By Lex, on October 8, 2008
Magic Mountain all day, at the behest of SWMBO V3.0 and one of her cohort. The Hobbit having taken a pass.
Pray for me, and talk amongst yourselves.
Update: A pretty good day. Traffic up the 5 was smooth at 0730 – herself can be quite the slave driver when it comes to her entertainment – and we got to the park with time to spare. Your correspondent immediately saw the X2 ride and determined to have at it, but the lady insisted upon intervals of warm-up in lesser contraptions. Wise beyond her years as it turns out.
Only $29.99 if you purchase on line, as against $59.99 at the door. Which makes it a no-brainer. They still nickle and dime you here and there: It costs a dollar to stow all loose gear in a little locker for the two minutes spent shrieking on the ride. A smarter man might have left it all in the car, but who goes anywhere without a cell phone anymore?
A sunday morning in October is the perfect day for a trip. The summer crowds and heat have both fled, and we never stood in line until our last ride. About which, more later.
First up was the Tatsu, which lays claim to be the longest and tallest ride on the earth. Gives you the “sensation of flight”, according to the literature, which I suppose is true, if hanging suspended from a truss is what flying feels like. Flying sensations or no, it was a hoot and I’d have gone again wasn’t there so much else to keep up with.
Got stuck literally holding the bag on the Riddler’s Revenge, Our Royal Sovereign having incorrectly surmised that it’d be OK to forgo the dollar locker and leave the gear trackside in a bin. Working at Six Flags must pay well, because there was no begging the ride attendants to make an exception. The bastards.
Parrothead Jeff asked how a roller coaster compared to flying fighters, and the short answer is that there are some similarities for many of them. I laughed out loud at the sheer joy of the swooping and soaring and pulling of g’s. I find it useful to look down track when I can, and imagine that I’m flinging the machine through its arcs and swirls. Tighter turns in terms of radius than you could ever get in a fighter aircraft of course, albeit at a lower total g-loading. And some flings outboard that we’d call “uncoordinated flight”, if you were the one doing the flying. But it’s enough like flying hard and fast to taste a bit of the primal joy.
Or at least, all of them were but the X2. It was the first line we stood in, and took us an hour and a half to get close. At which point the nice young man came by and told us the ride was down, undergoing maintenance, no telling how long it might be ’til it was up again. We several put our heads together and determined that we had come so far that returning was as tedious as go o’er. In another half an hour’s time our diligence was rewarded and we were strapped in, canted backwards and levered out into the sun, head first.
The X2 was billed as extreme, and perhaps because it was so little like flying, it was my least favorite ride of them all. In fact, it was much more like a high-speed accelerated departure with post stall gyrations tending towards – although never quite sustaining – an incipient inverted spin. The human body may or may not have been made to vault through footless halls of air, but this particular vessel of clay was most assuredly not fabricated for the purpose of being flung backwards through inverted loops. I mischanced to lever my noggin off the headrest for to gain a little perspective when a particularly ill-timed excursion planted it violently back into the seat again. My enjoyment wore thin before the two minutes were up, and the three of us jointly agreed that it was time to away, begone: The feast was at its best. Goliath would have to wait another day.
A bit more traffic on the way home. A serious crash on the northbound 5 was accompanied by a rubber-necking fender bender on the opposite side. You could almost feel sorry for the second set. Almost.
A little of the old In and Out half way home – that’s the burger joint, you know – and then back by 1630.
It was a pretty good day.