Persona, Personae, and Halima

If you are new to the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., you should know that personae are fictitious people that we create (though you do not need a persona to play in the S.C.A, but only adopt the courtesies of the society) to better re-create and understand the better aspects of medieval times. Certainly, having anything resembling a persona helps to focus your attention, keeping you from flying off in all directions and getting burned out in the process. In having a persona, you attempt to research and create suitable: clothing, accessories, recipes, pass-times (dances, games), skills, trades, "housing" (for camping events), speech inflections (don't bother trying to learn a new language, unless you want to, or else no one but one of the same culture has a hope in communicating with you), and so on.

This does not mean you are limited to persona-related research! On the contrary, it gives you a personal focus from which to reach out. From there, learn some skills that interest you, whether or not your persona would have done so. Make clothing suited to theme events, even if your persona would never have encountered such clothing (don't bother changing your name for one event...). Explore other times and cultures that your persona would never have known!

Within the S.C.A., we may also be recognized for the things we do that make the game more enjoyable for others, and that recognition may entail awards and titles. So I may give my name and such as Halima al-Rakkasa, GoA (Grant of Arms, which means I can be called Lady Halima, or Sayyida Halima; when referring to me, the phrase is "Her Ladyship Halima"). Until Their Majesties have given you an "award", you are known as "milord" or "milady"; over time and with participating in the SCA, you can advance through the various ranks. However, hard work is not a guarantee of recognition or advancement, and it's best to just enjoy the game for what it is.

It's just a GAME!

If you want to know something about me and my persona, read the Wiki intro, now uploaded there. You might enjoy my Persona Biography, written as a tale told to a passer-by, a response to "What did you do today?", or look at my notebook for my clothing class notes and other projects. I've also put together my idea of a basic Middle Eastern wardrobe. In my search for proper clothing, I've done a fair bit of gathering of information (which never ends); you can read a few of my notes on headwear, cotes, and dancing clothes, with a few pictures.

Non-Persona Stuff

What brought me to the S.C.A. was a small group of friends who all thought we should have a group in our area. Who was I to argue with their enthusiasm? I had -no- idea of the activity to follow that simple decision.

We had our first event in 1995, October (such innocence!). Ali ben Dova, Arabic ne'er-do-well, except for silver, was our theme, and we managed to pack the house. (Sucked in by fun!)

Since then, I've managed to get involved in other things, like organizing or helping to organize events. (I am now keeping an S.C.A. resume; it is amazing how many things you learn in a group like this!)

My favorite aspect of the S.C.A. is Dancing (Middle Eastern, of course; I'm attempting to find the roots of the dance and having to rely on questionable sources is frustrating but I have to try... I also like English Country Dance with all its energy and control; I'd like to see us do more dancing, but there is just so much to learn and do! Hm... Eight people could make a good troupe for demos...).

And I like the arts involving hand-crafting: leathercrafting, woodcarving, calligraphy, illumination, certain kinds of needlework (blackwork, a little embroidery), spinning on the handspindle and weaving, candle-dipping, soap-making, pewter-casting off soapstone.

And maybe singing. And dancing. And...