Renaissance Festival Notes…

Observation:
Writing:


Observation:

This past weekend my wife, two youngest daughters and myself went to the Texas Renaissance Festival. We would have brought the teenagers, but one had to work and the other just didn’t want to go. I think she thought I would be rolling 20 sided dice with a fat guy wearing glue-on elf ears in the pine straw next to the roads. Little did she know that I didn’t carry my twenty sided dice.

While there I noticed some things that I’m sure every one of you have noticed if you’ve ever been to a Renaissance Festival. Though we all notice things that should not occur it still does. I just can’t figure out why, since everyone seems aware of the problem. Well, maybe everyone is not aware of the problem so I will kindly bring these things to your attention here…in list form to make it simple.

  • CHAIN MAIL:Chain mail is a great thing. At one time I’m sure it saved thousands of lives. In today’s world it has little place and is mainly used as costume decorations at Renaissance Festivals. Sometimes it’s worn in the traditional sense (to add to a persons armor giving them more protection and looking cool), sometimes it is simply worn to show off the person’s body in a Zena sort of Amazon woman way. Now, either form of wearing it is great, but when it’s worn in the Zena fashion you HAVE to have an almost flawless figure to make it work. Anything short of flawless and you look like a sausage half-wrapped in a tin-foil mesh then cooked to plumpness, it’s juicy goodness threatening to burst from the metal confines. The basic rule is: If you have flesh hanging over your chain mail then you shouldn’t be wearing the chain mail. Also, if you have cottage cheese thighs you also might think of wearing pants.
  • ALCOHOL:Okay, I know everyone drinks at these things. Heck, I drink at these things. However, when you feel yourself getting loud and obnoxious please do everyone around you a favor and stop drinking. At least shut up! In case you don’t know when you have had too much I will give you a few indicators. When you notice everyone asking you to ‘tone it down’ or when you start using words like ‘penis’ more than five times in a paragraph you might want to consider slowing down on the King’s Ale. When every girl starts to look hot, even the ones overlapping their chain mail, you probably want to put the mug down. If you find yourself talking with a poor southern/English/Scottish/Irish accent with a little Viking thrown in you have probably passed that point where anyone wants to be around you. When you start to sing along with your country and western ring tones on your phone then you need to just find a place to hold up until the world stops spinning. I know, everyone thinks I’m joking, but I had to ride with these drunken dorks on the bus ride back to the hotel. I imagine they are still feeling the pain of their hang over – I certainly hope so…
  • COSTUME:Though I appreciate the effort and it does give the festival a bit of variety, the vampire, steam punk, school girl, manga and cowboy costumes aren’t really appropriate for this type of event. To give you an idea of how this looks, think of going to a wedding dressed as Darth Vader. Nobody would get it, but they would all wonder why while pointing you out to their friends – as if that were necessary. Yeah, it could happen, but everyone would frown on it – unless it was a Star Wars wedding or something and if I’m not geeky enough to go there I doubt there are many people who are.
  • FAIRIES:In this instance the word ‘fairy’ doesn’t equal ‘gay’ so there is no need to put yourself out on a limb by acting the part. If you are gay and want to be a fairy then that is great. If your not gay and want to be a gay fairy then you might want to talk to someone about that as there could be something about yourself that you really need to know…
  • TURKEY LEGS:Eating a turkey leg at this event is a must to really get into the Renaissance mood. If you really want to feel Renaissancie then don’t use a napkin and leave the grease on your chin. You might even want to season it with a little dirt as I’m sure very little food was eaten back then that didn’t have at least a little dirt in it.
  • PLASTIC:You might not realize this, but plastic and metal look completely different and no amount of spray paint will make your costume look less cheap. I can’t explain it, but for some reason, no matter what you do to it, plastic always looks like plastic. Even at a distance it looks like plastic. So, if you are going for that ‘cartoonish’ Renaissance look then by all means, wear a plastic breast plate, shield and helmet. Heck, if you want to go the extra mile throw in some plastic horns to give your helmet that Ken doll Viking look. It worked for Elmer Fudd in the ‘Kill the Wabbit’ opera cartoon. However, no one will ever take your barbarian butt seriously unless you go the extra mile and use good old fashioned steel.
  • UNWORKABLE COSTUMES:I’m talking to the centaur guy here. You might not realize this, but standing up in a horse costume only works for the front legs. So, those wheels you have on the back legs makes the costume look silly and wooden. Might I make a suggestion here? Hang a handicap sticker to the back of the horse’s butt and pretend the wheels are a prosthesis. The costume will still be silly, but at least now there will be a good excuse for the back of the horse to look like it was used in the siege of Troy. A final suggestion has occurred to me. Find a buddy to fill in the back half of the horse. This will have to be a good buddy that trusts you though because nobody, and I mean nobody, wants to be leaned over behind a guy in an enclosed space all day. Yeah, just scratch that second idea…

    Note: I might be extra harsh about this particular costume out of jealousy, because if I were to make such a costume I would look like the shetland pony version of a centaur.

