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If you could can it (even if you shouldn't) it was at the Ancaster Fair.  Also, why is it called canning?  Shouldn't it be "jarring?"

If you could can it (even if you shouldn't) it was at the Ancaster Fair. Also, why is it called canning? Shouldn't it be "jarring?"

Further prize categories from the Ancaster Fair (make sure that you read Part 1 and 2) and the glorious conclusion.

Antiques: Milk bottle w/ dairy label. It’s too bad I couldn’t submit the old milk bottle I had.  The label on it was from my grandfather’s moonshine supplier.

Home Arts: Article of ceramic or porcelain, no lace. The winning item was a ceramic boy, wearing a lace shirt.  The entry said NO LACE, Cindy from Copetown!  Whose homemade brownies (Baking: brownies, half tray, lactose free) did you have to eat to pull off that win, eh?

Vegetable or Fruit: 4 different types of winter vegetables. This was for all the farmers that felt that the “pie pumpkins, 2 matched” was too limiting a category for their boundless agricultural creativity.

Handicraft: Item created from an egg carton. There isn’t much that you can do with an egg carton.  The winner proved that definitively this year.

Baking: Bran muffins, 3, no fruit, no cup. The way real manly bran muffins should be made.

Home Arts: Original scrapbook page, 60+ years old or anniversary. Dammit!  My scrapbook page featuring the celebration of the 59th anniversary of the death of George Bernard Shaw was ineligible again!  Next year, Georgie, we’ll take this one next year.

Flowers: Dahlia, 1 bloom, decorative, own foliage. No renting foliage or making it out of paper mache this time.

Vegetable or Fruit: Any other vegetable not previously listed. Thank God I can enter my tomaco this year!

Field Crops: An item created from corn husks. Please see the entry regarding what you can make from egg cartons.

Canning: Basket of homemade fruit for a shut-in. I wish that I could make up something as fantastic as this.  I swear to you, this was the name of a category, word for word, as printed on the label.  And it was a good enough category that someone said to themselves, “I know exactly what kind of preserves a shut-in would go crazy for!”

The fair rounded off that night with a demolition derby in the brand new bullpen.  I have never experienced this staple of country fairs before.  My entire experience with the sport consists of grainy clips shot on VHS camcorders and shown on “Destroyed in Seconds” and “World’s Wackiest Explosions.”  Sadly, there was only one minor engine fire, apparently too small for the waiting firefighters to even bother putting out.  They just let it sputter away while the rest of the cars engaged in a game of tag using their bumpers and the concrete barriers (pathetic constructions meant to convince us that spectating was safer than driving, even though we didn’t have helmets).

There appeared to be rules, but it was very hard to follow them.  There were three different flags, but we only ever saw the black one in use, and it was waving quite often.  It either meant that someone was dead or that they had hit someone too hard (a strange restriction in a sport bent on destruction).  You had to go around counter-clockwise, but not if you were driving backward (which a lot of people did), and if you’re engine didn’t belch black smoke every time you spun out, you were given a $10 fine.

The highlight of the ‘roided-up version of bumper cars was when the one painted in Scooby Doo colours (which had won the “Best Looking Car” award only moments earlier) was descended upon by all of the uglier cars immediately after the opening salvo of “Eye of the Tiger.”  It was like watching the prettiest guy in prison on his first visit to the cafeteria.  What was left had been folded in about seven different directions (think prison again) and had to be pushed out by the waiting tractor.

I love living in the country.

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