Sunday, October 08, 2006

Where The Road Ends

This past summer was a frustrating one. The company downsized and my responsibilities diminished. There was a time when I was one of the few people that could do the job I do, not bragging, it’s just a fact.

I knew the company was downsizing this year, I had no idea it would affect my job the way it did. The industry is changing so fast, a lot of faces have disappeared over the last couple of years, and a lot more will in the very near future. A lot of us are becoming obsolete, we’re dinosaurs.

I’ve never said what my position is in the Carny world, there’s a reason for that. There are only a few of us that do it, if I specified, people would know who I am, and I would rather remain anonymous for my own reasons.

You see, I don’t have to work a joint or a ride, because of my position I had the freedom to wander the Midway day and night, and have for the last 17 years.

As a result of the industry changing, and the company downsizing, I’m not needed anymore, I can easily be replaced by a younger less experienced person that will work for less and take a lot more shit.

A lot of other people offered me jobs for next season, working in a joint mostly. But I can’t do it, I won’t, I’ve been free on the Midway too long. For me to go into a joint and make less money, and take orders from an idiot, would be a step down.

I’ve seen it with other people; I’ve watched what happens when they can’t accept that their time is up. They’ll take anything just to hang on, their pride disappears, one year they’re running stuff, and the next year they’re doing some shit job way beneath them, their pride gone.

I will not do that to myself, I refuse, I never forget who I am, even when others do. I paid my fucking dues in full; there isn’t a chance in hell I’m taking orders from someone that knows less than I.

So ends my 26 years on the road as a Carny….poof…..gone, where did the time go?

Sure I’m scared, so what, it’s a fact of life.

I’ve been working on my resume, it’s a little tough, and what do I write? “Professional Carny”.

I don’t know where I’m going from here, it’s scary. I’ll find a new profession I guess, if anyone’s hiring, let me know.

I’ll continue to post my stories and experiences from the road; it’ll just be “Diary of a Retired Carny” instead.


patita said...

I'll repeat my offer to help you edit if you decide to collect this into a book. Might be a good way to give yourself time to work out the next step.

As for what you do now, you've got more freedom than you ever have in some respects. Seems to me that some kind of work where you'd be traveling would be good. Your knowledge of people and their behavior is definitely valuable. Heck, if I knew a band in need of a roadie I'd not hesitate to pass the info along. I'll keep thinking.

If you're looking for something to read, let me suggest Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward Angel. I think you may enjoy it.

On that note I'll wrap up this meandering comment. Take care of yourself!

Whocares said...

Thanks, i will need your help, I'm going to start putting posts in order, in a word processor and rewriting.

Email me.

Sue said...

I have so enjoyed reading you blog. My man is going to have his last teardown this Sunday and then retire and join me for the "normal" life.
I'm scared and he's excited... at least I now know what "decompress" means to him.

Best to you,

Kevin said...

Same to you, thanks Sue, glad you enjoyed it.