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Fear the Ren Fair
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I am not a hateful man. Ask anyone who knows me. I meditate on a semi-regular basis. I chant on occasion. I've even gone and seen the Dalai Lama speak. Twice! And yet there is something that is so awful, such a gash in the leg of humanity, that it literally fills my throat with bile. It fills my heart with hatred. In fact, just the very mention of its name makes me question if there is a God. I've seen this thing. I've looked in it's face and I've lived to tell the tell. Horror, thy name is "Ren Fair."

Now, for those of you who don't know what "Ren Fair" is, you are the lucky ones. You were never dragged out of the safety of your home in the dead of night, driven hundreds of miles into the middle of fucking nowhere so you could sit on a stack of hay and watch gas station attendants and accountants pretend they're King Arthur. You never had to move your way through a sea of "young" maidens, smothered in bad costumes and uncontrolled body hair, so you could pay $27 for a turkey leg. You were probably never forced to watch a puppet show while you're parents tried to re-live their youths by buying overpriced jewelry and speaking in "ye old English". If the words "Ren Fair" are not in your vocabulary, then count your blessings. Because the "Ren Fair", or Renaissance "Pleasure" Fair, as it is so ironically called, is the devil's work. It is a hotbed of frustrated actors and questionable sexuality, where small children are forced to watch the adults around them, their parents included, embarrass themselves, scarring them for life.

Now you may say, Thorin: Did you have a bad experience at "Ren Fair"? Fuckin' A right I did. The year was 1976. Against my will I was forced to be the tail of the "Dragon" in "George and the Dragon". This was not a good experience. I stumbled out of that musky tail upset and confused, which brings me to my point.

Parents. Listen to me. Do not take your child to "Ren Fair"! This is abuse! They will come back hating you for it. No child over the age of 5 likes to sit on hay. They don't like puppets. They don't like the smell of petuli. And most of they don't like to watch their parents making a "ye olde" ass out of himself. At least until the age of 13, children enjoy having respect for their parents. It kind of gets them through those awkward years. Please don't take that away from them by dressing up like a "court fool" with the pointy hat with the bells on it (you know the one). Put the lute and the hackey-sack down. Please! For the love of all that's wholly. Go to Disneyland instead, it's less expensive and a lot more fun. The child you save might be your own.

end of essay
Thorin's hippie mum named him after Thorin Oakenshield (the Dwarven leader in J.R.R. Tolkien's the Hobbit). The only thing that kept him from getting his ass kicked in high school is the fact he's seven feet tall. No shit -- seven feet tall. He's covered in tattoos, married to a Pilates instructor, and the proud father of a boy named Ivan. | more essays by Thorin
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