View single post by Johan Steele
 Posted: Wed Mar 19th, 2008 10:35 pm
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Johan Steele
Life NRA,SUVCW # 48,Legion 352


Joined: Sat Dec 2nd, 2006
Location: South Of The North 40, Minnesota USA
Posts: 1060
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I think Younglobo is spot on. I don't consider myself a hardcore by any means; probably a progressive would better describe me in that I am always trying to improve my impression and striving for as accurate a kit as possible. I strive for the "Touch rule" in that someone speaking w/ me could touch my gear and not be able to tell it apart from an original. Others ascribe to the "20' Rule" in which case someone looking from 20' away wouldn't know the difference those I don't respect go for the "Hollywood Rule" in which their gear might pass muster for a TV movie. Different standards to strive for and different attitudes about what is the focus of the hobby. I focus on trying to do things right others focus on just having a good time. Either way is ok; it's history and that fella who has a cooler & cot in his tent and a cell phone in his pocket is still closer to understanding what a CW soldier experianced than by just reading a book. He's suffered the heat of an event often feeling the same excitement and if everything is just right some of the fear, confusion and apprehension and such that comes w/ a real battle. He does it knowing the smoke doesn't push real lead death towards him but his mind can better undersytand things.

I go a few steps further. My gear is the same weight & construction as an original, nothing is in my kit except what a soldier of 1863 would have carried, I sleep in a dog tent w/ just a ground cloth & blanket as they did. I've done route marches and participated in a couple campaign weekends where I totally immerse myself in my persona and leave the 21st century fully behind. But I do all of the above knowing full well I don't need to worry about dysentery or other nastiness and that I will be returning toa hot shower and work at the end of the event. It will never be real; and than God for that. What it has given me is a DEEP respect for the soldier of the CW and a grasp of what he accomplished. So I know what I'm talking about when I talk about route marching 12 miles in a day, living on Hardtack, salt pork and coffee (Tea in my case as I'm not supposed to drink Coffee) and I can hit a man sized target at 400 yards w/ my M1841 or an M1861 because I have done those things.

There is more to it than that by far: period attitudes, language & knowledge. I primarily do Living Histories and classroom presentations w/ a targeted audience in the grade school to preteen range. But I also have presented to almost any kind of audience you can imagine. For me it is important to show how the men of the CW acted and lived. It is a picture... I don't play war very often as that just isn't my cup of tea.

As to the animosity between "hardcore and farbs" there are elitists in any group; people who think themselves better than everyone else and who go out of their way to prove it to themselves and rundown someone else. In other words there are some nutters in any group. Some of the finest men I have met in the hobby are what can only be called true hardcores in that they strive for perfection in every aspect of their kit, both physically and materially. That said I've also met some who are just plain jerks. I've met streamers who are just as interested in the history but are unwilling, for a variety of legitimate reasons, to go that next step. They're content w/ where they are in the hobby and I have no problem w/ that, in fact I applaud it. I've also seen those who put no effort forward, they're there to drink and play cowboy and wouldn't know a Johhny Reb from a Billy Yank if they got clobbered by one. Then there are those like me who just plain obsess... we're just nuts.

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