Cavallini's crazy car

Cavallini's crazy car

The Cavallini Taxi was a 1920 T-model Ford. It came juddering into the ring to pick up its passengers dressed to go out for the evening. As soon as they climbed into the car, the engine stopped. Everyone clambered out and with much silly business took the baggage off, the roof before opening the bonnet to examine the engine - typical clown logic! The engine would then suddenly start all by itself and everyone would frantically leap back in. Immediately they were ready, the engine would stop again and bits of the car would start to fall off - wings, running boards, head-lamps. Flames and smoke then exploded out of the engine to be extinguished by Tom the midget fireman. Another explosion shot the lady passengers into the ring in an undignified heap. The performance here took place at Bertram Mills' Circus at Olympia, in 1948. As with so many circus acts, this was copied from an earlier one. The car act was already running in 1912. John Pimpos, one of John Sanger's clowns had a comedy car, which stopped and started of its own accord, and sprayed its owner with a fountain of water when he opened the radiator cap.