Area Man Takes Major Step To Reclaim His Dignity
After ten years appearing as Thomas Snot Jr at renaissance festivals from Maryland to Florida to Colorado to Minnesota, area man John Paul Gamoke recently announced his intention to “never be seen in those goddam tights again.” Reaction from friends and neighbors has been universally positive. Henry Hammerschmidt, Mr. Gamoke’s long-time neighbor, said “We’ve been waiting for him to regain his senses—he seems like he’s almost back to normal now. That was a weird time in his life, and we’re all glad it’s over. Now we can enjoy poker games in John’s kitchen again without the uncomfortable silences whenever someone asked him about his next gig.”
In a recent interview in his suburban backyard where we found him re-sodding some bare spots on his lawn and setting rabbit traps, Gamoke said “I don’t know what happened---guess I thought doing bad comedy outdoors in the rain with a stupid British accent was somehow a step up in my career. I blame it on my wife---she could have stopped me anytime, but I think she enjoyed watching me humiliate myself.” Gamoke’s two adult children say they’re relieved and happy, and both plan on coming home for Thanksgiving this year for the first time since Mr. Gamoke began his bizarre avocation.
Mr. Gamoke has enrolled in a recovery program for renaissance performers, has started a GoFundMe site to help with the financial burden, and by all accounts is making good progress. “I still slip every now and then, but I’m getting better at normal human interaction. Yesterday I asked a stock boy at Cub Foods where I could find a henway. When he said ‘What’s a henway?’ I couldn’t stop myself: ‘About three pounds.’ He hit me in the face with a cantaloupe, but I deserved it and I won’t press charges. It’s a day-at-a-time thing for me, like everyone else who’s faced these life challenges.”
His long-time comedy partner refused to be interviewed for this article, but did say that he was surprised Mr. Gamoke lasted as long as he did, and surmised that without the daily pint of Maker’s Mark before every show Gamoke likely would have quit after the first season.
There will be a private ceremony in December where Mr. Gamoke’s tights, his puffy shirts, and his costume boots will be burned. The public is not invited.