We got off our last Mean Streak ride. It was a ride in the front seat; we waited the several extra ride cycles for that chance. After all it isn't like we could do that again. And there weren't any fresh souvenirs for us waiting. There was a mob, though.
Someone or other was dressed as a zombie or other kind of undead creature standing on the podium giving Mean Streak's eulogy. The whole plaza in front of the Mean Streak entrance was packed with people. And the ride was still going on, rolling its busy way over the entrance and drowning out whatever was being said. We shuffled our way around and we could get closer to the platform and hear a couple things here and there. But not much. I could hear a little more since, being taller, I was a little above more people in the crowd. It still wasn't easy. We could make out the park officials dressed this way talking about Mean Streak's legendarily rough treatment of riders. It was rougher in legend than in reality. bunny_hugger speculated that Cedar Point fans have no idea what a truly rough roller coaster is like. It is like Lake Compounce's Wildcat.
The idea of a eulogy for the ride was a good one. But that everyone who'd been in line at the closing hour was allowed to get their ride in --- normal Cedar Point practice for rides and ordinary closing hours --- meant the ride was still going even a half-hour into the ``funeral''. It's hard to talk about the last rides of the roller coaster when you're drowned out by two trains running every four minutes each.
Finally, though, came the end of the ceremony and a funeral procession. Workers went up to the entrance's Mean Streak sign, but before they could do anything the Cedar Point officials and performers started walking the long, long way to the front of the park. We took some last photographs of the area as it was, and of the trains as they went past. And we joined the gigantic amoebic mob of people trudging their way past Gemini and Magnum and up to the front of the park.
Because it's at the front of the park they have the Rides Graveyard. They've got a couple of roller coaster markers too, something that would've been unthinkable before 2012 when the first of their roller coasters in ages went out of commission. They've got a gravestone for Mantis, even though that ride is arguably still in existence. The same track is running as Rougarou; the train has changed from a stand-up to a seated coaster. There's no end of good questions of identity that roller coasters give us examples for.
At Mean Streak's open grave the park people gathered around and said ... something. I assume. I couldn't hear it either. They took turns tossing some relics of the ride into the grave, though, so the intent was all pretty clear.
Some commotion. Some racket. People clearing out of the way behind us. I looked back and saw what was going on and cried out something like ``Oh! Oh my'' and grabbed my camera for pictures. The workers had got the Mean Streak sign off of the queue and were walking it at a fast clip to the front of the park. It would be put at the open grave, over top of the thing. Some more words that I couldn't hear and then people started dispersing. We got our first chance to actually see the grave site, although whatever was put inside would remain a mystery. It was about 8:30, and the ride was now done.
Cedar Point hasn't announced what they're doing with the ride yet, somehow. But on our subsequent Halloweekends visit we did see they had one of the Mean Streak trains posed in the open grave, as though crawling out. You know, in case anyone had any doubts it was getting converted into some wood-structure steel-tracked roller coaster that I bet is going to be named Vicious Streak. We'll see.
Trivia: Gutenberg was his mother's maiden name. His full birth name was Johannes Gutenberg Gensfleisch. Source: A World Lit Only By Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance, William Machester.
Currently Reading: The Diploids, Katherine MacLean. ``The Snowball Effect'' seems shorter here than I remember. Almost nothing from the sewing club circle meeting.
PS: The End 2016 Mathematics A To Z: Tree, which starts and ends with doodle-ready mathematics.