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Patron Comments Participant come-backs
What's under your Kilt? "Ultimate dumb patron come-back story"

Dumb patron Come-back Stories

The best (or worst depending on how you view them) participant comebacks to patrons. While I'll don't recommend hitting the visiting public with such zingers, it's terribly hard to resist sometimes.
You have to remember that smart-assed comebacks can sometimes bite back. Our group traditionally roasted a whole lamb at our last outdoor event each season. Of course, the public would ask what it was, and one of the lads replied it was "Shep" -with the result that a police officer appeared saying that someone complained that we were cooking a dog...
My father in law is a rendezvouser, and once he had a young man of around twelve years old in his tent. The young man sat down on his bed, neatly covered with a Hudson Bay blanket, and said, "So, where do you sleep?" My father in law looked at him and said, "We hang from the ridgepole by our toenails, son." And the boy simply nodded, as if accepting his wisdom.....
Several Submitted from the U.K.
a group of 17th Century re-enactors at the large annual multi-period multi-group event that we used to have at Kirby Hall. A tourist saw some children playing in kit and asked "Are those real Children?" To which she got the reply "No, they're special animatronic children on loan from Steven Spielberg. Please don't touch them - if they break, we might get sued for millions of dollars" The woman went off quite happy....

Or my own (I seem to attract the idiots - whereas other guys are getting historians and TV producers dropping by for a chat, I seem to have a tattoo on my forehead that says 'Ask silly questions here') when I had this kid coming up and asking "Is that sword real?" He continually asked this every two minutes for the better part of an hour, egged on by his family who thought this hysterically funny. Eventually good manners escaped me and I sad "No, it's not real. It's a figment of yor imagination. Go home and lie down".

Or the classic foreign tourist. This was a lady from the US who was with a party of tourists from the United States, and to be fair, the rest were asking the kind of good intelligent questions we like to answer. However, proving the rule that every silver lining has a dark cloud, she then engaged a friend of mine, Ian, in what ahs got to be the most memorable conversation I've ever heard:
Woman: Are those horses from Americ
a? Ian: No they're Irish thoroughbreds
Woman: But they originally come from America, right?
Ian: No, these are Irish, although I think there's Arab in a couple of them somewhere.
Woman: But all horses come from America?
At this point, all the other tourists are looking at her in a "What the hell is she about to say" kind of way Ian: Erm, no
Woman: Oh get real! Everyone knows Europeans didn't have horses until they were brought over from America!
Ian: I'm sorry, but I'm afraid that's untrue. Haven't you seen the pictures of Romans on horseback?
Woman: But that doesn't mean they had them in Europe, does it?
Ian: Excuse me. I am going to have to leave now before I kill you


During the usual hot, humid summer in Iowa, I had a touron ask me if I was hot wearing all those clothes. I answered with, "yes, but I get too burnt if I don't wear clothes."
Lady Violette, IA
My lord and I were wearing early period garb while driving to an SCA event in Massachusetts some years back, and stopping for gas, we were greeted with the usual jeans-clad gas station clerk asking "Why are you wearing such funny clothes?" To which my darling husband, without missing a beat scratched his head and replied, "Funny, we were just about to ask you the same thing!"
Lady Lyllydd. IL
MN Ren Fair: A man thought he was being funny by asking me if I could "spin a good yarn". I showed him the fox tail I was wearing and said "Yes, but I don't tell a good tale." As he walked away a family member said "She got you."
Rilla the Spinner
The two best responses I've heard (and used) to the perennial question, "Are you in a play?" are:
1. Yes, ma'am. "Death of a Salesman."
2. No, God told us to dress this way.
J. L. , FL
As part of a family oriented French and Indian unit, we often chipped in and had a "community meal" on Saturday evenings while at rendezvous. At one event in Indiana we had a goodly sized turkey cooking on our camp fire from early in the morning. By about three in the afternoon, the smell of our supper was trailing all around the campsite. The sutler from across the trail walked over and related an incident that he just had with a patron...
