Monday, August 14, 2006 Caution To All Ye Whom May Enter

Caution To All Ye Whom May Enter

Pictures to be added soon...
Over the weekend I attended a birthday party for two 34 year old men at Medieval Times. The party was my first visit to the hallowed halls of MT. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this particular tourist trap, below is an excerpt from their website.

As Medieval Times popularity grew in its native country, the welcome Spanish invasion hit Kissimmee, Florida in December 1983. Professional production and training staff from Spain brought with them the architectural flourishes, authentic costumes and weaponry that had become so popular in Europe. The U.S. response was immediate and overwhelming. Families, tourists and schools descended on the Castle, and a new dynasty had begun.

Medieval Times is located in such exotic locales as Buena Park, CA; Dallas, TX; Schaumburg, IL; Myrtle Beach, SC; Kissimmee, FL; Baltimore, MD; Lyndhurst, NJ; Toronto, Canada and the recently opened venue in Atlanta, GA inside the Discovery Mills Outlet Mall.

Upon arrival we stood in line for 20 minutes and were herded like cattle toward the ticket desk. Once at the ticket desk we were given yellow laminated cards to trade with our "serving wench" (a teenager named Jasmine) in exchange for a disgusting 'medieval' style meal (instant beef bouillon served out of a pail, garlic bread, dry roast chicken, bbq ribs, a hunk of potato, and 'medieval' pastry aka a Nutrigrain bar). At the same ticket desk were were presented with a yellow paper crown to mark us as "champions of the yellow knight". We proceeded to the mandatory photo with a grimy king dressed in the fiefdom's finest velour.

After 30 minutes of milling about and admiring the reproduction armor in the 'great hall'/bar area I decided to kill the pain of being there with a $40 22 ounce 'King's Goblet' filled with strawberry daiquiri. Once I was fully inebriated (20 minutes later due to the tragic combination of Claritin, rum, and an empty stomach) I was led by the cute four year old daughter of one of the birthday boys to 'Ye Olde Gift Shoppe'. Sixty dollars later the little girl was the proud owner of a princess hat and two faux dalmatian fur trimmed crowns for the birthday kings.

FINALLY, our yellow knight group was called and we were carried by the movement of the mob into the arena where the festivities take place. The arena smelled like a Footlocker on the bad side of town. The volume of the royal speakers was earshattering and their version of old English was atrocious, adding thee, ye, and thou does not old English make. The woman sitting two seats over from me emitted a high-pitched squealing sound for most of the three hours we were in the arena, she was the first of many knight groupies we ran met. The sandpit in the middle of the arena was filled with some depressed looking horses and scary looking knights. If you ever wondered what happened to the long haired, D&D players who sat in the back of every class in high school, look no farther than Medieval Times.

After close to four hours in the Medieval Times vicinity we were free.
Cost of an evening at Medieval Times (for two): $250
Escaping: Priceless

(Things I would rather have spent $250 on: 1. Enough alcohol to render me comatose for the duration of the show 2. A mallet with which to beat myself unconsciouss during the show 3. Almost anything other than an evening at Medieval Times)

21 Comments:

Blogger kapgar said...

I actually live only about 20 minutes from the Schaumburg MT, but have never been there. Katie and her brothers have been threatening to take me there for years. So far, they have been empty threats.

10:45 AM  
Blogger Johnny C. said...

Wow!

That bad eh? that place is 10 minutes from work. I'll only go if they pay and agree to buy me alchohol.

I'll just stick to drunk jousting in my back yard with the homeless guy who keeps trying to steal my shirts off the clothesline!

10:49 AM  
Blogger Karl said...

So what you're trying to say in a roundabout way is that you totally loved it.

11:33 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

If people were actually maimed or killed it would be worth it.

12:11 PM  
Blogger Dale said...

We do indeed have one here in Toronto and thankfully the closest I've been is the scenes in The Cable Guy. Sounds like I got off easy! Sorry for your loss (the cash).

12:29 PM  
Blogger G said...

That was too funny. My familiarity with Medieveal Times stems from the movie Cable Guy with Jim Carrie (a guilty pleasure).

12:31 PM  
Blogger kludge said...

Sounds like a lot of painful pagentry. I'm sorry you had to endure it, and additionaly that it was such a costly experience.

At least now you can say to people. "I just can't bring myself go back since the yellow knight decided to get a real job and move on with his life. I was therapy for months."

Or just "no" I suppose.

1:16 PM  
Blogger Mad Ethel said...

Now I feel like a moron for being mildly interested in attending one of these Medieval theatre thingys you so speak of. Thank you for saving me from a HUGE disappointment. $250?! Wow. Just wow. That had better include casting me in a B-flick, complete with medieval wardrobe and my own steed.

2:22 PM  
Blogger RC said...

i love your description, i saw midevil times when i was say...um...15 maybe.

and it was okay for what it was...but one time is enough.

--RC of strangeculture.blogspot.com

5:36 PM  
Blogger AWG said...

Huzzah! I think I'll stick with the Ren Fest in Norman.

12:14 AM  
Anonymous Suicide Ranger said...

Renfair is so much cheeper and fun.

5:48 AM  
Blogger inkyhack said...

Nerd Hell, eh? And $250? Geesh. Wish you took pictures though.
On a similar note, my daughter has been begging me to take her to a Star Trek convention. Is she a Star Trek fan? Nope, hates the show. She wants to see how nerdy, nerdy can get. Sounds like you found an alternative.

11:45 AM  
Blogger kludge said...

A Star Trek Convention is a excellent exhibit for nerdiness...Don't feed the trekies!

2:46 PM  
Blogger RWA said...

What's really funny is after reading this, I was on ajc.com catching up on the latest Atlanta news.

And, doggone, if there wasn't a banner ad across the top talking about how great their location of "Medieval Times" is.

I started laughing...I just couldn't help myself.

6:27 PM  
Blogger One Wink at a Time said...

When I started reading, I thought, "This sounds way cool"... but then, "Sheesh!" Maybe cake and ice cream in the back yard would have been preferable... Or maybe nothing at all.

10:54 AM  
Blogger Jeremy Barker said...

I have been to the hallowed Medieval Times location here in Toronto and the enjoyment really is equal to the amount of booze consumed.

As for Trek conventions, I went to one 12 years ago and covered it for my student paper. Now there is a science fiction convention coming up here in Toronto at the beginning of Steptember with Shatner and Nimoy. How can I resist?

10:02 PM  
Blogger James said...

Small, small world.

Roughly ten years ago we took my friend to the Medieval Times in Dallas. Big Hair, Horse Shit and Pepsi. We too, were championed by the yellow knight.
Said Knight picked out said friends wife to pick up on during some ceremony involving tying a scarf to his
"lance"....reading that post brought it all back.

In fact I think I just threw up in my mouth a little...

1:22 AM  
Blogger MC said...

Just a little bit?

2:17 AM  
Blogger Mob said...

Holy Christ, I went to a bachelor party at the one in Dallas about a month ago, (search my blog if you're curious) which was pretty painful as well.

Glad to know it wasn't just me.

4:48 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

I knew I wasn't interested in checking out the new MT in Atlanta ... but your post has given me ammunition in case someone brings it up. Ugh.

5:02 PM  
Blogger cipriano said...

Wow.
I've never been.
And now, I never shall wander therein!
Hitherto.
As it were.
What a powerful non-endorsement of MT ye hath given unto us!
Thank ye!
-- Cip

11:14 PM  

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