Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

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Jason Taylor
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Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Jason Taylor » Sat Dec 04, 2010 12:39 am

I wanted to open this thread up to try to get everyone on the same page regarding our direction for the near future with Kron. I also want to bring up a few issues we should probably get ready to hammer out soon in order that everything run smoothly and we all get as much training time in every class as possible. A lot of this I'll bring up for discussion tomorrow, but maybe a few of you early risers and/or late going to sleepers can take a look at these before you come to the party. We'll also continue this discussion here after the meeting and I'll spin off new threads as necessary.

A few things I want to discuss, broken up into broad categories:
  • Club Practices

    So far, I think these are going great. We have a good turnout, and the regulars are serious people. That's one of the advantages of charging dues--people who aren't really that serious stop bothering to show up. Wednesday before class has worked so far for the main meeting (we'll have to rearrange once next semester rolls around).

    • Scheduling: I would like to have everyone agree on an RSVP system for secondary practices with at least a semi-regular schedule. Fridays, for example, have been a problem for me due to repeated sickness (but I'm going to cut pumpkins tomorrow regardless, damn it!) I can text those people I have numbers for, but I don't have everyone's. My not being there doesn't mean you can't have a meeting, but I think having a two-person practice should be the call of those two people, not just the end result of only two people showing up. And a one-person meeting just sucks.

      One good method I've used in the past is to set up a thread on the forum (it was a different group, of course) and only activate an event if enough people RSVP. So, for example, we start a thread every week for Friday, and so long as we have sufficient RSVPs, that event goes. If not, we cancel it, and interested individuals can just check the thread to see if it's on or not the night before.

    • Study Plans: Longsword needs to remain our primary focus because of its pedagogical significance in the system--you can learn a lot of applicable stuff for every weapon through the longsword. But I think we should mix things up every class session and give everyone a chance to try new things.

      I want to set up ahead of time what general topics we'll be covering in that way in order to give everyone a chance to come prepared. For example, maybe every other session is staff day, where everyone brings their staves and we'll spend half an hour to an hour working on staff, along with whatever longsword material we want to cover that day.

      If you guys want to study anything particular, the forum is a great place to post that, and I'll do my best to accommodate on training night. I especially like it if someone says they worked out a longsword play from x manual they want to do--that gives you guys a great chance to lead a portion of a class and it gives us all a new view on a new piece of the historical curriculum, which is extremely useful all around.

    • Handling walk-ups. We need a policy for this. It's very easy to just let anybody who walks up talk to the closest person, or let the first person to see a walkup handle showing them a few things, but trust me, my past experience says that that's not the optimum way to handle this situation. It's best to have someone who's assigned as a kind of group ambassador, usually based on experience or time in the group. That person is then responsible for inviting up other members to talk to the new person. My past groups have had problems with everyone wanting to be friendly and inviting and ending up mobbing the person, which, depending on his or her personality, could be good or bad. Regardless of that element, however, the "mob effect" is chaotic, disorganized, and looks like we' don't have our act together, because there's no organization to the way it's handled. Everyone means well, but the end result isn't always in the group's best interest.

      It's also a really good idea to have the individuals who want to talk to walkups be "trained"--that sounds more fancy than it is, though. There's a few things that I know we want anybody walking up to hear, and those should be the things the "ambassadors" or sure to say. Everybody in the club could easily get on the same page for this in a matter of 15 minutes, but not everybody wants the responsibility, so there's another reason for having designees.

      Other groups I've had with similar problems have done similar things and seen a much better PR reaction. I think this is something we need to implement fairly soon, because we can definitely increase our "street cred," even if we don't hang on to the walkups themselves every time.

  • Study groups
    These are a great idea, and have even caught the attention of those outside the area, which means we're definitely doing something right. The enthusiasm everyone is showing is cool, and it means we're going to have a lot of great stuff to work on as time goes on.

    • Study Group Meetings: The study groups should try to get together on their own outside of class to give themselves time to focus on working through the material. It won't always be possible, of course--but it's a great way to make progress. Plus, anything cool you figure out can be posted as a topic of "let's work on this next week."

    • Study Group Practice Time: I plan on having time set aside in most future meetings for study group work, so the groups can break up and do their work together, especially if they don't get to meet much outside of regular class time. This also gives time for organizing the study groups, as well.

    • Study group format: This is something I'd like to work on with someone else, sort of a starter's kit we can give people looking to organize study groups for how to get started and where to look. If anyone's interested in helping me, please let me know.

  • Swag etc.

    Swag is awesome. I'm putting a number of things in this category: t-shirts, uniforms, business cards. This is hugely important for PR, and I think it's worth spending club money on.


    • Business cards: The design is done already and voted on. We just need to get them made, which means someone needs to order them. We need to vote on the options in a meeting so someone can be assigned to order them--probably Peter, because he's the treasurer.

    • T-shirts: Mostly completed as a design for the new ones. The old ones are fine, but have been confused for Korn shirts (more than once). I think we need to get this design nailed down (shouldn't be hard at all) and then get some new shirts up so members have a) two choices of what to wear to fly the colors and b) a more professional non-rock-band-confusable shirt for events like the Pumpkin Launch.