"Excuse me, I hate to sound dumb,: she said, "but is that a real turkey they're cooking over there"? His response was..."Ma'am it's too late, and yes, it's real". He didn't make a sale, but was rewarded with a plate of our meal with all the fixings that evening.
Chris Who is called Leary, IL
This summer some good friends of mine got a few fest gigs in some faires down in IA. They're the Musketeers and I was Porthos' lead wench. After months of fighter's practice the Musketeers, Cardinal's guards (the bad guys) and a handful of wenches made it down to a tiny fest in Waterloo IA. Durning the final fight of the weekend everyone on the grounds was watching in a large circle. We had been waiting all weekend for this master fight planned perfectly with multiple fighters and great bantering. 30 seconds into this long choreographed battle everyone hears a 'tink' sound as we see a foot and a half of one man's sword go dangerously spinning/flying through the air. Luckily, it landed in the center of the battle ground far from any of the spectators, and all the while having a very cool 'Braveheart' effect as it stuck straight into the ground. The two guys glanced at eachother momentarily as we all whispered under our breaths: "Oh #!@$".
He only stalled for a second until yelling "Sword! Give me your sword!" to one of his cronies and the fight continued on without a hitch. After the fight a family came up to me wide eyed and dumbfounded and asked how in the world we were able to choreograph such a dangerous battle. "Well you see, I responded very seriously, they're profesionals".
Abella Descartes. Queens, MNRF, MN
One more from my days as a Massachusetts SCAdian. My housemate was taking me to my first event, in borrowed garb, when came the inevitable stop for gas and sodas. Along with the stop came the equally inevitable, "Excuse me, are you in a play?"
"Yes" shot back my lady hostess, unperturbed.
"Mind if I ask which one?"
We both responded in unison on this one with the time-honored classic "Death of a Salesman!" Whereupon the questioning mundane backed away slowly. Turns out he was in sales...
Lady Lyllydd, IL
As I was mending the gate of our guild yard at Santa Barbara, a woman sees me hammering away at a stake, and offered the following:
"Oh, you're a handyman? I've got some problems with my plumbing."
..wait for it...
"Well, ma'am, my tent's right over there, I'll be with you in five minutes..."
It took her about 45 seconds before her breathing returned to normal. The scarlet flash in her cheeks, however, lasted for about 5 minutes.
Matthew, CA
I am Native American (American Indian) and I participate in a great number of Pow Wows in New York and New Jersey. I can relate to many of the foolish and ignorant questions that you are asked. The best two I have are:
One child asked me if I was a "real" Indian, I answered, "No, I just play one on T.V."
I dress in cloth regalia and a woman asked me where my "buckskin dress was" I told her, "It's at the cleaners."
Morning Star, NY
I'm a member of the military guild at Renaissance Pleasure Faire North. I play a landsknecht (read: German mercenary), and one of my props is a huge, two-handed sword called a zwiehander. Walking down the main street at fair with my prop, every idiot (both patrons and actors) who have barely heard of Freudian psychology look at the sword and make the obligatory joke, "You know what they say about men who carry big swords . . ." After trying to graciously bow out for the fifth time, my wit got the better of me. I started replying with:
-- "They carry big scabards."
-- "You dress them in skirts and call them Scotsmen."
-- "Even Freud said, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."
-- "Men with small penises have a tendency to remark about them."
-- "It's not compensating. It's advertising."
-- "Let's have your lady friend come with me and find out."
-- or I walk up to them and ask, "No. What do they say?" Usually they're flustered and just stare at me. How dare I stop and ask as if I do not know! :-)
A landsknecht, CA
I am a doscent with the California State Parks and do living history lprograms on a regular bases. One of our big events is on fathers day weekend; where we do the mid 1800s of california. At the end of our first day (Saturday)we have a big pot luck where everyone tries to out do one another with their cooking. I was cooking a pig (this was a wild pig that I had just harvested two days before) when a park visitor came up and make the normal comments Ie what are we doing here and do we do this every weekend. After asking me two times what I was cooking and getting the same answer each time she again asked me what I was cooking I answered witha straight face "GREYHOUND". Satisfied she went off and said no more.
