Mark gassed up the mini.
He cleaned it up, too, at the car wash down our street.
He was sucking goldfish crackers out of the upholstery with a vacuum when he got offered ice. Street name for meth! The guy showed him a $20 bill to let Mark know he was legit. Mark declined the offer. The would-be dealer next asked Mark for a ride to the convenience store, which was across the street. Mark also declined this request. Would-be dealer wandered off. Mark continued to vacuum goldfish.
The mini was ready! Time to go to the fair, kids!
I love the fair.
Deep fried things on a stick, and spandex spandex everywhere! We’ve got yer above-ground tornado shelters for sale. We’ve got yer bearded lady swamp thing. We’ve got yer alpacas. We’ve got yer farm animal birthing center — celibacy training for children! We’ve got yer giant turkey legs. I mean…it’s all in one place. Can’t beat it.
Laila was thrilled. She talked about the fair for days and days.
We took her on the merry-go-round.
It gave her toddler-sized PTSD.
She screamed and thrashed every time we walked past it for the rest of the day.
We took her on the spinning strawberries.
Her face went blank. She loved it!
Next we hit the flying bumble bees.
Blank face. She dug her fingers into my thighs in distress.
It was a hit!
We hit up the birthing center.
Ooooh. Those piglets are cute. I’m never eating pork again…
Are those chicks in the incubator dead or sleeping? I’m sure it’s just nap time, but we’re not sticking around to find out. Move along, Laila.
I couldn’t go on any rides last year. I was pregnant.
I went for the swings this time. I seem to remember this from childhood.
OK, under the safety bar. Check. Click the belt. Check.
Oh, here comes the friendly fair worker!
He’s helping me buckle that crotch buckle I forgot.
Tha….did he just slide his hand up my leg whilst buckling the thing?
Did that happen? Was that an illusion? That could not be proven in a court of law.
Too close to call. Let’s do this!
The contraption lifts. It spins. That noise! It’s like the crank you’d expect on the rack.
This doesn’t feel safe.
And we’re moving up and down.
And I could fly out of this loosely buckled seat at any moment, and so could these children around me.
I’m flyin’. I’m flyin’! I’m kickin’ up my cowgirl boots. I’m a kid again. I’m a kid again!
Spandex, turkey legs, animal births. Illusions, midriffs, things that flip. Smiles, cotton candy, show horses. Touts, beauty queens, creepers, cops, cowboys, Indians
Ya know. America.
Look away. I dare ya!