Saturday, June 21, 2008


On Thursday May 29 the 2008 Glasgow Kentucky Highland Games ushered in four days of cultural celebration and the visit of many dignitaries from across the United States, Canada and Scotland. Members of The Kingdome of Räknar celebrated their thirtieth anniversary and the legacy of one Robert Alexander “Hägar” Swanson all weekend with the finale being the Räknar Sunday Night Raid and extravaganza under the big top adjacent to the Louie B. Nunn Lodge at the Barren River Lake State Park.

One hundred and sixty-five Räknarians and guests were entertained by the likes of Colin Grant-Adams, Father, Son & Friends and other great exhibitions of talent. All this was mentored and facilitated by one Jeff Fleming, outstanding humorist, attorney and CPA from Olney, Illinois who was elevated in rank by Gude King Brodir of Räknar aka Jim Kilpatrick to Le Duc des Ecureuils Blancs (the Duke of the White Squirrels), Olney’s favorite and quite prolific varmint.

Many awards (mostly tongue in cheek) were presented to include the highly coveted Räknar AHOY Half Ass Award that was won last year by Kent Hay Atkins aka Erland the Duke of Jayhawke and the Royal Keeper of Words & Letters, that distinguished American Scot, member of the Clan Hay and new Viceroy of The Kingdome of Räknar. Kent was absolutely honored and proud of his selection. Wife Alison who was recognized most recently by being named one of the “One Hundred Most Incredible” graduates of East Carolina University was not pleased. A beaming Kent was nonplussed as Alison removed the three foot tall trophy from her mantle and deposited it in their basement where it reposed for the better part of a year.

Sunday night arrives and the Räknar Raid is in full bloom. King Brodir calls Kent to the stage to make the presentation of the AHOY award. I, unfortunately, was sitting immediately beneath that portion of the stage in the first row looking up at Kent. Whilst pondering his choice Kent looked down at me once, then a second time and yours truly knew that his goose was cooked. Where can the Eldest Bastard Son of Räknar hide? Though there were many others who were well qualified, Kent called my name out loud and with a bravado that resounded throughout the Barren River Lake State Park. I accepted the award to surprising great applause and reminded all in attendance that I would be back in 2009 and like Santa, would be watching in the interim.

The Half-Ass part of that award is but part of the title that includes that not so subtle AHOY acronym that refers most appropriately to The Ass Hole of The Year.

Given all that I have unwittingly done (to include some undeserved credit) most recently to screw up my life and all those around me, I figure that this was and remains a most appropriate choice.

I will try and do better from this point on. The trophy sits on my mantle…


Ned Buxton

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