austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

Whirl me 'round, 'round, 'round, through a waltz or a two-step we'll glide

One question my brother-in-law had was whether bunny_hugger and I had ridden Green Lantern. I couldn't remember. My sister said that I hadn't, then, because if we had, I'd remember. They said the ride hurts, a lot. I was skeptical about this since other roller coasters they say hurt don't bother me, but, particularly with the more modern ones where you get strapped into a harness, little changes in how a body's distributed can change the ride experience greatly. But they explained it was a stand-up roller coaster, and I was pretty sure I hadn't been on one of those. Since then I looked it up and yeah, it opened 2011, when bunny_hugger and I didn't get to Great Adventure.

We also didn't go on Kingda Ka. I was emotionally prepared for it, but neither of them made any strong moves towards riding it. The day was slightly misty --- at one point the top of the ride vanished in the fog, and my brother-in-law tried taking a photograph, which for some reason got posted eight times over to his Twitter feed --- but the ride was running, and they discussed the possibilities of getting stuck on top or facing a rollback.

It was mostly a day of riding roller coasters, though; somewhere near one of the Panda Express my sister asked if we wanted to eat and there wasn't much consensus for that. One of the non-roller-coaster rides was the Super Round Up, which was my favorite as a kid. They call it Swashbuckler now, for some reason (well, there's a Buccaneer nearby its current location). Also in one of the metal spokes was a collection of short branches which looked like a shoddy bird nest. It couldn't be --- could it? --- but none of the other spokes had such a collection either.

There's this Dark Knight roller coaster, a wild mouse that's enclosed so it's largely a dark ride, themed to being in the Gotham City mass transit system. It's not a busy ride. The whole day wasn't busy --- our longest wait, for El Toro, was twenty minutes --- but this was really empty. When we got around the first time the attendants asked if we wanted to re-ride, no need to get out, since nobody had come up to the platform anyway. One guy said he just wanted to do anything to get the ride used. One gets the sense it's not long for this world.

The Runaway Mine Train ride is a survivor; it was there when the park opened and it's carried on since. A woman ahead of us was trying to tell her kids how it had just been there forever, and I was able to provide confirmation, that it dated to 38 years ago.

At the close of the night we went to the carousel. On the ride ahead of us one girl sat side-saddle on her horse, with the seat belt strapped around her. The ride operator noticed this and announced on the speaker that all riders must be facing forward, no side-saddle, but the girl didn't seem to notice. I'm not sure someone who looked about five like that might know what side-saddle means, or realize that the directions were about her or were anything out of the ordinary for the ride. Even if she had, I don't know she could have done anything about it with the ride in motion; I wouldn't want to try maneuvering a leg around the horse, particularly as there aren't foot rests on the right side, where she was facing.

So the operator stopped the ride early, mildly disappointing people who knew how long it should last. Even then when the ride stopped he went up to the girl and --- well, I couldn't hear what he was saying to her. But she looked distressed, close to tears. After that demonstration, however pointless I might think it was, I put the canvas strap around my back.

Trivia: Around 1350, England exported 35 thousand sacks of raw wool per year. A century later, it exported barely five thousand. Source: Gold and Spices: The Rise Of Commerce In The Middle Ages, Jean Favier.

Currently Reading: The Fear Planet and other Unusual Destinations, Robert Bloch.

PS: Who Was Karl Pearson? Someone asked me the question, so I'll answer in a completely different venue.


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