  • DUNKING BOOTH:Stay away from this place! It is full of fork tongued harpies who will make you cry and wish you were never born.

    Okay, in case you don’t know what I’m talking about, there is a place at the Texas Renaissance Festival where you don’t need to go unless you have a fantastic sense of humor or strong self esteem. It’s the dunking booth, where a scantily clad woman sits on a bench over a pool of water. She teases good folk until the good folk get fed up and, for a small fee, are allowed to throw bean bags at a target in the hopes of dunking their tormentor. Don’t throw below the target or she will make fun of your manhood. Don’t throw above the target or she will claim that you were too eager. She will make fun of your lack of hair and the girth of your waist. The clothes you have on and the attractiveness of your wife could even fall prey to her vile tongue. The women throw the bean bags out of rage, sometimes aiming at the harpy on the bench instead of the target, but I think most of the men are doing it to watch the scantily clad tormentor climb, with wet clothes clinging to every curve, up the ladder.

  • MORALS:If you are easily offended or don’t have a taste for lewd jokes and comments then the Renaissance festival is no place for you. Seriously, I saw a woman get mad when a nut vendor asked her if she ‘would like to try the king’s nuts’. I image it was an extremely long day for her.

Plague, now available at Amazon


Writing:

The Haunted Brothel is now available from Purple Sword Publishing and Amazon for the Kindle…

BLURB:
The Regent hotel is about to open as a ghost walk, packed with terrorizing special effects along with actors dressed as zombies, werewolves, and vampires. There’s only one problem. The Regent seems to really be haunted. That’s not a problem for a young group of ghost hunters. Nancy’s the group’s think tank and can solve mysteries in her sleep. If muscle is needed Tony is the young Adonis who’s not only into heavy lifting, but also a big hit with the ladies. Tina is a paranormal investigator who is into Tony almost as much as she’s into herself while their technician is a stoner with a Bassett Hound that can talk, though nobody else can hear his words. The Regent is their first assignment, and these young Paranormal Investigators will learn ghost hunting is scarier than it looks on television while they find out more about each other.

EXCERPT:
Dwayne stood next to the stairs as the group climbed up and left him behind. He didn’t mind. All this ghost stuff was stupid anyway. Dwayne only hung out with the group because he didn’t have anything better to do, plus the van was pretty cool, two tone green with Paranormal Investigations Group painted on the side in black. It looked like a good place to smoke a little weed if he could get a moment or two by himself. Hell, a green two-tone van was made just for that purpose.

He smiled and scratched Randy behind the ears. Most dogs liked that, but Randy didn’t seem to give a damn one way or the other. Lazy bastard. The dog had a lazy streak, but so did Dwayne. They had been together for two years, best of friends. Dwayne just wished everyone else could understand Randy as well as he could, though Randy didn’t seem to talk much when other people were around. Dwayne figured Randy had a shyness about him. Of course sometimes Dwayne had trouble understanding the Bassett Hound, too. The dog seemed to make the most sense when Dwayne smoked a joint or two, and mushroom tea turned the animal into a blabbering idiot who not only talked incessantly, but also wore strange outfits. Dwayne couldn’t ever figure where he got them from, and he only wore them when Dwayne drank mushroom tea. Maybe there was a connection. He would have to think on that.

Randy groaned as a dorky guy with a broom and bowl style haircut walked past. The fellow gave Dwayne a crooked smile, and he replied with a timid wave.

Mr. Krager called down from upstairs. The man cringed, tilted his head down to his feet and walked up the stairs and out of Dwayne’s line of sight. The stairs creaked under his weight.

Dwayne scratched Randy’s ears some more. “We’re gonna have to find out where that guy gets his hair done and make sure never to go there.”

“Hey.”

Dwayne looked up and into the red eyes of a zombie. He screeched and tumbled backwards onto his butt. Randy groaned and squirmed as Dwayne’s leg fell over the dog’s back.

“Didn’t mean to scare you.” The zombie giggled as it stuck its hand out to help Dwayne to his feet.

Dwayne decided that this was no ordinary zombie. First of all, the thing had boobs, not a bad trait for a rotting undead creature and something that he could certainly work with. Secondly the zombie had a pretty smile, thick lips and beautifully white teeth, not the type that one would sink into the living’s neck…

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~ by bretjordan on October 18, 2010.

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