So here's the stuff going on my humor blog this past week:
- Some Astounding Things About The Moon, last week's big piece, in anticipation of the news about water on the Moon, which is every bit of astounding news NASA ever publishes about the Moon.
- And Now I Am Deeply Amazed By The Moon in which I turn something that I thought of only after the previous essay published into a post of its own.
- Statistics Saturday: Ranking of _Nightmare Before Christmas_ Alternate Universes and, like, some of them I'd actually be up for seeing.
- 60s Popeye: Strange Things Are Happening, and I have questions about them because the internal logic starts getting a little ... hah?
- This week’s pause a well-liked post because it's the kind of thing people find, you know, relatable.
- What’s Going On In Prince Valiant? When was Camelot attacked by kaiju? August – October 2020 A plot recap.
- Some Kinds Of Jack-O-Lantern, With Such Warnings As Apply which I wanted to just be a reblog of a post from last year that's seasonal and fun and all. But then I fumbled the WordPress reblog tool, sending it briefly to my mathematics blog, where it doesn't fit at all. And then WordPress would not let me re-reblog it; apparently you can reblog something only one time ever for all time? Even if you want to reblog it to a different blog? I don't understand why that happened and I don't like it.
- In Which I Evaluate Some Phobias, this week's big piece, which turned as these catalogue essays will, into my stand-up sketch of What If Bob Newhart were Pennywise the Clown? And honestly that works better than all the other stuff I was trying to do.
And while we spent four days at Pinburgh/ReplayFX, and spent ... uh ... four days looking at pictures of the fourth day at Pinburgh/ReplayFX, this is the last of my photos from there. Not to worry, though; we did something after the arcade closed. Go on. Guess what we did in Pittsburgh during the summer last year.
OK yes so technically speaking this happened but, you know, 12.5 million is not a very high score and anybody should have been able to get on there sometime during the weekend and I am not always upstaging bunny_hugger.
So, the Rock-O-Plane. The amusement park ride was there, for free, all weekend and we finally decided to take a ride. The Rock-O-Plane was once a common fairground thing but the company making it has been out of business a long while and these things only last so long, which is why we decided to not pass up the chance. After all, who'd know if it would be at Pinburgh 2020?
The station had this replica of a Popular Science cover (July 1949) that explained how amusement rides are designed. The thrill of the Rock-O-Plane is that it moved like a Ferris wheel, but ... you the rider could pull a lever that would lock your car's angle relative to the wheel's arms. So that, as the wheel goes around, your car eventually tips upside-down, and straightens out again. And you can lock it to any angle you like, so you could, if you're up to that, go upside-down through the bottom of the ride cycle.
Control lever for the Rock-O-Plane.
Manufacturing label for the Rock-O-Plane, another -O- ride from the Eyerly Aircraft company.
Plates and Michigan inspection sticker and other stuff for the Rock-O-Plane. I took no pictures while on my ride, I'm sorry to report, because the safety signs said to not and I accidentally locked my camera underneath the restraining bar so I couldn't get at it anyway. (I do feel like Ferris wheels are the rare ride where it's not risky to take an on-ride photo, and this --- if the car's left to rotate freely ---- is essentially a Ferris wheel.)
GamePlan's 1980 game Pinball Lizard. So, do you suppose that dragon tail is part of her body or her bikini?
The end. We closed out Pinburgh on Class Of 1812, of course, and they turned the games off on us.
``Go home, Stern pinball tables, you're drunk.''
A last look at the pinball tournament areas, with the rightmost row the games used for Intergalactic Pinball qualification. It was a shame that it was over, but we had this comfort: since Pinburgh 2020 moved to the week after Anthrocon, we had only fifty weeks to wait for the next tournament, the shortest wait we'd ever have. [Whimper.]
Trivia: One of first two lecture/spectacle shows Fred Thompson put on at the newly-built Hippodrome was A Yankee Circus On Mars, a sort of stage production of the Trip To The Moon amusement-park scenic ride. Mars included, in background, two 50-foot-tall gilded dragons serving as arch for the performers. Source: The Kid of Coney Island: Fred Thompson and the Rise of American Amusements, Woody Register.
Currently Reading: The Space Shuttle Decision: NASA's Search for a Reusable Space Vehicle, T A Heppenheimer. NASA SP-4221.