L.A. County Fair Chapter 5: Our Final Missions Accomplished!

by janet on September 21st, 2006

This is Chapter 5 of my trip to the L.A. County Fair. If you missed it, you should read Chapter 1: Fry loaf hunting, inedible cupcakes, and Nathan Lyons first and then Chapter 2: KO-ed by Kuteness, and Chapter 3: Drowning in a Deep-Fryer and Chapter 4: Gold Medal Wine Tasting and Beer, Too.

As we slightly staggered out of the wine tasting vineyard, we were the victims of a drive-by 70’s banding. They were hanging out on this wagon dealie and being driven through the fair. At the point when they drove by us, they were singing My Sharona. Of course. Sigh. I am sooo [subtle dig warning!] sick of people putting on fros and thinking that’s funnycool. It’s not.


Complete with traveling disco ball.

Then we walked by a stand that was selling gigantic donuts. I’d like to point out here that not all things from Texas are gigantic. For example, I was born in Texas, and I’m small (despite what my Franz Hall janitress says).

Tapioca (despite his peculiar lack of peripheral vision) had spotted this same stand earlier, and kept pestering Teriyaki to get the Molly Maple donut (since Teriyaki loves all things maple). He started pestering him again until it was pretty clear to everyone that Tapioca was the one who should get it. He was reluctant, but we called him the “p” word and then he did.

Though the donut was super doughy (enough to make you ask, “Is this cooked all the way through?”) the maple icing was really mapley and the sugariness seemed to go straight to your brain, which I uncharacteristically liked. Probably due to fair-related fatigue. Tapioca looked super cute eating it, too.


Definitely the right decision, dude.

Remember that fryloaf hunt from Chapter 1? Well, we finally found it!! We weren’t even finished with the Molly Maple before we saw the fryloaf. It was, in a word, insane. It spanned two paper plates, and was a 4 x 4 loaf that was at least a foot long. Teriyaki took out his wallet with shaking hands and forked over the money. We had to do it. We had to eat it. It was the fryloaf that we had been in a quest for all day. So we just had to.

In preparation, I squeezed six cups’ worth of ketchup, reminiscent of the beer sampler I had had earlier.


Deep breaths as we prepare our ketchup and ourselves.

Out it came from the deep fryer (Teriyaki astutely pointing out that a fry loaf is probably just an entire basketful of fries upended onto a plate, thereby forming the loaf shape). We took a deep breath and dug in.


As deadly as Frylock.

I didn’t think we could do it. Each mouthful of fries was like dying a little bit. I had to physically walk away from the table to stop myself from eating anymore and perishing, but then the next moment I would find myself shoving even more into my mouth. And after a valiant effort…we did it! We finished the whole goddamn thing!


Triumph? I feel like the fryloaf was the winner here, not us.

Once we finished it, I realized that actually, it wasn’t so bad, and maybe we should go get that dill pickle that Teri was craving earlier. So we walked two doors down and got in line for a pickle. I noticed that this stand was in fact a funnel cake stand, and demanded that Tapi get a funnel cake since he was craving one earlier. He said, “nonono” but Teri and I busted out the “p” word again so he did it.


The sirens.

Teriyaki’s pickle was a devastating disappointment. It was soggy with bad flavor. Too bad. I despise funnel cake so I don’t even know what to say about it. I guess, to its credit, the funnel cake was freshly fried so it had a good texture, and I like it when Americans (who usually have the more-is-magnificent mentality) appreciate the subtle deliciousness of just a little powdered sugar. Teriyaki didn’t finish his pickle but that was excused. Tapioca powered through the funnel cake and finished it. You go, dude!

So at this point we had fulfilled all of our eating missions (except cotton candy, which Teri decided to take home with him). It was time to fulfill our other missions: 1. Get a penguin and 2. Get James’ fishies.

Teriyaki’s goal in life is to free all penguins from carnival games. We predicted that there would be some penguins needing saving at the county fair, so we walked around the Carnival section until we found them. It was a mommy penguin and a baby penguin tucked into her crotch area, a la March of the Penguins. They were at that game where you shoot water at a target, and the first person to raise the platform all the way wins. Teri played twice (at $3 each time!) and didn’t win. BOO! One of the winners was a random lady who clearly should not have won (only boys know about aiming and shooting) so we suspected the game was rigged. We decided to take a break and look for a goldfish booth.


