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This little piece was a welcome find for a few reasons: (1) Depending on the brand of nerd you are, these are a big deal. Just because they aren’t exactly my brand, I’m open to all things Nerd and should really do my homework, (2) someone totally unexpected at work was talking about an upcoming Renaissance Faire all week and made it sound more like Mardis Gras than make believe, and (3) I recently saw what seemed to by a similarly themed gathering at a park, but everyone was painted blue or in military garb, apparently reenacting Avatar… I immediately wanted to know more but the mere concept was overwhelming; I figured I should ease into it by starting with the better established and now mildly socially acceptable Renaissance Faire.

After making a mental note to investigate the Faires, I
promptly forgot about them and never did any digging. The internet gods know what they’re doing though, because this blog entry from Jamie Lee Curtis Taete on Vice Beta randomly found its way into my “StumbleUpon.” It’s a fitting first-person account from a renaissance virgin.

What the Fuck Is a Renaissance Faire?

By Jamie Lee Curtis Taete

A couple of weeks ago, I went to the Southern California Renaissance Pleasure Faire. A “renaissance faire,” as I’m sure you’ve seen on TV, is a thing people go to where they dress up in olden-dayish clothes, talk in funny voices, and then… Actually, as a Brit, I had no idea what these antiquated Americans do next. That’s why I went along, to see what’s up. I took a camera with me so you could see what I saw.

The first thing that struck me upon arrival was how awkward it was to converse with someone who insists on speaking in that fake old-timey dialect. Are you meant to try to do it back to them? Or do you just continue to speak normally? Each time I had to talk to anyone, I just ended up getting really embarrassed and staring at the floor while mumbling.

I did, however, really enjoy watching people’s confused faces as they tried to apply the olde-speak to the modern world. Like, “Young sire, can thoust insert thy debit card into yonder card-reading contraption?” or, “You there, boy, stepeth to one side and alloweth security to search thy backpack.”

Second thing were the costumes. Which were quite impressive.

But I’m not entirely sure what people’s motivation was for wearing them. From what I could tell, most of them weren’t doing it because they were getting paid. They were just visitors that had gotten dressed up for the day. I can’t imagine that sort of clothing is very cheap. It just seems like an expensive way to go about getting rejected by girls… Read on at Vice