    • Uniforms: This has gone back and forth, but I really think it's time we make a decision to look professional. As a couple of you observed after the Pumpkin Launch, we were taken more seriously and somehow trusted more because the simple act of wearing a uniform just makes the group seem cohesive. I think those simple uniforms were what made us more attractive to so many people who passed right by the Adrian Empire folks and came straight to us. Naturally there are other reasons (our numbers, our swords, our organizational equipment like tables and canopies, the fact that we taught classes, etc.) but the uniforms really gave people the feeling from a distance that we were worth checking out, so they brought people over.

      We can talk in detail about this, but I'm going to propose for now that we have a standard class uniform of club t-shirt (either type) and black pants. Trust me on this one, too--it ain't my first rodeo, as they say, and I've seen uniforms work wonders in my other martial arts classes. The kung fu club got instantly more respectable when they started a standard uniform about as simple as this one. If we all dress the same, we go from being "who are those bums with swords on the grass over there" to "I wonder what club/group/organization that is." That step in people's minds is psychologically huge, and we should take advantage of it.

      This also wouldn't be expensive--if you already have the old shirt and a pair of black pants, it's free. If you have neither, a shirt and a pair of cheap black sweats from Wal Mart or Goodwill will cost you no more than $20 ($10 is usually the shirt cost) so it's not a big expense.

All right; that's my compendium for now. Please discuss here and let me know if we need to spin off a new thread so I can use my moderator magic to do so.

Jason
Kron Martial Arts, Orange County
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Myles Cupp
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Myles Cupp » Sat Dec 04, 2010 6:03 pm

We do need to discuss whether we will be having practice during the winter break and, if we do, where those practices will be located and at what times.

As for uniforms, I don't know how we can expect to get away from the rock-band look as long as we use black T-shirts with an ambiguous logo that reads "Korn" (like my mom said the first time she saw it).
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Psalm 119:89
"For we all acknowledge that it is with the sword that Kingdoms are protected, Religions are defended, injuries are avenged and Nations achieve peace and happiness."
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Jason Taylor
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Jason Taylor » Sat Dec 04, 2010 6:13 pm

The new design t-shirt doesn't have that problem. It says all the letters in order. :)
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Myles Cupp
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Myles Cupp » Sat Dec 04, 2010 6:23 pm

I haven't seen the new design. Does it have any indications of what it is we actually do?
Lifetime HEMAA Member
Kron Martial Arts, CA
Psalm 119:89
"For we all acknowledge that it is with the sword that Kingdoms are protected, Religions are defended, injuries are avenged and Nations achieve peace and happiness."
Salvator Fabris, 1606

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Jason Taylor
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Jason Taylor » Tue Dec 07, 2010 11:05 am

Bump.

Okay, so we've talked about budget a bit, and that we can keep hashing out in that thread. I've started a thread for t-shorts specifically, but I expect that to be quick business. So there's a lot of other stuff in here we should talk about as a group to keep things going smoothly. We can do it during class, but doing it here limits the amount of time we have to spend on organization during training time.

Let's pick another one of these and get it put to bed.

Jason
Kron Martial Arts, Orange County
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Myles Cupp
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Myles Cupp » Wed Dec 08, 2010 4:09 pm

Hopefully people will have time during the break to make practices in the study groups that fit their schedule. We should take the initiative on this point so we don't waste a perfectly good semester break.
Lifetime HEMAA Member
Kron Martial Arts, CA
Psalm 119:89
"For we all acknowledge that it is with the sword that Kingdoms are protected, Religions are defended, injuries are avenged and Nations achieve peace and happiness."
Salvator Fabris, 1606

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Jason Taylor
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Jason Taylor » Wed Dec 08, 2010 4:41 pm

Agreed. Study group people: try to make some time to get together off-campus (or on, just not at regular training times) to try to make some progress. I'm here to help if you have questions on how to get started.

Brian: we sick(le)os should plan to get together at your house and work through the material on yuor greenbelt area. Since it's off-campus, any concerns about a wrapped-up sickle being "real" are not an issue there, and we can try to hammer through the stuff we have videos for, at least.

Messer people--print out a copy of Lebkommer from Schielhau.org to get started with, one for each of you. It'll be invaluable, and I can help you through that material, too.

Jason
Kron Martial Arts, Orange County
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World-Famous Sickle Authority and General Proponent of all Things Sickle

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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby william_cain_iii » Wed Dec 08, 2010 5:27 pm

Further, if I'm given sufficient notice I can make my copy of In Saint George's Name, with the Paulus Kal messerfechten gloss, available to the messer group for brief periods.
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Jason Taylor
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Re: Important Club Issues for Discussion (PLEASE READ)

Postby Jason Taylor » Sat Dec 18, 2010 9:31 pm

Bump.

I'm splitting off another topic here, so I'm bringing this original thread up for reference.
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