Tuesday, August 31, 2004

These kids' tails, as you could probably guess, are waving a fond farewell to the 2004 Dutchess County Fair photo spectacular. I'll return soon with my regular programming, whatever that is exactly... oh, I do have a few more issues of Steve Perry, Rock & Roll Fugitive to put up, so look for one of those tomorrow for starters. Aloha to the goats, sheep, Charo, rabbits, pigs, carnies, miniature horses and donkeys, the incongruous bathroom attendants, and all members of 4H, FFA, and the Junior Grangers. See you next year! Posted by Hello

Give it up for Charo's potted plant too, while you're at it. I think there was also one on the opposite side of the stage, but this is the plant that I became familiar with while waiting for the show to begin. It felt like I was back visiting Charo's restaurant on lush and tropical Kauai (the restaurant's closed now from what I understand, but it appears that you can rent her house while she's off on the mainland fair circuit). Posted by Hello

And how about a hand for Charo's fabulous backup dancers, who kept the party going during the star's many costume changes. The girl on the left is from Russia, the second girl is from MTV (which may have something to do with the fact that most of her costumes had torn stockings or buttons missing, though I'm not sure how exactly... I'm not entirely sure how you can be born in MTV for that matter), and the boy was described as having 'mixed DNA'. I don't think that the Puerto Rican dancer is pictured (pink twirling dancer courtesy of Fran S.). Posted by Hello

At Valley Fair amusement park outside of Minneapolis a pack of kids used to stand around on the boardwalk next to their version of this ride waiting for all the money that was constantly floating down out of riders' pockets. Something similar was going on at the Dislocator later in the evening but it was all falling into the enclosed area underneath the wildy flailing machine and one burst of coins falling onto the metal deck that reader Sarah A. and I heard while waiting for Mike A. and Francie S. to board had us convinced that the ride was starting to disintegrate in a hail of rivets. Posted by Hello

I have long been interested in getting one of these fair-rific airbrushed t-shirts, and all day long we were sizing up the talents of the many purveyors of this artform that were working the fairgrounds this year. This guy was the best, but it was late and he was being chatted up by a foxy lady at the time... if I'd just asked for Scoo you could still see that stylish starburst to the right on the finished product. This was the only real disappointment of the day. Posted by Hello

The fair photos continue. I wish I would have grabbed some of the solidified fudge from these folks, a little sample I tried was amazing, but I didn't think having a big hunk of fudge in my pocket all day would turn out well, especially in the stifling heat that enveloped the fair on Saturday. There was this one with a ribbon of peanut butter in the middle, though, which would probably have been worth licking out of the fabric of my jeans later. More to come, head over to Cityrag if you can't wait, she has a great selection up herself (I really should have gotten that beef she mentions, too, the line was just too much to handle when I was by it around 6:30). Posted by Hello

I should have studied up and learned how to use the panorama feature on my new camera, because there was a flowing waterfall over to the left of this scene, and over to the right a little camper had snuck away from the circle and was filching a cookie from a picnic basket. This and the previously posted salute to agriculture courtesy of the Junior Grangers. Posted by Hello

Most of the people exhibiting that were staying at the fair all week had mobile homes or trailers parked behind the livestock area, but this guy realized that they had rooms right there in the sheep pavillion. I'd like to think he was over in the hosing-down area next to the chicken/rabbit building taking a shower when we stopped by, but it looks like his towel is still there. Given my own experiences with goats, I am suprised that one of his neighbors in an adjacent stall hadn't eaten it already. Posted by Hello

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Monday, August 30, 2004

Okay, now that I've stayed over 45 minutes late helping the man keep the people down (graphically), here's a bonus fair photo of our hostess Fran pointing out the ride which some other fairgoers claimed was even more terror-inducing than the Dislocator. I believe it was called The Conventionator, but hopefully I'm mistaken. More tomorrow! Posted by Hello

The third outfit of the evening was somewhat more formal, as Charo took a seat with her classical guitar and got serious with some flamenco (as you may or may not be aware, she studied under Andres Segovia and is seriously talented). There is much more coverage of the fair yet to come, but it's looking like you may need to wait until tomorrow for the rest, because these bar charts detailing Accenture's year-over-year global consulting revenue growth are not going to create themselves, evidently... Posted by Hello

When I emerged with my delicious tuna salad sandwich from the Liberty Deli on 56th moments ago I ran into a pair of flag-encrusted visitors staring up at the deli's sign and debating whether to go in, so I said, "It's pretty good, I get lunch here all the time" to which one of the out-of-towners replied, "I'm sorry, but were we speaking to you?" Such a refreshing change from those famously rude New Yorkers we typically have to deal with on our midtown streets.

