Monday, May 19, 2008

Thrill Rider

Impulse, liberation, betrayal.
writers island prompts have been haunting me this weekend.
After writing about the amazing ride Soarin'... I feel like continuing the ride theme...
When I was young I just LOVED crazy rides. As a young teen, Every weekend during every summer, my friends and I would go to our local amusement park and ride the roller coaster and the love machine over and over again. Nothing was fast enough. Nothing scared us. The love machine was my favorite ride. It would go around very fast in a wave pattern, after several minutes a large canopy would come down covering the ride ( hence the name). Then the ride would continue backwards. I remember the feeling so well. It definitely felt liberating. We would yell to the attendant to play MOney by pink floyd. (turn up your volume, I put it on playlist) That songs escalating instrumental riff went so well with the rides feverish revolutions. Whoever sat on the outer seat, would be squished by the other kids weight. Being small, I always got in first and was luckily the squishER. The freedom of those nights is indescribable. We were young teens, without supervision, without a care, without a plan. Summer nights in suburbia. Flirting with boys. laughing like crazy. Winning tiny stuffed toys. Flying through the air without ANY fear at all.....UNTIL...
Move ahead several years. My boyfriend takes me to disney world. I haven't been on rides lately, but he knows I used to be a thrill seeker! He convinces me that Space mountain is really cool and NOT very scary. He says,

"It's just a roller coaster in the dark". Impulsively, I change my mind last minute and want to get off the line. Something about this fast ride being in the dark is really disturbing me. He persuades me to go against my inner voice, my impulse to flee. Never ignore your little inner voice as I did, It is your warning system at work. I have never been as terrified as I was on that dark ride that dark day. The bastard wickedly betrayed me. ( I ended up marrying him anyway) When we got off that ride, I was literally hysterical crying, wobbling, and shaking uncontrollably. As he sat me down on a bench. One after another... People coming off the ride were coming over to me and THEY were hysterical, but with laughter. Saying things like.. "We know you are upset, BUT we just have to tell you- you made that ride SOO much MORE fun!" They were doubled over with laughter and thanking me! Apparently Me SCREAMING the whole time at the top of my lungs, things like- "GET ME OFF THIS FUCKING RIDE", "OH MY GOD I AM GOING TO DIE ON THIS RIDE", 'NO, NO NO NO NO", " HOLY SHIT HELP ME PLEASE", " JESUS CHRIST IM GOING TO DIE!" "NOOOO" "OH SHIT OH SHIT OH SHIT"... Well, I guess that is REAL entertainment for some thrill seekers. What it was for me was the end of my thrill ride era. From that day on, I CANNOT Do ANY thing HIgh off the ground. No more roller coasters and flume rides for Little Lulu. Although I DID do soarin', what I didn't mention was... I was holding on tight to my husbands and sons hands. sweaty and shaky, and trying not to move a muscle, fearful I WOULD fall and die.... but I did it!
I can do wimpy rides like bumper cars, AND thankfully, I can do something low to the ground that zooms a bit and plays fast music. Years ago they renamed The Love Machine,They now call it the music express.
( No more canopy for kids to make out under.) I am so happy I CAN still enjoy this ride! When my kids were young I would be the one on the outer edge being crushed by their little bodies. NOW, since they're very grown...If we ever decide to go there together.. I get to do the squishing!



JP/deb said...

I loved opening your blog and hearing Pink Floyd's Money start up on my laptop (I love it!)

I can empathize with the Space Mountain story -- I did get out of line and walk back the winding building (the walk of shame). But, I'm glad I did even though my fellow 5th graders teased me!

xx, JP/deb

Just Jen said...

LOL...a big ride for me is having a kid on my knee playing horsey...I get nauseas in the car!

giggles said...

Oh we really could have been friends back then too! You brought back memories for me. Little italy in Vancouver is right outside Playland so meeting hunky Italian boys, carefree flirting
going on rides free was fun! They called me SPINNY because of my giggle and crazy screaming. I loved the scrambler then, the log ride, and that love ride you talk about, the DJ
would yell "wanna go faster"....then he yell "wanna go backwards"....yes both the scrambler and the love ride were squishing rides. I always made sure to be the one who got squished! See that would even work for us! I would still go on all three of those rides. But the roller coaster not so much anymore. Not so brave. Never like the swirling in the air rides! In fact I am not a thrill seeker what so ever! Hey I tagged you on my's a good one! Enjoy! Fun post and thanks for the walk down memory lane!

Hugs Sherrie

latree said...

last time I ride a roller coaster was about 10 years ago
I don't think I would do it agian now. I might get fainted, or throw out. yuck!
you are so brave!

texasblu said...

My last roller coaster ride was the Batman ride in Astroworld, ages ago. They had a height requirement, and I just barely passed it - I shouldn't have done it. I was miserable with the pole sticking up my rear (you were kneeling the whole ride), so much so I swore them all off, stating I'm just too freaking short for them. They just don't make rides for 5 ft people! ;)

Thank you for sharing your story. I've lost it when in complete terror too. My husband still laughs about it - turkey.

forgetfulone said...

Your posts are always such fun and bring back great memories! I'll still ride most of the roller coasters - like Space Mountain or Rockin' Roller Coaster - but don't try to get me on the Tower of Terror.