Sarissa Wine Club Minutes

Ornamental amphora showing Athena

Ornamental amphora showing Athena

Epistates Sterling Amyntas
Secretary Ariston of Pella
Treasurer Linos of Pella
Keeper of the Kraters Agapios of [Not yet found out]
Keeper of the Spears Pantaleon of Upper Macedonia, Somewhere
Sarissa Wine Ultras Liaison Officer Amyntas Son of Amyntas

      1. Epistates’ Address
      2. Prayers and libations for members who died at the last meeting or as a result of injuries sustained at said event
      3. Recruitment Update
      4. KotS report on the condition of the wine sarissas
      5. KotK on the condition and number of club kraters
      6. Treasurer’s financial report
      7. SWULO’s report
      8. Elections I
      9. Celebration for the winners

        To come in part two
      1. Elections II (to replace those who died / mortally injured during the celebration)
      2. Subscriptions and Forfeit Committee
      3. Matters Arising
      4. Next meeting
      5. Secretary’s account of the night

Epistates’ address
“My friends, welcome to tonight’s meeting. I am delighted to be addressing you on the occasion of my tenth meeting as your leader. I give an especial welcome to our king, who is at the back writing on his Linear bPad [Big cheer from members; cries of “say something about me]; I am sure I speak on behalf of you all when I wish Alexander a happy and drunken night. Most of all, I hope he survives. We want no repeat of what happened to Xenophon here.
“As you are all aware, the SWC was founded on the night after Philip II formally introduced the sarissa into the Macedonian army. It has always been the mark of a true Macedonian to seek out ways to marry violence to alcoholic excess, and on that night we as a nation excelled ourselves. In light of that, it is with regret, therefore, that we mark the passing of Red Faced Amyntas, the last surviving original member of the WSC, who died just a few days ago, yes, by accidentally beheading himself while drinking wine from a sarissa. Aristander will give a fuller appreciation of Amyntas presently.
“As is customary, I will close this address with one of my stories that you have so grown to love [groans from members]. When I was a child, I went hunting with my father. I killed an Illyrian. As he lay dying in front of me he coughed up blood; full of feeling for his predicament, I poured my father’s wine down his throat so that he would not have to taste the blood. I then closed his mouth with my hand. This choked the man, but I like to think he died happier than if we had left him to bleed to death. On that day my love affair of violence and wine began and I became a Macedonian [cheers from members]! On that note, I hand over to Aristander.”
Aristander prays for late members
“My dear friends, it is indeed a pleasure to see you all again. As Amyntas mentioned, I regret to announce the death of Red Faced Amyntas who died three nights ago after his sarissa slipped and cut his throat open. I knew Amyntas since the foundation of the SWC and he was a loyal, and happy drunk; I would add that on occasion, my king, he was even a great soldier [laughs from members some of whom mock attack Alexander in the Macedonian style]!
“However, our red faced friend would not have thanked me for telling you that; he hid his bravery behind his drink. That is why he continued to drink from his sarissa even when already drunk and liable to decapitate himself. ‘I have to do it,‘ he would tell anyone who would listen, ‘So that I don’t end up like Brasidas.‘ Not, of course, that Brasidas, was a bad man – but who are we? [Drinkers! Shout the members in time honoured fashion, Drinkers from Sarissas!]
“That is correct. At our last meeting, two other members died – Amyntas and Amyntas; since the last meeting, apart from Amytnas, three more members have died: Amyntas, Amyntas and Amyntas [Pause while Aristander checks his notes]. Sorry. Amyntas survived. Oh, and there he is; my apologies to you [Amyntas laughs]. So, I invite you to rise for the five – four – men we have lost. Raise your arms in prayer.
“Receive the spirits of your brave men, father Zeus! Lead them to Elysium! Where, I pray, Dionysus will give unto them, kraters of never ending wine!”
Epistates: Thank you Aristander. I invite you all to sit and Amyntas to remain standing as he tells us about the current state of recruitment to the SWC

Would sir like to try a selection of our wines?

Would sir like to try a selection of our wines?

