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Anonymous

You know what is odd? Some of the recent threads lately have sort of brought up the issue of having Roman reenactors belong to some type of organization. Some have pointed out that the SCA however, is problematic at best, and that similar problems would exist in a Roman based group.<br>
I think this could be a good thing.....seperate headquarters in N. Amercia, Europe, Australia. Flexibility regarding regulations.....no strict rules regarding how units should be ran. But it would increase the contact between groups around the world, and provide all kinds of assistance to new ones forming. We could have a monthly newsletter, with all kinds of articles on reconstrcuctions, new groups, personals etc. We could have membership fees (small of course) and the money could go to giveaways, or other things......<br>
What would be needed in order to create such a thing? What does everyone else think? I think this could be an excellent idea......it is just what this hobby needs.....some official identity, and cohesiveness..and maybe some solid, recognized leadership.....in my opinion of course.<br>
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<p>Tiberius Lantanius Magnus<BR>
CO/Optio,<BR>
Legio XXX "Ulpia Victrix"<BR>
(Matt)</p><i></i>

Anonymous

Maybe model the organization after some of the more successful clubs out there like the NSSA. Nothing like a monthly newsletter or magazine to keep your interest going. <p></p><i></i>
I have a deal of experience with a monthly newsletter about Roman re-enactments. (I have also edited/published a couple of other hobby magazines.) I suggest that the online newsgroup is much better in many ways.<br>
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Cost. The cost for printing color photographs in a magazine is still high. The postage for such a magazine is going up. The basic print run, address labels, pre-print pasteup and editing are all time consuming and the labor costs money. Voluntary newsletters suffer from failure to meet deadlines, tax accounting problems and lack of profit, even with advertisements, which you have to sell, (again, more effort).<br>
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Input. In order to have a good magazine, you have to have timely, accurate and well-written articles, and you need dozens of them! I have "files" with "filler" art, articles and photos. These require lots of effort, begging articles, shuffleing articles to fit open space, cut and paste, even on a computer takes time. The main reason many "hobby" magazines fail in the first 3 years is a lack of input from the readers, or advertisers find that their advertisements do not prove cost effective!<br>
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I suggest that the online "magazine" / interactive newsgroup is the way for people to share and keep informed, and thanks to RomanArmyTalk, we already have a find Roman e-magazine. There are several other Roman newsgroups you can also find, either at Yahoo, or various other groups that might fill your locality niche or specific time period. <br>
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<p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/ucaiusfabius.showPublicProfile?language=EN>Caius Fabius</A> at: 2/28/02 8:04:44 pm<br></i>

