August 20, 2007


Ahhhhh! I've got a mitten made of flesh!

At least it's not Rappy Doo.

Hey, big shot Marvel lawyers, you can't touch these guys! They changed up the mask by at least 30%.

Is that DJ from the sitcom Full House?

And here are a few more unremarkable shots of the Grape Festival in Tontitown, Arkansas...

The rules to the hardest game in the world

The poster game is always a snapshot of modern popular culture, give or take a few years.
(Whoa, they still have Men in Black.)

What can you win by playing this game?
Anything in this general area right in here. Anything below the stereo and on this side of the bicentennial glasses. Anything between the ashtrays and the thimble. Anything in this three inches right in here in this area. That includes the Chicklets, but not the erasers.

In most places these quarter pusher games give out tokens. Not in these parts.
It pays out more quarters, baby!

Engraved jewelry: a fine way to commemorate the evening you spent with sweaty strangers in a grassy field temporarily jammed with tractor trailers.

Remember when these little plaques were actually printed mirrors mounted in real wooden frames? (Which usually featured logos from bands like Journey or AC/DC.) These days they're no more than a color printout on cardstock shoved behind a piece of clear, poorly cut glass contained in a cardboard sleeve. Let's bring back the carnival prize craftsmanship of the early 1980s, man!

Something wicked this way comes... it's fair season! Woohoo!


The CDP. said...

Ahhh, the carnival midway. Proof positive that almost everything was better when you were a kid. I spent about 15 seconds at one last weekend, and I couldn't take it anymore.

For the record, I've seen Marine sharpshooters take on that 'Red Star' game, and fail miserably. The trick used to be to shoot a clean circle around the star, allowing the center of the paper to pop out, old-cartoon style. Of course, they made it a rule that you couldn't do it anymore. Same goes for just tearing the sheet in half horizontally.

Jay Amabile said...

i don't even want to say what barbie looked like...

docweasel said...

heh, _The Jerk_ was a great movie, cool reference ;)

Travis said...

SpongeBob's lower body is just a brown nub! Yikes!

iamchief said...

At the Grant County Fair (Sheridan, Ar), before we could even think about getting on a ride or investing our money in any of the games of skill, we were tortured with having to walk through the armory where all the craft displays were.
Imagine being tempted by the sounds of your classmates screaming on the tilt-a-whirl, and the delicious smells of cotton candy and diesel exhaust, all the while being held up by and endless row of 4-H exhibits, canned preserves and quilts.
BTW...I'd love to see photo proof of an OSHA rep at any smalltown fair.

Storm Boy said...

Aw, I kinda like Existential Crisis Barbie! (Those eyes.. they've seen too much.)

Kirk D. said...

cdp- yeah the first clue that the 'red star' game is impossible is the ancient yet extravagant prizes that are collecting dust above the shooting gallery. Someday I'll show those carneys. I'll show em all!

jay- I think I'm glad you chose not to. : )

docweasel- glad you caught that doc!

travis- I thought the same thing. The artist is a mad genius!

iamchief- state fairs are worlds of contrasts that's for sure. The whole 'as seen on TV' demonstrations also seem out of place. Yeah, I'd get a kick out of reading the Arkansas carnival regulations. Probably wouldn't take long.

storm boy- thanks for the genuine lol!

Dane said...

The bucket seats on that ride look like if you tried to grab the sides to hang on, they'd slice your hand off.

And Barbie ... I guess the divorce from Ken took quite a toll.

By the way, that last photo, of the ferris wheel? Fantastic.

Kirk D. said...

Ha, I'll bet the ride operator would gives tetanus shots if the price is right.

Thanks for the compliment on the photo. means a lot coming from a shutterbug like yourself.

phoneyfresh said...

I remember when i was like 10 or 11 I played a midway game where for one dollar you got to throw a dart at some balloons, if ya hit one ya got a little mirror with a unicorn or care bear on it. Once I won four or five little mirrors i could trade them for the next size of mirror, if I could hit one more balloon and pay another dollar of course! When it was all said and done I ended up getting A mirror with three trashy bleach blonde bimbos wearing revolutionary war gear pictured on it. One of them had a thong on and the other two were showing a little nipple and the caption read "...And Justice For All". I was pretty proud of that mirror, but my dad didn't seem very impressed with it to say the least.

Kirk D. said...

That mirror was the embodiment of so many fantasies rolled into one. Blond thong babes bringing justice both figuratively and sensually, and doing it so long ago that we'd be living in a purely peaceful society now.

I went through a whole mirror trading routine with a dart carny guy once as well. He worked me all the way to the top level and then he changed the rules just as I was about to obtain the big one. He didn't bother double talking, he just started lying. That night I snuck into his trailer and took his life. I'm sorry, for a moment there I was mixing fantasy with reality.