Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Candyman

I can't help it, and I'm sure they're harmless by and large, but the men who come to kids' playgrounds to sell candy and toys disturb me. They're like the guys my mom always told us to avoid when we were little, the much-feared Strangers With Candy. They can also be seen hanging around outside school playgrounds during recess.

There's just something lurky and creepy about them.

I admit I must have seemed creepy sneaking around this fellow to take a picture. That's LE far in the background, wearing the red, white and blue tie-dye.

It totally looks like the guy was scoping out my kid.

*shudder*

16 comments:

toastytoasty said...

I like the way people dress up as clowns and then force a lolipop on kids and then demand money.

Also the men who have an awful air rifle and a few baloons that you pay to shoot-they always seem desperately poor.

Stranger said...

The air rifle guys are tragic.

I haven't run into a clown. I'm mostly trying to teach LE to stay away from clowns yet not be afraid of them. Kind of like what I do for stray dogs. I have no use for clowns.

Nomad said...

My own detestation for clowns goes way back. They are annoying at best and at worse freaky and scary.

http://nomadicjoe.blogspot.com/2010/01/holiday-hill.html

toastytoasty said...

The police seem to have driven off the fake dvd sellers which is a little annoying but there is a fake dvd shop near me that sells them under the counter. The other street sellers and hawkers seem to be carrying on as normal.

Stranger said...

I have a friend who's deathly phobic of clowns. If I even told him that story, Nomad, he would have to leave the room.

I'm not scared of clowns, but they do make me intensely uncomfortable. Same with people in masks. It started the first time I saw a clown with a painted frown smiling, or maybe it was a painted smile frowning.

Having said that, we just got back from the circus in Büyükçekmece. It was creepy and tragic and good fun all at once. It might be LE's only chance to see a traditional circus if the animal rights folks have any say in it. Some of the ponies had wire bits and the hostile, semi-aggressive cringing of the big cats at the toothless tamer's fake whip will probably give me bad dreams for awhile. Some of lions clearly thought the children in the audience looked tasty.

The quality of fake DVDs from the shops is way better than the street sellers'. Way fewer dark movies with tinny sound filmed with a hidden hand-held camera in some cinema in Russia.

Vicky, Bursa said...

luckily, I don't think the candyman thing has come to Bursa - that is just totally creepy and horrible. We get old guys sitting at the kids' playground here, which is okaaaaay, but haven't they got somewhere else they can go as even they creep me out a bit, and make me feel a bit uncomfortable trying to keep respectable as I leg it after my son. What I find completely disgusting is how everyone here has taken the ads on telly at face value and now scoffs their sunflower seeds (which I love) and splutters the casings all over the ground. This annoys me beyond belief as the playground is next to a river and we really don't want rats coming to eat the discarded shells, do we? Is it too much to ask to remember to bring a plastic bag with you? Frankly, the park, though lovely and new, is covered with rubbish - it gets duly cleaned regularly but I have no idea why people don't just chuck their efes bottle/bottle tops/lolly wrapper in the bin. Grrrr

Nomad said...

Speaking of DVDs. Found a bootleg copy of IronMan2 and started watching. The opening was set in Russia and I kept watching and watching trying to figure out if the language was in Russian throughout or if it was only in that part. Sadly, it was in Russian all the way through.
One time I watched a totally crap film- like one of the worst- and it was nearly unbearable until I realized that the noise I kept hearing in the background were two Chinese girls giggling about how bad the film was. Of course I couldn't understand what they were saying but it was pretty clear by what was being shown. It was like having a Hong Kong laugh track and it made the whole thing so much funnier.

Bulent Murtezaoglu said...

Um. If you're willing to that route, why bother with the DVD-men? Here, for example.

Stranger said...

I think old people hanging out in kids' parks is the equivalent of old people hanging out at the duck pond. I expect they don't have much else to do, and watching the kids at least makes them happy, I suppose.

