Guide to Better Living: Getting Attention on Social Media–The Vague yet Dramatic Status

Sometimes a person just needs a little extra love from the world. In the past one would have to carry out actions desperate enough to capture the attention of the media or community to get this kind of support.  However, we are lucky enough to live in the age of social media.  The key to successfully garnering likes and comments from concerned friends and followers is mastering the art of the vague yet dramatic status.

The Prayer Request

Prithee Pray (1)

The Prayer Request is effective because human beings are naturally curious.  The act of requesting prayers ignites the imaginations of the incurably nosy among your friends.  They will almost certainly respond in the hopes that you may change your mind and let your adoring public in on the hot scoop of your hot mess.

The Check-In

Black Plague (2)

The Check-In is a fantastic weapon in the attention-seeker’s arsenal.  In order for this tactic to work, however, you absolutely cannot give any clue as to the purpose of your visit.  Ambiguity is key here.  It doesn’t really matter WHY you’re there–the important thing is to foster your followers’ wildest fancies.

Moderation is of the utmost import, though.  This cannot be stressed enough!  If you overuse these techniques, the response will cease to be curiosity or pity and will become eye rolls and unfollows–this is in direct opposition to the desired outcome of these desperate acts.  Use with discretion, however, and sit back and enjoy the outpouring of concern that will follow!



Festival Fun at Boster Castle in the Kingdom of Callaway

Yesterday was the Two Faire Wenches’s first experience at the Central Missouri Renaissance Festival.  Where shall I begin?  First of all, the weather could not have been more perfect.  It hovered right around 59 degrees all day which was absolutely ideal in multiple layers of garb.  Secondly, WHAT A LOVELY FAIRE!  The festival grounds were very easy to navigate, and the autumn trees really added to the picturesque setting.

While this is a smaller festival, that is far from a negative.  I personally enjoyed the smaller size of the venue because it was definitely more intimate.  I was also highly impressed by the number of people in attendance who wore some kind of costume.  It definitely added to the atmosphere and made it feel more like a group of friends playing together rather than a bunch of tourists visiting a theme park like some other Festivals have a tendency to feel.  That was a nice departure.  It truly felt like a market day or a festival day in a small village.

There were many fantastic vendors at the Festival, but one that I really enjoyed was the Village Books tent.  Village Books’s permanent location is in Columbia, MO.

...verily I cannot pass up a good book.

…verily I cannot pass up a good book.

They had me at the word “book.”  The tomes they had selected to bring back to the Renaissance were appropriately themed.  I, however, decided that I could not live without a book entitled Shakespeare’s Kitchen because it combines three of my favorite things:  books, food, and Shakespeare.

In addition to the vendors, there was a wonderful array of entertainment sprinkled throughout the grounds.  One such performer was Emrys Starsong, who writes much of his own materials in addition to performing songs penned by his mother and father.

Emrys Starsong

Emrys Starsong

One of my favorite songs from the set was a parody of Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” that depicted a game of Dungeons and Dragons as told by the Dungeon Master.  While I myself am not a player (though when people find out that you dress for Ren Fests, many assume that you do play), I found the song very funny.

Another act that I enjoyed VERY much was Better Than Nun.   These two were great!  This was a hybrid comedy/musical act (as are most in the RenFest setting), and it appeared that a great many members of the audience found them as delightful as we did.

Two cheeky

Two cheeky “sisters” tell off-color jokes and sing bawdy songs. Perfect!

The show was lively and upbeat.  The song they sang about their vacation to “Hawai’i” was hysterical.  Another song that was quite well-received was the camp out favorite, “The Rooster Song.”  This group is fantastic.  Who doesn’t love spirited nuns?  😉  I can’t wait to catch them at future Festivals.

Another nice feature of the day was the University of Missouri Columbia’s Raptor Rehabilitation Project raptor demonstration.  Beautiful creatures.

Jacob is a Red-Tailed Hawk who is used as an Education Bird with the Project

Jacob is a Red-Tailed Hawk who is used as an Education Bird with the Project

This beauty is currently in the rehabilitation process and they plan to release it back into the wild.

