My mini Pennsic

For many reasons Pennsic 39 was a wash out for me this year. There was still a possibility that I’d be able to go out alone for the middle weekend, but that shriveled like my manhood under the gaze of a woman who would not be scorned. So, instead of simply sitting around drinking beer and sulking, we decided to sit around drinking in our tent and sing instead!

Good Times were had by those who attended our mini Pennsic, I think. The “event” started for me on Thursday night, myself having taken off Friday to prepare the yard. By Friday afternoon the tent was set up and skulls and candles were in place for night time festivities. That night was nice, with only one friend and his kids making it out for a little pre-Pennsic party. Most of the fun happened Saturday afternoon into Saturday night as several of my similarly Pennsic-pitying friends showed up to share story and song supplemented by fine food and strong ale.

We found many analouges to Pennsic in my back yard, though the town runs were much shorter and we didn’t have to wait for the honey wagon to clean Mr John. We all commented on how what we really missed about Pennsic the most were all the people who are really almost extended family who we miss very much. We also enjoyed star gazing and the Perseid meteor shower as the night grew older. I spent almost all Sunday out in the tent listening to Ceol na nGael with Eileen Ivers as guest host which made for an absolutely fantastic show and a perfect cap to my personal Pennsic. Finally got the tent down and stowed tonight after work 🙁

Keeping tabs on Pennsic from afar

Now that smartphones are everywhere and seemingly everyone is hooked into the social web, there are a number of different ways to keep tabs on whats going on at Pennsic in real time even from afar. I’ll keep poking around for new links and updating this post as I come across them.

Only bored when you’re boring

We used to quote a line in a punk song when we younger: ‘you’re only bored when you’re boring’ and it’s proven to be a truism. I’ve had just way too much to do lately to spend very much time writing about any of it as well. This entry is really just a summary of several recent activities – although I usually like to put a little more effort into these journal posts, there’s really just too much to say to do it all any justice.

Jamming regularly with Tim, and less regularly with Ned since Imbolc (around Groundhog’s day) blossomed into a CD and a sweet gig of sorts at the feast of Beltaine (what later became May day). We had such a good time at that camping event that we decided to get some more tunes together and go out to Pennsic to play them.

Pennsic http://www.pennsicwar.org is a participatory medieval festival that I haven’t been to for nigh on 8 years, and was as fantastic and otherworldly as I remembered it. My brother and I spent nearly the entire time jamming in various camp-life venues. The night we rolled in, Momus and our new friend Christianna caught us and gave us 10 minutes to dress and grab our intruments out of the car to run up to the Chalkman for their annual talent contest. We went on 11th of 17 acts!

As we were going up on stage (of sorts), the ‘MC’ asked Momus what we called ourselves, and having never thought about it, he burst out, ‘Momus and the sugartits’! (after Ned’s recent favorite Mel Gibson comment to a female police officer). The MC leaned over and said ‘you have three seconds to think of another name’. Fjord later suggested that he should have said ‘OK, Dave and the sugartits’, but instead he blurted out ‘Momus and the Fomorians’ (after the legendary Irish immigrant race). The MC, apparently unaware of this piece of Irish folklore suggested ‘it looks like there’s only Two More-ians’ which brought some serious laughter.

Momus’ tune ‘Whiskey Down’, which mentions the chalkman among many other delights of Pennsic won for originality and we were brought back up on stage for photos and a plaque! The rest of the time we spent jamming in the Clann’s yurt (actually it was Vollund’s Yurt, but was leant to Fjord for Pennsic since Vollund was in Ireland), or just around camp for various guests and gambling night festivities. Blending two of my favorite activities, Medievalism and playing music has allowed me to discover a huge mess of great modern and well as ancient folk music and provided a forum which forces me to practice performance.