Anonymous

Caius,<br>
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I think the e-newsletter is the way to go as well. However, what the heck is the point subscribing to "smaller" newsgroups in the Roman world, if we can put together one that is Global???<br>
Who, in this forum, knows about forming such a group? If possible, I would also like the opinions from some of the heavy hitters in this field, like Dan Petterson, M Bishop, Matt Amt, Sean Richards, Sander Vand Dorst, Jasper, Jenny...the list is long and distinguished. These are the people that can make this happen, along with our support. I want to do this though.<br>
We are a part of something, that takes commitment, effort, time, and most importantly, courage. Why not take this to the next level?<br>
What are the advantages and disadvantages of becoming organized???<br>
<br>
<p>Tiberius Lantanius Magnus<BR>
CO/Optio,<BR>
Legio XXX "Ulpia Victrix"<BR>
(Matt)</p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/bromanarmytalk.showLocalUserPublicProfile?login=tiberiuslantaniusmagnus>tiberius lantanius magnus</A> <IMG HEIGHT=10 WIDTH=10 SRC="http://www.myezboard.com/projects/ezboard/ezboard_userimages/romanarmytalk/images/Matt-L.jpg" BORDER=0> at: 2/28/02 9:19:05 pm<br></i>
Are there any parallels with other age reenactment groups? Global US civil war, WW2, or others? perhaps those could give some clues. <p>Richard Campbell, Legio XX.
the HIGH NOISE/low signal person for RAT.
ICQ 940236
</p><i></i>
There are many reasons for being a member of smaller groups and working together in a lose federation, or association.<br>
1. Some groups allow "fatboys" and women, in military uniform, some don't.<br>
2. Some groups use live steel, some use rattan, some use other weapons, and some don't fight at all.<br>
3. Some groups are religiously exclusive, or have other agenda which not everyone would wish to agree with.<br>
4. Some groups are very authentic, some groups are less so, but they all have a place, and can share information.<br>
5. Some groups only do one time period, and might exclude other well meaning and interested people, who don't want to be in such and such a legion in AD159, for example.<br>
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I have been in ACW re-enacting for over 20 years, and many of the various groups almost refuse to work together, and if there was one official organization, many groups would refuse to join if another (rival) group were already there. At many events one of the behind the scenes problems is keeping rival groups "leaders" from meeting in camp or on the "battlefield". (How sordid, but ...) I have also seen many "melt-downs" in the SCA since 1977, when I first was drawn by the sound of rattan on plywood at a local Medieval Fair. Yes, some "households refuse to go to events where others will attend, and the various kingdoms have had many problems when they get together for combat "war" events trying to decode which rules will be used.<br>
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There are already several " ancient groups" which invite "Romans" to become members. One group called "Imperium Antiquitus" fights SCA style and has a system of points for rank and honors, another Roman group is "NovaRoma" which has many members all over the world, but requires members to "respect or honor" Roman deities and officers to swear "oaths" to Roman religion.<br>
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We have the many and various "Legions", "cohorts" and other units with their own rules, officers and standards.<br>
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Who would choose the "leaders" and "set" the rules?<br>
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I think, that it is good to have a place where people can go and "share" and choose to work together, but to have an organization similar to the SCA or the NSSS would probably end up having many people who would choose to not even communicate and share. The SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.) has liability insurance for each member at each event, to keep from having the society sued in an accident! The SCA is currently having a funding problem, mainly because of the costs of publications and insurance. NSSS has some strict rules, and many people won't join, because they don't want to come up to them, but they are at every local re-enactment, and look good enough and still present history.<br>
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Instead, it is a good idea to have a forum to discuss, share and work together, and allow the sponsors of each event to set their own standards, then allowing each individual or group the choice of whether to accept those standards and rules.<br>
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I am not even going to get into the mechanics of trying to get official international recognition of a non-profit organization for educational purposes. Maybe we have some corporate lawyers who like to work pro bono?<br>
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Just my point of view, probably I am really confused, (puts away the wine and goes back to posca).<br>
<p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/ucaiusfabius.showPublicProfile?language=EN>Caius Fabius</A> at: 3/1/02 12:57:39 am<br></i>
Actually, it's interesting that this idea has been raised when it has.<br>
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Jasper, Sander, and I have been developing a plan for some months now to establish a not-for-profit foundation to promote Roman military studies.<br>
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The Foundation for Ancient Military Studies (FAMS) will be incorporated in the Netherlands, have a board of directors, bylaws, etc. Its specific mission is to publish a new academic journal starting in 2004, to be called the Journal of Ancient Military Studies (JAMS).<br>
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While the mission of FAMS is not re-enactment nor to serve as a global alliance of groups, I see no reason why supporting or associate memberships in the Foundation could not be offered to re-enactors, or anyone else, for that matter. Memberships in such a global academic organization would give a sense of community which is presently missing in many ways.<br>
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For associations to work, it is often not necessary that they share the same "rules" or standards, but simply that they have the same objective. Perhaps in the case of a re-enactment alliance, the objective could be "to promote the understanding of ancient Roman life and warfare through re-enactment and reconstruction."<br>
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Thoughts?<br>
