It appears to the casual observer that the carnies at this year’s State Fair are a little cleaner than in past years. To the sharp-eyed snark hound, however, it is an obvious sea change in the modern carnival solutions industry.
That’s right. The midway has gone corporate.
All games, rides, and straight-toothed carnies are now provided for the California State Fair by the Ray Cammack Shows corporation or RCS. Take a look around the midway and you’ll see the RCS logo emblazoned on every skee-ball, pop-a-shot, and shoot-the-water-in-the-clown’s-mouth game.
Along with the new corporate image comes innovations in productivity and, of course, additional profits. What new profits, you ask? The kind of profits that inevitably come from currency exchange. That’s right, the carnival games at the fair have taken a page right out of the Walt Disney playbook: tickets. That’s rights, tickets.
No longer will the barkers, sharpers, and sliphs take your greenback dollars. No, now you must exchange your cash for tickets that you can then redeem for balls, darts, or dangerous pellet guns. What’s the end result? A lot of unused tickets at the end of the fair, that’s the result. More money in Ray’s pocket and less in yours, that’s the result.
Will we put up with it? Of course we will. We need that giant stuffed Spongebob. I’m just making you all aware of the myriad injustices we must live with everyday. That’s all.