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Pimp my Sword, or, the Sword Pimp: my first ever HEMA article

Just one of McBane's splendid tricks

I am currently digitising a metric fuck-ton of paper, prior to moving to the UK. If you're interested in the actual process of going more-or-less paperless, then I'll be happy to post it here in detail; let me know in the comments below (here. I don't necessarily see every comment on Twitter or Facebook). This procedure is, as you may imagine, somewhat tedious but there are moments of pleasure that more than make up for it.

Finding this banknote was one such.

I found it in a chest of drawers I was restoring maybe 18 years ago, and it's been following me about ever since. I have no use for it, so I asked if anyone on Facebook wanted it. That generated more than one response, so I was faced with choosing fairly who to give it to. In the end, the most elegant solution I could come up with was to ask for mailing addresses from the people who wanted it, and then randomised who would get it. Three people sent me their addresses, so I wrote out three notes, and put them into three envelopes, one with the banknote too. I then shuffled the envelopes, before writing the addresses on them; I had no idea who would get it. One envelope went to Helsinki, one to Salt Lake City, and one to Vancouver. I'm looking forward to finding out who got it!

[Update: the note went to Jordan Hinckley in Salt Lake City. Congrats!]

I have also come across an essay I wrote in 1995 for Dr Jonquil Bevan's class on the portrayal of character in 17th century literature. I had been working on historical swordsmanship research for a couple of years by that point, and had found a copy of Donald McBane's Expert Sword-man's Companion in the National Library of Scotland. I persuaded Dr. Bevan that it would make an excellent subject for my class essay. For those unfamiliar with the term, “pander” is an old term for “pimp”.

The Gallant Pander

This copy actually has Dr. Bevan's notes on it, which brings up a very worthwhile point. Some of my readers have been kind enough to say I'm a good writer. If that's true, then it is at least in part because I've had legions of good teachers who have read and critiqued my work in the past. You'll notice from this essay that my writing style has changed somewhat, but you'll also notice that there are several places where I make unsubstantiated claims, and Dr. Bevan points them out, as well as correcting some points of grammar.

I'm finding lots of similar things, like articles I wrote back in the nineties, old newspaper clippings from the early days of the DDS, in fact just enough cool stuff to keep me at it.

Alright, it's back to the scanner for me. I hope you enjoy the essay; let me know what you think of it!


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