Aug 182011
Demerol the Pirate
The foam sword indicates a LARP player. The stuffed shoulder parrot indicates my friend Dave playing Demerol the pirate

LARP – Live Action Role Playing – is often described as the very nerdiest thing man has ever accomplished.

Foam swords, pretend spells, cosplayers as monsters, and a 70-plus page rulebook to tie it all together.

I have to agree about the nerdiest ever part. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t fun! We just don’t talk about it among certain circles 🙂

I was big into a LARP group called the IFGS in my youth. Good times. Weird times, but still, really, some of the best memories I have came from those days.

  • The time my friend Jim – wearing a sleeping bag-based Naga costume – role-played his monster so fearsomely that the players facing him threw down their weapons and fled and could not be persuaded to return
  • The time I wandered off by myself and accidentally encountered the end boss and his cronies. My character was so silly (an evil wererat based on the opposite of Micky Mouse) that it took them a moment to process my sudden appearance among them. While they tried to figure out what the hell I was (silly rubber wererat nose, silly ears, and a silly high-pitched wererat voice), I was able to surprise cast a spell and defeat them. Hah! Who’s silly now?
  • A huge battle (for LARP anyway, with 30-40 people on each side) across an open mountain field at dawn where Nature chose to supply the best special effect – rolling banks of fog – while the “armies” approached. A real goosebump moment in the middle of our pretend battle

So! Much! Fun! Everyone really ought to consider giving LARP a shot, even if they won’t ever admit it to their co-workers.

Flash forward thirty years and – unbelievably – my old group the IFGS is still going strong, with multiple chapters spread across the country. I’ll be in Denver in a few weeks and have decided to once again take up foam sword and hand-made costume and brave the world of lets-pretend adventure.

It’ll be the first time back in many years. I’ll need a brand-new character: my old main character was last seen falling into The Abyss in the mid-nineties, and in any case I am not the Fighter now that I was then. Time for a Wizard I think.

More updates to come as I construct character and costume.

Just don’t tell anyone.

🙂 😀 🙂

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