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Jenny <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Jenny, thank you so much, that is what I am talking about. You hit the nail on the head. I think we are missing a sense of community here. A loose federation, or family if you will, of Roman reenactment groups around the world, sharing info, contributing to whatever we decide to do, etc. would be excellent. If we become a side venture of FAMS, is there someway we could maybe have a newsletter or something like what Caius suggested, that everyone could contribute too, that was in an e-mail format? Also, what would we get from having memberships to FAMS? Discounts on the journal? Some other kinds of benefits? I have no idea what or how these things work.<br>
I know it is a ton of work, to bring everyone together but I am sure most people would jump at it if given the opportunity...... <p>Tiberius Lantanius Magnus<BR>
CO/Optio,<BR>
Legio XXX "Ulpia Victrix"<BR>
(Matt)</p><i></i>
Tiberias, I think you have seen from previous threads, that our group would fully support a "Roman reenactment federation". We have a long record of helping new groups get started, my little book had almost become a "manual" for some, and if I didn't want to see authentic Roman equipment in the hands of everyone interested, I never would have assisted Deepeeka.<br>
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As for FAMS, I think it is a great idea, and would say now that FAMS members who do not have Roman equipment, but who want to "experience" Roman living history at the events in Europe, would be welcome to be the guests of LEG XIIII GMV and be issued a complete equipment to participate.<br>
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Some of the comments on this thread seem to indicate that this proposed federation should be very "loose", so to let everybody "do their own thing" much as is going on now. lf that's how it would be, then it probably wouldn't be much different than what we already have, a lot of guys from a lot of units, sharing information on "Roman Army Talk". And I think that's great, but if the "do your own thing bit" is the parameters, RAT is doing an admirable job on its own and don't really see what more would be accomplished in calling it a "federation".<br>
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Here is what I think though, for what it is worth. Some time ago, people could particpate in a Civil War reenactment wearing JC Penny blue or gray cotton work suits, and a pressed felt "Disneyland" kepi. (Maybe somewhere they still do?) There were whole units of dismounted cavalry (because a brass fraem reveolver was cheaper than a musket), and officers usually outnumbered enlisted men on the field. It was pretty pathetic, but it happened because everyone could "do their own thing". At the same time, The Brigade of the American Revolution was created. They established authenticity standards, realistic, mandatory officer to soldier ratios, etc. and overall portrayed a vastly more authentic level of reenactment, despite the greater difficulty in doing this period. That's not to say there weren't always some very good Civil War units, and the standard has vastly improved since then.<br>
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I believe a Roman federation should follow the same lines. For example, some Roman "legion" of one centurion and a neat website that joins this "federation" should not have the right to parade around a federation event dress as a centurion if he doesn't have the soldiers to back it up. It is an insult to every "real" group. Likewise, lets say we have a "federation" of several Roman groups, and a film company contacts us for this very reason (that we have a federation of many Romans). Then lets say, the film company asks us to stage some battle scenes. In the "do your own thing" federation, the "display only/manequinn" Roman groups might refuse to participate, thereby embarrasing the federation at large. The federation might also be invited to a major historical event, and if there are no authenticity standards in some of the "federation" sub-units, then again, the federation's reputation will suffer and we might not get another film opportunity. Some groups in the federation might boycott an important event simply because they'd refuse to change their tunic color, wear or not wear crests, etc,. if the sponsor wanted uniformity. Although the federation hasn't happened yet, ALL of these things have indeed happened in the past, I know, I've been there.<br>
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Like I said before, I most definately believe there should be a federation. But becuase of irreconcilable differences, maybe we need to decide from the very beginning if it is truly going to be a federation of Roman "reenactors" or a federation of guys who just "dress up" like Romans, and refuse to fight, get dirty or wet. In Britian, I think the term is "Fancy Dress".<br>
Actually, most of the fancy dress "mannequin groups" would not join a "federation" anyway, since their major aim is doing "paid performances" and they obviously would not get as much if they participated with a "federation". Mark my words, some "real" Roman reenactors will probably fly, at largely their own expense, all the way to Italy from the U.S.A. this year for Albano, because it should be great event. "Fancy Dress" mannequin groups will not go - period, if they don't think they are going to be paid enough. Why the difference, Roman reenactors have a lot more incentive. Mannequin romans have become so "dulled" by the same old routines that they often could care less where they do their nest "performance". Another example, our group, LEG XIIII brought Roman reenacting for the first time to Romania last September to commemorate both Trajan's birthday, and the 1900th anniversary of the first Dacian War. We had around a 20 man display, and the costs practically all came out of my own pocket. No other group would go because Romanians couldn't afford their price. Dan.<br>
<p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Dan, money seems to keep coming up as a motivation for units to do events. Why? I would never dream of inquiring about getting paid to do something which is a hobby. That is what work is for.....Shouldn't we be doing this because we love it? You are right, it comes out of our own pockets, like going out and buying our favorite combo at Mc Craps.<br>
Some of us are also constrained by budget, time off work etc.....which is part of the reason that maybe some of us won't be in Alba this summer. Well, it's my reason anyway.<br>
I also think that if we have this federation, we can regulate large scale events as far as standardization of kit, and who gets to be centurion, etc. Then for small events, things can be the way the group running it wants it to be, like it is now. Can't see a problem with people bitting a small bullet like that, but then again, I have had little interaction with other groups.<br>
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Anyway, I hope some more people put their input here, I was hoping that some of the other heavy hitters would put their 2 cents here.....thanks for your comments Dan.<br>
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<p>Tiberius Lantanius Magnus<BR>
CO/Optio,<BR>
Legio XXX "Ulpia Victrix"<BR>
(Matt)</p><i></i>

