Gene Baker, with the State Fair, leans out on the shoulder of Big Tex to unfasten the lift cables on the north end of the State of Texas Fair's Midway in Dallas, Monday, Sept. 26, 2011.

Gene Baker, with the State Fair, leans out on the shoulder of Big Tex to unfasten the lift cables on the north end of the State of Texas Fair's Midway in Dallas, Monday, Sept. 26, 2011.

AP

Texans have warm memories of Big Tex, the massive statute that greets State Fair visitors. He elicits childhood memories of corny dogs, rides, and possibly rigged fair games.

To many newcomers, Big Tex is just plain creepy.

Even when he's not burning.

2012 Big Tex on fire at the State Fair of Texas on Oct. 19, 2012 in Dallas.

2012 Big Tex on fire at the State Fair of Texas on Oct. 19, 2012 in Dallas.

Lynda Kingsley

Why is Big Tex creepy?

It's because he's from the uncanny valley.

The "uncanny valley hypothesis" is that people are repulsed by things that appear to be almost human. This is also why clowns and puppets scare many people.

Hypothesized emotional response of subjects is plotted against anthropomorphism of a robot, following Mori's statements. The uncanny valley is the region of negative emotional response towards robots that seem "almost". Movement amplifies the emotional response.

Hypothesized emotional response of subjects is plotted against anthropomorphism of a robot, following Mori's statements. The uncanny valley is the region of negative emotional response towards robots that seem "almost". Movement amplifies the emotional response.

Wikipedia

Big Tex has had three creepy iterations. 

He started life as a Santa Claus in the Navarro County town of Kerens in 1949. The Kerens Chamber of Commerce wanted a gimmick to drum up business, so they decided to create the "World's Largest Santa Claus."

Before Big Tex became Big Tex, he was a giant Santa Claus in Kerens, TX in 1949. 

Before Big Tex became Big Tex, he was a giant Santa Claus in Kerens, TX in 1949. 

The State Fair of Texas

The Kerens Santa Claus greeted visitors for two years and then was sold to the State Fair of Texas for $750 in 1951. 

That is when the framework of the statue was repurposed as the first Big Tex.

Big Tex is seen in this 1975 file photo.

Big Tex is seen in this 1975 file photo.

The first Big Tex reigned until 2012, when an electrical fire caused him to burn (and become a punk art icon.)

The current Big Tex made his debut in 2013, and has served as a eerie selfie backdrop ever since. 

Whether you love him or hate him, there is still time to see Big Tex.  The State Fair of Texas runs through Oct. 23. 

Here is your complete guide to the State Fair.

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