Friday, September 28, 2012

Ye Olde Renaissance Faire and Boob(e)s

Boyfriend and I went to the New York Renaissance Faire last weekend with our friend, Jen, and good nerdy fun was had by all. It was a brisk autumnal day with crisp clear skies and it was a surprisingly meager turnout for the last day of the Ren Faire season. I appreciated that because I hate crowds and probably have a minor case of agoraphobia (says the girl who lives in NYC.) I saw many of my favorite performers return this season to reprise their roles of past seasons. The singing and stage combat were enjoyable, the humor was full of good old fashion innuendo as always. We watched jousting, and the nun show, and it was so much fun! Boyfriend even bought me a beautiful cloak from M' Lady's Panties (my favorite shoppe at Faire) because he's the best boyfriend ever!  We had a really good day.

Nun Show!!!
However, there are some things I don't understand about Ren Faire. Maybe someone can enlighten me. I know Ren Faire is very tongue-in-cheek and no one is supposed to take it as a serious portrayal of life in the 14th-17th centuries in Europe, but where exactly is the line? Is there one? I totally understand dressing up or cosplay with medieval-themed outfits, armor, bodices, etc. even if it's not necessarily outfits from the Renaissance Era. Boyfriend wore his traditional 12th Century-style Anglo-Saxon garb that he ordered custom made from Europe, (did I ever mention he has a history degree?) and I wore a purple princess hat I bought at a Ren Faire in the past. Hell, we even saw a gaggle of Doctors this year!

One of the Doctors let me hold his Sonic Screwdriver. Giggity.
All this cosplay is in good fun and makes sense...ish.  So, maybe my history is a little rusty or something, or maybe because I only got to go to the Colorado Ren Faire once or twice as a small child that I just wasn't exposed to the "culture" enough to get it, but what is with all the fairy wings? Seriously. I sort of understand little kids wearing them, little kids just like an excuse to pretend it's Halloween. It's cool. But, grown-ass men and women wearing jeans and sweaters and fairy wings?! Really?!

"I'm going to the Ren faire, I can't leave the house without my fairy wings."

Is it because Shakespeare wrote about fairies and the English Renaissance/Elizabethan Era was also during Shakespeare's time? It's a stretch, but maybe I would accept that if someone other than myself rationalized it like that. But, I can't even find one answer to this query, much less a bullshit one I just made up. I've Googled it, and all I can find are people who either make costumes for Ren Faire, or people who complain about how Ren faire isn't an accurate portrayal of the actual Renaissance Era. (Wait. Then, does that mean that Comic Con isn't an accurate portrayal of our nation's crime-fighters?!?! *gasp* My whole world is a lie.) But, seriously why all of the clearly-not-the-same-time-period-yet-alone-same-universe outfits, and why all the wings?

This is totally 15th-century-accurate, right?
Another thing I noticed at Faire but also completely baffles me is girls walking around barely covered. It's the end of September and it's 68 degrees outside, ladies!!! I was in jeans and a coat and/or cloak most of the day and I was freezing!  Maybe it's just like any other "Con" environment where there's bound to be some exhibitionist-types who go out in a crowd to show off their goods for the sake of showing off. (I won't even broach the subject of people who show off their body when no one else wants to see said body. #ThingsThatMakeYouGoBleh) Whatever, I roll my eyes at those people. But, cons are indoor events, Ren Faire is outside in the wind/rain/snow/sleet/sun. Is it some sort of rite of passage that I don't know about, to see who is the most dedicated Faire-goer because they wore the least amount of clothing on the coldest day?  

She wins.
(I actually saw a Faire attendee dressed like this.)
Speaking of barely covered, I am actually shocked that I didn't see any nip slips this year. Shocked. I saw so many pasty white bubbalas overflowing out of much-too-tight corsets like dough rising out of a pan. All those poor tatas were stressed to the point that they all looked like veiny swollen water balloons about to burst. How are these women enjoying themselves?! Boyfriend and I rented costumes at Ren Faire a couple of years ago. He looked dashing in his Robin hood-esque outfit, while and I was most uncomfortable the entire day. Not only could I not breath because of the corset, but my girls were smooshed in a way that mother nature did not intend them to be. To make it worse, at one point while I was adjusting myself, my entire left boob just jumped out of my shirt for all to see. It was at that time that I knew my boobs had had enough and decided to rebel by attempting to expatriate from my body. I loosened my corset as far as it would go and still stay on, while my boobs just sort of hung around all sweaty and cranky and bra-less inside my shirt. I remained self-conscious and only slightly more comfortable for the rest of the day. Not my favorite time at Faire, but I still looked cute!

The aftermath of the Great Boob Rebellion of 2010
(no actual boobs are seen in this photo because they have gone into hiding, and also this is family friendly website, fucking perverts.)
To sum up things I don't understand about Ren Faire:
1) Fairy wings, and B) Is there such thing as "too much boobage" in cosplay?

Ok, fine. Here are some boobs! Are you happy now?!
Not mine


  1. I took my kids to the Ren Faire. It was something fun and different and, of course, I thought I could sneak some education into it one way or another. (plus I just blame everything I want to do on the kids) Now that you mention it, they probably got a pretty interesting anatomy lesson. The girl running the kids'games had her ta-tas up around her neck. Every time she bent over to help with the arrows, balls, prizes, etc I was more than certain they were going to fly out and quite possibly hit her in the face giving her a permanent concussion!

    It was tons of fun though, but I'm now upset that I didn't see the doctor. Now that is totally era-appropriate because the doctor can go anywhere in his tardis! I did,, however, see captain jack sparrow and a whole lot o "shakespearian" fairies. :)

    Love your blog!

  2. Never been to a faire like that, but sounds like a blast.


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