Story Value

random musings and episodes from the life of a 40 something comidienne/corporate refugee/mom - since whatever doesn't kill you provides excellent story value.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Fair Enough

The Marshfield Fair completed its 141st run and left town nearly two weeks ago ... and yet, the controversy continues.


Each year the Fair comes to down, there's one carny drama or another. Last year two carnies got married under the Ferris wheel. Awwwwww. They had something like 12 children between them. That's one big trailer.

This year, an 18 year old carny was accused of raping a 13 year old girl and her 14 year old friend. Things weren't looking too rosy for this young man, until it was revealed that these girls had gone to the Fair with the specific goal of seducing a carny.

What little girl doesn't dream of that?

Carnies simultaneously fascinate and disgust most of us. The disgust is clear -- B.O., "summer teeth" and facial tattoos -- but why the fascination?

I think the alternative outlaw carny lifestyle is the draw. Think about it, all the fried dough you can eat, the opportunity to find out how the games are rigged, unlimited turns on thrill rides which (as my two boys describe) "make your penis tingle." It doesn't get much better than that.

People yearn for this kind of fun. Its why middle-aged bankers are now sporting so many tattoos its hard to pick the real carnies out of the crowd. Now carnies have to wear uniforms.

Personally, I have never dreamt of seducing a carny, but I have toyed with the idea of becoming one. Just for a week. I'd be a carny temp, just to see what it was like hanging in the Airstream village after-hours. Oh, like you're not a little curious?

Once, I almost completed an application when I saw a sign posted on the Zipper ride. It read, "Help Wanted: Must Love Travle." I love Travle. I think. I decided not to gamble, just in case "travle" is some euphemism for corn liquor-fueled bestiality. You can't be too careful.

I'm curious about the job interview process. I imagine it might go something like this:
Me: "I'm here about the carnival job, I love travle."
A carny boss throws a wrench at me. I pick it up off the ground.
"Be here at 11!" He yells.
I am now in charge of assembling and running the Bumper Cars.

I'd be low on the carny totem pole until I had proven myself at 3 card Monte while doing Jack Daniels shots.

The carnies who really fascinate me are the professional-grade carnies. At our Fair, there is a duo: Lance Gifford and his ambiguously sexual partner Jarrod . Not only are Lance and Jarrod a class A magic act ... they moonlight running the pig races. Each day they perform 8 - 10 shows, racing from one end of the Fairgrounds to the other, stripping out of their glittered attire to don overalls and straw-filled hats to transform themselves into Granny's champion pig callers.

One year my eldest son recognized Jarrod from his earlier gig and yelled, "Hey, its the magic man!" while pointing enthusiastically. Jarrod momentarily looked panicked and quickly shoved a whistle in my boy's mouth and deputized him as Assistant Pig Caller. Identity crisis averted.

I wondered if my magic men were perhaps double-dipping without Fair management permission? It didn't seem too necessary to preserve the illusion of being only a magician or only a pig caller -- a pig-calling magician is a pretty solid act.

I read in Lance Gifford's online bio that he left home at 16 and travels regularly with the Fair. He has a pretty plush stage & all those pigs. I wonder if he has a grade A RV in the lot, or if he bunks in a hotel. He and Jarrod are like the kings of carny world. They look like they are having a blast. Maybe its all the travle ... or maybe their penises just tingle, magically.


Blogger Sam said...

I love travle, too. It makes MY penis tingle. Woohoo!

Throw me a wrench, will ya?

12:44 AM  

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