Redeye - CA
My husband is an Interpretive Ranger at a military park who frequently acts as tour guide and living history demonstrator for schoolchildren. One question he gets frequently is "How did they go to the bathroom?" to which he answers, "They dug a trench and everyone squatted over it. If you stray off the trail you might fall into one!" After that the children are extra careful to stay on the trail.
Another question is, "What did they use for toilet paper?" which he answers by holding up his left hand. He then explains that's why people shake hands with their right hand, at which point he offers the children crowding around him his left hand. The children then stand back and give him room.
It was on a faire on a castle, and one friend of mine (who's about 5'8'' -- trust me, this is going to be relevant) had just gotten his brand-new made-to-fit full plate armour from the smiths. He was posing in a niche by the stairway, when two patrons, father and son, came up the stairs. They stopped. Looked at the shiny new suit of plate armour standing in the niche, and finally the father knocked on the helmet and said, "See, they were that short back then."
Answering voice from within the suit of armour: "They aren't much taller today..."
inge
Overheard at Gettysburgh " Why were all the battles of the Civil War fought on National Park Land ? "
Answer by re-enactor " well it's expensive to rent private land for a battle . "
-NY
Comments: For us, you are never a true practitioner of what we call "Pacifist Warfare" until you've been asked: "Are you in a band or something?" The usual answer is "I'm in an 'or something.'"
Maior Grigorii B.
A couple years ago at the Big Island Rendezvous-
I was spinning some kind of dog and jokingly told the class I was "spinning puppy". Kali saw one of the children start crying and break away from the crowd so she followed and overheard the childs teacher/mother? calming the child with-----
"It's okay, the puppy was probably already dead when they shaved it."
-Just for the record; a dog groomer saves the fluffy grooming bits for me. And patrons bring me donations, too.
Rilla/
Milady, myself and a friend were heading to a Civil War re-enactment near Mount Dora, and decided to stop at a Denny's for breakfast on the way. Our friend made a big impression with her hooped green plaid Civil War dress and bonnet in this somewhat rural area, but not more so than with one lady who timidly approached our table and asked if we were Amish. We let her down nicely, noting that we were on a pilgrimage to Disney World.
Matt Dragonfly Drury, FL
My friend Chris went to the CoRF (Colorado Renaissance Festival) with me, and she's brand-new to faire and this was her second faire event. Chris has been blessed with long, thick, naturally red hair that caught the attention of some patron obviously thinking he could pick her up with the brilliant line of: "I didn't know they had redheads during the Renaissance."
Chris looked at him straight-faced and said, "You're right, they didn't. Redheads didn't come along until the invention of technicolor in the 1950's."
Shannon, CO
This is the best "Is that real" story I have ever heard! Although I did not witness this happening, a very dear friend gave me this account of what happened to her one day at the Minn. Renaissance Festival. __ is the stage manager for The Gypsy Stage and Wizard's Hill and is dressed as a gypsy herself. An obviously alcohol stupored "biker chick" approached __ with an extended index finger and proceeded to bounce the said finger upon the __'s exposed cleavage stating, "Are those real?"
I don't remember what __ did or said, but I would have been tempted to say, "No, but you can purchase them from Frederick's of Hollywood!"
Rosalily, MN
Comments: I met my GF, Cyndie online. We were pleased to find out that we both love Faire. So, when we decided to meet for the first time we picked TRF which is her home Faire. This was my first time to both TRF and Texas. It was a rainy day but we both wore our garb. As we pulled into the parkinglot I noticed a large lack of garb. In fact, we were the only ones that seemed to be garbed. Well, as we were getting our stuff together to go inside I heard this teenaged voice behind us drawl, "Damn, Pa! Look at what the hell they're a wearin!" I turn around and there is this kid and his family staring at us like we had three heads. This was my welcome to both TRF and Texas.
One for the Participant comebacks: "Hey! Are you guys entertainers?" "Why, are you feeling entertained?" "Not really." "Well then, there you go!"
Fubar of the HillPeople, CA
Another "Aren't you hot" reply, one that has the virtue of not being a put down to the patron.
I reply, "Well, aren't you hot?"