Shooting liquid into a mouth.

Walking, walking, walking, and no goldfish booth. The carnival was right next to the exit, and the goldfish booth we had seen earlier was way the hell on the other side of the fair. Goddamn it. We started trekking back to the goldfish booth, morose because we didn’t save a penguin and because we had to walk so far.


Our view on the Pomona Death March

At the booth, a super trashed-out oooolllld lady took my money and gave me ten ping pong balls. In my first attempt (which I was using to calibrate my throwing), I landed a ball in the fishbowl! Yes! I had to point to the bowl to make sure the cracked-out lady noticed, and then proceeded to throw the next nine balls unsuccessfully. It was ok, though, because you get one fish guaranteed, and two fish was the maximum, so I actually totally rocked that game. I chose an aquarium with a pink top (Teri: “Why are you picking pink if it’s for James?”), named the fishies “Cheeto” and “Fryloaf” (Teri: “Why are you naming the fish if they are James’ fish?”) and happily walked back toward the carnival.

One last attempt to save a penguin! Teriyaki sat down at gun #4 and then a swarm of people joined the game. Drat. The more people who join, the less your chance of winning. On top of that, 4 is a super unlucky number in Japanese so I was filled with foreboding. The bell rang, and the guns started squirting, and the platforms started rising. Things were looking pretty good! I got more and more excited until…SUCCESS! Shining lights and ringing bells above gun #4! Woooooot! Teri was handed his penguin and joined my blissful winner’s circle. After a quick stop to buy cotton candy (to GO! No more food!), we tiredly made our way back to the cars (another 10-minute walk). Nevermind that it took a full hour to get out of the parking lot – I had had a totally fun, fulfilling day at the L.A. County Fair and couldn’t have been happier.


Captain and Coke, happy at home

Epilogue
James was not thrilled about his present. I forgot that he has a thing against living things as presents (I should just discard my dreams of getting a puppy for my birthday). He also renamed “Fryloaf” to “Skittles.” It works, cuz he is skittish. I don’t own fish food, so I fed them breadcrumbs. I don’t think they understood that it was food, though, so they got soggy and just sank to the bottom. James got all sad because he knew that the fish would die, probably really soon, and said, “Is this how it feels when you know your grandma is dying?” What a disaster.

The next morning, however, I woke up and (a) the fish were still alive (!) and (b) the breadcrumbs were gone! Perhaps they just disintegrated. But then when I put another crumb in, Skittles ate it! So the outlook was good. I decided to invest in my little fishies and planned to go to Petco to buy a true fishbowl, rocks, and fish food (James lamenting “By tomorrow they are going to be belly up! In their breadwater!”).

The fishies deserve their own post, so stay tuned for that. However, I will offer a little preview: Cheeto dies.

And with that, my epic L.A. County Fair chapters come to a close.

6 Responses to “L.A. County Fair Chapter 5: Our Final Missions Accomplished!”

  1. simon says:

    Not only did we finish the fryloaf, we conquered it in under 8 minutes! booyah!

    and i’d like to point out (again) that 4 is my lucky number. i guess we have to stop being friends now.

    I like how cracked-out fish lady totally even forgot we were there for like 5 minutes. what a space case.

  2. […] At the L.A. County Fair, I won two goldfish as presents for James. I named them Cheeto and Fryloaf, but then Fryloaf got renamed “Skittles” by James because he is a skittish motherfucker. It’s very appropriate. This is the story of their lives so far. […]

  3. […] Skittles’ little life: We rescue Skittles and Cheeto from the L.A. County Fair. Skittles loses/kills his best buddy and gets a new home. Skittles battles THE BLACK SMUDGE. Skittles being wriggly and cute. Skittles and The Return of THE BLACK SMUDGE. Skittles’ last days. […]

  4. […] We rescue Skittles and Cheeto from the L.A. County Fair. Skittles loses/kills his best buddy and gets a new home. Skittles battles THE BLACK SMUDGE and wins. Skittles being wriggly and cute. Skittles and The Return of THE BLACK SMUDGE. Skittles’ last days. […]

  5. […] little life: We rescue Skittles and Cheeto from the L.A. County Fair. Skittles loses/kills his best buddy and gets a new home. Skittles battles THE BLACK SMUDGE and […]

  6. […] turning – gasp! – thirty this December] (b) didn’t think I had the wherewithal to do another five-part blog post in […]

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