“Banana Derby” is monkeys riding dogs. Racing each other. For... bananas, I guess?

Our brief story begins at a country fair, where the sweet smell of cotton candy tinged with diesel permeates the air and the only thing sadder than kids dropping ice cream in hay is the wild jungle animal pacing around in a lobster trap.

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Naturally I was there at the behest of my girlfriend, who insisted I’d be able to relax about the whole “clown thing” as soon as the acid kicked in. Just kidding, we were actually in the throes of a heated argument over whether “fried dough” or “funnel cake” as the proper name for the sickening delicious poison we were about to ingest when we happened upon a race track.

Not just any track, obviously. An oval about the size of two Toys R Us pools paved with sawdust and marked off with kid’s birthday party flags. The sign above simply read; “Banana Derby.”

We slurped down some petroleum-based dessert anxiously anticipating said derby to commence. First, a dog showed us his butt.

At this point I was cresting peak social discomfort but I was too blocked in by heavyset patrons who’d crowded in behind me, and I promised “I wouldn’t want to miss monkey jockeys, coming up soon.”

And then it was showtime. And this is basically what we saw:

The monkeys appeared to be attached to the dogs via some kind of restraint while the dogs just go bounding along in circles because they’re dogs and WHAT’S MORE FUN THAN RUNNING?!

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We were told the Capuchin monkeys are highly intelligent creatures. I couldn’t really tell if the winning monkey jockey we saw got much satisfaction out of his (her?) victory but I was so high on fumes and funnel cake I’m just happy I made it out of that carnival without falling into some fast-moving hastily-assembled hydraulic machine.

So uh, is this kind of thing common in your town?

Images by the author


Contact the author at andrew@jalopnik.com.