Saturday, September 24, 2005

The Turtle Man

Nothing I write about this can convey to you how funny this man is (however, if anyone can tell me how to compress .AVI videos, you can see him in action).

That said, this Rodney Dangerfield of Park performers does this: He holds turtle races many times a day on weekends in Central Park near the Loeb Boathouse at 72nd Street. Here he is with one of his little guys:

Now I am not sure which turtle this is, but what I can tell you is that he has given names to all of his turtles (although he is not always consistent about which one is which).

Turtle Man (cue inspirational music): First, there is the little turtle with the big dreams and stars in his eyes I guess. His name, of course, is Engelbert Lump. If he can just win one race, he will reach the big leagues of turtle racing. (Turn off music) Then there is the turtle that swam to America all the way from the Soviet Union. He is known as Ivan the Terrapin! But his CIA code name is Red Octurtle. (A few audience chuckles, mostly from me) Is it so hard to get a laugh out of you people? I feel like I'm doing Hamlet out here! Finally, coming out of a steroid bath, we have the Kobe Bryant of turtle racing. Boo him if you must, here is Engelbert Lump's older brother, Engelbert Dump! (I laugh, no one else does)

This is the turtle fortress that they wait in:

Turtle Man: Ok, fine, if you don't think this is funny, then at least have some sympathy for the turtles and contribute to the St. Elmo's Home for Special Turtles in Rehab. Here I have a picture of the great Maximilian Shell, who has spent years here, improving his life. And now finally, it's time for the race! Let's turn it over to Chip Sepulveda for the call.

Chip Sepluveda (actually the Turtle Man) lifts up the fortress and the turtles take off: And they're off (turtles slowly start crawling toward the outer ring of the racetrack). What a race folks, what a race! Can you at least make some noise and cheer? Where am I, in Belgium? (2 minutes later) And that's it, the winner is: Engelbert Dump!

Turtle Man: Thank you for your time, and I could use your money. I live in Venezuela and I need to catch a cab home.

(Editor's Note: All of the above names, places, and events are entirely real.)

1 comment:

  1. For all of you studying for the 10/1 LSAT, I have a sample question for you. This is the first line from an asinine article on Wayne Gretzky.

    "Numbers never adequately described the athletic achievements of Wayne Gretzky, in the same way that merely listing the colors used by Michelangelo would fail to even begin to describe the genius left on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel."

    A flaw in the reasoning of this comparison is that

    A: Hockey was not invented until long after Michelangelo stopped painting.

    B. Genius is used objectively in the first example and subjectively in the second.

    C. An entity that serves to provide a reasonable, if not total, impression of one person's achievements is presented as analogous to an entity that fails to provide any kind of reasonable impression of a second person's achievements.

    D. While numbers are necessary to confer greatness in one sphere, they are not necessarily able to confer greatness in another sphere.

    E. It is paradoxical to present one entity as being both sufficient and necessary when another similar entity specifically implies that sufficiency precludes necessity