There were rides too, naturally. I think this one was called The Dislocator, or something like that. Posted by Hello

All those ride tickets and fried dough can get a little pricey, and my attempt to break even on the trip by spending part of the afternoon as an attraction did not really pan out either. Posted by Hello

A pack of fire trucks and police vehicles with lights and sirens engaged just sped up 55th, so I took a little break to investigate. My entirely uninformed opinion is that some visiting moomericans called in a report on one of our many scenically steaming manholes, because that is what was in the middle of a section of the intersection of 55th and 7th Avenue that had been condoned off with police tape by the time I arrived, but if the window behind me is suddenly shattered by the force of the blast you readers will be the first to know (as soon as I remove all the shards from the back of my skull, of course).

I don't really want to burst any of the millions of balloons Blaze has probably blown up over the years, so I will just remark that it is curious that he pulls around a little wagon with a helium tank in it and leave it at that. Here is his tour bus from the entertainers' parking lot; if Jimmy Fallon ever shows up and tries to tell you how much more money you could make if you flew from fair to fair instead, do not listen to him Blaze! Posted by Hello

"Don't misconscrew me" Posted by Hello

As always, there was food to satisfy every appetite in abundance at the fair. I preferred the lime fizz myself. Posted by Hello

Prescription Drug Abuse is a Growing Menace vs. Hillbilly Heroin Saved My Marriage. Those Junior Grangers are the undisputed champions when it comes to whipping up a compelling diorama. Posted by Hello

I don't remember if this fella is a stewer or a fryer, but I would sure love to try him out as a petter. Mike A. and I stopped by the auction barn at one point and saw a little girl's white rabbit go for $150, which seems excessive, but I guess if you just got two blue-ribbon bunnies to put together in your hutch you would soon have enough classy rabbits to make back that investment in no time. Posted by Hello

Charo's show was almost identical to the one she put on here last year, but there was no reason at all to mess with success. She did work a little more blue this year ("They call it Castillian, I call it bullshit... now for all the boys and the girls is the song that I sang as Mrs. Toad in Thumbelina!") Posted by Hello

I think this was my fourth Dutchess County Fair overall (twice in the 80's and last year) and they just keep getting better. That little camera was a breeze to use, and there are probably close to 20 images of fairgoing excitement to look forward to! Between working and trying to ignore the convention coverage (having this new TV lounge at work with Fox News blaring on a big screen directly in front of me is going to be even more excellent than usual this week) it's going to take a little while to get them all selected, cropped, and posted, so keep checking back (unless you find yourself getting too jealous of all the fun you missed and cannot stand the pain from kicking yourself any longer). Also, since there has been an unusual amount of confusion on this issue, I will point out that a larger version will appear if you click on an image, and Charo had three spectacular costume changes that you're going to want to study at the highest resolution you can get. Posted by Hello

Friday, August 27, 2004

I don't think it's likely to be as historical as my previous trip but I'm off to see our Brooklyn Cyclones take on the hated Staten Island Yankees tonight at Keyspan Park with a whole host of readers. Look for the Dutchess County Fair photographs to start popping up here around noon on Monday, assuming I am able to successfully operate my new miniscule camera this weekend (I'm still trying to figure out how exactly I am supposed to jam the roll of film inside the stupid little thing).

16 Goats of Glory, #16. Your collection is now complete. Much love to the goat muse, and on to Torino in 2006! Posted by Hello

Thursday, August 26, 2004

I tried putting a plaid skirt and knee socks on him, but no go. Posted by Hello

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There's squirrel news today, too (goat developing, stay tuned). I recently reported that the Rockies already have a rally squirrel this season, but it doesn't look like the news has reached Cleveland, and anyway, their squirrel is real.

This weekly squirrel from 30 years ago will serve as notice that the author is no johnny-come-lately just jumping onto the squirrel friendship bandwagon (as always, chipmunks are squirrels, be aware). Posted by Hello