Most of us know carnival games are scams, but Henry Gribbohm learned that particular life lesson the hard way—by losing his life savings in a desperate attempt to successfully toss a ball into a tub.
Gribbohm, 30, of Epsom, N.H., spent what he claims was his life savings over the weekend on a carnival game called Tubs of Fun. The game’s premise is simple: contestants drop an entry fee to toss balls into a tub for prizes.
“You’re expecting the kids to win a few things, let the kids have a good time,” said Gribbohm. “It just didn’t turn out that way.”
Gribbohm said he attended a Manchester carnival run by New Hampshire-based Fiesta Shows and wanted to win an Xbox Kinect at a game called Tubs of Fun where contestants toss balls into a tub.
When he practiced he says it was easy, but something changed when he started playing for the prize and the balls kept popping out.
The 30-year-old said he’d kept trying to win back his money by going double or nothing. He dropped $300 in just a few minutes, then he went home to get $2,300 more and soon lost all of that as well, says CBS Boston.
“You just get caught up in the whole ‘I’ve got to win my money back.’”
Gribbohm went back the next day to complain and, according to local media, was reimbursed with $600 — and the banana. Still, he called rig!
“It’s not possible that it wasn’t rigged,” says the 30-year-old dad, though he adds—in what may be the understatement of the year—”It was foolish for putting up my life savings.”
Fiesta Shows, which ran the carnival, is interviewing the independent contractor who ran the game, and the police are also investigating the possibility of fraud.
There’s no word yet on the results of the investigation. But, again, at least Gribbohm got something out of the ordeal — even if the same five-and-a-half-foot Rastafarian fruit is available on eBay for $150.
However, now Comedy site CollegeHumor launched a Facebook campaign Tuesday to buy back Gribbohm’s banana — which sports a beanie and dreadlocks — for the full $2,600.
Gribbohm lost what he claims to be his life savings over the weekend on a carnival game called Tubs of Fun, reports Mashable.
For every Facebook Like that this CollegeHumor post gets, the site will put $0.10 towards purchasing the banana.
If the post reaches 26,000 Likes, CollegeHumor will offer $2,600. If it gets 30,000 likes, the site will buy the stuffed fruit, as well as pay for the Xbox Kinect that Gribbohm was originally trying to win for his kids at the carnival.
“He’s now somewhat famous for being foolish at a carnival, which is something no one should be famous for,” said CollegeHumor editor-in-chief Streeter Seidell.
“But this isn’t exactly charity … We want the banana — the giant, stuffed stoned reggae banana.”
“We don’t want to encourage people to do anything foolish, but anyone who will spend $2,600 playing a single carnival game is not going to be encouraged or discouraged by what we do.
“They’re going to do certain things anyway, and we all have to be okay living in a world where there are people that will do those things,” he said.
“It brightened my day a little bit to hear the story … so, in a way, it might be a good thing if more people do funny things like this.”