Anonymous

Dan's right. I'm thinking the FAMS would have a committee attatched to it, and this commitee would, with the input of participating groups, deliberate and ratify a minimum set of standards covering all aspects of Roman military living history. In other words, order.<br>
I sense a squeamishness to submit to a "governing" body or standardization. Some may think this too intrusive or authoritarian, but I feel it would have a purifying effect, as well as lend legitimacy to our groups and endevours.<br>
Like Dan said, if we all want to continue "doing our own things", what's the point?<br>
All this talk about organizing is exciting! I forsee big things happening in the future. Now maybe if I could only move to San Diego...<br>
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P.S./ "Heavy hitters" or not, ALL comments and suggestions are welcome and appreciated. This is one place I hope never becomes elitist. <p><a href=http://pub45.ezboard.com/fromanarmytalkfrm6.showMessage?topicID=53.topic><u>Rules For Posting</u>






</p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/uthecaesarionsection.showPublicProfile?language=EN>The Caesarion Section</A> at: 3/4/02 12:53:55 am<br></i>
I don't see the need for any Federation to set a second generation set of standards. The governing body is the published body of research provided by professors, archaeologists, museums and scholars that we all have access to. If they don't agree, how can we non-professionals? As hobbyists, we take this and apply it as best we can; the evidence from 2000 years ago is sketchy and subject to much interpretation, a point I think we can all agree upon.<br>
I think you are falling into a philosophical trap if you think that 'hitting and getting dirty' is closer to reality than anything else. Reenactors can never approach the reality of battle because the fear and motivation of death is missing. It's just a more physical form of play acting, although it can certainly be very illustrative.<br>
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<p>Richard Campbell, Legio XX.
the HIGH NOISE/low signal person for RAT.
ICQ 940236
</p><i></i>
I also worry about some groups setting rules for "approved" re-enactors.<br>
For example... the National Park Service in the USA has rules about how long you must wait between each discharge of a blackpowder cannon, which prevents well trained re-enactors from actually showing people proper Artillery drill. Even though some units have yearly live ammo live fires and competitions at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, the rules keep all units to the standards of the least trained, for safety's sake.<br>
(Who will certify YOU as approved to use live steel in a public demo?)<br>
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The Kansas Historical "Society" has decided that they don't even want any re-creations of "battles" or "violence" on their properties.<br>
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The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. has a set of rules that limit the weapons, armor and equipment that can be used, and a rather long and sluggish process for recommending changes.<br>
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My experiences with the governing "federations" and "Societies" are that they seem to become slower to react to change, more worried about public relations and liability, and less for the "member" who is doing the research, practise and study of ancient history. True, it keeps a few people from getting hurt, and a few of the stranger theories and styles from being seen in public, but does it really help?<br>
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If we want to try Dan's "special"swords, right now, we can, but if there were a federation with rules and membership requirements, we might have to go through all sorts of hoops, and then we might not "allow" the felt swords in "our" re-enactments, or we might require them, for group liability reasons. It only takes one or two people to initiate a lawsuit against a formal "organization" as the SCA, Inc. can tell you.<br>
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I know some people like the idea of being in an official "club" and some people love the paperwork and thrill of having groups that all interact with a specific flow chart. I suggest that you get the RAT T-shirt. That looks official and pretty cool to me!<br>
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This is coming from the guy who stopped going to the HMGS conferences as the only way to finally get off the BOD, so I am more anti-formality, anti-flow charts, and pro Roman anarchy. The more forums, the more groups, the more different views and lines of research, the better for the understanding.... in my opinion. I know some people just want one page to turn to, and one authority to ask, but ...<br>
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On the other hand I currently subscribe to over 55 newsgroups, not including this forum, and while I don't always agree with them, I still try and see what new articles are there, that might be relevant, as well as using them to find "true believers" to recruit. If you limit yourself to one or two "official" forums or "official" organizations, then where will you get your new blood and new ideas?<br>
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Don't get me wrong, I'll join any group that studies Romans and doesn't require me to give up my religion.<br>
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<p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Ave!<br>
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I've read all of these insightful comments, and here are my thoughts:<br>
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As a budding 'Reenactment' enthusiast, this is a hobby for me.this means that on my priority<br>
list it comes after work, family,friends and other volunteer work that I do. money is also a big concern for me right now. I don't have a lot to spend. because of all of these reasons,I haven't progressed very far in this hobby yet. While I want to do my own thing, I have no problem agreeing to authenticity standards as long as they are reasonable. I would actually be happy to belong to this 'federation' since it would hopefully provide me with a basis for support in research, equipment manufacture, and just general understanding of my little idiosynchrasy. As of yet, my toes can't really be stepped on, because I don't have any vested interests involved. I'll be happy to contribute whatever time/ energy or skill that I have to try and make this Idea work.<br>
with everyone's assistance I think we can work this so that everyone except the hopelessly entrenched can be happy with the result.<br>
<br>
Declan Dillman<br>
Gauis Marius Aquilus<br>
<br>
NOSTRA ROMANITATE VINCEMUS <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

