Society For Creative Anachronism Seizes Control Of Russia

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Vol 35 Issue 20

Portrait Of Nude, Bleeding Man Hung On School Wall

BOISE, ID—As a reminder of God's abundant and undying love for them, a portrait of a nearly naked, bleeding man was hung in full view of students at St. Matthew's Catholic High School Tuesday. The image of the almost-nude, dripping man violently nailed to wooden planks, now on permanent display in the school's central hallway, "reminds us that God would do anything for his children," said Sister Mary Margaret, the school's math teacher. "It presents an uplifting message of love and salvation to inspire us all." Sister Mary went on to praise the craftsmanship of the piece, saying, "You can actually see his bulging eyeballs roll up into his head and the trickles of ooze running into the sockets. Amazing!"

Hypothetical Cat Simultaneously Dead And Alive, Physicists Say

SYRACUSE, NY—In a turn of events that has baffled students of quantum mechanics for more than half a century, a hypothetical cat was suspended in a state of unknowable probability flux between life and death Tuesday, after being placed in a box during a "thought experiment" in a Syracuse University lecture. Approx-imately 15 Physics 252 undergraduates blinked uncomprehendingly at high-energy physicist and instructor Chad Parks, 41, as he explained that the box contained a radioactive atom which may or may not decay, releasing an alpha particle which, if detected by a geiger-counter, may or may not trigger a hammer, shattering a flask of deadly prussic acid. The cat, originally postulated by wave-particle duality theorist Erwin Schroedinger in 1935, is expected to remain in this paradoxical superposition of decayed and undecayed states until an observer opens the box, collapsing the animal’s wave function.

Teen Publication Takes Bold Anti-Peer-Pressure Stance

ANAHEIM, CA—TeenPulse, a monthly publication targeted at 13- to- 17-year-olds nationwide, shocked industry insiders by espousing a courageous anti-peer-pressure position in its June issue. "Friends who try to pressure you into something you don't want to do are no friends at all," contributing editor Cassandra Walters urged a reader in her monthly advice column. "Say 'so long' and get yourself some new buds who like you just the way you are." Also featured in TeenPulse's June issue is a "Cool Summertime Looks You Can't Do Without" pull-out shopping guide.

Shit Parking Ticket Fuck

FUCKIN' DOWNTOWN—After stopping for like 10 goddamn minutes at the west-side post office, local resident Dave Shore got a motherfucking parking ticket in the amount of 35 fucking goddamn dollars Monday, fuck. Where were the goddamn cops when the dude stole the hubcaps off of Shore's light brown 1992 Escort last year, the 27-year-old line cook would reportedly like to fucking know. The ticket, which Shore will have to work five whole fucking hours at his shitty fucking job just to pay, was placed on his vehicle by the asshole fucking Nazi parking patrol shortly after noon. Jesus fuck.

You Want A Piece Of Me?

Hey, you! Yeah, you. I see you standing over there with the hungry look in your eye. Something bothering you? Something gnawing at your gut? Huh? You want a piece of me, is that it? You want a piece of me?

Vehicular Search And Seizure

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 7-2 that police do not need a warrant to search or seize a vehicle in a public place. What do you think of the court's decision to expand police powers and limit the rights of criminal suspects?
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Man Commits To New TV Show Just Hours After Getting Out Of 7-Season Series

UNION CITY, NJ—Recommending that he give himself the chance to pause and explore the other options out there, friends of local man Jonathan Gember expressed their concerns to reporters Wednesday that the 29-year-old is already committing to a new television show just hours after getting out of a seven-season-long series.

Healthy Eating

Society For Creative Anachronism Seizes Control Of Russia

MOSCOW—Official reports from the Kremlin Tuesday confirmed that the Society for Creative Anachronism, a group of medieval-wargames hobbyists, seized control of Russia in a bloodless coup over the weekend.

SCA members guard the recently seized St. Basil's Cathedral.

"Weakened by food shortages, political instability and widespread economic chaos, our military's combined forces proved no match for the enemy's rattan-and-duct-tape broadswords and homemade weaponry," said deposed Russian president Boris Yeltsin during a national radio address in which he relinquished rulership to the "Principality Of The Mists," one of several dozen SCA "kingdoms."

"I can't tell you how humiliating this is," he added.

