Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Meet Me At the Fair

Last night the family made the summer trip to the Ozark Empire Fair. It's been quite some time since I've been to the summer fair. I think that this is only the second time in 11 summers that we've been to the Fair. Although I didn't grow up on a farm, ours was a small rural town in central Illinois. I was in 4-H and my best friend raised and showed Angus cattle. I spent a more than a few nights sleeping on tack boxes, straw bales or in the bed of a pick-up truck at various county fairs.

We didn't have enough time to really enjoy all of the exhibits and mainly went for the grandstand show. I did realize that there was some great photography displayed and wondered why Dan Kennedy hadn't entered any of his great pics in the fair. I've seen some fantastic sunsets and sky pics from Dan--worthy of fair competition. After the show, we strolled on the Midway and at some point I managed to heed the advice of a co-worker and "eat something on a stick." It was teriyaki chicken from an Asian vendor. When Aaron asked me what I had, I responded with "Salmonella in a stick." Something about eating fair food (or fair fare) always makes me feel like a bit of a daredevil.

The grandstand show was Weird Al Yankovic. Al has been at it for quite awhile and has put together an impressive list of albums and awards. The concert was very entertaining. I think that the kids may have enjoyed it more since they were more familiar with the current parodies. I had just a couple of complaints about the evening, perhaps I'm becoming more curmudgeonly as I get older or maybe it comes from reading blogs like Bilbo's or Mike's.

In any case, the grandstand show is usually included in the cost of your ticket to the Fair. However, since Weird Al was quite the name, you had to have a separate ticket to the show. If you bought a ticket to the Weird Al concert in advance(starting at $10), admission to the Fair was included. But if you got to the Fair you had to buy your admission ticket($8) and then buy your concert ticket (still starting at $10) separately. What a ripoff! The other thing was trying my patience by not starting on time. The concert was scheduled for 8 pm. Some time around 8 stagehands began messing with lights and other things to make you think that the show was about to begin. By about 20 minutes past the hour, the audience began its clapping, foot stomping chants to entice the performer onto the stage. Once the concert finally started (8:25 or so) it was a good show and he performed for 2+ solid hours including his encore. Weird Al is an extremely talented, funny and energetic guy. If you've never heard any of his stuff, go to You Tube and enter his name in the search. I'm sure there are a bunch of videos of him. Here is a link to one of my favorites, The Saga Begins.

I hope that you're enjoying your summer (Northern Hemisphere readers), it's almost over.



Sicilian said...

John . . . . Got a revelation for ya. . . . Weird Al kind of dates you . . . . . not that I care. . . . it dates me too. . . .
I need a cold front . . . . just a small one. . . . . need to break the triple digits here.

John said...

The funny thing is that my kids think that he's a new, hip guy. He has certainly made the generational jump!

Bilbo said...

If I've been a curmudgeonly inspiration to you, I have finally achieved something! Now, if only I could do something with Mike...

Mike said...

Bilbo -
Roses are red
Violets are blue
I'm going to write
A letter to you.

It's pretty bad when bloggers are blogging to each other on somebody elses site.

Anonymous said...

Weird Al does not date you. He's bigger now than ever. If you check you tube has one of the most downloaded videos of all time. 32 million views.

And it ain't old ppl like us who are watching them.


John said...

Yeah, Steve. It's funny that the kids think of him as one of their artists. They probably don't realize how old he is!