seen a huge change to what you are talking about in WWII.

I too have become one of the  get there on Friday bug out after the battle is over guys.  Why?

It sure as hell isn't because I want to get back into the real world.  I am a supervisor at Rubbermaid working 80 hours a week (5 days on 16 hour shifts - 7 days off)  At home I have a wife and 3 daughters.  Do you really think I want to go back to that? ;-(

Reality is that I have to.  Either I have to get back to work or the wife is screaming at me to be home with the family and not go out into the dungeon to make blanks My wife is very serious about going to church, someone has to watch the little monsters while she goes. That = me.  Where do you think I would rather be????

A lot of it with others is demographics as well.  I forget the numbers off the top of my head, but something like 75% of the population has been at their job for less than 2 years, 50% for less than 1 year.  Getting the time off is simply a problem.  Divorces are way too common and getting back home to get the kids for the weekend that you are allowed to have them is a problem for some.  This has been absolute hell on our unit this year. We dropped from 12 attending to 3-4 at best due to all the reasons above.  Yea it will get better as time goes by, but the year is shot now.

Many have just come into a hobby that has been like this since they started and don't know any better.  Todays society wants fast on the spot entertainment.  Once the shooting is over, the guys think it is time to go home. 

Myself, I would love to stick around and have told my wife we will be doing so at this weekends Torrance PA event.  That will be the only one for this year though.  The problem in a nutshell is life outside of the hobby doesn't allow for it most of the time, other just don't think to allow for it. 

If we all stuck around to BS with each other a little bit more I think a lot of the BS politics would go away too - but again, that may be part of the problem, I don't like them so I am going home, when talking for 5 minutes just might solve most of the ego-centric problems in the hobby.

Just my unsolicited opinion.  Take it for what opinions are worth.

Robb

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2007, 11:17:36 AM »
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Offline Antonescu

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2007, 04:11:53 PM »
Having started 3 weeks after the 50th anniversary of D-Day (oh the stories I have heard!!!)  I have seen a huge change to what you are talking about in WWII.

I too have become one of the  get there on Friday bug out after the battle is over guys.  Why?

It sure as hell isn't because I want to get back into the real world.  I am a supervisor at Rubbermaid working 80 hours a week (5 days on 16 hour shifts - 7 days off)  At home I have a wife and 3 daughters.  Do you really think I want to go back to that? ;-(

Reality is that I have to.  Either I have to get back to work or the wife is screaming at me to be home with the family and not go out into the dungeon to make blanks My wife is very serious about going to church, someone has to watch the little monsters while she goes. That = me.  Where do you think I would rather be????

A lot of it with others is demographics as well.  I forget the numbers off the top of my head, but something like 75% of the population has been at their job for less than 2 years, 50% for less than 1 year.  Getting the time off is simply a problem.  Divorces are way too common and getting back home to get the kids for the weekend that you are allowed to have them is a problem for some.  This has been absolute hell on our unit this year. We dropped from 12 attending to 3-4 at best due to all the reasons above.  Yea it will get better as time goes by, but the year is shot now.

Many have just come into a hobby that has been like this since they started and don't know any better.  Todays society wants fast on the spot entertainment.  Once the shooting is over, the guys think it is time to go home. 

Myself, I would love to stick around and have told my wife we will be doing so at this weekends Torrance PA event.  That will be the only one for this year though.  The problem in a nutshell is life outside of the hobby doesn't allow for it most of the time, other just don't think to allow for it. 

If we all stuck around to BS with each other a little bit more I think a lot of the BS politics would go away too - but again, that may be part of the problem, I don't like them so I am going home, when talking for 5 minutes just might solve most of the ego-centric problems in the hobby.

Just my unsolicited opinion.  Take it for what opinions are worth.

Robb

All of this from a guy who got rolled over at Dunkirk like a smurf! ;D :D On a serious note, Robb are you guys really staying Saturday night? What time are you all going to be getting there? Leaving at 6 AM Friday morning so I will be the first out of our unit there I think.
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Offline atlanticwallblanks

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2007, 06:13:22 PM »
Now that was cheap, out of context it makes it sound like I got the raw end of something....oh wait, I did, never mind...

I will leave here after I get the kids off to school, that should put me there around noon(ish)  The rest of the guys won't be there until around 4-6pm.  I should be there roughly the same time as you.

We are sticking around until sometime Sunday.  After last time when we had planned to stay and were too tired to move, my wife called and demanded I come home because of some church thing.  It ain't happening this time.    >:( >:( >:( >:(


If you guys are sticking around we can make a good time of it.

