Saturday, September 16, 2006

You Don't Say

It is amazing what you can learn when attending a Renaissance festival- from the fairly normal to the slightly silly to the completely ridiculous.

You can see all sorts of demonstrations - glass blowing, chain maille and handmade candles. You also learn that some people still know how to dish out the insults. (This is from a show called Vilification Tennis.) You also realize that some people just don't know what time period the Renaissance is when you see them dressed in Victorian-style dresses.

All that will seem normal compared what I learned about next.

You see, it seems there is a new church in my home state. It is called the Church of the Rubber Ducky. What?!? Ah, yes, those wacky Minnesota Ren Fest people - they went and started their own "church."

While I was walking around, I noticed that quite a few people who worked at various booths had tiny rubber duckies swinging from their costumes. I saw a man with one hanging from his belt. I saw a women with one dangling from a button hole. Finally, I had to ask someone and ended up talking to a girl who was church member #118. (Each duck is numbered on the bottom.) "I'm so glad you are interested in our little church," she said in her Ren Fest drawl.

While I didn't find out too much information regarding the beliefs of this "church," the girl did give me instructions on how to find and recognize the Head Duck so that I could secure my own membership into this new church. While I walked around for the rest of the day, I kept hoping for a glimpse of their leader so I could find out more. I am sorry to report that I failed in my mission.


Bernulf said...

The Church of the Rubber Clucker...ah, Rennies :)

I share your observation that some folks at the renfests seem confused about which historical period they're in...but by the same token, I think that renfests are one of those few environments in America where people really let loose and allow their fantasies to take shape en masse. I usually felt more sorry for the people walking around in plain street clothes than I did the vampire-hunting kobolds from Venus :)

Sojourner said...

Then you must feel sorry for me! LOL

I hate "dressing up." It is not very often that you will find me in a costume - not for a Halloween party and definately not for the Ren Fest.

I do find it more amusing than annoying to see people walking around with strange costumes. I would agree with your observation that this is a place that people are allowed to let loose.

Bernulf said...


My problem with 'dressing up' is that I'm loathe to go back into 'mundane' clothes afterwards. Kilts are simply more comfortable than jeans - although I haven't worn one since leaving America - and I think that decent costuming also looks better than the suits many are expected to wear at work.

Penguin said...

I do believe Vilification Tennis is much more entertaining than Puke & Snot!

I too saw people with duckies and wondered. But, was unable to ask anyone.

Wonder if you and I were standing next to each other & didn't even know it!


Sojourner said...

Penguin - I love VT. As I know many, if not most, of the people that participate in this show, I end up hearing "the best of" the season's insults the rest of the year.

This has got to be one of favorite shows - especially when I see parents covering their children's ears as they get up and leave or the older folks that are so shocked, I wonder if they are going to need medical attention. :)

The funny thing is that I kept an eye out for you, hoping to be able to meet you. :)

Were you there this weekend?