After belmikey showed me some of the "hitting people with sticks" potential of the SCA, I took the bait and went to "It's Only a Flesh Wound", an SCA fighting event that was held in Jefferson, WI on Saturday. I had a lot of fun, and the short version is that I'll probably end up doing it again.
Belmikey and I were good road trip partners - we belted out all the lyrics to the Chess soundtrack, then a random song mix he'd made for the trip. That was good entertainment. We got to Madison around 4pm, and went almost directly to Ella's Deli for noodle kugel and other yummies. I actually went to high school not much more than 15 miles north of Ella's, so it was fun to be in my old stomping ground. Too bad they got rid of the Wil-Kil sign - it seems kinda wrong that I can't use that place as a landmark anymore. The company appears to have moved to Milwaukee, but the sign was iconic. It was a neon flashing sign, alternating between a rat and a fly. I used to know someone who lived above the Wil-Kil shop, and he insisted that he never needed screens in the winter because flies and mosquitoes would literally drop dead a few inches from the window sills. I tend to think that if he had been telling the truth, he would have been poisoned himself within a few days, but who knows. I never tested it out.
Anyway, after a night that could have been more restful (poor belmikey left a crucial part of his CPAP at home and simply couldn't get to sleep) I drove (belmikey's driver's license also having been left at home) to Jefferson for the event.
It was pretty full, mostly with armored men and a few women (yay Sir Rochine, one of the few female knights in the society!), getting ready to take practical classes taught by a dude named Duke Paul, who is apparently from CA and famous for his skillz. I would have liked to take part, but I'm not fight qualified for the SCA. Once the fighting started, I was wishing even more that I could pick up a rattan sword and beat on things. It made a *terrific* noise, all those people clashing into each other, metal armor and wooden shields and rattan swords frightening the children and one extremely unhappy dog.
They had several different kinds of tournaments: a speed tourney, where the idea was to get through a lot of people in a really short time, and then some regular double-elimination tournaments - great sword, florentine, great axe, banner bearer and mixed weapons. It all looked like a ridiculous amount of fun, and people were in general very nice and extremely safe. Still, a lot of the armor and weapons were repaired with *duct tape* on the field, which certainly works, but ... eep.
Belmikey did a bunch of heralding, which involves loudly telling people what to do and where to do it. Poor man had much less of a voice by the end of the day, when I drove back to the hotel, we got out of garb and went out for extremely good Italian food. I ate all of my tiramisu and some of belmikey's. Ha!
This morning, we had breakfast at Ella's again, with some of belmikey's in-laws, who seem to be highly entertaining people. We took I-90 to LaCrosse and then north along the river on 61. It was a really pretty trip, and we bopped out to more music, including the soundtracks to Avenue Q and Hair, which made me really happy. I didn't start flagging until the sun started going down, but I'm really glad I'm home now. I imagine tonight will be a early bedtime, since I'm exhausted.
Short version is that I'll likely try out fight practice this Tuesday, and maybe even rapier practice on Wednesday. I'm such a geek.