My trip to the Renaissance fair
Today I went to a Renaissance fair for the very first time. I had seen them in movies, like in the hilarious “Role Models” but I had never actually personally witnessed the majesty that is a giant, fenced off area with thousands of dorks pretending that it’s 500 years ago.
Now, I want to be clear that when I say “dorks” in no way do I use that word with a negative connotation. Some of the finest people I’ve ever met in my life were dorks. I certainly have been guilty many times of being a dork myself, and I personally think it’s an honorable distinction. It’s far better to be true to yourself and be a dork than it is to be wishing you had the balls to be one.
I’ve done many dork-worthy things in my day, like for instance I was once in an online “Quake” clan where we would not only play online, but we would meet up from all around the country, hook all of our computers up and play each other in the same room and still refer to each other as our online screen names.
For real. That shit’s pretty fucking dorky.
If you were in denial I guess you could try to argue about video game addicts being dorks. You could point out how cool the games look, or how exciting they are to play, but the bottom line is that if you’re holed up in a room with a bunch of other dudes holding in a wicked mountain dew piss and screaming out in excitement because “CraZe” just gunned down “ReSDog” you’re a fucking dork.
It ain’t a bad thing, but it is what it is.
This Renaissance fair shit however, makes THAT kind of dorky just step aside and bow down with amazement. It’s so ridiculous that it’s absolutely magnificent.
It is a public orgy of group fantasy. A strange, and seemingly unlikely event where thousands of people agreed to gather together to play make-believe for weeks at a time. And they all even agreed on the time period.
Logically, it doesn’t seem like something that would catch on, but it sure as fuck did, and from the looks of it, most of the freaks there were having a pretty good god damned time. I watched as people in their fifties got out of their cars dressed up like Elizabethan nobles with huge smiles on their faces and a spring in their step as they quickly headed towards the gate, eager to join the gang bang.
I was thinking, “when the fuck do these people ever get this excited about anything other than this?”
Now, the whole Renaissance fair thing seems like a funny subject for a scene in a movie, but there’s virtually no way that can compare to the actual real thing happening right before your eyes – especially when you’re higher than Tommy Chong on the moon. Now, I knew that a lot of people there would probably be talking and acting like they’re from the time period, but the sheer number of participants was just overwhelming. There were thousands of people there, and at least 50% of them were dressed up and in character.
“My lord, doth thou not enjoy this fine day of song and drink? Let us raise our goblets and toast to another day thou art above ground! Huzzah!!”
He raised his silver goblet, and I touched it with my diet pepsi. You go, boy.
I ain’t hatin’.
It’s kind of weird to me how one period in time got the Lion’s share of all the fairs.
There’s no cavemen fairs, or Dynastic Egypt fairs but there’s a hundred and fucking eighty Renaissance fairs in this country alone. That’s pretty crazy considering that the history behind this shit occurred overseas. If they have 180 of these things here, how many of them do they have in England? It must be borderline obscene.
I watched these people move from group to group, going up to each other and exchanging in-character greetings. They even played out these little improvised scenes where some pretended to be kings while others were wenches and servants and what have you. They weren’t doing it for an audience either. They were doing it for themselves. They were just getting off on pretending.
I stopped and thought about it, and although I have absolutely nothing against these nice folks, I do think that participation in these fairs should limit your employment possibilities. Like for instance; you can’t be a Renaissance fair enthusiast and also be the vice president of the United States.
Not that you have to be perfect to be the VP – clearly you don’t, but we’ll only allow so many personal flaws. You can be addicted to golf, or have a reputation as an adulterer, or have been a problem drinker in the past, but you can’t be in a parking lot in Temecula dressed up like King Arthur yelling out orders with a turkey leg in your hand. That’s just way too fucked up.
There’s nothing wrong with some harmless pretending, but if people find out that’s what you’re into, no one is gonna want you to perform their brain surgery. And can you blame them? We all know that people occasionally wind up with jobs they’re not supposed to have, like bullies becoming cops or trannys selling make up, so when you find out that the guy flying your plane through a storm spends his days off dressed like a jester, you’re allowed to get freaked.
I was amazed at how well these people stay in character. Most of them were excellent at it. In one interesting moment an old lady broke character and started complaining about her husband not taking his medication, and her friend who had probably heard this boring shit a thousand times in the past stayed in the game and played dumb. “I know not of what you speak of. What is this “prescription” thou refereth to?”
Well played, fake prostitute from 500 years ago, well played. Good for you, keep that selfish bitch in check. Who the fuck does she think she is shitting all over your awesome make believe party with her real life problems. Save that shit for the walk back to the car, cunty.
It made me think, I wonder how long people could keep acting like that? If there was a reality show, and the last person to stay in character won a million bucks, how long do you think people could hold out for?
If they were all living in a house together, and they have to do everything and say everything as if they were living in the 1500′s – how long do you think people could hang in there? That would be a real mind fuck.
I wonder if it would ever just become the new way you think and talk after a year or so.
I bet if the show got popular enough it could even spin off into a new sect of society that choses to live and act like a Renaissance fair 24/7/365. Maybe they could all pool their money together and buy an island where they can all live the dream together.
Weirder things have happened.