The SCA, founded in 1966 by a group of Berkeley science-fiction and fantasy fans, is a non-profit organization dedicated to fun and learning through such medieval activities as metalwork, calligraphy, lute-playing and brewing. Boasting more than 20,000 dues-paying members in 14 countries, the club is also known for holding elaborately staged mock battles, followed by feasting and merrymaking amid the revelry of troubadours and jesters.

The seizure of over 70% of Russia's land mass marks the first time the SCA has ventured into the arena of international politics.

"I can't believe how easy it was to claim Kiev for the Kingdom Of Ealdormere," said Royal Peer Gawain Falconsfyre, a 44-year-old tech-support assistant from a suburb of Toronto. "It was a piece of cake. Haven't any of these Russians ever heard of a moving-shield-wall offense?"

Falconsfire and an SCA faction armed only with rubber maces successfully captured two Russian tank divisions outside Moscow Saturday when fuel shortages immobilized the armored vehicles.

Due to the disarray of communications within Russia, information regarding the actual invasion is sketchy. It was confirmed, however, that St. Petersburg was taken without a shot being fired late Saturday morning, after thousands of Russian soldiers deserted their posts, joining approximately 70 SCA knights advancing on the city in hopes of being issued new boots and coats.

The SCA also overtook vast areas at the borders of former Russian republics Ukraine and Belarus simply by trading several sacks of potatoes for enemy guns.

Former president Boris Yeltsin transferring control of Russia to Grand Seneschal Ulf Silverhawk.

"Forsooth, mine legions of brave warmakers hath conquered the Lands West O' the Urals! Let there be great rejoicing in our noble victory!" exclaimed Cedric, Bard of the House of Æthelmearc, 36, hoisting a flagon of ale. "What, ho! Bring on the serving wenches!"

Cedric, known as Harold Freed when among non-SCA members, is credited with capturing two military air bases and a string of missile installations throughout the north Caucasus region along the Georgian border—an area rendered vulnerable by ethnic infighting, corruption and military anarchy.

SCA leaders, who have called the weekend's campaign "a really good time," were said to be especially pleased with the invasion's early wrap-up, as it left the remainder of the weekend free for social recreation in the form of mead-drinking, archery contests, and the singing of bawdy madrigals.

Even captured Russian soldiers were invited to join in the fun and campfire dancing. Such "good sportsmanship" has some analysts arguing that the SCA's power base in Russia may even benefit the troubled land in the long run.

"Though civilian rioting and widespread starvation still rock the major population centers, Russia is actually more stable right now than it has been for the last 18 months," Harvard political science professor F. Horace Gunderson said. "Candle-dipping seminars are addressing the problems posed by energy shortages, and the booths selling roasted turkey legs represent, in many regions, the first source of food in weeks."

"This could be the best thing to happen to Russia in years," agreed State Department foreign-affairs analyst Howard Plum. "The sale of jewelry, driftwood art and other medieval handcrafting at concession tables throughout Russia has boosted local economies, and SCA presence has even created new jobs in the custodial and campground-rental fields."

The U.N. security council is drafting a proposal urging SCA forces to remain in Russia, at least until a more viable interim government can be structured.

"Under the current political system, the Russian people face Mafia domination of the black market and a deteriorating national infrastructure," U.N. Ambassador Thomas R. Pickering said. "With an elaborately networked consortium of amateur gamers in charge, however, there will at least be some semblance of order."

Members of SCA nobility, however, say the group has no interest in running Russia for any great length of time, especially with the members' need to prepare for their next major event, this summer's Pennsic War between the East and Middle Kingdoms, to be held in Pennsylvania. Insiders expect the occupying forces to return power to the Russian government "on the honor system" and return to their day jobs by the end of the week.

"We're doing this for fun, not the vulgar acquisition of personal political power," said insurance actuary and Arizona native Willownook Pendragon, of the Kingdom of Atenveldt. "We're here to celebrate our mutual interest in the ways and customs of pre-1600 feudal Europe, and to bedeck ourselves in the heraldic regalia of our fictional medieval personas, not to get mixed up in politics."

Pendragon added that "anyone who wants to have a fun time and make new friends" should check out the SCA home page or contact the group's California headquarters directly at its toll-free number for more information on an SCA chapter in their area.

"We're really just friendly folks who welcome outsiders," Pendragon said. "Plus, now is a great time to get involved, because there's lots of super events coming up this summer, and you'll want time to prepare the correct blazon for your heraldry."

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