Friday, October 17, 2008

It was carnage as usual at the Mississinewa 1812 reenactment this fall. Last year, I took the kids but missed all the fightin', so we made it a point to bring the whole family and get there early. The trees were gorgeous and the river is pretty: steep banks and a little bit broader than the river that is near your house.

Only when I got home did I read up on some of the history to learn that no real battle like this one you see here ever took place. The real battle on this river was in the middle of a snowy November and was an attack on some sleepy Indian villages. There weren't gaggles of British forces and cannons and firing lines and what not. We didn't care.

Because this thing was cool. The whole day. At first you think it might be embarrassing to see all these people playing dress up in one place, but they take it on with such earnestness that you can't help but suspend your disbelief a little bit. This is J and me listening to an Indian story- teller (not pictured) (and not Indian, either). I need a new black hat. My Air America hat, like the radio station, is fading.

This, too, is not an Indian, but he rubs red paint on his skin and plays one on the weekends in a kind of make-believe Native American National Guard. This particular one appears to be inter-marrying, establishing a Metis culture in a part of the country where I don't think there was one.

I still am not sure what tone this weekend is taking toward the events of the battle itself. They aren't celebrating it, but they aren't examining it either. The Indians always lose, though, that's for sure.

Best shirt of the day. And his friend had one just like it.

The climax of the day was supposed to be a "pirate battle," which just ended up being men shooting randomly at each other from across and in the river. Best part was when a white man settler-kind of guy ran out into the river, got tomahawked, and then did a dead man's float in front of us, following the current. I can imagine him looking forward to that performance all year: "Just wait til they see my dead man's float!"

You should go next year. It'll be fun.

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1 comment:

Mindstroller said...

That picture of you and J is amazingly precious.