They say, "Why, yes."
I conclude, "Well, as long as you're going to be hot anyway, you might as well look good."
Gary H, IL
I recently started playing a half-Fae warrior named Pooka, which is a horse-type of faery. So, of course I constantly get the "Is that real?". It generally leads to a whole lot of fun!
Well, a couple months ago I was up at the opening weekend of the Bristol Renaisance Faire in Wisconsin and I'm happily minding my own business when I feel this tugging behind me. Of course, I whirled around, grabbed my tail and in the most indignant brogue you can imagine, demanded of this extremely startled 10 or 12 year old boy, "STOP PLAYIN' WI' ME TAIL!"
Pooka, GA
Pick-up lines
This has happened to me several times in the past few years, after the first time I came up with the "perfect" answer; Two pre-teen to early teen boys accompanied by similar-aged girls they are trying to impress come up to me & #1 boy says "what's your phone number?" I say "I know not what you mean m'lord" then #2 boy says "Yes what's your E-mail address?" I turn to the girls & say (you will like this): M'ladys, why are you being punished? to which they reply usually "We are not, why?" "Then why are you being forced to travel with your village idiots?" I then bow & walk away.
In my home group, I play a French Marine during the F&I war. I am frequently invited to participate in Revelutionary War re-enactments at other State Parks around the South East, in which case I simply portray the same character (later in life) assisting American Colonial Militia. It was at one of these events that I was treated to a most scathing participant comeback. A boy of about 12 years of age was pestering the beejeez out of one of the Militiamen. For a long time, the poor guy maintained his composure while battling dehydration in the hellish heat, and answered the boy's questions about the mock battle we had just put on. The usual questions, the usual answers; "We get shot, we fall down, the Indians loot our bodies, game over." The boy finally sneered "OH! So everything you guys do is fake!" My friend lost his temper and snapped "Fake? The f---kers took all my ammo and didn't give it back!" You could almost HEAR the poor kid's eyes blinking in astonishment.
-Jean B., AL
Conspiracies...
Several years ago, my first wife Judy and I were at a Rev War event somewhere in the Chicago area. Judy was confined to a wheelchair, and could thus not escape some of the stranger "tourons" (tourist/morons, that term, by the way, is at LEAST 15 years old). The dreaded "Blue Haired Lady" caught her. The BHL asked her who we were and what we were doing.
Judy gave the standard speech -we're history buffs who, at our own expense, came to this and other events, to try to teach a little history, and to raise the interest in history among the tourons... (Judy is MUCH too polite to actually call a touron a touron to his face).
The BHL said, appoximately, "Yes, yes, I've heard that story. Now what's the REAL TRUTH...?"
Judy had discovered the final stage of flatlandership -theConspiracy Theorist Touron. She told the BHL the same standard speech a dozen times that afternoon. The BHL continued to demand the Real Truth. Finally, just before closing, Judy whispered to the BHL to come down the ropes a wee way, and she would REVEAL ALL. Even Judy had her limits... She told the BHL that we men were all inmates from an insane asylem, that we had been GOOD, so they had let us out to play with our guns, that the ladies in the camp were nurses and psychologists assigned to watch us. The BHL escaped from the GREAT DANGER, never to be seen again.
Lewis, Indiana
Aren't you hot?
The classic question, and I have found the best reply is to say "No, we wear a liquid cooling suit underneath this just like the NASCAR drivers."
You'd be amazed at how many of them buy it, even when you are dripping with sweat.
There was also the time someone compained about our hides and my ever diplomatic [not] partner pointed to the vinyl shoes he was wearing and reminded him that "they were brought to you by the same mother f---ers who brought you the Exxon Valdiz."
We all have lines we draw - hopefully we can respect each others without kicking shins...
-C., NY
Is that a real fire? -No, not really. We have a gas line running from a propane tank in the parking lot.
