Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Iowa State Fair Game...All can play!!!

Last weekend the hun and I went to the Iowa State Fair. It's hard to describe to a non-I.S.F. participant why this fair is SO awesome. Let me talk numbers: 100,000 each day of the fair, totaling 1 million fair goers each year. It's that HUGE. Most of the attendees are Iowans, which is to be expected.
Disclaimer: Though it will soon seem other wise, I love Iowa and Iowans. I married one, and all the in-laws are still there, and I love them too.
So all these Iowans mixed with a few of us "normal folk". You got the Papa Iowan, whos got his mullet washed, his best bibs on and itchin' to go see the latest and greatest in tractors and combines while hoping he gets recognized from his cameo on COPS. Then there is Mama Iowan, with her 90s inspried curly fro, sporting her Mom pants, praying that her dried flower arrangement will take home the blue ribbon. Then you got the Iowa tykes...all 4H kids, each a result of a conjugal visit. It makes for some great people watching. So a few years back we were at the fair (myself, Hun, his brother and sister-in-law) enjoying our chow-on-a-stick, watching the people go by and pointing out (respectfully) the freaks (read:Hicks, Rednecks, Hoosiers, Bumpkins, Hillbillies, Rural Folk) . When a game developed...The Iowa State Fair Game. The best thing about it, everyone can play! You Don't even have to be at the I.S.F., or any fair, or even in Iowa (though that does help, you'll see why...)
It's easy to play. you may have already played and not even known it.

The rules are simple; play close attention to the crowd, be the first to spot any of the "Point items" on a person, point it out (verbally, unless the people is far enough away, obviously). Also unique items, not listed as "Point items" can get you points. For these you point them out and your fellow Iowa State Fair Game players, or Judges, will decide on how many points that item is worth. Keep a close eye out for Multipliers, these items will double your findings on any one person!!!

Point items:
Nascar Shirt
Nascar hat
Nascar anything!
Cowboy hat
cigarette not in mouth/hand (on arm, in hat, etc.)
hole in shirt
stain on shirt
animal poo on a shirt (or something that might be poo)

Big Belt Buckle
Dried Meat (like Slim Jims)

Example: Man with a glorious Mullet and a huge sweet Nascar belt buckle...
Mullet (+1) Nascar item (+1) Belt Buckle (x2)
1+1x2= 4 points

Again, if you see something wonderful you are to point it out to the others playing the game, who will decide upon a fair amount of points to be alloted to that item/travesty of fashion.
An example of this is pictured: SHIRTLESS man, with cowboy hat. His lovely lady riding with him on the "skylift" is sporting a "respect your mother tee". How respectful is it to go out in public (100,000 people a day, this ain't some family reunion) with someone without your shirt on? Really? So this is one couple that I would point out (or in this case photo) and let the others playing the game decide how many points it's worth.

How many would you give it?


  1. Oh, my game is not nearly as complex... but as an attendee of many a festival, fair, concert and even (gasp) motorcycle rally, I like to keep a mullet tally. Sometimes it doesn't seem fair that a little bitty hardly even making a statement mullet gets the same amount of points as a fully glorious one.

    We recently saw Joan Jett and the B-52's. The actual mullet count was a disappointing 7, but 2 or 3 of them were the sort that inspired me to want to start a slow clap... The B-52's brought a new element to the game - a Bump-It tally.

    I need to look into multipliers and such - to keep the game fair.

  2. What a glorious day it would be if you'd sacrifice your COOL for the sport.
    Next time you head to the Fair-to-End-All-Fairs wear a NASCAR tee with the sleeves cut out tucked into high-waisted, tapered-leg acid-washed jean and a hat w/built-in mullet (cuz I know you're too chicken to fully commit.) Tuck a Slim Jim behind your ear. Don't forget the belt buckle, and revel in the joy of knowing you've made someone's day.
    (Think you could muster up some raging tooth decay???)

    In truth there's NO CROWD as bad as a Southern Crowd and the ISF makes it all WORTH IT.