Sunday, April 15, 2007

Little Big Top Bits ...

From the first year posting ...

All quiet down the sawdust trail? Counting em’ up — we’ve got two little bigs — Big Apple and UniverSoul and ... is Kelly-Miller a little big? ... Circus Chimera is a little big- plus ... How about Giants? Carson & Barnes, on a diet, too, leads the diminishing pack, still clinging to a trio of rings .... Please consider California, Barbara Byrd, before you too go solo.... John Pugh’s New Cole is — or was — another ringless affair, he having apparently started the trend even before Kenneth Feld gave up on the circus’s most enduring stage set ... In 2005 on the Willow Grove, PA lot, I saw Pugh’s tenter reconfigured into an amorphous oblong performance area ... Beware of rearranging the deck chairs ...

How amusingly topical, and this from Big Bertha dreamer, Craig Johnson: You might know that Randy Concello, a practicing attorney in Sarasota, is the son of the late Arthur. Wonders Craig, what if John Ringling North II hired Concello to represent him, would that be a true North-Concello return? Why not, the scene is crazy with historical reverberations. ... We might witness an eerie replay of the Ringling family wars leading up to John North’s 51% conquest in late ‘47 ... Jim Royal is awfully quiet these days .... He may be breathlessly watching it all play out precariously. Jim, welcome to the Ringling rangling ‘40s. Be prepared for the in-and-out, the on-and-the off of ever-changing big top power ... You could end up working for, who knows, Nichole Feld — or even , let's see ... Patricia Buck Ringling.

Speaking of which, yes it’s a story that just keeps on giving. — About the simmering ill-will at Feld central over North II’s daring to show his name on Kelly-Miller trucks, I chatted this out with an attorney friend. While she did not dig into the law books to render an exacting position, it was her informal (I stress informal) feeling that she would side with North. "But," I asked her, "is he not using his name to lure people into the tent?" Answered she, "Sure, but it’s like he is saying, 'John Ringling North II recommends Kelly-Miller.'" She, not a circus fan, stressed rationally, it’s not as if North is calling it the Kelly-Miller and John North circus. She did caution that the word "presents" might be tricky. ... In casual summation, attorney pro bono for Showbiz David said the point is, will the public be confused into thinking it is patronizing a Ringling Bros circus? Points on or off point to ponder, kids ...

Another great blog down memory lane: Have you seen Bill Strong's wonderful Yesterday's towns? I have a link to it on this revived midway, about which, details follow below, and please read ... Strong has thrown up some photos of Clyde Beatty Circus 1952, a show I saw and loved as a kid. Even helped set up the seats and got ducats for my own hard sit in the blues. So moved am I in recall of that magical day in Santa Rosa, It informs one of the chapters in my forthcoming, Fall of the Big Top.

About this blog, please make note that I might be moving over here soon. A number of reasons make it very appealing -- as much as I have liked the typepad people, on whose lot I currently play. One reason is that it will give more visual prominence and clarity to comments and to the names of those who post them .... I believe those who take the time to contribute deserve better attention. After all, this is a blog, and I value your input ...

And that’s a little big wrap!

first posted April 15, 2007

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