Tiny Never Went South


Another act that I first knew working together at Madison Square Garden was Tiny Hicks a 550 pound fat man. Following his first engagement at the Garden, Tiny went on the road with me. I built a single-o show for him. (A show which has but one attraction.) I sent him with a manager named Billy Judd to play county fairs in Ohio, where business was very good. I hadnít been around to collect the receipts for a few weeks.
Billy had an old car, in which he carried the sledge hammer used to drive the tent stakes and a huge crowbar with which to pull them.

He also carried the money on hand in the auto's trunk. One night, as was their custom, after closing, they went to a local cafe for a late dinner. Billy, unintentionally ran a red light and was pulled over by a policeman, who thought they looked suspicious. He had Billy open the trunk of the car. He saw the tent tools, he assumed they were burglar tools and the bag full of my money, was stolen loot. Once at the police station, it took a few hours for Tiny to locate someone with the fair's management to verify the explanations. It would seem at one time Tiny had toured the south and didn't get paid on the excuse Southerners don't like fat people. This is erroneous. I had observed just the opposite. Never the less, Tiny didn't want to go south. I believe subconsciously he believed he wouldn't get paid. We jumped from Ohio to Abilene, Texas in early September. The weather was very hot, which is always tough on fat people. Our next town was Amarillo. Billy's car had no air conditioning so Tiny was to take the Greyhound. When I arrived in Amarillo, a telegram awaited me. Tiny had gone home convinced the south was no good for a fat show, although our business was good.
Before Tiny retired to his home in Warren, Illinois, he worked for Chris and I several more times, but I never asked him to tour the south.



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