Robb

Offline Sturmkatze

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2007, 06:20:27 PM »
After last time when we had planned to stay and were too tired to move, my wife called and demanded I come home because of some church thing.
Try these...
"Oh Honey, I NEVER got any of your calls... we were at the event."
  • They don't allow cell phones
  • I didn't have any bars of service
  • I didn't get any calls there
  • My battery was dead :-0 Darn it, I really wanted to go to church.
  **o
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« Last Edit: November 11, 2007, 06:28:06 PM by Sturmkatze »
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Offline Antonescu

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2007, 07:42:03 PM »
Well lets get back to the topic. Maybe events should be set up that when you arrive you have 30-45 minutes to get ready then you are in period. From that point on it is all tactical. Might not be able to fire weapons after a certain time Friday night until Saturday morning but depends on location. Have the units rotate in and out so they can get rest and food to keep going throughout the day on Saturday as well. maybe end at 4, 5, 6 (depends on when it gets dark I guess). Gives you Saturday night to recoup and meet with old friends, get some rest and then pack up on Sunday. Why, thanks to long driving distances need to get out early as possible thanks to the traffic in the city.
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Offline Sturmkatze

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2007, 08:44:09 PM »
The thing is, most of us don't go just for the combat. Far be it -- the whole experience is what I'm after. Part of that is flea marketing, BS-ing, hanging out, etc. It's all well and good to say to do these things Saturday nite, but really, by then, a lot of the "Ramada Rangers "are packed up and underway for home. And, if you're talking about WWI, well, most units have stuff planned on Saturday night -- stuff w/ their own unit.

 0| It is my firm belief that stuff needs to be SCHEDULED for Sunday and it WILL take some time to reverse this course of behaviour. Like has been said, a lot of these guys are new and to them, this is normal. They need to un-learn what they know.
Marsh Wise
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Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt

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Offline battlebaby4

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2007, 09:43:02 PM »
I and the fellows agree with you all  too. Why not hangout and have fun. We did at Dunkirk. I have friends in CW that say Sunday battles are getting smaller all the time. They were getting smaller when I was in too over 10 years ago. Maybe with so many other hobbies and sports people do  today they can only do something for a short time anymore. Family stuff and work stuff happens too. The cell phone is a evil machine especially in reenacting. It good to tell the folks you made it to the event and when your leaving. If you can't put it away and turn it off for the weekend to be 1940's period then reenacting might not be the hobby for theses people.
 We tell all our members once your in uniform you stay in uniform till the end. Kind of ruins the militray aspect of reenacting with folks wearing MEGADEATH T-shirts and NFL hats after the battle.
Our camp is always open to hangout so stop by.

Pat Tarasovitch  99th I.D., Erie,Pa

 PS. All unit 's who came to the Dieppe Raid and D-Day ,Utah Beach will be getting their free DVD of the 2007 battle and interviews in a few weeks. We are burning them as I write. Thanks for your support of Dunkirk ,NY and the most heavily defended beach on the Great Lakes.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2007, 07:41:55 PM by battlebaby4 »
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Offline Philonivs Maximvs

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2007, 09:31:17 AM »
Preaching to the choir, Marsh! I love staying through Sunday, unless it's going to be a 12 hour trip home or something. I'd still stay at Newville until noon at least though, if anything there was still going on (and I DO intend to get back out there someday, dammit! Just have to get going on other things first).

There are a few events that we do stay all weekend here in the Midwest, but those end up being mainly living histories. Lowell, IN, Rockford, IL, and Ft. Meigs, OH come to mind as the big ones. Columbus, IN (airshow) will be too this next year... supposedly a Reading-style show is what they want to have there. It's easier to stay at those though, as everyone's not wore out by Sunday.... hung over perhaps, but now physically from humping it.

I dunno... maybe a lot of people just got old! Then it's a domino effect, where people start leaving, then everyone else figures "well, so & so are leaving, might as well pack it up too". This is especially bad if the unit commander is one of the first to leave... he should lead by example!
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Offline Flamingos.r.us.

