Everyone called him Danny Boy, he was hardly a boy at 60 something. A lot of people saw him as old and grizzled, mean even. He wasn't, all the miles jaded him sure, but I liked him, we had a lot of laughs.
Danny was slow as hell, and he seemed to take for fucking ever at anything he did, but he got it done right, and that's what counts in this world where everyones in a hurry.
Danny was an old Carny and had been around forever, he worked rides when he was young, then games for a long time. He loved to tell stories about the old days. He would sit in front of his bunk in a lawn chair half pissed, drinking beer, and talk to whoever would listen.
I was one of the few that would listen, ask questions, I guess that's why he liked me so much. The younger people on the crew couldn't be bothered, but then again, they were too busy making memories of their own to be bothered with someone elses.
30 years from now it will be them sitting in their lawn chairs, drunk, telling stories that no one gives a shit about.
Even old guys get laid on the road. Danny hooked up with some local lady that worked on the lot, she traveled for 2 more spots. He had his own car so he ferried her ass around and doted on her. He talked about "Marks" a lot in some of his stories and as it turned out, he was a "Mark" for her.
She ended up taking him for a few bucks and a lot of rides. I had to get in between them on the Midway finally, him screaming what a " Fucking cunt" she was and her calling him a "Little man", taunting him.
The "Boy-Girl" game go's on long after people have outgrown being a "Boy" or a "Girl" it seems.
Danny Boy ended up quitting a few days later, saying it was because the boss was "Too fucking cheap" to work for. He was drunk and I listened to him ramble for awhile as he packed his stuff.
She was the real reason he left though, I knew that, I guess our hearts get a lot softer as we age, I've seen it before. He had a place out on the west coast, or so he said. I called the number he gave me late one night, but there was no such listing, so who knows.
I never saw Danny Boy again after that season, I don't know what happened to him, no one does. The last time I saw him he was waddling down the Midway, headed towards the gate, with all his stuff, muttering to himself.
I think he died, somewhere alone, I just get that feeling.