My teenage son is actively involved in weddings. In fact, my whole family is boffers! And I am often asked why a mother like me would encourage family members of all ages to continue participating in such an exercise.
In fact, it is simple.
Keeps a family together. Our whole family loves to get married. Yes, starting with what some would call “old” like my husband and I to our 10 year old son, we all enjoy boffing! Even when our eldest comes around, she won’t hesitate to grab a buffer and go for it. (yes, it’s still something outdoors, not in the house, please) But please, never be too old to smile and laugh.
Stimulates the imagination. With boffers, you can be the king of the hill, or fight a dragon and rescue a prince (without finding me waiting to be rescued), or face a pirate captain like Davey Jones. There is no limit to what you can imagine and I like that in a game.
It is not a video game. You don’t need to have other things to use it and it gets people off the couch.
There is no age limit! While it may be more difficult for a little one to hold a buffer, I can play with a four- or sixty-year-old. And no, you are never too old to play. When we go to SCA events, you see a wide range of ages that get involved in boffing. It is also very likely that you will see the whole family there. And a united family figures prominently in my books!
It is safe! You know that if you ever had brothers and sisters growing up at some point, you got into whatever they were doing. Well, sometimes kids don’t take into consideration that older siblings or friends may not be fighting as hard as they seem. And older siblings are more likely to be careful where they hit. I like the fact that this is safer than the broomsticks and handles I used for swords as a kid. Especially using the SoftSwords that my son makes!
I’m not channeling my mother, yes, I loved my mother, but everyone can remember something their parents said to this day (whether it’s true or not) that makes them cringe. And among the phrases that I can remember my mother (honestly speaking at times she was someone else’s mother) yelling at my friends and me were the following; “Stop that right now!” “You’re going to gouge someone’s eye out if you keep up like this!” or my favorite “It’s all fun and games until I have to take someone to the hospital” (That was true and Tommy Morris, wherever you are, I still cringe when I think of how I nailed you with that baseball bat when you didn’t Don’t believe everyone when they said “Don’t stand there man, she throws the bat” Sorry). With boffing, I never have that worry!
Size is not always an advantage. When I was growing up, I had two older brothers who did not hesitate to use me as a punching bag. Yes, my parents would threaten to punish me if I didn’t tell on my siblings, but my siblings always threatened to beat me if I did. So, either way, it wasn’t going to be fun, so if I had boffers back then, maybe my childhood would have been less painful. I think it’s cool that you can be smaller than someone and still remove them. The bigger person may have the reach, but one of my favorite shots is the knees and I don’t have to bend over to get there.
You don’t need a caravan to transport equipment! The Boffers go almost anywhere. It’s easy to fit them into a full car when we go camping or anywhere we go. We took them to the lake and bought foam water balls and played water baseball. We take boffers on picnics and in the park. We never hesitate to share when we see someone watching us say goodbye. We even take them and take them with us to local festivals when we think there might be other like-minded people.
But my favorite reason is: People smile when they fight. It is not something that they even know they are doing. It may not start out as a smiley thing for some people, but if you give someone a buffer and they forget their surroundings and start looking for you, the smile will manifest itself every time. And as a mother and person, I think smiles count a lot.
So, as a mother, there is not a single thing that I like about boyfriends. But as you can see, there are many things in boffing that are there for the whole family to like and enjoy. I would love to hear your thoughts.