“Rock U” Is a Winner and CosPlay Needs Help
Despite the reappearance of the sunshine, the crowds were a bit lighter at The Fair today. More room to move around, shorter lines, more places to sit a spell. Yay!
We had a chance to check out a few of the new attractions, including standing below the new ride in the carnival called Vertigo. It is basically a swing ride that spins about 100 feet in the air. It looked pretty back-friendly, which is encouraging. However, although I don’t really have a fear of heights, those 100 feet looked rather daunting from the ground. Especially since the swings looks pretty sparse. I’m sure they are safe, but I’d feel a lot better if I were in a pod or something such that my feet couldn’t dangle so free and happy. Rob and I are still discussing. We might ride the bucket Ferris Wheel twice instead. Stay tuned.
We got to the Fair in time for lunch. We stuck around to see the 7:00pm concert in the Grandstands and finished off the evening with a stop at Sweet Cheeks for deep fried fun. The cashier recognized me from yesterday and greeted me with a big smile. I’m on my way to becoming a Regular. Yay!
The other people reminiscing looked old. That’s not a good sign. There’s a really interesting exhibit in one of the barns called “Rock U” or “Rock University.” It’s a collection of memorabilia and interactive instrument exhibits and history displays about rock and roll music. It is surprisingly well done and is similar to the EMP (Experience Music Project) in Seattle but on a much smaller scale.
I will spend more time in the exhibit later in the Fair, but today I especially enjoyed listening to some One Hit Wonders, like Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up.” Actually, that was the only one I listened to because every time I pushed a button for a different One Hit Wonder, Rob pushed the button for “Never Gonna Give You Up.” Yes, Rob Rickrolled me right there in the barn. Brilliant!
My favorite part of Rock U was an exhibit about the evolution of how we listen to music, from reel-to-reel to 8-track to cassette to CD to MP3 player.
I got totally side tracked by the 8-track display. Cleverly arranged in the shape of an 8, the cassettes transported me back to my kindergarten self and the long road trip my family made in 1974 accompanied by a big box of 8-tracks. The Carpenters, Tony Orlando and Dawn, Neil Diamond, Cher…they were all heading from Ohio to Montana with us that summer. It was such a trip to see some of those very same 8-track cassettes again for the first time in nearly 40 years.
I was honestly surprised the cassettes weren’t behind some protective glass or something. Then I realized, if someone took one how would they play it? So I suppose they really are safe just glued in an 8 on a board in a barn.
Did I mention I got side tracked? Oh, the 70s.
CosPlay needs a lot of work As I noted in a previous blog, both weekends of the Fair are featuring a new (to the Fair) activity called CosPlay. It stands for “Costume (Role)Play.” The basic gist is that people (mostly teens and young adults) dress up in costumes of their favorite characters from movies, video games, and comic books and act out scenes and create new ones while in character. I’ve only heard of this phenomenon, so I was very curious to see it in person and headed to the CosPlay area with great anticipation.
I found three teen girls dressed in costumes, trying to maintain hope that others would eventually join them. Two of the girls — Leia and Elena — were dressed as Shiemi Moriyama and Yukio Okumura from a favorite Japanese anime called “Blue Exorcist.” Kailey was dressed as Edward Elric from “Fullmetal Alchemist.” No, I don’t really know what I just typed and yes, I took a lot of notes.
I felt really bad for the girls, as they had put a lot of thought into their costumes and were excited to come to the Fair to meet other cosplayers. They had arrived at 10:00am only to find out that the costume contest wasn’t until 3:00pm. At least there were video games to play.
The girls were working their cell phones trying to encourage friends to join them, but the $10 entry fee to the Fair was a huge barrier. “A discount for coming in costume would be great,” Elena said. “Five dollars is very doable.” So all of their cash-strapped friends decided to meet up for free at a park and play there instead.
When I returned at 3:00pm to watch the contest, the girls were gone and had been replaced by three adult cosplayers who looked equally disappointed they were the only ones who showed up. Best I can tell, the contest never happened.
It will be interesting to see next weekend if the Fair Folks get a better handle on how to advertise and encourage participation in this CosPlay thing because so far, this one looks like an epic fail.
Not a fan of guitar solos Since it was free, Rob and I decided to check out the Blue Oyster Cult concert tonight. It is here that I need to admit I had only heard of the band, assumed I didn’t like them, couldn’t name a single song by them, and always thought of oyster crackers when I heard their name. So, since food was involved, I was game to see what the band was all about.
Turns out I sort of enjoyed it despite the eternal guitar solos. Go figure!
Rob kept trying to tell me that Blue Oyster Cult was the start of the heavy metal movement in rock. Yet to me they really just sounded like a classic rock band from the ’70s, not a spandexed hair band from the ’80s. But I guess a movement has to start somewhere.
The music was much more interesting and complicated than today’s music, including the Christian band that played last night. And tonight, the “devil horns” hand gestures made by the crowd were much more appropriate (someone really needs to educate those teens from last night).
I don’t think I’ll go out and buy a BOC album but at least now I know that I actually do know one song by them. You probably do, too. It’s this one. (And yes, that is a really old video and yes, I took one tonight but the file is too big to upload on this site. Drat!!)
Odds and Ends
Today’s mileage was 4.17 miles. Tums count is 0. Pepto count is 2. And I should clarify one thing. All the food you see me eating? Yes, I actually eat all of it. I’m not just taking one bite for the picture and then moving on to the next goodie. Except for elephant ears, fries, and onion rings which I typically share, I finish all the stuff you see pictured all by myself. And yes, I will be answering the weight question at the end of The Fair. My weigh-in is on Monday, August 12.
Here’s today Fair Food Feast Parade!
On the schedule for Sunday:
- Chips and Salsa Eating Contest in the Picnic Tent at 1:00
- Draft horse shows in the Horse Arena from 2:00-4:00
- 4-H Goat Games and Milking Contest in the Goat Ring at 4:00pm
- Last day to see the cats!