Carson and Barnes Circus, in the 1960s

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Bitty Big Top Bits ... Let’s Take What Little Comes Our Way, Kids...

As some of you may know (well, all three of you out there who read this biog.), once upon a time, thus it would appear, I was Royally favored by Kelly-Miller’s new big top boss. Now, Royally ignored. No problem ... I’ve trod this sod many times before, and I’m still belligerently doing it my way. Yeah, Frank, I hear you! .... Anyway, nice to hear from Big Bertha Retro Booster Craig Johnson of having e-mailed the new John Ringling North II produced Kelly Miller Circus for dates near his PA home, and getting, in return, a "very professional reply."

Wonders, Craig, would 150 miles to Warren, PA "be worth the trip if JRN II would be on the lot? Your thoughts?"

A no-brainer, Craig. With or without a Ringling icon on the lot, GO! Hop a bus, a train, a skateboard, rig up a wagon or get out your new hydro-whatever and savor a super-rare slice of history while it lasts ... All together now, let’s all dream that North the Sequel has the real stuff, can stick it out and power into Season Two with maturing gusto ... He was "reported" to have dubbed his favorite act, contortionist Sai Zhang "the eighth wonder of the world." How flairful; the man’s inner Ringling must be tingling ...

In a Covington Flash: Best seller novel Water for Elephants has been optioned for a flick by the producer of The Bourne Identify. Set in the depression era ... Speaking outside the tent, I am, as I write this, listening to some fresh modern rock from Their Space that invaded my space via a random search. It’s cool for the moment ....

What was once cool: Don of Covington also answers my earlier question: Did Maestro Evans ever play my favorite big cage music, the Duke’s "Caravan?" Yes, he did, once for gracious Charlie Bauman’s cage act under the hard tops. And at least once under the big top ...

Where is Sage? Anybody seen him? Must be fixing busted tilt-a- whirls, it’s the carnie thing.

... Circus Vargas and Me: They are headed for San Diego and, if my cybersleuthing is right, for Long Beach in October. Perfect month for a tent show in the shadows of the docked Queen Mary .... Every time a new date appears on the winning Vargas site, I take heart. Wouldn't it be heavenly if their performance is as fine as their site...

About those mysterious Ringling-Barnum Circus Archives in Baraboo, word from sources on high suggests another grand effort to make them a permanent and OPEN part of the collection is seriously underway (Go, Freese & Foley!). I’ll have more on this, much more, in due time. Practicing journalism (only reluctantly when I have to), is a messy business that hurts feelings and raises dire suspicions .... I’m trying to gather as many salient facts as I can before I wax stupid.

Lost in the music: Another inspired Merle Evans’ pairing of circus action and scoring: A trio of single trap artists performing to "Poinsettia." Over that, I'll dream ...

LATE BREAKING FLASH: A massive e-mail full of goodies just received from Jim Royal ... I’ll share with you soon ... So, I guess it’s okay to keep doing it my way.

And that’s a mini wrap.

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