Sunday, July 25, 2010

Well marriage officially sux!

I have been in my 2nd marriage for the last 6 years n with him for the last 7. He is currently incarcerated for losing his temper with his step son. There have been some new discoveries in the past 4 n a half months and ive come to the conclusion that im done with my husband. Im tired of the drinking the lying the cheating and being ignored and not supported in my endeavor to get a better education so i can kick the system. I want my own house. A vehicle that i dont have to either repair every month or replace every six months. Im just tired of the bullshit. I have two men that want me just the way i am. And i know how both are in the bedroom. I love one n i fell in love with the other. The entire situation is really messed up. But it is what it is. For as long as it lasts. Im going to get thru this without the help of a dumb bitch n her narc attitude.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Carnival Season In NY Has Begun....

The warm weather has set in here in New York. So now carnival season begins. Many carnivals are just out of winter quarters and are starting their trek north.  Some even start here in NY and go south.
     Well for the best part of the year... carnival season! I can't wait to go work in my fried dough joint. I get to relax with out my kids for a bit and make money doing it. Funny thing is that most people wouldn't consider it relaxing. I get to spend time with people that I consider extended family and treat people to the most BAD for you food on the planet. There is nothing more delicious than fried dough or funnel cakes under the flashing lights of the midway. So I start my season the first weekend of June and I have no clue where the spot is. And that makes it all the more fun. I get to travel to little hick towns and hole in the wall towns, and the middle of no where, and East Bum Fucked Egypt. Life on a carnival is so much fun, but it can be a lot of work too. The rides are the hardest because of all the heavy lifting of steel and iron and canvas in the blazing sun. The reward for all that hard work is watching the patrons leave with a smile on their face. And with the economy the way it is right now, people will be flocking to carnivals rather than going on expensive vacations and going to theme parks. The average price of a theme park ticket is $40. Admission to the carnival is free. Tickets and food are what really cost anything and most carnivals have a P.O.P.... pay one price... where the parent pays a set price for the child to ride any ride they want of the duration of the P.O.P.  The P.O.P usually lasts a good 5 if a single ticket costs $1 and each ride takes 3 or more tickets, and the kid wants to ride every ride, and there are 13 rides, do the least $35 in tickets versus a $15 wristband. sounds like the P.O.P is the best deal.  Since carnivals are free to get in and park, you can bring your own food, and save money that way, and just buy a treat, like fried dough, or a candy apple. There is no need to buy the days meals at the carnival. But it does support our wages. So get off your duffs and get moving.... go to  local carnival today!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A Typical Morning with my Son

Life after traveling with the carnival is much like the life of any person with children. The day starts like any other...I get up, I go potty, I make coffee. I get my son up for school and he fights me the entire way. From getting out of the damn bed, to getting dressed, to actually getting his ass out the door.  He complains that school is boring...he hates's stupid....I don't have to fricking go... etc. There have been days where I even have to physically dress him. Ever try putting socks on a cat? Ever try bathing a cat? Thats how bad he can fight me. Like today, he doesn't want to go to school, so he dawdled just enough to piss me off. Im at the point of screaming every morning. That is something that I shouldn't have to do. What parent screams at the top of their lungs to get their child to do something? He refuses to respond to a normal tone of voice, or even a simple request. I have been at the end of my rope with him for a while. I also have a beautiful little girl and she is the most adorable, precious, part of my life. She just turned one on April 5th, and is trying to learn to walk. I wish my son would be a little more like his sister. But that would mean a complete change of him to something that he's not. He had ADHD, ODD, and a bit of bipolar disorder. He is on meication for this, although I think they really don't work. I wonder where my fairy tale is, or if my fairy tale even exists, or even if fairy tales even really happen for anyone.....

What is a Carnie?

 Well let me see if I can explain what a carnie is.  A carnie is any person who engages in working on a game, ride, or in a food joint on a traveling carnival.  Some people that work in stationary amusement parks are also considered carnies. Now for the glossary of terms that you will encounter in this blog page.
Joint: No NOT the kind that people smoke... a joint is any structure that houses a game or a; food.

Gamie: A person who tries to cheat you out of your money by playing a game whether it is chance or skill

Ride Jock: A person who sets up, runs, and tears down one ore more rides

Carnival Group: A group of people that travel together on the same carnival; ie James E. Strates Shows who do the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, New York.

Green Help: Any person who comes in off the street to help with set up or tear down of the rides,concessions, or games... they may or may not start to travel after helping

Spot Help: Similar to green help in that they come from the street to help, but only do it for that particular spot or a particular set of spots.

Travel Help: These are the people that get up every day and work on the carnival. They go from one spot to another for the entire season or jump in in the middle of the season

Season: The time period when carnivals move from Florida (East Coast) to New York, Maine, New Hampshire etc depending on the group

R-Key:  Also called a trailer hitch pin...can be found in any hardware store. These are one of the most important safety items on ANY ride that a patron goes on.  they look like a capital letter R but a bit more curvy. Reffered to as a key to the midway

Snap Ring: This is a metal ring with a straight metal pin attached in a similar style to a door knocker. This is alos another important type ofsafety item on a ride

Diaper Pin: Looks like a really big diaper pin. Made of metal and is the last type of pin used on rides.

Cotter pin: A stright pin with a bulb at one end, bend the ends up towards the bulb after inserting it through the hole to fasten two pieces together

Safety pins/keys/rings:  All the aforementioned items are used on every ride. These are what hold all the other pieces of the ride together. Each manufacturer of rides uses one or more of these to "lock" the pieces together to keep people safe. Without them, tubs can fly off, or other pieces can injure people

Safety inspections: Some states require an inspection at EVERY spot, others are good for the season and it is up to the owners to make sure that the ride jocks inspect their rides every spot.  New York requires weekly inspections, and state inspector, who is independent of the carnival group, inspects every ride for safety. If the ride does not pass, the ride jock has until the inspector leaves to correct the problem or the ride does NOT run at that spot.

Circus Jump: A complete tear down of all rides, games, and concessions, and an immediate move to the next spot, and an immediate set up of all the aforementioned. Usually less than 24 hours elapse between tear down and set up.

Jump: The usual tear down, transport, and set up.  Takes a few days rather than one.

Mark: A mark is an old term used in the days when the ticket seller at a carnival would motion to another person standing nearby to "mark" the person to whom he just sold tickets to. This was done using chalk placed on the "marks" shoulder. A person was a mark when they had a lot of money in their purse/wallet and it told the gamies to put the pressure on to get the mark to spend their money and leave broke.

There are many more terms that are used and games that carnies play on the marks just to get a laugh. 

I have been a carnie since July 5, 1997 when I did my first tear down.  It was a really warm summer night and I was at the Cheektowaga town park with my family and boyfriend.  My boyfriend, knew the owner and some of the carnies on the lot. We were asked if we wanted to help out at the end of the night, and we agreed. I started my work with a 1942 Herschell Rodeo Carousel...ground mount. I did it in jelly sandals of all the worst kind of shoes to wear... I loved every minute of it. I got dirty, greasy, and sweaty. I ruined my brand new jeans in the process due to the fact that I kept wiping grease on them from my hands so that the next piece of metal I grabbed didn't slip.  The next week we were at it again, but we got to run our own rides. My boyfriend got to run the Hampton and I was stuck on the most boring ride...the bounce house.  3 tickets please... no one over 75 pounds, no shoes.  for spot help, the pay was good.  little did I know that I was hooked for life.