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It was a gorgeous summer day in Colorado. We were looking for something to do before Chauvinist the Younger goes off to camp, so we took the kids to The Renaissance Festival in Larkspur. This “festival” is actually a summer season theme park for people who really like to dress up in “historical” garb. I mean, really, really like dressing up. Enough to invest. Heavily.
Most of the shops (and that’s mostly what’s there besides food vendors and a few stages for the various theatrical, comedy, magic, and acrobatic acts) sell costumes, footwear, jewelry, hats, and weaponry(!) somewhat loosely related to the Renaissance (whichever one that may be — let’s just say historical accuracy isn’t the imperative). Pirates are a favorite theme, as are knights. The women select costumes ranging from witches to royal ladies. Now, of course, cross-dressing shows up as well — as if gender bending was commonly seen on the streets and celebrated in 14th century Italy. Whatever.
All the dress-up playacting seems like a terrific excuse to show-off one’s tatts, too (heh). Surprisingly, I’ve had enough exposure to the body art culture (mostly at Walmart) that I’m not even terribly disturbed by it anymore, with one exception. Why do so many tattoos portray Satan or seem to celebrate death, with skulls, for example?
It’s a sincere question. If I had more courage, I’d ask one of the wearers: “Why did you choose to permanently mark yourself (otherwise beautiful young woman) with a depiction of Satan on your arm?”
Is there a historic connection (to sailors, for instance), or is this a new development in the culture of death? Just wondering.