This beauty is currently in the rehabilitation process and they plan to release it back into the wild.

And finally we come to the part of the day that I always look forward to:  the food.  There were two options to choose from:  the food booth and the food truck.  After seeing the massive volcano of nachos on other people’s plates, we decided we couldn’t hold out anymore.  We had to head to the Lilly’s Cantina Food Truck.

Honestly some of the best nachos I've ever had.

Honestly some of the best nachos I’ve ever had.

Yes, I took a picture of my nachos.  I told you earlier that I love food.  Seriously good stuff.  We saw somebody who got one of the burritos.  HUGE.

For now the Central Missouri Renaissance Festival is only open for one weekend, but according to Doug Wilson (one of the Festival organizers we happened to meet while waiting for our turn at the food truck), the hope is that attendance this year would be large enough to justify a second weekend.  I hope the second weekend happens next year so that more people will get the opportunity to discover this local gem of a Festival.

Kansas City Renaissance Festival: Wonderful Treasures, Priceless Memories

Whew! The last couple of weeks have been busy! I’m finally getting time to sit down and write my review of the Kansas City Renaissance Festival which I attended on Sunday, September 13, 2015.

I’ve been to the KC Ren Fest several times over the years and each time I find something new or interesting that pulls me into their world. This year did not disappoint in that aspect. Highland Fling was the theme of the weekend and it was the first time I’ve really seen any Highland games. From the very brief research I’ve done on the games, they were started a very long time ago to help condition and strengthen the Scottish army. Now they are a way to keep the Scottish heritage alive, measure brute strength and so I can ogle the hotties in kilts! (Hey, what’s a fair maiden to do while waiting for her prince?)

Coming from a town that has an annual fall festival, I always think about the food when attending a fair or festival. KC Ren Fest does not disappoint. I always go in thinking about turkey legs, but end up with a bread bowl of something and hopefully a stout coffee or ale. The White Stag Inn (see photos) is a fairly new feature with a pub-like atmosphere and wonderful bread bowls of Guinness Beef Stew. Yeah, my mouth is watering right now! The tables in the White Stag Inn are narrow and the bench is tall. While I’m average height (5’5”) my feet didn’t touch the ground. Swinging my leg was fun for a little while but made it difficult to chow down on the stew. The entertainment at the inn was passable but not as enjoyable as some of the musical groups elsewhere at the fair.IMG_0652  IMG_0657

Speaking of musical groups, one of the first stops we made (after getting some sweets) was listening to the Maguire Brothers. Listening to Irish and Scottish ballads always put me at ease and tugs at my Scots-Irish heritage. I could have sat and listened to them all day but there is more to pursue at the Fest than just music.

One of the best parts of the fest is visiting all the shops with handmade treasures. I did not purchase anything this year but last year I did lay out some coin for a few items. I purchased a one-of-a-kind, handmade headband from A Wench in the Gear that is decorated with brown/black/tan feathers that mold to my head and a lovely cameo that sits just above my ear. Everything in this shop is a one-of-a-kind and her corsets are made to order. You can use these for anything from Steampunk cosplay to general back brace for better posture. They are true steel-boned structure and molded to your body and don’t come cheap but are well worth the money spent.  

IMG_0736 IMG_0737

I got a lovely real rose necklace from Real Rose Jewelry. These are real roses that they have frozen in time and look Victorian and wonderfully old-fashioned. I chose the gold crescent moon for a whimsical look. The necklace goes with almost every piece of clothing I own to that is a pleasant bonus!

IMG_0740 IMG_0742

This was the first year I attended in costume and it certainly made the experience better. Being mistaken a few times for ren fest actors and being approached by the king and queen made me feel special. The costume I wore wasn’t authentic by any means, but was well made. While there are clothiers at the fest, I didn’t buy from them. I found most of my pieces on eBay where it is nice to find quality construction.

All in all, the Kansas City Renaissance Festival is a great way to spend a day or weekend. You will come away with wonderful treasures, a full belly and priceless memories.