Happy Dragon Tuesday to all who celebrate! Don't know what Dragon Tuesday is? Well, I'll fill you in on the secret. John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats declared the Tuesday after Thanksgiving "Dragon Tuesday" on November 25, 2012, via a tweet that read:
black friday…cyber monday…but on dragon tuesday we carry our tribute to the cave in the misty hill. fuck yes dragon tuesday
And Mountain Goats fans have been celebrating ever since.
If you know anything about John Darnielle, you know that his love of dragons, and Dungeons and Dragons, goes way, way back, long before 2019 when The Mountain Goats released their 17th studio album, "In League With Dragons," which was basically an homage to the famous table-top role-playing game.
I love the album, John Darnielle, and The Mountain Goats, so of course, I'm gonna love Dragon Tuesday! If you want to celebrate, go listen to some Mountain Goats and play your favorite fantasy game.
You can also celebrate by watching this cringe-worthy video created by VICE in 2019, "Playing Dungeons and Dragons with John Darnielle of Mountain Goats." These comments about the video on The Mountain Goats subreddit sum up how VICE really missed the mark here:
That was hard to watch, as someone who loves both d&d and the mountain goats
Imagine having this opportunity to play D&D with JD, and then instead pre-scripting the whole thing to quote his own songs at him, and not anticipating him approaching it as a story teller. What a lack of depth of understanding of both D&D and the Mountain Goats.
He hated every lyric quote they threw at him. :D
I can't believe that they didn't anticipate that he'd want to build his character himself. Did they not think for two seconds about how consistently he explores complex characters in his lyrics and novels?
Not to mention John's well documented distaste for looking inward publically, and then they present him with a horrific voodoo doll in his likeness. If anything, this video simply shows you how graceful John is with people who don't fundamentally understand or respect anything about his career.
Imagine what a video this could have been if they'd actually played D&D. :)
This was really hard to watch, to the point that I essentially skipped to the end. That last interaction was worth watching, though.
JD games with Jason Morningstar and a bunch of other indie RPG designers I adore, like Joshua A. C. Newman. Their games are intentionally designed to have mechanics that hone in on and support themes and narratively important elements of the story during play. Getting a Warhammer guy to design a pre-scripted "Story Before" adventure when JD plays and is interested in "Story Now" style play was a huge mistake.