Real Life Dumb People
At KCRF (Kansas City Ren Fest) a man walked up to our counter with his two children. I should note here that we sell knives--big, sharp, pointy ones! Any way, Dad picks up a big ole knife and examines it, then hands it to the 2 year old baby he's carrying. Baby then swings knife around and tries to lop-off her brothers head! At this point, my husband reaches across the counter, snags the knife from the baby and asks the man to leave saying "Sorry sir, your just not smart enough to own one of my knives." We lost a customer that day, but no doubt saved someones life!
- Lady Claymore
Is that a real fish?
I read this in an English re-enactment periodical called Revival and it's to good not to pass on. A woman comes upon a soldier cooking a fish over a fire and of course says,"is that a real fish?" To which the soldier replies,"no ma'am,it's not a real fish, it's a specially trained stunt fish. This is far too dangerous for a real fish."
-Elwyn Gunn

We were camping in a beautiful spot by the river under the walls of Warwick Castle in England portraying fifteenth century soldiers and their families. On a hanger by the fire we had two fish. A family approached and we overheard the small boy say to his father "are those fish real Dad?" Dad proceeded to tell him how nothing was real and everything was plastic and or fake in some other way. We interrupted him "actually sir the fish are real. They are especially trained stunt fish, our pets actually. We have to dip them in the river every twenty minutes or so or they suffocate that's why they are on the hanger..." This member of the great british pubic took it "hook, line and sinker" and was heard to say to his boy as he walked away - "see son I told you they were real!"
Tinker, UK


Is that real fire?
An acquaintence of mine was onstage, preparing to do a bit of fire-eating, when a patron in the audience asked "Is that real fire?" Without missing a beat, Bob replied, "No, it's that new artificial fire you've been hearing so much about."
I was working a crossbow game near the tiltyard at a Renaissance festival, and the following really happened, just after a joust. Him: Hey, are those real horses?
Me: Nay, good sire, they are in sooth goats wearing horse costumes.
Him: Yeah, that's what I thought.
- Jeames of York
Is That Real?
Patron, on a hot day at RPFN, (Renaissance pleasure Faire Northern)looking at me sprawled in the shade fanning myself... points to my 8-months-along belly and asks, "Is that.... real?"
After a brief shocked stare, I answered, "Why in the world would anybody want to *fake* this?"
- Capi
(Asked by a VERY uptight-looking woman after watching me "wench" in my best fitting bodice) "Doesn't it bother you that all the men here are looking at your breasts?"
I answered "Well, no, in fact it kind of excites me." She turned several shades of red-to-purple and marched away, leading her husband by the sleeve (almost broke his neck to get a long last look...)
- Lady Claymore
"Was Mary Queen of Scots a Jacobite?"
We were asked that at an 18th C. event at Carlisle Castle a couple of years ago. We said we were sure she would have been, if she'd had the option. The vister then saw the hand-stitched blackwork embroidery my wife had on her blouse and said "Neat! I have a sewing-machine program that does that!". My wife put her teeth together and said "No you don't!"
-Duncan fae Loudouns
A few years ago our group was in Iowa for a small Ren Fair. As our group is rather large once again we had been camped out in a large hayfield without trees. The heat index was out of this world and many of our group had been suffering the effects of the heat, two member ended up packing and going home because they where so ill. The only water sourse was a good 150 yds or better away. New to the group, I did not have a demo to do so I took it upon myself to haul water back and forth all day. With two full buckets, perhaps my 4th trip in the last half hour, a women asks to take a picture because she thinks its cute im playing "water girl". I grudgingly smiled for the photo and informed her I am certainly not playing but this is a great need since we have members collapsing from the heat.
A little later that day doing as much as I can for the group, I am on my knees scrubbing a big old cast iron pot that had pea soup made in it. Nasty job! The woman appears again with cammera in hand and tells her children "oh, isnt this cute she is washing the pot". Now I'm in no mood to clean this pot, the heat has me cranky, Im worried about fellow members, I'm sure the look on my face was less than social. While she took her picture I said if she would like to help and experiance how we play I'd be more than happy to let he have her fun. She asked why I would bother doing demos of washing dishes, I sharply replied "ma'am, if i don't make sure this pot is clean my group will be violently ill. If the Provost comes about and see's everyone throwing up and fainting with fever he will shut the town down and declair a plague. Her eyes widened and she quickly pulled her children away saying there hasn't been a plague in Iowa that she can ever remember and the school has never required her children to have shots for plague.
