HUMOR – Yesterday I rode the world’s longest wooden rollercoaster, The Beast, at King’s Island theme park in Mason, Ohio.
The Beast was born 34 years ago, in April 1979. That is 340 years old in rollercoaster years, so as I waited in line I was acutely aware of every rusted bolt and was hyperalert for signs of termites, rotted wood, and rogue beavers. I am nothing if not a rollercoaster safety and engineering expert.
I also quadruple-checked my safety restraints after the pubescent park attendant checked them because one can never be too safe when it comes to the possibility of flying off into the trees at 65 mph and because I have trust issues.
The ride began with a slow climb that had me screaming internally: “Is it supposed to make that noise?! Is our car supposed to rattle like that?! Is that normal?! IS THAT A LOOSE BOLT?! I think this ride is broken!”.
Externally, I was telling my 7-year-old daughter not to worry. People hardly ever fall out of rollercoasters and drop 140 feet onto the unforgiving asphalt below.
The Beast is 7,359 feet of rickety climbs and drops which last about four minutes and end with a plunge down a 540-degree helix tunnel that didn’t make me cry, but definitely made me rule out a career as a fighter pilot.
The ride was somewhat terrifying, incredibly fun, and I suspect that it gave me a concussion.
My husband and I are about to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. I never thought that we would last this long given my history of angry, hormone-induced cell phone throwing and my husband’s propensity to leave dead wildlife in my car. But here we are.
A lot of people have been successfully married a lot longer than I have and by no means do I consider myself a marriage expert. However, I have gathered some mildly amusing observations that I offer as my free gift to you, as long as you have nothing better to do, like make sure your kids are not eating crayons or if you are on duty at NORAD – that is, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, of course you are.
Marriage is hard. There are a lot of frustrating times when you will internally scream, “Is this normal?! Is that a loose bolt?! I think this thing is broken!” like when your spouse brings home a German shepherd dog without consulting you.
There may be times when you will externally scream, as my 9-year-old niece did yesterday, “I hate this, I hate this, I hate this, I hate this!” when your spouse backseat drives you for the 3,557th consecutive day.
There might come a time when a stranger’s gum hits you in the face, but that does not work with this analogy so forget that I mentioned it.
There will also be times when you will fly inverted through a loop or spin through a helix, laughing your head off. Your heart will be in your throat and you will try not to soil your pants out of sheer happiness. Those are the times to focus on when you are worried that the ride might be broken.
And don’t forget to quadruple-check your buckles and restraints.
Elise Haynes chronicles family life in her blog Haynes Family Yard Sale. Any opinions stated in this column are her own and not necessarily those of St. George News.
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