Spıt sunflower shells are so gross. I bet you could work out a mathematical formula that tells you how many people were sitting there and for how long, based on the size of the pile. Yuck. And yeah, I wish more people would teach their kids not to just throw their trash wherever they like. LE is like this OCD trash cleaner-- he lets me deal with the glass, but he collects trash and throws it away all the time, so long as I haven't designated it as "yucky:" spit out gum, popsicle sticks, anything with wet stuff on it... Our playgrounds are really messy too because they're always near bakkals, so kids throw their trash by day (even though they all have trash cans nearby), and teens and grown-ups do it by night. Apparently thinking about children playing in broken bottles the next day doesn't occur to anyone.

Bülent, I don't pirate my own DVDs partly because of the time involved, and partly because we have to pay a lot extra if we go over our monthly GB limit. This normally only happens when our wi-fi password protection spontaneously goes off and all the neighbors start downloading huge files. Anyway, my husband has this insane DVD and computer game buying problem. He brings home at least 10 a week, then refuses to get rid of them after he's used them, insisting they're his "arşiv." We're starting to drown in the things.

toastytoasty said...

I love the way motorists when their car gets a bit full of junk they put it all in a Migros bag and chuch it out of the car window onto a patch of grass in the street.

Also there should be a law requiring a park to have at least a few trees and shrubs and possibly a tree.

Some of the kids playgrounds in Beylikduzu have almost all their equipment broken and after 4 pm they are full of schoolgirls with their much older boyfriends and then after about 8 the drinkers appear.

I remember a great episode when I lived in Moda near the fountain. Kids would bathe their during the summer days and in the evening people would sit round it and drink beer or whatever. A friend of mine and I were having a beer and a couple of old women were chatting and a group of early twenty somethings were drinking beer and smashing the bottles into the fountain. My friend and I wanted to say somehting about the kids getting hurt next day as they would not be able to see the broken glass but were afraid when one of the women screamed at them:

hain misin, vatan hain mi sin? There was an exchange but the woman won and the men were humiliated. I was really impressed with the use of hain.

Stranger said...

There are two things about that story I love about Turkey. One is that certain things, when directed at someone a certain way, are deeply and incredibly insulting, enough to stop someone in their tracks. Why bother swearing if you can call someone "hain" or "terbiyesiz" with more effective results? The only downside is I'm not sure "hain" would have the desired effectiveness coming from a foreigner, though the power of it might upend the logic...

I also love it that young Turkish people who act tough and mean and being naughty are chided and shamed when an older person bawls them out. They stop what they're doing and feel bad. That's good old-fashioned respect. Can you imagine what American or British young people of the same age would do?

Bulent Murtezaoglu said...

Actually, 'traitor' is just one meaning of hain. Here it is from TDK.

"Vatan haini" from a foreigner might sound a bit off, but just "hain" would work fine. "Ne hainsin" is way stronger than "ne edepsizsin" BTW.

The thing that seems to work in such cases (which also tends to work with low level civil servants BTW) is to be or appear to be so sure of both the position you're taking and your authority that the other side needs to put a real mental effort into getting onto even ground. Being right also helps, of course.

toastytoasty said...

Funny a similar odd thing happened to me a few months ago here in the UK. I was on a public bus on a Friday afternoon when there was an arguement between a couple in their early twenties who were drunk and had obviously on some kind of drug. It was quite nasty and went on for 10 minutes with everybody pretending nothing was happening including the driver. Suddenly a kid about 17 sitting with his girlfriend jumped up and confronted the man with `there is a baby on this bus` and the man finally got off. Cowardice is the norm now in the uk and fear of knives and teenagers is rife. Sad.

Stranger said...

Cool. I'm glad I can use "hain." I like the second meaning. I can't think of a good, single word like that in English. Vandal? No, too obvious. "Wanton destructiveness" is closer, but pretty much silly for most people...

Toast, I'm definitely too much of a coward to confront someone being obnoxious. Fear of getting knifed or punched is one thing, but there's also the fear of creating a scene. Public buses in San Francisco were one of the scariest places on earth. You just kept your head down. But I had a friend who was keeping his head down and some kids walked by him and, totally unprovoked (except for my friend's ginger hair which seemed to just piss a lot of people off), kicked his head into the window so hard it cracked the window.

toastytoasty said...

Uni students are not like I was when I was an undergraduate. You would not believe what uni campuses are like now.

Stranger said...

It's not just from you that I get the feeling Britain is going to hell in a handbasket and it's not unlike the early 80s there now.