-Katie MacBurney "wench"
Sometimes you just tell the truth
About 15 years ago at the Texas Ren. Festival, I was watching two very skilled actors doing a quarterstaff battle. One was doing an overhead block from a one knee on the ground position when his staff broke, leaving him with two sharp, splintery sticks, and a terrified, panicked, " what do we do NOW?" look. They covered very well. He used both sticks to repel his opponent, rose to his feet, selected the longer of the two sticks and discarded the other, and they faked a (very 8-)) short quarterstaff vs. singlestick bout to finish the act.
Afterwards, a member of the audience asked "How do you get the the staff to break at just the right point in the battle". Our worthy protagonist tried to bluff it through. "Well, you see these are very special staves, with a designed in weak point, and if you hold your hands just right and twist....." at which point he lost it and admitted that it had been a totally unplanned accident.
David Gallowglass
A few excerpts from the 'Guide to Idiot Questions' of Regia Anglorum, a UK based dark ages group.
Q "Did you make that sword yourself"
A "Yes, I have a fully equipped forge in my bathroom."

Q "Why has your spear got a metal knob on the end?"
A "Since we discovered killing people for a hobby was illegal."

Q "Do you do this all the time?"
A "Yes, last week I was having sex with my girlfriend and knocked all her teeth out with my axe."

OK, so not all these answers may actually have happened, but the temptation is always there.
-Simon K.


Behind the Asylum
I'm involved with the SCA and every year in July we have a war called Mele Maddness. So named because it is held up behind the local asylum (there is a castle there). About four years ago a lady was taking a jog and stopped infront of our castle and turned to me (because i had not yet changed out of my mundanes )and asked if they were the patiants. I replied "yes they are, we have to let them out once in a while." She accepted it calmly and walked away.
-B. Magee
Civil War Dumb Questions
I'm standing at "support arms" with my Parker-Hale Enfield musket, in shiny black Jefferson booties, sky blue kersey wool trousers, Federal blue sack coat and forage cap. Up comes J.Q. Publik and asks me, "what side are you supposed to be, north or south?"
Rather rudely, I say "I'm one of Quantril's Raiders."
"That's what I thought," he said and walked off.
- B. Marks
Is that a real sword?
I finally heard the best comeback to "Is that a real sword?" while at a Renaissance Fair that I was visiting.(No, I won't name the actor or fair) The Actor in question kept a very well done fake severed head on his hip under his cloak.When asked the obvious question he would bring it forth while saying "dunno, let's ask him" The public reactions were priceless. -WRI
What's worn under the kilt?
  • "Shoes..."
  • "Nothing is worn, everything is in perfect working order."
  • "For 500 pence I could give you a guided tour." (NOTE: I made gas money this way once)
  • I'm a man of few words -give me your hand.
  • If you're lucky, just a wee bit of lipstick.
    I've been a reenactor for many years doing a variety of eras and for the last ten years or so I've also been a teacher. For a number of years my school taught a curriculum which included a unit on the Vikings as the discoverers of North America. So one day with my principals blessing (you never know these days how you'll be treated if you show up at school armed) I gave a historical second person interpretation of a Norse sailor from Leif Eriksson's ship. I was kitted out from head to toe in linen and wool, turn shoes, armor helm, weapons, and all really good historical kit. The kids were really impressed by the realistic outfit. (It always helps when your stuff has seen years of use), except for this one smart ass. He kept interrupting, asking me if I'd like to fight him. I must have been doing a pretty convincing job talking about Viking customs in the first person, because the second time he interrupted me I spun around and had the sword out and pointed at him saying "you want to fight right now-sure". The kid planted his posterior in the seat and didn't say another word for the rest of the class. His homeroom teacher told me later she was cheering when I did that.
