Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I Almost Died at Six Flags.

Okay, I didn't actually almost die, but it felt like I was going to. And I will get to that story in a moment. Let me start by saying that I love Six Flags. I know I'm kind of supposed to be a grown-up at this point, but I'm not and I'm not sure that I ever will be. But I'd never been to Six Flags Great Adventure, only the ones in Texas, and I was not disappointed. The park was nice, and since we went in the middle of September, it was a nice, cool day and the park was only half full, which was a definite plus.

Though the themes in the park weren't as strong overall as I've seen in other parks, the rides more than made up for it. This ride to the left, is the Bizarro, and I'd have to say it was my favorite. I've realized that I love roller coasters, but I hate falling (take a look at the Kingda Ka, which there was no way in hell I was going to ride it) so the Bizarro was a perfect ride for me. It does take you up really high, but then rather than dropping you straight down, it kinda twists and rolls and then goes into loops. You go through mist, between two bursts of fire and around this freezing-misting-flashy thing (as pictured) and the whole time Bizzaro talks to you via speakers by the seats. We rode it twice. It was fabulous.

My next favorite ride was the Superman: Ultimate Flight, and I'm sure it was Rickey's favorite. Basically you get strapped in and then turned so that you're facing the ground, then you ride up the initial hill (I'm sure there's a technical term for it) and all the while you're just hanging, looking straight down with nothing underneath you, as you're pulled a couple hundred feet (if it hadn't been for that part, this ride would've been my favorite). It was all very intense cause your body is pulling you down and you know you're super strapped in, but it's still a little unsettling. But then as soon as the car goes over the peak and starts falling, the gravity sucks you up into your seat and you really feel like you are flying. It was bad ass. We wanted to ride it again but unfortunately we ran out of time.

There were a couple more pretty cool rides, but I'm going to skip all that and get to the terrifying stuff. The second ride of the day (and this is like 11:30 am) was the Nitro (as picutred). It was a very long, ups & downs type coaster, and it seemed pretty simple. One part in particular was too simple: the harness. As you can see in the picture, the only thing holding you in is a little lap thingy. Well, when you are taken up 22 stories, and then dropped at a 30 degree angle, that lap thingy really doesn't do the trick. You come up out of your seat, and you can feel the harness moving slightly, and I know it's safe and it's not going to spring open, but it sure didn't feel that way. Every little hill was completely terrifying and I just couldn't enjoy myself. Had there been those fun chest harnesses, I'm sure this would've been a cool ride.

Now for the almost death part. Rickey thought it would be fun to ride the little sky tram thing (as pictured) and I thought, sure, that'll be fun and nice. I think I rode one when I lived in Germany, but I don't remember. Well, we get in a car, and after we're about 20 feet off the ground it hits me-- I have a fear of open-air heights. I'm not confronted by it too often but when I am, I don't handle it well (it goes back to the whole falling thing). So I'm breathing and internally calming myself down and Rickey's all excited and looking at stuff, and I realize we're going to be fine. And then BAM! the whole track stops moving. So we're hanging there, the other track is moving fine but we're just stopped. Rickey assures me it will be fine, but as the minutes pass, and the douchebag kids passing us are making fun of us, I start freaking out. Eventually a man on the speaker tells us we'll be moving in a few minutes, but then a few minutes later he comes on again and it seems like it's going to take a long while.

After a few more minutes we start moving again, but very very slowly. And then we stop again. The first time we stopped, we were on one of the steel beams, so should something go terribly wrong we're at least hanging on something. The second time we stop, we're just out there on the line, and now we're near a car of freaked out teenage girls who won't shut up and are making me freak out even more. We hang there for a little while longer, and I'm clinging on to the center pole for dear life, but I'm trying not to show Rickey how completely terrified I am, because he's totally calm and cool and I'm positive he'll think I'm big weirdo. So eventually they get us moving again, but still very slowly, and we finally get pulled in and get off the car. And I couldn't be more relieved. I'm sure it all sounds completely stupid and irrational, and it probably is, but hanging in a little cage a hundred feet off the ground while experiencing technical difficulties, well, it was rather unsettling. We move away from the ride and Rickey asks if I'm okay, and I am, and it turns out, he was just as freaked out as I was, but he didn't want to worry me more by showing it. And it's good he did, because I would have lost my shit if I knew he was scared too.

So anyways, the other parts of the day were all fun and fabulous. We had delicious burgers, saw a super fantastic tiger show and just had solid fun all around. And as a kicker at the end of the day, we decided to try to and win something from the boardwalk. First we thought about a stuffed animal, but then realized those were stupid. And there were these superhero capes that you could win, but you can buy them for almost just as cheap. And then I saw one you couldn't buy, and you had to win: a University of Texas cape (which is where I went to school). So Rickey helped me play the basketball-shooter game, and he won it for me! It's totally rad. Six Flags=WIN.


  1. Sam, your description of Nitro fully explains why it is awesome! I lovethat ride (which is essentially the same as Chicagoland's Raging Bull at Six Flags Great America). Last time I was there, Jessi and I rode Nitro six times in about an hour (the crowd at the park was minimal at best).

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed it, and I can see for some people how it could be fun, but like I said, I need something solid and stable to hold onto or I lose my mind.