Escape with a teddy bear

More than anything, I wanted the stuffed purple alligator hanging on the wall. The girl next to me wanted one of the beige teddy bears. We weren’t in a toy store, we were at Owlstock.

WOWL 91.7-FM scheduled Owlstock to be an all day bash, on Wednesday, September 4 from 2 to 8 p.m. “The event was intended to reflect the sounds of the radio station,” said Station Manager Mitch Kamp.

Wackadoos, the Palmetto Palm room, and the Outdoor Stage were reserved for the event. Despite the fact that there was rock-n-roll, rap and techno deejays set up in and around the University Center, few students showed up.

Those who did come, took advantage of the music, 60 pizzas, 200 chicken wings, cotton candy, carnival games and school folders that were free for the taking.

I passed up the free folders to hone my carnival game skills. It took two tickets to win a prize. So for hours, a crowd of students, including myself, took turns playing the eight free games that were set up.

After a few attempts, I managed to (almost) master one of the most impossible carnival games there is. The object is to get a metal rod to the bottom of a spiraling metal stand without tripping the sensitive buzzer. I got a few impressed looks as I edged the metal rod within centimeters of the winning zone. But finally I was forced to move on to a game that required less skill.

I tried my luck at roulette, not the traditional gambit, but one played with professional sports teams. The girl that wanted the teddy bear was there and had already placing her bet. She placed a red chip on the Mets’ logo and I jokingly told her, “The Mets never win.” (I know it’s an outdated joke). She got her teddy bear a couple of seconds later – I should have known.

I resolved to give up gambling right then and there. But I did let the charming boys at the makeshift carnival stand win me the stuffed ‘gator I had eyes for. It’s sitting on my bed now. It reminds me of how much fun I had at Owlstock in front of that silly carnival stand.