This is more in response to Rich and Caius's posts. Richard, I am going to pick on you because you were first....lol<br>
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Ok, you are a member of Matt Amt's Leg XX right? Now you tell me this, wouldn't it be a great idea, to have (for example) Matt's high level of authenticity (which takes effort more than anything else, not money) as a staple for this federation???<br>
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As far as everyone agreeing on issues, that will never happen in anything, be it government, business, a group of friends, whatever. Disagreements are one of the spices of life, and is a great deterrent of boredom...look at the debates we've had here!<br>
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Also, I don't belive that we, as reeanactors and not professional Roman soldiers should have "real" battles, or even well performed battles of high intensity, demos of fighting will do fine. All Dan is saying, is that in order to fully, yes, fully reenact as a soldier, fighting is an integral part of it. Most groups don't. That to me, is off balance with maintaining a high standard of authenticity as far as reenacting.<br>
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Ok, Caius, now it's your turn....<br>
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In response to your first paragraph about your concerns with state parks and their rules.....We will just have to look into that. I am not sure of the hierarchy of parks in the US, but in Canada, we have National, Provincial, and Municipal. Each is governed by a separate body, and have their own set of rules, depending on where you are. Also, live steel demos aren't a factor if we use Dan's felt swords anyway.<br>
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I am not a member of the SCA, but I have heard the same thing, that it is getting bunged up with rules and regs. (yes, I said bunged up).<br>
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I don't know much about how organizations, federations, or whatnot work. I do think you have some valid points in that some are not capable of keeping up with the times, or change. But that is why you need a continuos supply of fresh blood and ideas....in the form of new governing bodies, members etc.<br>
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I think Caius, that you, have some of the best information and most potential to give to a new Federation that starts up. You know what is wrong with existing ones, and what has gone awry with them.<br>
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If we do this right, and LEARN from past group's mistakes, this could work, and work well. Why not give it a try? Make this federation the one that does the impossible, and is a good group, with happy members, fair and just rules, and a diverse membership, with more intelligent people that you can shake a stick at.<br>
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Wow, that was my longest post....do I get anything for that?<br>
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Always up late....<br>
<br>
<p>Tiberius Lantanius Magnus<BR>
CO/Optio,<BR>
Legio XXX "Ulpia Victrix"<BR>
(Matt)</p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/bromanarmytalk.showLocalUserPublicProfile?login=tiberiuslantaniusmagnus>tiberius lantanius magnus</A> <IMG HEIGHT=10 WIDTH=10 SRC="http://www.myezboard.com/projects/ezboard/ezboard_userimages/romanarmytalk/images/Matt-L.jpg" BORDER=0> at: 3/4/02 9:47:56 am<br></i>
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