Monday, November 7, 2005

Fewer Sideshow Freaks Thanks To Medical Science

NEW YORK (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – If it’s getting harder to find a bearded lady or Siamese twins, you can blame it on medical science.

That’s according to Marc Hartzman, author of the upcoming book American Sideshow: An Encyclopedia of History’s Most Wondrous and Curiously Strange Performers (Tarcher/Penguin).

Some freaks are getting harder to find because, as Hartzman puts it, “Medical science can separate Siamese twins.”

He says the Politically Correct movement had an effect on modern day sideshows because now more people feel guilty looking at people put on display.

But Hartzman says these days you just have to know where to look to find freaks, like on an episode of Dateline that features Siamese twins being separated, or in Las Vegas where “The Rubberboy,” a super flexible contortionist, performs.

And there’s also Hartzman’s book of freaks. One of his favorites is Laloo the Hindu who was born with a parasitic twin sprouting from the middle of his chest and was part of P.T. Barnum’s act.

The headless, malformed twin had two arms, two legs and a body, plus a penis that could urinate and get an erection.

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