Friday, September 17, 2010
Today's picture is from 1915, and it shows a "Side Show" at Coney Island. I can remember going to the "Side Shows" or "Freak Shows" which were quiet popular at carnival midways in the 60's and 70's. Today, political correctness has very much reduced the more unusual "Freak" shows. One I went to when I was young had what they dubbed was the "Walrus" man. It was a man with a deformity where he had no arms, but had normal hands growing out of his shoulder. If you went into the show, you could walk up and talk to the guy, and he showed how he could do lots of everyday things in clever ways, using his hands, or his legs and feet. He was a very cheerful and talkative guy, and was happy to answer any questions. Now, this would be considered exploitation. I sort of wonder though. This guy had a serious deformity, but had figured out how to make a living that was not too hard, and he appeared to enjoy the attention and being around people.