I wasn't trying to say those things don't exist - those are things I personally enjoy in the hobby now. I just think the future is should be pointed more toward them as a positive and healthy direction. As Hank said, it is very hard to do in very small numbers. A pard and I have done 18th century treks in small numbers and the experience was amazing. (I hate that word - my kids say it). However, the vast tracts of forest lend themselves to the 1700s better than the 1800s. The kind of 1sst person Hank does is difficult, and really might not the be cup of tea of all reenactors. As you pointed out, people want to socialize and catch up with people they haven't seen in a while. I think it's fair to set limits on when people should be exected to be "switched on." A time you go live and a time you stop. Civil War reenacting has never developed a cod for telling people you're trying not to break character, speaking "forsoothly," as it were. I remember a wonderful first person experience in which a friend and I were telling deer hunting stories. Each of us was retelling an actual occurance, but with language that didn't break character. Hank's last post gave at least 4 or 5 minable situations for scenarios. I might add, though, that this sort of thing is very hard for beginners. When I was a new reenactor, I knew my history, but not the culture of the history. I'm afraid I'd have spent a long time standing around like an ignorant peasant.
Pine River Boys, Co I, 7th Wisconsin
"We're... Christians, what read the Bible and foller what it says about lovin' your enemies and carin' for them what despitefully use you -- that is, after you've downed 'em good and hard."
-Si Klegg and His Pard Shorty