In Trimaris, "it's about honor"

Miami New Times reporter Kyle Swenson took the opportunity to hang out "with about 500 Trimarians in ornate medieval tunics" over Memorial Day to see what medieval re-enactment was all about. What did he find? "It's about honor." The feature-length article includes photos. PG-13

Swenson braved the heat of a Florida summer to actually don armor and learn about the SCA style of combat. He channeled his "Inner Viking."

When it's my turn to give the whole ancient blood lust a go, I slip into some loaner armor from a similarly sized knight. By now, his kit is soaked with sweat after a day of fighting. As for the smell — imagine hockey pads fresh off the ice. That someone pissed on. Twice.

Although from the outside it looks like a knight is literally canning himself inside a bunch of metal, inside, the armor is surprisingly flexible. After locking in, I run, jump, roll, twist — take the thing for a test drive, getting a feel for this exoskeleton that will protect me from harm as I Conan-smash the hell out of my opponent.

The guy I'm facing off against is probably a good five inches shorter, and I probably have 20 pounds on him. Cake, I figure. But after we put our shields and swords up, a funny thing happens: He disappears.