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Zoltan on my mind...
- June, 1998

Zoltan took Georgia by storm! Well, not really by storm...but it did rain a lot. Allow me to explain. No, there is too much. Allow me to sum up.

1998 was my first season in Georgia at the well-established Georgia Renaissance Festival, and it was really great. So much so, that I've already been invited to come back again in 1999.

It was an incredible experience on a lot of different levels. First of all, most of the other acts at the festival are real heavy-weights - Broon, Hack and Slash, The Zucchini Brothers and The Ded Bob Sho to name a few. In fact, I shared a stage with Ded Bob (in his secret identity as Clark Orwick), which was sometimes frustrating since he's such a well-known and popular act. When it was time for his show, there was always a big crowd waiting. And then, between his show and my show, they would somehow all disappear....

Which means that I almost always had to start gathering my crowd from scratch. This was my first hat faire, and boy, did I learn a lot about crowd gathering. Fortunately, at the Georgia faire they provide the stage acts with criers, like the two lovely lasses in the photo there.

 
Zoltan's two lovely criers from the '98 GA faire
Talk about sitting pretty...
 
The genteel blonde lass (is she a real blonde? Only her therapist knows) is Lucy Gravel, the town rock monger. Apparently in renaissance times rock mongering was a real profession. "Oh look! A rock! I think I'll monger it. Oh, I'm sorry - we're you already mongering that rock? Never mind, there's plently others about." In her secret alter ego, Lucy is played by Valerie Hammond, who was generally responsible for much of my crowd and sanity during the faire, including cleaning up my used and abused vegetables between shows.

To her right is a fine redhead, the graceful Roseanna McClove, the town garlic monger - ask her about giving head. She's got great clovage. Oh! The humor! The merriment! Stop, stop, you mad witty foole! Mistress McCloven was played effervescently by Alison Leedy. Between these two dandy renchicks I brought in great crowds, and entertained them forthwith. There were days I downright rocked like Satan.

Anyway, overall, the Georgia faire was great. My first time at a faire away from home, I learned the fun (and sometimes, utter boredom) of the two-day work-week, and five-day weekend. While the pros lived in lovely, cozy, waterproof trailers, I lived in a pop-up tent. The first night I was there, it rained, and leaked all over me and everything I brought with (including my pet dove, Sampson). When the nights were cold, I froze. When the days were hot, I fried. And let's not forget the three days of tornado warnings. Did I mention I was living in a tent?

Oh sure, there were hardships (I had to listen a lot of Rush Limbaugh), but bundle it up in one nifty lump sum and squash it flat, wring it out and peer through the results, and the grand total was that it was a blast, and I'm looking forward to doing it again. The spring of '99 I should be even more popular (in theory) since I'm a 'returning' act. Also, I suspect that after having the joys of two-month tent living firmly impresed upon me, in '99 I'll likely splurge and rent an RV. So while that's going to cost more, my comfort level will increase.

And heck, you all know you're going to get to hear about it...

     signed, Zoltan the Adequate


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