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Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)

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darling:

--- Quote from: Elfmama on August 05, 2013, 10:15:36 PM ---OK, end of background.  Where the impossible patron requests come into the story is when people submit a name that is impossible to modify in the form requested.  The patron loves the Russian name "Olga" but wants to have it changed to the 10th century Irish form, as if all names have a counterpart in all other languages in all time periods.  Or wants "Willow of the Fairy Hills" because it's her favorite name from a certain bodice-ripper fantasy romance, but has no documentation whatsoever to prove that it is a name actually used by humans in period.  And again, she wants it made authentic for medieval Irish.  We have concluded that what the patrons really want is for us to wave our Magic Herald Wands and change history, so that Olga and Willow really ARE period Irish names.

--- End quote ---

LOL, I work ren faires as part of an educational Royal Court (we are paid, and most have theater backgrounds). When I was figuring out my backstory, I searched through the actual records of family names for the nobility of that era, and picked out the one that I liked for my family name (actually belonged to my favorite historical author at the time), parents names, children's' names, etc. 

Back on topic:

As part of our work in the group, we sometimes get requests from other acts, players or vendors to participate in various "play" scenes. As our days are usually heavily scheduled, we have to narrow down what we do participate in, without offending anyone (because we do like these people, and see them throughout the season, year after year). The rules are:

1. The "scene" must have a beginning, middle, and end. No trailing off, or leaving something open ended (yadda yadda, and we're not sure what will happen after that, but we'll figure it out). It's not funny if it just kind of peters out, and it confuses the paying customers.

2. No more than 5-8 minutes long, because it has to be able to hold the attention of the patrons. ("It'll only be about half an hour, no more!" Um, that's show length, and it falls during our lunch break.)

3. It has to make sense, and be appropriate. No kidnapping the under-age-princess type thing (we have no more princesses, partly because of this).

4. It cannot interfere with our normal shows/duties. Don't interrupt a show unless someone is missing, hurt, or dead. Interrupting MY show with your stalker-behaviour will get security called, not a date with me.

5. If you want us to be part of an actual show, you had better have a script, or an idea of how you want people to react, and what you want us to do, and it's best to talk to us before the gates open (but not while we're getting dressed, unless you are a scotsman, and in a great kilt. I will talk to you ANYTIME, and the answer is YES!).

All of us have good improv skills, but there are times when you just don't want to get into something without some idea of what you are supposed to do, how long it will take, and how it ends.

Our standard e-hell-friendly phrase: "I'm sorry, it won't be possible today. Maybe you can work on a plan this evening/week, and email us, and we'll let you know if we can work it in." (it usually ends there, as they never get back to us).

EHell has definitely helped me keep my cool, and to have a polite backbone at faire.

asb8:

--- Quote from: MissRose on August 05, 2013, 08:48:14 PM ---I had a customer call in and ask us "Can you locate all of our email on your servers and send it on to us?" after we had an issue with the servers that held up mail delivery and the servers were fixed.

Nice try...  we have too many mail servers and try to find all of the mail that belonged to her? She had 20+ email accounts too.

--- End quote ---

I'm sorry I don't understand.  You had an issue with your servers that cause a client's email to vanish?  Asking that their data be retrieved is not an outrageous request.  20+ account or not, if your company is taking her money to provide a service, then you have to do your utmost to provide the service.

Jocelyn:

--- Quote from: snowdragon on August 05, 2013, 10:27:52 PM ---
--- Quote from: Elfmama on August 05, 2013, 10:15:36 PM ---As background, I'm going to babble about my hobby here, the Society for Creative Anachronism. We are a non-profit group that researches and recreates the Middle Ages and Renaissance, with about 40,000 members worldwide. 

In the Society, I am a herald.  My job is to help people create a persona, a person who could have lived in that era, complete with a name and a coat of arms.   All name components must be documentable to the Society's time period.  Such name and arms are submitted to the Laurel King of Arms, the Society officer who registers them so that no one can use a name or arms that are too similar. 

As part of the paperwork to register a name, people have a number of choices.  One of them is an option to have a name modified to make it authentic for a certain language, culture, and/or time period.  So if you submit "Alice Smith" but ask to have it changed into a form authentic for 14th century France, we can do that. 

OK, end of background.  Where the impossible patron requests come into the story is when people submit a name that is impossible to modify in the form requested.  The patron loves the Russian name "Olga" but wants to have it changed to the 10th century Irish form, as if all names have a counterpart in all other languages in all time periods.  Or wants "Willow of the Fairy Hills" because it's her favorite name from a certain bodice-ripper fantasy romance, but has no documentation whatsoever to prove that it is a name actually used by humans in period.  And again, she wants it made authentic for medieval Irish.  We have concluded that what the patrons really want is for us to wave our Magic Herald Wands and change history, so that Olga and Willow really ARE period Irish names.

--- End quote ---


Could the character be the daughter of an Irish woman and a Viking man? since the name is also Scandinavian it could work

--- End quote ---

I'm SCA also.   But unless things are very very different in Elfmama's kingdom, the person registering their name has the obligation to come up with a plausible name and explanation. The herald is supposed to help them find documentation that the name is authentic. Many heralds are very kind and will start earlier in the process, guiding someone with only a vague idea, but that's not a requirement of their job. It would be like hiring an interior decorator for your home, and when she arrives with her samples, telling her you have no idea what color you want to paint your living room, and then moaning that she's no help because she can't show you the perfect color which you will instantly recognize if she just shows it to you... and then not accepting that she cannot get the style of furniture in the fabric you want because you've selected a modern sofa that comes in leather with an aluminum frame, and you want it done in toile. And you want fluffy Cape Cod curtains. 
Way back in time, when the SCA was young, you could get names passed that were not at all authentic. Willow is an example. So a newbie may meet someone who's been SCA since the 1970s, and want to use a similar name, only to be turned down, because the strictness of historical plausibility has increased as knowledge has increased. You can no longer get James of Goetz-Down passed.  ;D

Thipu1:
More than 20 years later, this one still makes me laugh.

We had a request at the library.  Someone wanted to write on a friend's cast,  'Sorry about the broken leg.  Get well soon!.  The problem was, he wanted me to tell him how to write the message in Egyptian hieroglyphs --- and he wanted me to do it over the telephone!   :o

missanpan:

--- Quote from: Thipu1 on August 06, 2013, 12:06:50 PM ---More than 20 years later, this one still makes me laugh.

We had a request at the library.  Someone wanted to write on a friend's cast,  'Sorry about the broken leg.  Get well soon!.  The problem was, he wanted me to tell him how to write the message in Egyptian hieroglyphs --- and he wanted me to do it over the telephone!   :o

--- End quote ---

I remember you wrote this story! It was HILARIOUS! You should write out your response!

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