Monday, July 25, 2011

lose the battle, win the war

we pried ourselves away from the television and our heat index-induced coma and headed out to manassas this weekend for the 150th anniversary re-enactment of the first battle of bull run.

they say it was a steamy 80 or 90 degrees when the battle was fought.

it was a steamy 100-plus degrees when we watched the battle be re-enacted.

i am not going to come right out and say that this makes civil war soldiers wimps, but i think you can see what i am getting at.

put it this way. we saw two re-enactors pass out from the heat. but we didn't pass out from the heat.

so there.

we also saw one guy get bucked off his horse, and then his horse bolted.

i do not think that guy is a wimp.

it was hard to get really close to the action, but here is what it all looked like from our perspective.

all in all, it was pretty cool. in the age of insurgent warfare it's sort of hard to imagine soldiers lining up on a field and shooting at each other until one side wins, but that's basically what happened.

i also learned (or perhaps re-learned) that it was the battle of bull run (or the battle of manassas if you happen to be a confederate. i'm not judging) where stonewall jackson got his nickname. before then he was plain old thomas jackson, which is what i plan to call him from now on.

and i learned that if you sweat enough the color from your grey jersey knit dress will transfer onto your undergarments, so it was a pretty informative outing all around.

the best part of the whole day was when a confederate regiment walked by us and one of the soldiers shouted out, "on to washington city!" (in character, presumably), and the guy standing next to us shouted back "how quick can you get there? we need a lot of help. you guys might have the right idea after all."

i guess it's like the old saying goes: if at first you don't secede, try, try again.

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