Amyntas, Recruitment Officer
“Thank you, Sterling Amyntas. As members know, membership of the Sarissa Wine Club is limited to 500 as a mark of respect – ahem – to the boule of Athens. The sad deaths of the five Amyntoi when added to the twenty-four current vacancies means we have a total of twenty-nine places now available. As the waiting list to join the SWC is nearly fifty thousand I do not anticipate any problems in filling them up!”
“In respect of recruiting practices I can confirm that they have not changed from the tried and trusted method: “Join us, drink out of the sharp end of spear; get drunk, maybe die”.
Sterling Amyntas, epistates: Thank you Amyntas. I now ask Pantaleon, the keeper of the club’s wine sarissas to report on the condition of those in the club’s possession.
Pantaleon, Keeper of the Wine Sarissas
“Friends, as you know, our best sarissas are in the safe keeping of the baggage train. Of those that are with us, I regret to announce that our oldest sarissa – Tethys – has sustained a hairline fracture above the butt. As she is the symbol of the club, I am taking her out of use until a repair can be made [groans from members]
Epistates: That is bad news Amyn— sorry, Pantaleon. Of course, it may not be possible to effect a repair so we must give thought to how to give Tethys a fitting send off. That is for another day, though; Agapios, as keeper of the club kraters, could you now update us on their condition?
Agapios, Keeper of the Kraters
“Sterling Amyntas, friends, I am happy to report that our kraters are all in good shape. The damage that was done to Old Brutal at the last meeting has been repaired and he is fit for use again tonight! [cheers]”
Sterling Amyntas, epistates: That is good news! Well now, we were due to have Linos’ report but I can see him at the back of the meeting and he appears to be in a crumpled heap [unknown member shouts: he may be dead, we’ll check later; or tomorrow, unless we are too! Laughter from members]. Well, who cares about money! [cheers]. Let’s move on to Amyntas, son of Amyntas, our liaison officer with the Sarissa Wine Club Ultras.
Amyntas, Son of Amyntas, Sarissa Wine Club Ultras Liaison Officer
“Thank you, Sterling Amyntas; friends, I stand before you to let you know that for the twenty-fifth meeting following the creation of the Sarissa Wine Club Ultras (SWCU) no negotiations have taken place regarding a re-unification of the two societies. This continues to be on account of the Ultras leadership persistently accidentally killing themselves before we can hold such a meeting. To date, the longest time their epistates has lasted in his rôle is four days. Well, they are the Ultras.”
Sterling Amyntas, epistates: … and they are an inspiration as well as a warning as to what can happen when our love of drinking wine out of a sharp instrument can go too far.
“Well, we must continue to the elections. All the posts except for mine [comedy boos] are up for re-election. I don’t know why my post is exempt; unfortunately, since we lost the club constitution at Gaugamela our adherence to the rules has been a bit hit-and-miss. Anyway, I will read out the office and then candidates’ names. You know what to do!
The first part of the meeting ends. Sarissa Wine Club elections are not carried out in the usual fashion – with ostraka and whatnot. An election is carried out, but it is a formality; the post is effectively given to whoever can take the longest swig of wine out Tethys. At this meeting, since Tethys was out of action, Mnemosyne was used instead.
The current members of the Wine Sarissa executive all retained their posts except for Pantaleon who, unfortunately, drowned in his attempt to ensure his re-election, and Linos who – it turned out – was indeed already dead. Their places were taken by Amyntas and Ptolemois of Aegae.
Sterling Amyntas, epistates: Well, may I be the first to congratulate the senior members on their re-election, and welcome Amyntas of— hm – nothing it seems, and Ptolemaios of Aegae to our council! That’s enough talking. In the immortal words of our founders, let’s drink out of sarissas! [Big cheer].
Here followed the substance of the night with the members (who were around 200 in total) spending the it drinking out of their sarissas and the various kraters, including Old Brutal. A great time was had by all except the six men who died after choking on their wine. These included Ptolemaios of Aegae twenty-three minutes after his election to the council, thus making him one of the shortest lived SWC council members in the club’s history.
Part II to come

Categories: Sarissa Wine Club | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Sarissa Wine Club Minutes

  1. I never cease to be enthralled by your postings no matter what the thrust or subject matter. I think in the past I have told you how much I appreciate your sarcastic wit and irreverant approach to things. While I may not always be knowledgeable of the subject or characters involved good writing seems always to transcend lack of information. >KB


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