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rose Wha' 'Zup Wi' Zoltan - Stories from the Road rose

Millennium fever's making me sick...
- September, 1999

Ah, it's always a pleasure to return back home again, to the birthplace of Zoltan, the Ontario Renaissance Festival. And this season was a special one, since it wasn't the last one of the millennium.

You too can have Zoltan's face pressed on your chest
Stone-Cold Steve Austin or Zoltan
the Adequate? Which one eats fire?

That's right - did you hear me? I'll say it again: 1999 was not  the last year of the millennium. There was no year zero - we start counting with ones, not zeros (how many fingers on your hand? Ten? Or nine?). Hence, the first year of the new millennium will be 2001 - see the one? That's how you know it's the first year, not the second year. If you're not bright enough to understand that, I suggest you ask whomever you've hired to work the mouse to explain it again, without using any big words...

However, there were a few other things that this season in Ontario a special one. First of all, this was The Season that Zoltan Discovered Marketing. That's right! All you adequate fans out there, we now have Zoltan Tshirts available for your consuption. Get them signed by me and if in 50 years their value hasn't increased exponentially, I'll buy them back from you. With printing on both the back and front, the shirt were popular last season as I hope they will be in the 2000 season (the last season of the millennium, you know!).

In addition to having Tshirts, I also had a nifty new banner made up by my friend (and slightly more than one-half The Zucchini Brothers by weight) Todd Key. The poster was received and lauded by all who beheld it. And how could you not, really?

Wait a minute...is there something on my head?
Not the first time someone's accused me
of being two-dimensional...

As always, I like to bring a little something new to the Zoltan show every year, and 1999 was no exception. I started doing fire-eating as an actual part of my show (as opposed to a teaser, as I did previously this year in GA), and will only continue to do more of it next year. Finally, the '99 season in Ontario marked the official Use of Rats on Stage. Both my fine pets made appearances both in the street and on stage, poking their faces into my mouth, and having me bite their heads off. Pure family entertainment! (and if you missed seeing either the fire-eating or the rats and can't wait until the start of this year's festival, there's lots of pix in my Photo Gallery). As with the GA faire earlier this year, the rats were a huge hit in the street. Most of the people loved them. However, of the people who were weirded out by them the reason always seemed to be because of the tail. What's with the tail? It's a tail, for goodness sake! They need them for balance and gripping when they're climbing! Can someone explain this to me?

So with the addition of a poster, Tshirts, rats and fire-eating, this was a great season all around. There was a new act at the festival this year, three fine gents by the name of Men in Tights. One of them goes by the name of Squish, and Zoltan and Squish hung out a great deal last season, and will surely do so again next season. Deaf Awareness Day was excellent as it always is, and for many reasons this year was a particular favorite. And finally, I had a 'personal triumph moment' when, on the third weekend of the festival during the part of the show where I sink a big knife into my arm and bleed, a young boy who was watching suddenly turned to the side and threw up. Ah, that's a golden moment, that is.

As such, it was as fine a season as I've ever had in Ontario and I only hope it will be all the finer for my return in 2000. There will be more rats, more fire, and (given how I've been eating lately), more Zoltan.

     signed, Zoltan the Adequate

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