    A. I. Mychalus (aka Andrey Ihorsson), Maryland
    Accents
    I was working a Highland games in Glendale CA. and had a bit of a problem with a patron. You see, we're not supposed to talk to the patrons in accent, some being from the Island and all. Well I had visited the bushmills tasting booth, numerous times, and did not notice that I had " let my brogue slip". So there I was, scaring vehicles into submission with a Jeddard staff (I was playing crossing guard), when a gentleman and his family approached me.
    "Excuse me sir," he said in a fine accent," but I was wonderin' what part of Scotland yer from?"
    -"Well sir, yeh see I'm not from Scotland. I'm from L.A."
    "OH! Yeh got a NICE L.A. ACCENT!!" To which he stormed off with his family. Side note. It took me 10 minutes to get my friend who had witnessed this event off the ground laughing.
    The Origin of the Flower
    While walking up to front gate at Southern Faire, I and my companion (wholly new to Faire) were passing by the Braided-Flower-Wreath booth. She pauses, and looks up at me and softly asked "Are Flowers period?".
    With a deadpan expression, I responded "Nope, they weren't invented until the 17th century, by a Frenchman named DeFleur". About 20 steps further down the road, the tears started welling up in my eyes, the recognition kicked into hers, and it was at that point she decided to hit me.... :)
    -Domenico
    Hot clothing
    After 25 years reenacting and 12 years of full time living history interpretive work, I believe I've heard the penultimate response to "Are those clothes hot?" Bout five years ago at one terribly hot G'burg reenactment, a very young (read as not jaded) man in our unit was asked that infuriating question. He just smiled, shook his head and said "Naw..Clothes are fine." And as the inqisitor turned away somewhat disapointed, he added, almost as an afterthought, "I'm a might warm though".
    -C. Schreiber
    Kid in a mall
    Well, one day at the So. Cal. Ren. Faire we had some old friends we hadn't seen in a while who were coming out for the first or second weekend (this was in '93). We were all geared up... and subsequently rained out. So, we decided to run off and go to "Much Ado About Nothing" After the movie we went to the mall next door and were walking around in costume. We were in line trying to get cookies at Mrs. Fields. I feel this tug on my pants. I look down and see this little boy. He asks me, "Are you Robin Hood?"
    So, I'm not quite in "Faire Mode" the surroundings being considered. Jumping out of my mouth comes, "No". No accent or anything. The sad look on his face would've softened the heart of anyone. Immediately, I jump into action I put on my accent and say to him, "But I am one of his Merry Men." The boy's face brightened up.
    "Really?" Suddenly, he realises he's got the hook up. "Where's Robin Hood?"
    "San Bernardino" (County of faire site) I reply, laughing at my private joke, figuring we're far enough away that he won't know where that is... I was wrong.
    "Oh, that's where my step mom lives."
    To this day, I'm just sure that whenever that kid goes to San Bernardino he looks at the trees and thinks of Robin Hood. That makes me smile. The kid's got to be at least 18 by now. ;)
    -JE
    "Real"
    I work at a living history museum and one day a particularly ethusiastic woman stood in front of the house I was at and asked "Is this a real house" and then walked up to me (I was tatting)and said "and look! she's doing real tatting!"
    I do a lot of spinning in the house I work at and many people tell their children "Look, she's sewing!" Another thing they ask me "Did you make that wool?" and I quickly respond "No, if I did, the sheep whould get jelous."
    -Bobbie Magee
    At our wonderful little re-created French Colonial Fort at a state park, we also have a wonderful band of native re-enactors who participate in a properly re-created indian village just within a musket's shot of the wall..As was the historical fact of the day. Needless to say, these colorful men & women are one of the highlights of the park for the "tourons", and as a consequence get more than their share of dumb questions. The most notable being a young woman in her mid-twenties who was appalled at the lack of privacy afforded in an 18th century indian town, asked in complete sincerity (from a crowd of 20 or so tourons, at least they were all adults)"Then how did they have sex?"
    Without missing a beat, our great resident native leader announced "Like this, baby!" & proceeded to pantomine the act from the posterior position while spanking his partner.
    -Jean B., AL
    Historic Games on-line catalog Man-powered wood lathes through history
    Contemporary quotes on Scottish AttireTongue-in-cheek reenactors' glossary