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2007, 11:48:53 PM »
just putting in my two cents worth from another time period....
something I noticed as a regional thing... I'm from Ohio, any drive to an 18th c. event is a long one..so it doesn't really matter what time we leave... it will always be late when we get home.
Now, when I lived on the east coast and reenacted there, it seemed almost all the 18th c. events were about 3-4 hours away.  If you left early enough on Sunday, you actually had time to do the "family obligations" after getting home....I know it's no excuse.   It completely amazed me to see the guys go off to the Sunday battle and the women go get the cars and line up at the gate, waiting to get in since the official end of the event was the end of the battle.
Another observation I hate to make....we ARE getting older, with more family obligations (children, elderly parents, bills, working, etc.....)  not in college anymore, taking our time, drinking and socializing with no cares or worries....plus, at 40 years old,  I can't party most of Saturday nite, perform Sunday, pack, and drive home, get 3-4 hours of sleep then work all day Monday and still be functional Monday evening.  It seems to take me 2 days to recover from a really fun weekend. >:(
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Offline h?lz21pz

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2007, 11:49:28 AM »
I've noticed the same thing and must say I'm guilty of leaving Sunday morning more often now. Depending on the location of the event and pace/enthusiasm of the group, I'm trying to get back into the habit of staying for Sunday. Since I've had my wife involved with our group and cooking a large formal dinner at Camp Roberts on Saturday night, that has been the part I look forward to the most. The kammeradshaft during abendessen. Once that is completed, I can take or leave the Sunday battle. I'm going to try and put in a few more hours on Sunday though. Sometimes the battle on Sunday it alot better since there usually not alot in the way of "objectives" and guys are out there to duke it out and even have some good first person interaction (surrenders/captures).
-Marcus

Offline FJR1

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2008, 03:38:03 AM »
When I started reenacting in 1981 the closest battle was a 12 hr drive - Weldon Springs (St Louis).  We drove all night Fri to be there before start time Sat morning.  We packed up first thing Sun morning and then did the 3+ hr battle and left shortly afterward for the 12 hr drive home.  That put us home 02-0300 Mon morning.  Big deal!

I'll step on some toes, but I don't really give a damm!!!  This trend toward only a 1 day battle is krap!!!  THIS IS A WEEKEND HOBBY!!!  Now days it seems the hobby is populated by Pansies!!!  They like to show up late for Sat and go home as soon as we quit for the night.  Camp out - MY GOD thats a horrible thought!!! Cook your own food over a camp fire - same response!  Stay for a half day battle on Sunday - NO WAY, I've got a 2 hr dirve to get home.  B.S.!!!
Many of us are very willing to drive up to 12 hrs for a Battle - some of us have gone as far as 17 hrs drive ( Ft McCoy, Rosemont, Ft Campbell, usv,), but Sat only is NOT a Battle!  It's half a battle!  We finaly quit going to Nebraska because they always said of course, it's a full weekend and then we watched 95% of them bailing out within 30-40 minutes of getting back to the "camp area" and told when we ask - NO they're not coming back tomorrow.  In the first instance there was a Sunday Battle because of the 20+ guys there 17 were from Colorado.  Hell we could have had a bigger turnout at home and only had to drive 1 - 2 hrs, not 9.
We tried 4 times over a about as many years and ALWAYS got the same result so we don't go back!  I'm sure they could care less.
When invited to our battles we ALWAYS got gee that so far away.  We could drive it but those Pansies could not!

Yes we get the same excuses from some of our guys - Got to spend time with the family for example.  When ask WHAT did you do last weekend or What are you going to do next weekend The answer was almost Always the same - I'll be at home.  For most it's a B.S. EXCUSE!  They Do NOT have a legit REASON that they are not able to attend or stay the weekend!
« Last Edit: February 19, 2008, 03:41:09 AM by FJR1 »

Offline Philonivs Maximvs

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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2008, 05:17:22 PM »
I think the bottom line is that we have a lot of events all around these days... I'm talking from a WW2 perspective here, of course. Back in the 80's there were only a handful of events, and it was a big deal (I'm sure) to go to one, so I can see why guys allocated a whole weekend to travel and hang out there as much as they could. Now, you can hit an event each month (if not more), normally within a couple hours or so of most areas, so we don't tend to see it as such a big deal.

In some ways, it's a trade-off.... would you rather have the "best of both worlds" (reenacting and a little home time on weekends), or back to the extreme of only having a couple events a year? I think it's ultimately up to event organizers to come up with perks to keep people there. Real-world gets in the way, and you can't expect people to dedicate 150% to it all the time, especially if they are older and have families. I am getting up there myself, but no kids, so money's the only thing that holds me back from going places. But I have done events, especially ones one weekend after the other, that I feel rather drained by Saturday evening and just want to crawl into a hot shower and relax at home... happens to the best of us. You can't hold a gun to their heads in this "all-volunteer, part-time, civilian army"! (as I call it)
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Re: Comradeship and the Decline of Sunday Reenacting
« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2008, 05:17:22 PM »
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